Decision – MSSCT – 1/4/2018


Robert Patrick Terrell v. State of Mississippiconspiracy – Terrell, Archie Nicholson, and  Ricardo L. Hawthorne were charged with various counts after they forged property deeds in order to sell timber that did not belong to them.  The owner of the timber land noticed when the timber was gone. Law enforcement checked the property record and spotted deeds purporting to convey the property to Hawthorne, who, when contacted, gave up the scheme whereby the three used fake deeds to see the timber (there is nothing about this scheme that would indicate to a reasonable person that you could get away with it for very long). Terrell was found guilty of timber theft, conspiracy to commit timber theft, false pretenses, and conspiracy to commit false pretenses. On appeal Terrell raises several issues including sufficiency of the evidence.  The Miss.S.Ct. reverses on one issue – that there was not evidence to convict Terrell of two conspiracies but rather only one.

But because the evidence was insufficient to support two conspiracy convictions, we vacate the sentences for both conspiracy convictions (Count II and Count IV) and remand the two conspiracy convictions to the trial court with instructions to dismiss—at the State’s election—one of the conspiracy counts and resentence Terrell on the remaining conspiracy count.

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