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Glenn v. State

Supreme Court of Georgia

February 16, 2015


Murder. Clayton Superior Court. Before Judge Carter.

Judgments affirmed.

Jennifer A. Trieshmann, for appellant.

Tracy Graham-Lawson, District Attorney, Elizabeth A. Baker, Assistant District Attorney, Samuel S. Olens, Attorney General, Patricia B. Attaway Burton, Deputy Attorney General, Paula K. Smith, Senior Assistant Attorney General, Michael A. Oldham, Assistant Attorney General, for appellee.

HINES, Presiding Justice. All the Justices concur.


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Hines, Presiding Justice.

James Michael Glenn III appeals from his convictions and sentences for the felony murder of Cliff Brannon and possession of a firearm during the commission of a crime. For the reasons that follow, we affirm.[1]

Construed to support the verdicts, the evidence showed that at 6:00 p.m. on August 26, 2011, James Michael Glenn III and Aaron Weeks were walking down a street when Brannon drove up close behind them. Glenn and Weeks moved off the road and continued [296 Ga. 510] walking, but Brannon again drove up behind them, close enough that the two men believed Brannon's car would hit them. Glenn and Weeks exchanged words with Brannon, who responded by yelling racial slurs and unsuccessfully trying to have his dog attack the two men. Weeks, believing that Brannon was deliberately antagonizing them, walked away; he looked back and saw Brannon inside his car with one hand near the center of the car and his other hand by the door; Glenn was pointing a .25 caliber pistol at the car. Glenn fired several shots onto the street surface in the direction of Brannon's vehicle and then left the area.

Later that evening, Glenn told Weeks that Brannon was " going to get what he deserves." Glenn's roommate saw Glenn come home late that night, load his pistol, and leave. Glenn returned early that morning and set his pistol on the table; later that morning, Glenn told his roommate that he had killed someone, but did not provide any details. On the evening of August 29, 2011, Glenn's roommate contacted a law enforcement detective, and related what he knew. At trial, Glenn testified that, late that night, he ran into Brannon, they argued, Brannon physically attacked him while keeping one hand concealed behind his back, and that he shot Brannon in self-defense, although Brannon never produced a weapon.

At 2:00 a.m. August 27, 2011, law enforcement officers responded to a 911 call from Brannon; he was on the threshold of his residence bleeding heavily from gunshot wounds. Blood spatters were inside Brannon's house, and there was a trail of his blood leading from a site on the street 150 feet from his house; six .25 caliber shell casings

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were found at that site, and they proved to have been ejected from Glenn's pistol. No weapons were found in Brannon's house or the immediate area. Brannon was taken to a hospital, where he told a law enforcement officer that he was walking his dog when a young black male walked past him, gave him a " funny smile," and then turned and shot him; because of Brannon's pain, he asked that the interview with the officer be postponed, and it was then terminated. Brannon had received three gunshots, to the face, neck, and back, and on September 2, 2011, he died of these wounds without giving a complete interview to the law enforcement officer. During his autopsy, no stippling was found around his wounds, which, despite the passage of time between the wounds and Brannon's death, was some indication that he had not been shot at close range.

1. Glenn contends that the evidence against him was insufficient to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that he was guilty of the crimes of which he was convicted. See Jackson v. Virginia, 443 U.S. 307 (99 S.Ct. 2781, 61 L.Ed.2d 560) (1979). Specifically, he asserts that the State failed to disprove his affirmative defense of justification in acting in [296 Ga. 511] self-defense in shooting Brannon. See Crane v. State, 281 Ga. 635, 637 (641 S.E.2d 795) (2007). " When this Court reviews the sufficiency of the evidence, it does not re-weigh the evidence or resolve conflicts in witness testimony, but instead it defers to the jury's assessment of the weight and credibility of the evidence. [Cit.]" Greeson v. State, 287 Ga. 764, 765 (700 S.E.2d 344) (2010). It is for the jury to resolve conflicts in the evidence and questions of witness credibility, not this Court. Tolbert v. State, 282 Ga. 254, 256 (1) (647 S.E.2d 555) (2007). Although Glenn testified that Brannon acted as though he had a pistol, attacked Glenn with his hands, and that the two men struggled, other evidence was that Glenn expressed a desire for revenge on Brannon, and that Brannon was shot in the back, as well as in the face and neck. The question ...

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