Justia Massachusetts Supreme Court Opinion Summaries

Commonwealth v. Resende

By
After a jury trial, Defendant was convicted of murder in the first degree on a theory of felony murder, armed home invasion, and armed assault with intent to rob. Defendant filed a motion for a new trial on the ground that the trial judge should have provided the jury with a felony murder merger instruction. The trial judge granted the motion as to the felony murder conviction but did not disturb Defendant’s remaining convictions. At Defendant’s retrial, a second jury found Defendant not guilty of the single charge of felony murder. In this appeal, Defendant argued, inter alia, that he cannot be guilty of his armed home invasion and armed assault with intent to rob convictions because the second jury acquitted him of felony murder predicated upon the same underlying felonies. The Supreme Judicial Court affirmed Defendant’s convictions, holding (1) the second trial cannot spare Defendant from the consequences of convictions properly decided by a different jury; and (2) Defendant’s claims of error in the first trial were unavailing. View "Commonwealth v. Resende" on Justia Law