Case Detail
CitationPeople v. Roundtree, 593 N.Y.S.2d 345 (N.Y. App. Div. 1993)
CrimeDrug crimes
StateNY
Pros. First NameUKN
Pros. Last NameUKN
FederalNo
Trial Year1991
BodyAppeals court
OpinionThe New York Supreme Court, Appellate Division, held that: (1) the prosecutor's comment, during summation, on the defendant's failure to call any of the people who were gathered at the scene of his arrest was harmless, given the court's curative instructions, but (2) the prosecutor's remark on summation coupled with his improper cross-examination of the defendant regarding the arresting officers' credibility warranted reversal, given that evidence of the defendant's guilt was not overwhelming. "While neither of these alleged errors were preserved by appropriate objection at trial, defendant's conviction will be reversed in the interest of justice because we are unable to conclude that these errors were harmless, given that the evidence of defendant's guilt was not overwhelming [citation omitted]. The outcome of the case rested upon the credibility of the two police officers on the one hand and defendant and his witnesses on the other. It simply cannot be said that the prosecutor's remarks on summation coupled with the improper cross-examination could not have influenced the jury in making its credibility determination [citation omitted]. Accordingly, defendant must be afforded a new trial."
Determination Year1993
Misconduct TypeTR: Impugning
TR: Inadmissible
TR: Vouching
C/S EffectReversal of conviction
Pros. Misc. ReportedUKN
SanctionsUKN
Sanction TypeUKN
Web linkhttp://www.leagle.com/decision/19931069190AD2d879_1536.xml/PEOPLE%20v.%20ROUNDTREE