APPEAL FROM CRIMINAL DISTRICT COURT ORLEANS PARISH. NO. 510-042, SECTION " F" . Honorable Robin D. Pittman, Judge.
LEON A. CANNIZZARO, JR., District Attorney, J. BRYANT CLARK, JR., Assistant District Attorney, PARISH OF ORLEANS, New Orleans, LA, COUNSEL FOR APPELLEE/ STATE OF LOUISIANA.
SHERRY WATTERS, LOUISIANA APPELLATE PROJECT, New Orleans, LA, COUNSEL FOR DEFENDANT/APPELLANT.
(Court composed of Judge Max N. Tobias, Jr., Judge Madeleine M. Landrieu, Judge Sandra Cabrina Jenkins).
SANDRA CABRINA JENKINS,
[2014-0691 La.App. 4 Cir. 1] After the close of a jury trial, the defendant, Ryan Poree, was convicted of two counts of second degree murder, one count of attempted second degree murder, and one count of obstruction of justice. Counsel for the defendant filed a motion to withdraw and a Benjamin  brief with this Court, requesting only a review of the record for errors patent. After conducting our own independent examination of the entire record, we grant counsel's motion to withdraw and affirm the defendant's convictions and sentences.
FACTUAL AND PROCEDURAL BACKGROUND
The defendant, Ryan Poree, lived next-door to Kimberly Perry on Woodbine Drive in eastern New Orleans. On October 14, 2011, Kimberly and her brother, Alcee Perry, both died of multiple gunshot wounds; Robert Aguillard, the Perrys' nephew, survived a gunshot wound that lacerated his colon and small intestine. Several witnesses identified the defendant as the shooter and the State obtained an indictment charging the defendant with the second degree murders of Kimberly and Alcee, the attempted second degree murder of Robert, and one count of obstruction of justice. The defendant pled not guilty to all charges. The trial court [2014-0691 La.App. 4 Cir. 2] subsequently denied the defendant's motions to suppress the evidence, statement, and identification. Thereafter, the defendant withdrew his not guilty plea and entered a plea of not guilty and not guilty by reason of insanity. The court convened a competency commission, and ultimately found the defendant competent to proceed.
Trial commenced and after five days, the jury found the defendant guilty as charged as to all four counts. Thereafter, the defendant filed a motion for new trial, which the trial court denied. The defendant then waived all delays, and was sentenced to life imprisonment at hard labor without benefit of parole, probation, or suspension of sentence on both second degree murder counts, forty-nine years at hard labor on the attempted second degree murder count, and forty years at hard labor on the obstruction of justice count. The defendant filed motions to reconsider sentence and for appeal, which were denied and granted, respectively. Appellate counsel for the defendant then filed a motion to withdraw and a Benjamin  brief with this Court.
The testimony and evidence adduced at trial is as follows.
Tiffany Samuels, Kimberly's neighbor and best friend, testified at trial. On the date in question, she and Kimberly were outside talking when the defendant drove up at a great rate of speed and parked in front of Kimberly's house, narrowly missing several children who were playing in the street. Ms. Samuels testified that Kimberly told her that the defendant was " stupid" by the way he was driving. Ms. Samuels stated that the defendant apparently overheard the comment and that lead [2014-0691 La.App. 4 Cir. 3] to an argument between Kimberly and him, which ended when the defendant's mother coaxed her son inside. Ms. Samuels stated that the defendant came back outside within minutes to move his truck in front of his house, and the argument continued. Ms. Samuels testified that the defendant's father then came to the door and his son followed him inside.
Ms. Samuels testified that they went inside their respective houses, and she did not see Kimberly again until Kimberly dropped their daughters off at her house. She stated that sometime later, her husband came inside to tell her that something happened across the street and that she needed to come outside. She stated that she followed her husband outside, but once he made it across the street, he told her to ...