Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Showalter v. Binion

Supreme Court of Appeals of West Virginia

December 20, 2019

Nathaniel Showalter, Petitioner Below, Petitioner
v.
J.T. Binion, Superintendent, Huttonsville Correctional Center, Respondent Below, Respondent

          Mercer County 17-C-428

          MEMORANDUM DECISION

         Petitioner Nathaniel Showalter, pro se, appeals the January 26, 2018, order of the Circuit Court of Mercer County denying his petition for a writ of habeas corpus. Respondent J.T. Binion, Superintendent, Huttonsville Correctional Center, [1] by counsel Zachary Aaron Viglianco, filed a response in support of the circuit court's order.

         The Court has considered the parties' briefs and the record on appeal. The facts and legal arguments are adequately presented, and the decisional process would not be significantly aided by oral argument. Upon consideration of the standard of review, the briefs, and the record presented, the 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.

         On June 23, 2014, a robbery occurred at the First Community Bank in Bluefield, West Virginia. Detective K.L. Adams of the Bluefield Police Department interviewed petitioner. During the interview, petitioner confessed to the bank robbery. On February 10, 2015, petitioner was indicted for first-degree robbery.

         Subsequently, petitioner filed a motion to suppress the confession he gave during the interview with Detective Adams. On June 11, 2015, the circuit court held a hearing on the motion. Detective Adams testified that he read petitioner's rights to him pursuant to Miranda v. Arizona, 384 U.S. 436 (1966); that petitioner signed a Miranda rights waiver form prior to giving his statement; and that he advised petitioner that petitioner did not have to speak to him. Detective Adams further testified that petitioner's confession corroborated facts of the robbery, including his description of the pellet gun used during the commission of the offense, the black clothing worn, and the direction in which the robber fled following the crime. While petitioner also testified at the suppression hearing, the circuit court found petitioner's testimony "incredible." The circuit court denied the motion to suppress, finding that petitioner's confession "was voluntary and not the product of duress or coercion by law enforcement."

         Petitioner's trial commenced on October 27, 2015. After the close of all evidence, the circuit court instructed the jury on second-degree robbery and bank robbery as lesser-included offenses of first-degree robbery. Specifically, the court's charge stated:

The offense charged in the indictment in this case is first-degree robbery. One of four verdicts may be returned by you under this indictment. They are: guilty of first-degree robbery; guilty of second-degree robbery; guilty of bank robbery; or not guilty.
. . . .
Before [petitioner] can be convicted of first-degree robbery, the State of West Virginia must overcome the presumption that [petitioner] is innocent and prove to the satisfaction of the jury beyond a reasonable doubt that [petitioner], in Mercer County, West Virginia, on or about June 23, 2014, did feloniously take, from the presence of employees of First Community Bank, against their will, U.S. currency belonging to First Community Bank and in the custody and control of the bank's employees by the threat of presenting a firearm, putting the employees in fear by the threat of the presented firearm with the intent to permanently deprive First Community Bank thereof.
If after impartially considering, weighing, and comparing all the evidence, both that of the State and that of [petitioner], the jury and each member of the jury is convinced beyond a reasonable doubt of the truth of the charge as to each of these elements of first-degree robbery, you may find [petitioner] guilty of first-degree robbery as charged.
If the jury and each member of the jury has a reasonable doubt of the truth of the charge as to any one or more of these elements of first-degree robbery, you shall find [petitioner] not guilty of first-degree robbery and deliberate on the lesser included offense of second-degree robbery as hereinafter instructed.
. . . .
[The circuit court then instructed the jury as to the elements necessary to convict petitioner of second-degree robbery.]
If after impartially considering, weighing, and comparing all the evidence, both that of the State and that of [petitioner], the jury and each member of the jury is convinced beyond a reasonable doubt of the truth of the charge as to each of these elements of second-degree robbery, ...

Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.