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State v. Walker

Court of Appeals of North Carolina

March 21, 2017

THE STATE OF NORTH CAROLINA,
v.
MICHAEL TODD WALKER, Defendant.

          Heard in the Court of Appeals 9 August 2016.

         Appeal by Defendant from judgments entered 19 June 2015 by Judge Gale M. Adams in Hoke County Nos. 11 CRS 51608, 14 CRS 87, 11 CRS 51647 Superior Court.

          Attorney General Joshua H. Stein, by Assistant Attorney General Peter A. Regulski, for the State.

          Cooley Law Office, by Craig M. Cooley, for Defendant-Appellant.

          INMAN, Judge.

         Michael Todd Walker ("Defendant") appeals from judgments entered on 19 June 2015 convicting him of, inter alia, two counts of assault with a deadly weapon with intent to kill inflicting serious injury upon K.D.[1], assault with a deadly weapon with intent to kill inflicting serious injury upon D.C., and attempted first degree murder of K.D. Defendant asserts that the State failed to present sufficient evidence to support the intent elements of each of these four convictions. After careful review, we hold Defendant failed to preserve his arguments before the trial court, and affirm his convictions, dismissing Defendant's appeal.

         Procedural History

         Defendant was indicted on thirty-four counts, including three counts of assault with a deadly weapon with intent to kill inflicting serious injury ("AWDWWIKISI"), and one count of attempted first degree murder. After waiving his right to a jury trial, Defendant was convicted on the above mentioned charges as well as twenty-six of the remaining thirty charges. The trial court consolidated the convictions and sentenced Defendant to three consecutive life terms without the possibility of parole.

         Defendant timely appealed.

         Analysis

         As an initial matter, the State challenges Defendant's preservation of his arguments on appeal. Specifically, the State asserts that Defendant failed to challenge the sufficiency of the evidence as to the intent elements of the four challenged convictions before the trial court, and therefore did not preserve those arguments for appellate review. We agree.

         To preserve an issue for appellate review, "a party must have presented to the trial court a timely request, objection, or motion, stating the specific grounds for the ruling the party desired the court to make if the specific grounds were not apparent from the context." N.C. R. App. P. 10(a)(1) (2015). Rule 10(a)(3) of the North Carolina Rules of Appellate Procedure provides further that

[i]n a criminal case, a defendant may not make insufficiency of the evidence to prove the crime charged the basis of an issue presented on appeal unless a motion to dismiss the action, or for judgment as in case of nonsuit, is made at trial. If a defendant makes such a motion after the State has presented all its evidence and has rested its case and that motion is denied and the defendant then introduces evidence, defendant's motion for dismissal or judgment in case of nonsuit made at the close of State's evidence is waived. Such a waiver precludes the defendant from urging the denial of such motion as a ground for appeal.
A defendant may make a motion to dismiss the action, or for judgment as in case of nonsuit, at the conclusion of all the evidence, irrespective of whether defendant made an earlier such motion. If the motion at the close of all the evidence is denied, the defendant may urge as ground for appeal the denial of the motion made at the conclusion of all the evidence. However, if a defendant fails to move to dismiss the action, or for judgment as in case of nonsuit, at the close ...

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