BARNES, P. J., MCMILLIAN and REESE, JJ.
Fulton County jury found Charles Patterson guilty of two
counts of armed robbery,  two counts of aggravated assault,
one count of the possession of a firearm during the
commission of a felony. He was sentenced to concurrent life
sentences and a five-year consecutive sentence on the firearm
charge. Following the denial of his motion for a new trial,
he files this appeal, arguing that he was denied the
effective assistance of counsel, that there was insufficient
evidence to support his convictions, and that the trial court
erred in denying his motion to suppress. For the reasons set
forth, infra, we affirm.
in the light most favorable to the jury's verdict,
record shows the following. On August 5, 2007, Ashley Paige
and Stephanie Clark, both sophomores at Clark Atlanta
University, drove to a friend's townhome in Atlanta. Upon
arrival, they parked in a lighted parking space across from
the townhome, exited the vehicle, and began walking. A man
ran up behind them with a gun, told them not to scream, and
grabbed their purses, which contained their cell phones. The
man waved the gun and told Paige to empty her pockets. After
she turned her pockets inside out to show him they were
empty, the man ran away.
described the robber as a dark-skinned male with a small
build, wearing a pulled-down "bucket hat" or
"fisherman's hat." She only got a glimpse of
his face and was later unable to identify the robber from a
described the man as having dark skin with an unusual mark,
she later identified as a tattoo on his forehead, wearing a
black shirt and a "flipped up" bucket hat, and
carrying a silver gun with a white handle. She testified that
during the robbery, she continually focused on "his face
and at the gun[, and] . . . the picture of the person was
just ingrained in [her] memory." Two weeks after the
robbery, Clark identified the Appellant from a photo lineup
on a computer screen and identified him again from a black
and white paper photo lineup. She also identified him in
court during the jury trial.
testified that, after the robbery, she replaced her stolen
cell phone, but kept her previous phone number. About 24
hours after the crime occurred, she received a phone call
from a woman she did not know, later identified as Santana
Hicks, who was looking for the Appellant. While speaking with
Clark, Hicks described the Appellant's gun as
"silver with a white handle[, ]" and said that she
had seen items that matched some of Clark's stolen items.
Hicks told Clark she knew who had committed the robbery and
referred to the robber as "Charles" and by his
nickname, "Spade." After the conversation, Clark
called the Atlanta Police Department detective assigned to
the case, Detective Hood, and gave him Hicks' phone
couple of weeks later, Clark had a second conversation with
Hicks, the day before she viewed the photo lineups from the
robbery. During that conversation, Hicks told her that the
Appellant was on his way to Hicks' home and asked if
Clark wanted to come and try to retrieve her belongings.
Clark declined to go to Hicks' home, but she called
Detective Hood and told him about the call. The Appellant was
subsequently arrested near Hicks' home.
trial, Hicks testified on behalf of the State and stated that
the Appellant called her from Clark's phone number to
speak to Hicks' sister, the mother of two of his
children. When Hicks called the number back and spoke to
Clark, she learned that Clark had been robbed. She asked
Clark to describe the robber, and after hearing the
description, Hicks told Clark "his name is Charles
Patterson." Hicks testified that, during the same
conversation, she told Clark that the Appellant had robbed
two different women at an Applebee's restaurant using
"a silver handgun[.]" When Hicks spoke to Detective
Hood about the robbery involving Clark and Paige, he asked
her to "come down and make a statement." Hicks
testified that she called 911 and reported that the Appellant
had stolen some items from her home.
Hood testified that he initially spoke with Clark on August
13, 2007. The next day he conducted the photo lineups for
both Paige and Clark.
Appellant testified at trial that he and Hicks' sister
did not get along well. He further testified that he and
Hicks had a sexual encounter, unbeknownst to Hicks'
sister, and Hicks did not like him. The Appellant denied
robbing Paige and Clark, and testified that he received
Clark's cell phone from a man named "Bicycle"
in exchange for drugs.
jury found the Appellant guilty of two counts of armed
robbery, two counts of aggravated assault, and one count of
possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony. He
filed a motion for new trial. After a hearing, the trial
court denied the Appellant's motion. This appeal
on appeal from a criminal conviction, the appellate court
view[s] the evidence in the light most favorable to the
verdict and an appellant no longer enjoys the presumption of
innocence. [The reviewing court] determines whether the
evidence is sufficient under the standard of Jackson v.
Virginia,  and does not weigh the evidence or
determine witness credibility. Any conflicts or
inconsistencies in the evidence are for the jury to resolve.
As long as there is some competent evidence, even though
contradicted, to support each fact necessary to make out the
State's case, [the reviewing court] must uphold the
standard of Jackson v. Virginia, is met if the
evidence is sufficient for any rational trier of fact to find
the defendant guilty beyond a reasonable doubt of the crimes
charged." With these guiding principles in mind, we
turn now to the Appellant's specific claims of error.
Appellant argues that the trial court erred in denying his
motion to suppress the photo lineup identification as
impermissibly suggestive and in allowing Clark to make an
in-court identification. We disagree.
in considering the admissibility of a pretrial
identification, this Court first determines
whether the identification procedure was impermissibly
suggestive. If the answer to that inquiry is negative, [the
reviewing court] need not consider the second question -
whether there was a substantial likelihood of irreparable
misidentification. Conversely, [the reviewing court] may
immediately proceed to the second question and, if the answer
thereto is negative, [the reviewing court] may entirely
pretermit the first question.
even if the circumstances surrounding Clark's pretrial
identification of him as the robber "rendered the showup
impermissibly suggestive, the evidence is inadmissible only
if[, ] under the totality of the circumstances, there was a
substantial likelihood of irreparable
trial court denied the Appellant's motion to suppress,
finding that Clark's pretrial identification of the
Appellant, based on the evidence heard, "was not
inherently suggestive and was of independent origin."
During the motion to suppress hearing, Clark testified that,
she had the opportunity to observe the robber at the scene of
the crime and that during her conversation with Hicks, she
gave Hicks "the exact descriptions of [the robber's]
face and the tattoo[.]" Also, Clark stated that,
although the paper version of the photo lineup did not
clearly show the tattoo, "[the tattoo] was very evident
[on the computer lineup] because the computer [photo lineup
was] in color[, ]" and she was "very certain"
the person she identified in the lineup committed the
on the foregoing, under the totality of circumstances, we
hold that there was little likelihood of misidentification of
the Appellant by Clark and that the trial court did not err
in denying the Appellant's motion to
Appellant argues that there was insufficient evidence to
convict him of the armed robberies because there was no other
evidence presented at trial that he committed the armed
robberies, and there was no physical evidence such as a
weapon found on him when he was arrested. We disagree.
individual commits armed robbery "when, with intent to
commit theft, he or she takes property of another from the
person or the immediate presence of another by use of an
offensive weapon, or any replica, article, or device having
the appearance of such weapon." The victim's
testimony is generally sufficient to establish a
Clark testified that she was able to identify the Appellant
as the robber from the photo lineup because she kept looking
at his face during the robbery. Clark's identification of
him is direct evidence of his guilt. Therefore, the
circumstantial evidence rule does not apply
here. Also, Detective Hood testified that,
after seeing the photo lineup on the computer, Clark
identified the Appellant. Further, the Appellant admitted to