MELTON, Presiding Justice.
a jury trial, Earl Crump was found guilty of murder and
various other offenses in connection with the shooting death
of Simon Riley. In his sole enumeration on appeal, Crump
contends that he received ineffective assistance of trial
counsel. We affirm.
Viewed in the light most favorable to the verdict, the record
shows that, at around 9:30 p.m. on March 8, 2009, Crump, a
convicted felon, went to Riley's home and rang the
doorbell. Riley knew Crump, so Riley let him into the house.
After Crump spoke with Riley for a few minutes, Crump pulled
out a gun and shot Riley in the head three times and once in
the arm, killing him.
brother, Roxberg, who was also at the home and in his bedroom
at the time of the shooting, saw Crump leaving the scene and
getting into a car that he recognized as Crump's. Roxberg
also later identified Crump in a photographic lineup. Roxberg
called 911 upon finding his brother's body downstairs,
and he was able to help police in their search for Crump by
letting them know where Crump lived.
the shooting, Crump told an acquaintance, Morris Guerra, that
he had panicked and that "something went wrong."
Crump also threatened to kill Guerra's family if Guerra
testified against him. Additionally, Crump asked another
acquaintance if he knew how a person could remove gun powder
residue from his hands.
apprehended Crump the morning after the shooting, and, after
being read his Miranda rights, he agreed to be interviewed by
them. Police also obtained a positive test for gun powder
residue from Crump's hands, and they found .38 caliber
shell casings at the crime scene and .380 caliber bullets at
Crump's home that came from the same gun as the one used
in the shooting. During Crump's recorded interview with
police, Crump admitted that he had owned a .38 caliber gun
(which he had allegedly sold) and that he had been to
Riley's home on the evening of the murder. Also, while
police were out of the interview room, but while Crump was
still being recorded, Crump said to himself, "Moe better
not say a word, " and "Hmm, kill Roxberg, "
"I knew I should have, " "One f******
evidence was sufficient to enable the jury to find Crump
guilty of the crimes for which he was convicted beyond a
reasonable doubt. Jackson v. Virginia, 443 U.S. 307
(99 S.C. 2781, 61 L.Ed.2d 560) (1979).
Crump contends that he received ineffective assistance of
counsel because his trial attorney failed to object to the
admission into evidence of a ballistics testing report and
testimony about the results of that report that showed that
the unspent rounds recovered at Crump's home came from
the same gun that was used in the murder. Specifically, he
claims that, because counsel received the ballistics report
on the morning of trial, rather than at least ten days prior
to trial, counsel was ineffective for failing to object to
the admissibility of the ballistics evidence relating to the
results contained in the report. See OCGA § 17-16-4 (a)
(4) ("The prosecuting attorney shall, no later than ten
days prior to trial, or as otherwise ordered by the court,
permit the defendant at a time agreed to by the parties or
ordered by the court to inspect and copy or photograph a
report of any physical or mental examinations and of
scientific tests or experiments"). We disagree.
In order to succeed on his claim of ineffective assistance,
[Crump] must prove both that his trial counsel's
performance was deficient and that there is a reasonable
probability that the trial result would have been different
if not for the deficient performance. Strickland v.
Washington, 466 U.S. 668 (104 S.Ct. 2052, 80 L.Ed.2d
674) (1984). If an appellant fails to meet his or her burden
of proving either prong of the Strickland test, the
reviewing court does not have to examine the other prong.
Id. at 697 (IV); Fuller v. State, 277 Ga.
505 (3) (591 S.E.2d 782) (2004). In reviewing the trial
court's decision, "'[w]e accept the trial
court's factual findings and credibility determinations
unless clearly erroneous, but we independently apply the
legal principles to the facts.' [Cit.]" Robinson
v. State, 277 Ga. 75, 76 (586 S.E.2d 313) (2003).
Wright v. State, 291 Ga. 869, 870 (2) (734 S.E.2d
cannot succeed on either prong of the Strickland
test. As an initial matter, to the extent that Crump claims
that the report itself never should have been admitted into
evidence at trial, such a claim is baseless, as the report
about which Crump complains was never actually admitted into
evidence at his trial.Crump's counsel cannot be deemed to
have performed deficiently by failing to lodge an unnecessary
objection. See, e.g., Vaughn v. State, 307 Ga.App.
754, 759 (4) (706 S.E.2d 137) (2011) (Allegation of
ineffective assistance was "totally without merit"
in situation where "it was not necessary for defense
counsel to make an objection"). Furthermore, there is no
evidence that the State acted in bad faith with respect to
the time within which it provided the report to trial
counsel, as the record reveals that the State provided the
test results to defense counsel as soon as they became
available. Accordingly, an objection to the admissibility of
the ballistics evidence would have been unsuccessful.
Cockrell v. State, 281 Ga. 536, 539 (3) (640 S.E.2d
262) (2007) (Lab report that was not provided to defense
counsel more than ten days before trial, but was provided as
soon as the State received it on the third day of trial, was
nevertheless admissible, as "the severe sanction of
exclusion of evidence [for violation of the ten day rule]
applies only where there has been a showing of bad faith by
the State and prejudice to the defense")
(emphasis in original). "Failure to make a meritless
objection cannot be evidence of ineffective assistance."
Hayes v. State, 262 Ga. 881, 884 (3) (c) (426 S.E.2d
886) (1993). Further, to the extent that Crump claims that
his trial counsel should have objected to the State
expert's testimony at trial based on having received the
ballistics report less than ten days prior to trial, we find
that the admission of this testimony could not have created a
reasonable probability that the outcome of the trial would
have been different in light of the overwhelming evidence of
Crump's guilt, including the fact that Roxberg saw and
recognized Crump as he left the scene of the crime,
Crump's own admission that he was at the crime scene on
the evening of the murder, and Crump's expression of
regret that he did not kill Roxberg - the only potential
witness to the crime. See, e.g., Dawson v.
State, 300 Ga. 332 (794 S.E.2d 132) (2016). Moreover,
trial counsel testified at the motion for new trial hearing
that he was not surprised by the test results, that he fully
discussed the ballistics report with Crump prior to trial,
and that the test results did nothing to change his trial
strategy. We find no merit to Crump's claim of