Friday, January 24, 2014

NC Supreme Court Criminal Decision, Jan. 24, 2014

State v. Whittington. -- Glenn Whittington, Nash County, Judge Sumner.

COA Decision Below: State v. Whittington.  Appeal of trafficking convictions, for sale, delivery, and possession.

First, indictments by sale and delivery were defective as it did not name who defendant sold or delivered to.

Second, it was error to admit a lab report showing it was opium, where the analyst was not present at trial. Under statute, if the state gives notice of intent to use a lab report without the analyst, the defendant must give notice of objection 15 days before trial. No evidence was presented that defendant received the lab report or waived the objection.

New trial.
Supreme Court: Reversed decision on grounds that defendant never adequately raised or preserved the confrontation issue at trial. Defendant's only objection at trial was not that he was not provided notice, but that 90-95(g) notice provisions were invalid under Melendez-Diaz. This is not the case. NC Notice and Demand Statute is valid. No evidence that notice was not given and Defendant did not object to the notice and demand the SBI agent appear in court.

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