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State v. Winstead

May 22, 2008

STATE OF NEW JERSEY, PLAINTIFF-RESPONDENT,
v.
MICHAEL WINSTEAD, N/K/A KWASI SEKOU MUHAMMED, DEFENDANT-APPELLANT.



On appeal from the Superior Court of New Jersey, Law Division, Essex County, 02-01-0315.

Per curiam.

NOT FOR PUBLICATION WITHOUT THE APPROVAL OF THE APPELLATE DIVISION

Submitted May 13, 2008

Before Judges Coburn and Fuentes.

Defendant appeals from an order of March 2, 2007, denying his petition for post-conviction relief. We affirm.

Defendant was tried on a twelve-count indictment charging him with related offenses that occurred on August 29, 2000, and February 7, 2001. The jury acquitted defendant on the five counts of the indictment related to the first incident but found him guilty on all but one of the counts related to the second incident. Thus, he was convicted on two counts of second degree aggravated assault, related weapons offenses, and resisting arrest. The victims of the aggravated assaults were Ikema Mitchell and Aaron Williams, both of whom defendant shot with a hand gun.

The victims and other individuals clearly testified that defendant brought a gun to the scene and used it to shoot his victims. Defendant did not testify that he shot anyone or that he shot them in self-defense. Rather, he claimed he was attacked and heard someone else shooting. Defendant received a sentence of imprisonment for ten years with application of the No Early Release Act, consecutive to a sentence he was then serving. He appealed and we affirmed. State v. Winstead, No. A-1987-02 (App. Div. Oct. 7, 2004), certif. denied, 182 N.J. 428 (2005).

On appeal from the denial of his petition for post- conviction relief, defendant offers the following arguments:

POINT ONE

THE COURT COMMITTED PLAIN ERROR CAPABLE OF PRODUCING AN UNJUST RESULT BY FAILING TO CHARGE THE JURY ON THE LEGAL JUSTIFICATION OF SELF DEFENSE. (Partially raised below).

POINT TWO

DEFENDANT WAS DENIED THE EFFECTIVE ASSISTANCE OF COUNSEL CONSTITUTIONALLY GUARANTEED TO HIM AT TRIAL BY THE U.S. CONST., AMENDS. VI, XIV.; N.J. CONST. ART. I, PAR. 10.

POINT THREE

THE SENTENCE IMPOSED WAS MANIFESTLY ...


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