Case Caption: Shevron Percival v. People of the Virgin IslandsCase Number: S. Ct. Crim. No. 2013-0083Date: 01/07/2015Author: Cabret, Maria M. Citation: Summary:

Convictions for first-degree robbery and unauthorized possession of a firearm during a crime of violence are affirmed. An argument need only be fairly presented to the Superior Court in order to be presented for review on appeal, as stated in V.I.S.CT.R. 4(h), and under this standard moving for a judgment of acquittal once—whether after the People rest, after the close of evidence, or after the jury returns a verdict—is sufficient to preserve the issue of the sufficiency of the evidence. However, there is no merit to the challenge in this case since a single positive eyewitness identification may be sufficient proof of guilt, and the defendant's remaining sufficiency arguments go to the credibility of the witnesses, which will not be reviewed on appeal. The evidence was sufficient to support the conviction for robbery in the first degree under 14 V.I.C. § 1861 and § 1862(2) given the testimony of witnesses that the defendant demanded and received money from the victim at gunpoint. Likewise, the evidence was sufficient to support his conviction for unauthorized possession of a firearm during a crime of violence under 14 V.I.C. § 2253(a), which contains no requirement that the People produce a firearm in court, or show that it was operable; all that is required is evidence that the defendant had an unlicensed firearm in his possession during a crime of violence. In this case three witnesses testified to seeing the defendant carry a gun during the robbery, and he stipulated that he did not have a license to possess a firearm in the Virgin Islands. Defendant has made no showing that the Superior Court's failure to grant a new trial in the interests of justice under Superior Court Rule 135 was an abuse of its discretion. His challenge to the out-of-court identification during police investigations using an array of photographs is waived under V.I.S.CT.R. 22(m) for failure to cite even a single supporting legal authority, and he has not explained either on this appeal or before the Superior Court how the photo-array used in this case was impermissibly suggestive. The Superior Court's denial of the suppression motion is affirmed, and the September 26, 2013 judgment and commitment for these offenses is affirmed.

Attachment: Open Document or Opinion