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.

Hines v. Commissioner of Correction

Appellate Court of Connecticut

April 19, 2016

VINROY HINES
v.
COMMISSIONER OF CORRECTION

         Argued January 20, 2016

          Amended petition for a writ of habeas corpus, brought to the Superior Court in the judicial district of Tolland and tried to the court, Fuger, J.; judgment denying the petition; thereafter, the court denied the petition for certification to appeal, and the petitioner appealed to this court.

          SYLLABUS

         The petitioner, who had been convicted of various crimes, sought a writ of habeas corpus claiming that the state had violated his constitutional rights to due process and a fair trial by failing to disclose certain favorable evidence to him in violation of Brady v. Maryland (373 U.S. 83, 83 S.Ct. 1194, 10 L.Ed.2d 215), and then by failing to correct allegedly perjured and misleading testimony related to that undisclosed evidence in violation of Napue v. Illinois (360 U.S. 264, 79 S.Ct. 1173, 3 L.Ed.2d 1217). Specifically, he claimed that the state failed to disclose an agreement between the state and his codefendant, J, as to favorable consideration that J would receive from the state in exchange for his testimony against the petitioner, and that the state failed to correct J's testimony that no such agreement existed. The petitioner asserted that if that evidence had been disclosed by the state and presented to the jury at trial, there was a reasonable probability that the jury would have reached a different verdict. The habeas court rendered judgment denying the habeas petition and, thereafter, denied the petition for certification to appeal. On the petitioner's appeal to this court,

         held :

         1. The habeas court did not abuse its discretion in denying the petition for certification to appeal with respect to the petitioner's claim that the state had suppressed evidence of the agreement between the state and J in violation of Brady : although the habeas court's finding that there was no agreement between the state and J was clearly erroneous, there was sufficient evidence in the record to support that court's conclusion that the state did not suppress evidence favorable to the petitioner, as testimony at the habeas trial from the petitioner's defense counsel and a prosecutor revealed that defense counsel had been fully informed at the criminal trial of any agreement between the state and J, and that the prosecutor had reduced the charges against J of her own volition, rather than because it was part of an agreement with J; accordingly, the issues presented by the petitioner's claim did not warrant the granting of certification to appeal because the evidence was known or disclosed to defense counsel during the trial and, therefore, was not considered suppressed as that term is used in Brady.

         2. The petitioner could not prevail on his claim that the habeas court abused its discretion in denying the petition for certification to appeal with respect to his claim that the state failed to correct J's allegedly perjured and misleading testimony in violation of Napue : the state was not required to correct J's testimony, as a prerequisite to any claim under Napue is the existence of an undisclosed agreement between the cooperating witness and the state, and the record here amply supported the habeas court's finding that any agreement between J and the state was fully disclosed to the petitioner's defense counsel; accordingly, the habeas court properly denied the petition for certification to appeal, as the petitioner failed to establish that the issues he raised on appeal were debatable among jurists of reason, that a court could have resolved the issues in a different manner, or that the questions raised were adequate to deserve encouragement to proceed further.

         Patrick T. Paoletti, for the appellant (petitioner).

         Leon F. Dalbec, Jr., senior assistant state's attorney, with whom, on the brief, were Gail P. Hardy, state's attorney, and Lisamaria T. Proscino, special deputy assistant state's attorney, for the appellee (respondent).

         Alvord, Sheldon and Keller, Js. SHELDON, J. In this opinion the other judges concurred.

          OPINION

          SHELDON, J.

          [164 Conn.App. 713] The petitioner, Vinroy Hines, appeals following the denial of his petition for certification to appeal from the judgment of the habeas court denying his petition for a writ of habeas corpus, in which he challenged his conviction for criminal attempt to commit assault in the first degree in violation of General Statutes § § 53a-49 [164 Conn.App. 714] and 53a-59 (a) (1),[1] two counts of assault in the second degree in violation of General Statutes § 53a-60 (a) (2),[2] kidnapping in the first degree in violation of General Statutes § 53a-92 (a) (2) (A),[3] and criminal violation of a protective order in violation of General Statutes § 53a-223 (a).[4] In his petition for a writ of habeas corpus, he claimed that the state had violated his state and federal constitutional rights to due process and a fair trial by failing to disclose favorable evidence to him in violation of Brady v. Maryland, 373 U.S. 83, 87, 83 S.Ct. 1194, 10 L.Ed.2d 215 (1963), then failing to correct allegedly perjured and misleading testimony relating to that undisclosed evidence in violation of Napue v. Illinois, 360 U.S. 264, 269, 79 S.Ct. 1173, 3 L.Ed.2d 1217 (1959). In particular, the petitioner asserted that the state failed to disclose an agreement [164 Conn.App. 715] between the state and his codefendant, Conray Jones, as to favorable consideration that Jones would receive from the state in exchange for his testimony against the petitioner, then failed to correct Jones' testimony that no such agreement existed. The petitioner argued that the agreement not disclosed due to these violations was material to his guilt, and thus that if the jury had been informed of the agreement, it was reasonably probable that it would have reached a different verdict. The habeas court rejected the petitioner's claims by denying his habeas corpus petition, and later denied his petition for certification to appeal. The petitioner appeals from that denial, claiming that the habeas court abused its discretion by so ordering because the issues upon which he challenged his conviction as to which he seeks appellate review are debatable among jurists of reason, the court could have resolved those issues in a different manner than the habeas court, and they raise questions that are adequate to deserve encouragement to proceed further. We disagree with the petitioner, and thus dismiss his appeal.

         We set forth the following facts in the petitioner's direct appeal. " The [petitioner] and . . . the victim[5] were in a romantic relationship and had two children together. The victim and their two children resided in a family shelter in East Hartford, but often stayed with the [petitioner] in his apartment in Bridgeport. On January 1, 2009, the [petitioner] and his cousin, Conray Jones, arrived at the family shelter to take the victim and their children to Bridgeport. On the way to Bridgeport, the group stopped to eat at a restaurant. While sitting next to the victim in the backseat of Jones' car, which was parked outside the restaurant, the [petitioner] began talking to the victim and then suddenly [164 Conn.App. 716] struck her on the nose with a beer bottle. Jones then proceeded to drive the group toward Bridgeport. For the first thirty minutes of the drive, the [petitioner] remained in the backseat with the victim and their two children, punching the victim in the head, back and shoulder. Once in the New Haven area, the [petitioner] produced a box cutter and repeatedly stabbed the victim on various parts of her body. He put the box cutter near the victim's face and told her that, when they arrived in Bridgeport, he would 'pop off [her] head and pop off his [own] head.'

         " Throughout the ride, the [petitioner] asked Jones to pass him a knife. When Jones told the [petitioner] that he did not have one, the [petitioner] reached into the front of the car and opened the glove compartment in front of the passenger seat. In fear that the [petitioner] was reaching for a knife with which to stab her, the victim slid behind the [petitioner] and jumped out of the car, which was traveling at a speed of sixty-five miles per hour. Jones continued to drive the [petitioner] and the children to Bridgeport. Meanwhile, the victim was rescued from the side of the road by a passing driver who drove the victim to a gas station where she called the police. The victim was taken to the hospital where she was treated for a broken nose and toe, two one-half inch lacerations on her scalp and multiple contusions and abrasions from contact with the road.

         " Thereafter, the [petitioner] was arrested and charged by long form information, dated September 15, 2009, with the five aforementioned offenses, and, in addition, two counts of kidnapping in the second degree in violation of General Statutes § 53a-94 (a). . . . [On September 23, 2009], after the state presented its case-in-chief, the [petitioner] moved for a judgment of acquittal as to all charged crimes. The court granted the motion with respect to the two counts of kidnapping in the second degree, but denied the motion with [164 Conn.App. 717] respect to the five remaining charges. As a result, the state filed a substitute information, dated September 24, 2009, charging the [petitioner] with the foregoing five counts.

         " The [petitioner] then presented his case, which he completed on September 24, 2009. . . . The case was committed to the jury, which returned a verdict of guilty on all counts contained in the substitute information. The court rendered judgment in accordance with the jury verdict and sentenced the [petitioner] to a total effective sentence of eighteen years in prison and seven years of special parole." (Footnote added.) State v. Hines, 136 Conn.App. 412, 414-17, 44 A.3d 886, cert. denied, 307 Conn. 903, 53 A.3d 219 (2012).

         Jones also was arrested for his participation in the events of January 1, 2009. Before he resolved those charges,[6] however, he testified against the petitioner and corroborated the victim's version of events. At the time of his testimony, Jones, who was represented by counsel, was incarcerated. The prosecutor, Robin Krawczyk, questioned him about any promises that had been made to him in exchange for his testimony against the petitioner. In response to her questions and to the cross-examination of the petitioner's defense counsel, Jeremy N. Weingast, Jones testified that the state had not made him any promises as to how his case would be handled, but that he hoped and expected that the state would take his cooperation into account at sentencing.[7] Following the petitioner's trial, on November [164 Conn.App. 718] 23, 2009, Jones appeared before the trial court for a hearing on a motion to reduce his bond pending the final disposition of the charges against him. Krawczyk told the trial court at that hearing that the state took no position on the proposed bond reduction, explaining her position as follows: " Mr. Jones did testify ...


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.