petitioner, Brian Daniel Hayslett, appeals the August 26,
2015, order of the Circuit Court of Raleigh County sentencing
him to life in prison without mercy for his first degree
murder conviction. In this appeal, the petitioner contends
that the circuit court committed reversible error by refusing
to give the jury his proffered instruction concerning
voluntary intoxication. The State maintains the evidence did
not warrant such an instruction.
consideration of the parties' briefs, oral arguments, the
appendix record, and the pertinent authorities, this Court
finds no substantial question of law and no prejudicial
error. For these reasons, a memorandum decision affirming the
circuit court's order is appropriate under Rule 21 of the
Rules of Appellate Procedure.
Factual and Procedural Background
McCoy (hereinafter "victim") was murdered sometime
between midnight and 3:00 a.m. on June 19, 2011. The cause of
death was twenty-three distinct stab wounds inflicted to her
head, neck, torso, and upper extremities. According to the
medical examiner, the victim was nearly beheaded, but her
death was not instantaneous; it took "a matter of
minutes." The murder occurred at a trailer owned by
Jeffrey Redden, who discovered the victim's body in a
bedroom used for storage. He notified the police at 8:08 that
morning, telling the 911 operator that the victim had been in
a fight "with a guy named Brian who lives down the
street." The Raleigh County Sheriff's Office
responded to the call. Upon arrival at the Redden trailer,
Captain James Bare discovered a trail of blood leading to a
nearby residence owned by Lisa Meador, which she shared with
the petitioner. Ms. Meador told Captain Bare that the
petitioner had come home in the middle of the night covered
in blood. She said he had a cut on his hand and was carrying
a knife. She further stated that he left shortly thereafter
with his mother to go to her home. While Captain Bare was
conducting his investigation, the petitioner arrived in a car
driven by his mother, Donna Daniels.
Bare approached the petitioner and read him his
Miranda rights. According to Captain Bare, the
petitioner did not appear to be impaired and showed no sign
of distress, surprise or confusion. Captain Bare proceeded to
record an on-scene interview with the petitioner. Initially,
the petitioner denied having any knowledge regarding the
blood trail from Mr. Redden's trailer to Ms. Meador's
residence. When questioned about his fingers that appeared to
be bleeding, the petitioner claimed he had been injured at
work a few days earlier. Upon further inquiry, however, the
petitioner confessed that he had stabbed the victim. The
petitioner's confession to Captain Bare was recorded at
that time as follows:
HAYSLETT: She [the victim] just was up there dancing for me
and Jeff [Redden] and nobody told her to, and then we come
outside and she was like well you owe me money.
HAYSLETT: I said, no, no.
BARE: You owed her money for dancing?
HAYSLETT: And she said well I'm going to tell your old
Meador] then. BARE: Okay.
HAYSLETT: And that was that.
BARE: So what did you do then?
HAYSLETT: Just went back to my house and come back and that
Were you mad when you went back to your house?
HAYSLETT: Uh-huh (yes).
BARE: Okay. So you . . . drove home and then you walked back
up here, is that right?
BARE: Okay. You walked back up here with . . . a hunting
knife. Is that right? You have to say "yes" or
HAYSLETT: Of course, I, so you know what I mean, just talked
to her and she was still saying that shit, so I didn't
want her telling my old lady nothing.
BARE: I see what happened, but I want you to tell me what
happened. I mean I can see it, but I want you to tell me.
HAYSLETT: I just stabbed her in the throat.
BARE: Stabbed her in the throat. How many times did you stab
HAYSLETT: I don't know.
BARE: A bunch?
HAYSLETT: I don't know, I guess.
BARE: Did you cut your hand . . . during the ...