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Smith v. Commonwealth

Court of Appeals of Virginia

May 17, 2016

LAMARR RAMON MASEAN SMITH
v.
COMMONWEALTH OF VIRGINIA

          FROM THE CIRCUIT COURT OF THE CITY OF PORTSMOUTH. Johnny E. Morrison, Judge.

          Affirmed.

         Kurt A. Gilchrist for appellant.

         Virginia B. Theisen, Senior Assistant Attorney General (Mark R. Herring, Attorney General, on brief), for appellee.

         Present: Chief Judge Huff, Judge Russell and Senior Judge Bumgardner Argued at Chesapeake, Virginia.

          OPINION

          [66 Va.App. 383] GLEN A. HUFF, J.

         Lamarr R. Smith (" appellant" ) appeals his conviction of felony hit and run, in violation of Code § 46.2-894. After a [66 Va.App. 384] bench trial in the Circuit Court of the City of Portsmouth (" trial court" ), appellant was sentenced to one year and six months of active incarceration. On appeal, appellant argues that the evidence was insufficient to support his conviction because he never left the scene of the accident and provided all required information to the police officer. Because appellant did not provide all the information required by Code § 46.2-894, this Court affirms appellant's conviction.

         I. BACKGROUND

          On appeal, " we consider the evidence and all reasonable inferences flowing from that evidence in the light most favorable to

Page 501

the Commonwealth, the prevailing party at trial." Williams v. Commonwealth, 49 Va.App. 439, 442, 642 S.E.2d 295, 296 (2007) ( en banc ) (quoting Jackson v. Commonwealth, 267 Va. 666, 672, 594 S.E.2d 595, 598 (2004)). So viewed, the evidence is as follows.

         In April 2013, appellant and his girlfriend, Sheryl Boone (" Boone" ), lived in an apartment over a restaurant in Portsmouth. Sydney Meers (" Meers" ), the restaurant's owner, lived directly across the street from the restaurant. Shortly after midnight on April 2, 2013, Meers heard a car's engine " rev up" and looked outside where he " saw a car run into [his] building." Meers recognized appellant as the driver.

         Detective Roesch (" Roesch" ) of the Portsmouth Police Department arrived at the accident scene. As Roesch was taking photographs and inspecting the crime scene, he noticed that " a section of the driver's side air bag . . . appeared to contain what looked like a blood stain." During this investigation, appellant approached Roesch on " several occasions," inquiring " in regards to any possible suspects . . ., as he previously had stated that he believed someone had stolen his vehicle and then crashed it into the building . . . ." After Roesch indicated that a portion of the " deployed driver's front air bag . . . appeared to have a blood stain," appellant responded that " he had previously cut his finger earlier in the day and was concerned that that would somehow have contaminated [66 Va.App. 385] the air bag." Appellant also told Roesch that he was not " driving the vehicle as it struck the building."

         On cross-examination, Roesch testified that appellant provided Roesch with his name and that all of his contact with appellant occurred at the site of the crash. Roesch also testified that upon receiving appellant's name he " would have . . . checked to see if [appellant] had a valid driver's license . . . ." Roesch knew that appellant resided in the apartment above the restaurant due to " [appellant's] statements later on," and Roesch testified that the car ...


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