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Other crime or violence

Strangulation; Tampering with Physical Evidence; Marsy’s Law

Issues include whether a defendant may invoke the rights afforded to a victim or inquire whether a victim’s rights may have been violated as a basis for vacating a conviction. Issues also include whether evidence was sufficient to support a conviction for tampering with evidence where the defendant drops drugs in the presence and view of police in light of the Kentucky Supreme Court’s decision in Commonwealth v. Bell. Affirmed in part. 
Reversed in part.

Human Trafficking; Human Trafficking Victims Service Fee

Any person convicted of an offense in KRS 529.100 or 529.110 shall be ordered to pay, in addition to any other fines, penalties, or applicable forfeitures, a human trafficking victims service fee of not less than ten thousand dollars ($10,000) to be remitted to the fund created in KRS 529.140. Appellant argued that the trial court should have waived the fee as to him, due to indigency. Affirmed.

Robbery; Burglary; Sexual Assault

For roughly six weeks, students at the University of Louisville reported a series of robberies, burglaries, and a sexual assault for which the appellant was ultimately charged and convicted. Prior to trial, the appellant moved the court to sever the first-degree rape, first-degree robbery, and firstdegree burglary charges, which all involved the same victim, from the remainder of the charges. When weighed against the remaining charges, the trial court correctly found the single incident of rape and assault insufficient to require severance under RCr 8.31. Affirmed.


Violence Against Women; Assault; Victim-impact Evidence; Involuntary Intoxication

The defendant beat his victim with a wooden object and attempted to burn her with a blowtorch. He also shot her friend. The victim survived but sustained several injuries requiring hospitalization. The friend died in the hospital. The defendant was indicted by a grand jury on charges of murder, first-degree assault, and tampering with physical evidence.

Attempted Murder; Theft by Unlawful Taking; Violence Against Women; Jury Instructions

The trial court did not err in declining the defendant’s request for a renunciation jury instruction, as there was no evidence that the defendant made any efforts to abandon his commission of the crime or took any steps to avoid its commission prior to the shooting. Rather, he completed the act of shooting his girlfriend, but failed to kill her as he had intended.

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