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State v. Robinson

Court of Appeal of Louisiana, Second Circuit

April 15, 2015

STATE OF LOUISIANA, Appellee
v.
TERRESE LATRON ROBINSON, AKA TERRESZ ROBINSON, AKA TERRESZE ROBINSON, Appellant

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Appealed from the Fourth Judicial District Court for the Parish of Ouachita, Louisiana. Trial Court No. 13F0333. Honorable Wilson Rambo, Judge.

TERRESE LATRON ROBINSON, Pro se.

CAREY J. ELLIS, Louisiana Appellate Project, Counsel for Appellant.

JERRY L. JONES, District Attorney; HOLLY A. CHAMBERS-JONES, SHIRLEY M. WILSON DAVIS, Assistant District Attorneys, Counsel for Appellee.

Before STEWART, DREW and LOLLEY, JJ.

OPINION

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[49,677 La.App. 2 Cir. 1] LOLLEY, J.

This criminal appeal arises from the Fourth Judicial District Court, Parish of Ouachita, State of Louisiana. The defendant, Terrese Robinson,[1] was charged by bill of indictment with two counts of aggravated rape, second degree kidnapping, attempted second degree kidnapping, carjacking, and felony theft. The indictment was amended two times without changing the substance of the charges. A jury unanimously found Robinson guilty as charged on all six counts. After a subsequent sentencing hearing, Robinson received maximum sentences on all counts. He appeals his convictions and sentences.

Facts

The following facts were gleaned from witness testimony and evidence at trial. All of the crimes of conviction occurred on three separate days, upon three victims in Monroe, Louisiana, in January 2013.

Victim One--MB

MB testified that on Friday, January 18, 2013, she was a student at the University of Louisiana at Monroe (" ULM" ). She had an 8:00 a.m. Friday class at Hemphill Hall on the campus. On her walk to class, a man approached her and began to speak

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with her, asking about her major and where she was going. When MB told him she was walking to class, the man told her he had a gun and to come with him. MB tried to escape, but the man threatened to hurt her. MB believed that he had a gun, because his hand was inside his jacket, out of her view. The man took MB just off campus, into the [49,677 La.App. 2 Cir. 2] shed of an abandoned home. Inside the shed, the man then told her he was not going to rob her, but that he wanted sex. MB tried to fight him, but the man began to choke her until she nearly lost consciousness. MB believed he was going to kill her. The man told MB to undress and then made her lie down; he removed his pants, and put a condom on. MB begged him not to, but the man attempted to penetrate her. The man then began to perform oral sex on MB and attempted to rape her. The man then removed the condom, penetrated her, and raped her vaginally. The man ejaculated on the floor. The man took the used condom and placed it in an egg carton, and placed that in a trash can outside. He then grabbed MB by the arm and led her back to the place on campus where he had first taken her.

MB went to Madison Hall dormitory for help from her friends, who called the police, her sister, and her parents. The university police and Monroe city police came to the dorm. MB was then taken to Saint Francis Hospital emergency room for a rape examination. MB and her sister, who also attended ULM, packed their belongings and left school that day to return home. MB subsequently gave a detailed statement of the incident to the police in the days following her return home.

Officer Dennis Sims testified that he was employed with the ULM Police Department at the time of MB's attack. Officer Sims was dispatched to Madison Hall dormitory the morning of January 18, 2013, where he made contact with the occupants of room 208 of the dormitory, MB and her friends. According to Off. Sims, MB was hyperventilating and hysterical. Her friends described to him how MB had arrived in their room: disheveled and upset [49,677 La.App. 2 Cir. 3] with the news she had been kidnapped and raped. MB reported to Off. Sims that an unknown black male had approached her, told her he had a gun, and threatened to hurt her. MB also told Off. Sims that the unknown man walked her off campus to an unknown location, later identified as 3304 Armand Street, where he raped her. MB's statement was detailed he said, but also hysterical, and he had to put it together in bits and pieces throughout their conversation. Officer Sims contacted his supervisors, Lieutenant Meeham and Detective Kevin Bonner, who arrived at the room. The ULM Police Department subsequently located the crime scene, and Off. Sims went to the location of the rape. He testified that he saw, in plain view, a condom thrown on top of an egg crate in the trash can outside. Officer Sims testified that MB's clothes were dirty and her hair was messed up, but he did not see observable injuries.

Detective Bonner with the ULM Police Department testified that he was called in to work on his day off on January 18, 2013. At the police station, Det. Bonner gathered things he would need for an investigation, and he went to the crime scene, 3304 Armand Street. Detective Bonner was briefed on MB's statement to Off. Sims. Detective Bonner photographed the scene and described at trial the photographs he took of the scene. While there, Det. Bonner found one earring on the ground in the shed. He then left and went to Saint Francis Hospital, where MB was. He spoke with MB, who also provided him with a written statement. A rape kit was taken at the hospital, and signed over to Det. Bonner through a Physical Evidence

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Transfer Sheet (" PERK" ). Detective Bonner signed over all of the evidence [49,677 La.App. 2 Cir. 4] he collected at the scene and the rape kit, to Det. Jim Booth of the Monroe Police Department. At trial, Det. Bonner identified State's Exhibit 4 as the condom containing semen that was taken from the scene of the crime. Detective Bonner said that MB only had on one earring at the hospital when he spoke with her. MB never told Detective Bonner that she felt or saw a gun, but that the man told her he had a gun and she believed him.

Detective James A. Booth, a sergeant for the Monroe Police Department, formerly a Child Abuse and Sex Crimes Detective, testified that on January 18, 2013, he was called to investigate a rape at 3304 Armand Street. The ULM Police Department was already there, and Booth obtained from them the evidence they had gathered. Detective Booth testified that the following Monday, he spoke with MB, who described the incident to him. Detective Booth determined that the residence where the crime took place was vacant.

Stephanie Gullete, a Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner, is the program coordinator for the coroner's office for examining sexual assault patients. At trial, Gullete explained that she collects evidence of sexual assault in a PERK. On January 18, 2013, she performed a physical examination on MB at Saint Francis Hospital. Gullete said that MB was tearful and quiet during the exam, but cooperative. MB gave her consent to the physical exam. MB reported to her that she was penetrated vaginally by her attacker, with his penis, and that he had put his mouth on her genital area. In addition to the examination, Gullete photographed MB. Gullete testified as to the contents of State's Exhibit 10-1, the PERK taken from MB's examination at the [49,677 La.App. 2 Cir. 5] hospital. In the kit were the clothes MB wore that day and swabs used on her body to collect any DNA evidence of the attacker. Gullete gave the PERK to Detective Bonner.

Victim Two--LF

LF testified that on January 26, 2013, she was working at Walmart in Monroe. LF got off work at 1:00 p.m. and drove home to her apartment, Parish Square Apartments on Blank Street. When LF parked at her apartments, she saw a black male she did not recognize as a resident in front of the stairs to her apartment. She sat in her car and watched him, thinking he would leave. The man made her nervous. LF decided to get out of her car and proceed to her apartment. The man asked LF for some change as she passed him, and LF ignored him. The man walked behind her, so LF began to pick up her pace to the door. As LF arrived at her door, the man was right behind her. The man told LF that if she did not unlock the door, he would shoot her. He had his hand in his pocket, and LF believed that he had a gun. LF opened the door, he pushed her inside, and closed and locked the door. She screamed, and the man choked her around her neck, and told her if she made any more noise, he would shoot her. The man pushed her toward a love seat in the room and told her to undress. The man still had his hand around her neck; he loosened his grip, and pushed LF to her knees. The man pulled his pants down and raped LF. LF was pushed into the love seat, facing away from him. LF never saw a gun. LF did not know if the man used a condom or ejaculated.

[49,677 La.App. 2 Cir. 6] After he raped LF, the man made her shower. LF said that she did not thoroughly wash herself, hoping to preserve evidence if possible. The man found cleaning supplies, and put bleach on her love seat. The man also sprayed LF with the bleach. The man left, taking LF's cell

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phone and car keys, and then left the apartment in LF's Mercury Milan. LF went next door to a neighbor's house and called 911. LF described the man as having a tattoo on his neck and his hand. The police came to LF's apartment shortly after the rape. She was taken to Saint Francis Hospital emergency room where a physical examination and a rape kit were conducted.

Sierra Ellis, a resident at Parish Square Apartments, testified that she saw an unknown black male at her apartment on the day of LF's rape. Ellis saw the man in the laundry room. When Ellis got to the laundry room, the lights were off, which she said was unusual. When she flipped the lights on, the man was standing in the washroom of the apartment complex. Ellis was startled, but she got a good look at the man. The man walked past her and out of the room. Following the rape, Ellis was shown a photo lineup and identified Robinson when she was interviewed by the Monroe Police Department. She identified the defendant in the courtroom as the man she saw that day in the laundry room.

Meshionte Jones, another resident at Parish Square Apartments, testified that she was approached by an unknown man while she was in her car heading to the store on the day of LF's rape. The man asked her if she had spare change, and asked her if she had a boyfriend. Jones responded " no," closed her vehicle door, and drove away. Jones spoke with police [49,677 La.App. 2 Cir. 7] about the incident. Jones identified the defendant in the courtroom as the man she saw at the apartment on the day of the incident.

Officer Bruce Brown, a patrolman with the Monroe Police Department, testified that he responded to a rape on January 26, 2013, at Parish Square Apartments. Officer Brown spoke with LF and her neighbor, who described the man who raped her, and said they saw him exiting her apartment, run and get into a vehicle, and leave the scene. LF indicated that it was her vehicle, and that the man had stolen it. More officers arrived at the apartment, and Off. Brown left to go search for the vehicle. He found it at a dead end, about a quarter of a mile away from the scene.

Susan McMillan, of the Child Abuse and Sex Crimes Unit of the Monroe Police Department, testified that she responded to a rape on January 26, 2013, at Parish Square Apartments. The victim had already been taken to the hospital upon her arrival. The apartment smelled strongly of bleach. Officer McMillan then went to Saint Francis Hospital and interviewed LF, who related the incident to her. According to Off. McMillan, she had been aware of a prior incident at ULM and had spoken with Detective Booth. The officer noted the description of the suspect and the incident was similar to MB's incident, in that they both described a tattoo on the neck, the man's attempt to make small talk with them, and a similar overall physical description of the suspect. Officer McMillan testified that a rape kit was performed, and submitted to the crime lab in Shreveport for DNA analysis. She testified that she showed LF a photo lineup, and LF identified the defendant as the individual who raped her.

[49,677 La.App. 2 Cir. 8] Dominique Johnson testified that he was present at Parish Square Apartments the day of LF's rape. Johnson saw a man run down the stairs of the apartment, get into a car, and drive away. Johnson also saw a girl he did not know, wrapped in a towel, who said she had been raped by the man driving away. Johnson identified the defendant in the courtroom as the man he saw that day.

Teresa Daniel, a Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner at St. Francis Medical Center, performed a ...


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