People v. Thomas Brown


AD1 order dated December 27, 2011, affirming judgment of conviction. Decision below: 90 A.D.3d 575, 936 N.Y.S.2d 537. Jones, J., granted leave June 21, 2012.

ISSUES PRESENTED: (1) Whether consecutive sentences for second-degree murder and third-degree weapon possession were legally imposed. (2) Prosecutorial burden-shifting on summation. (Assigned counsel: Richard M. Greenberg, Office of the Appellate Defender, 11 Park Place, Suite 1601, NYC 10007.)

People v. Brown

People v. Harris

People v. Carter


Issue before the Court: Whether the three defendants’ “simple” possession of a loaded weapon (as opposed to possession with intent to use) was separate from the later use of that weapon to commit a crime, so as to allow consecutive sentences pursuant to PL Sec. 70.25 (2).


Held: So long as the defendant knowingly possesses the firearm before forming the intent to commit a crime with that weapon, the possessory crime has been completed and consecutive sentences are permissible.


CAL Observes: Since 2006, simple possession is now a Class C felony; previously it was a Class D.  And now the Class C felony is easily run consecutively to the underlying crime.  An opportunity for trial courts to hand out even harsher decades-long sentences.