Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Williams v. State

Court of Appeals of Arkansas, Division III

March 6, 2019

Henry WILLIAMS, Appellant
v.
STATE of Arkansas, Appellee

Page 548

          APPEAL FROM THE PULASKI COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT, SEVENTH DIVISION [NO. 60CR-14-961], HONORABLE BARRY SIMS, JUDGE

         William R. Simpson, Jr., Public Defender, by: Clint Miller, Deputy Public Defender, for appellant.

         Leslie Rutledge, Att’y Gen., by: Jacob H. Jones, Ass’t Att’y Gen., for appellee.

          Opinion

         PHILLIP T. WHITEAKER, Judge

          Appellant Henry Williams was convicted by a Pulaski County jury of one count of first-degree battery; his twenty-five-year sentence was enhanced by an additional three years under Arkansas Code Annotated section 5-4-702 (Repl. 2013), which provides for enhanced penalties for

Page 549

offenses committed in the presence of a child.[1] On appeal, Williams argues that the circuit court should have granted his motion for directed verdict on the sentence enhancement because the State failed to prove that he committed the offense in the presence of a child. We affirm.

          A motion for a directed verdict is a challenge to the sufficiency of the evidence. Carter v. State, 2019 Ark.App. 57, 568 S.W.3d 788. In reviewing a challenge to the sufficiency of the evidence, we view the evidence in the light most favorable to the State and consider only the evidence that supports the verdict. Taylor v. State, 2017 Ark.App. 331, 522 S.W.3d 844; Ealy v. State, 2017 Ark.App. 35, 511 S.W.3d 355. We affirm a conviction if substantial evidence exists to support it. Taylor, supra. Substantial evidence is that which is of sufficient force and character that it will, with reasonable certainty, compel a conclusion one way or the other, without resorting to speculation or conjecture. Id.

          Substantial evidence can be either direct or circumstantial. Chatmon v. State, 2015 Ark. 28, 467 S.W.3d 731. Direct evidence is evidence that proves a fact without resorting to inference, such as when a witness testifies as to what he or she saw, heard, or experienced. Id. Circumstantial evidence is evidence from which a fact may be inferred. Id. Evidence of guilt is not less because it is circumstantial. Id. Further, circumstantial evidence may constitute substantial evidence to support a conviction. Holland v. State, 2017 Ark.App. 49, 510 S.W.3d 311.

          On appeal, Williams does not challenge the sufficiency of the evidence supporting his battery conviction. His only argument concerns the sentence enhancement. As a result, we set forth the facts that support his conviction as necessary to give context to his argument.

         Williams shot Jacent Winston three times in the legs while Winston was washing his truck in the front yard of his home. At the time of the shooting, eight children ranging in ages from eight to seventeen were at Winston’s home awaiting a birthday party for the twelve-year-old daughter of Winston’s girlfriend. Before the actual shooting, Williams engaged Winston in conversation. Williams informed Winston that he lived in a house behind Winston’s, and Williams stated that he had been watching Winston "for a long time." During the conversation, Winston’s daughter[2] came outside, spoke to Winston in the presence of Williams, and returned to the home. Immediately thereafter, Williams pointed a gun at Winston’s head. Winston tried to run around his vehicle but was shot by Williams and fell to the ground. After Winston fell, Williams attempted to shoot him in the head, but his gun either jammed or ran out of bullets. Hearing the gunfire, the children came out of the house onto the front porch. According to Winston, Williams then "looked up at the kids and he smiled and he walked away real slowly."

         As is pertinent to this appeal, at the close of the State’s case, Williams moved for directed verdict on the enhancement for committing the offense in the ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.