Case Caption: Marcella Browne v. People of the Virgin IslandsCase Number: S. Ct. Crim. No. 2010-0088Date: 11/18/2011Author: Hodge, Rhys S. Citation: Summary:

In the prosecution of a defendant for crimes including acting an accessory after the fact in making a false statement to police to protect her husband and her brother, who were suspects in a multiple murder shooting, the People failed to offer sufficient evidence to prove that she knew at the time of making the false statement that the men were involved in the shooting. Mere knowledge that the underlying offense occurred is insufficient. Rather, under 14 V.I.C. § 12(a) the People must prove that the defendant had actual knowledge of the crime and of the principals' participation in it, and that she took some action to hinder or prevent their apprehension, trial, or punishment. Therefore, that portion of the Superior Court's judgment finding this defendant guilty as an accessory after the fact is reversed and her sentence for that conviction is vacated.

Attachment: Open Document or Opinion