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State v. Bryant

September 24, 2008

STATE OF NEW JERSEY, PLAINTIFF-RESPONDENT,
v.
JERMAINE BRYANT, DEFENDANT-APPELLANT.



On appeal from the Superior Court of New Jersey, Law Division, Essex County, 93-03-1078-I.

Per curiam.

NOT FOR PUBLICATION WITHOUT THE APPROVAL OF THE APPELLATE DIVISION

Submitted September 11, 2008

Before Judges Winkelstein and Chambers.

Defendant, Jermaine Bryant, appeals from a March 8, 2007 order of the Law Division that denied his motion for a new juvenile waiver hearing. The court rejected defendant's claim of newly discovered evidence.*fn1 We affirm.

Following defendant's waiver to the Law Division by the Family Part in March 1993, he was tried to a jury, which found him guilty of murder, N.J.S.A. 2C:11-3a(1) and (2); aggravated assault, N.J.S.A. 2C:12-1b(1); possession of a firearm for an unlawful purpose, N.J.S.A. 2C:39-4a; and possession of a rifle without a permit, N.J.S.A. 2C:39-5c(1). State v. Bryant, 288 N.J. Super. 27, 31 (App. Div.), certif. denied, 144 N.J. 589 (1996). The trial judge imposed an aggregate life term, plus ten years, with a thirty-five-year period of parole ineligibility. Ibid. We affirmed defendant's judgment of conviction and the Supreme Court denied certification. Ibid.

The offenses for which defendant was convicted occurred on November 11, 1992, when a dispute arose between defendant and a number of other individuals. Id. at 31-32. During an altercation, two victims were shot, one of whom died. Id. at 32.

On March 6, 2001, we denied defendant's first petition for post-conviction relief. State v. Bryant, No. A-3571-99 (App. Div. March 6, 2001). Defendant filed additional post-conviction relief petitions in October 2005 and April 2006. The trial court denied those applications by order of July 25, 2006. Defendant did not appeal from that order.

On August 8, 2006, defendant filed another petition for post-conviction relief. By order of October 13, 2006, the trial court denied that petition. In a letter opinion dated October 27, 2006, addressing defendant's motion for reconsideration, the court made the following findings:

In addition to the reasons set forth in the Court's letter opinion dated October 13, 2006, an argument is advanced that the State has engaged in prosecutorial misconduct by virtue of its alleged failure to provide a Ballistic Report which purportedly states the crime was committed with a 22 caliber revolver. In addition to an allegation of prosecutorial misconduct by reason of an alleged failure to disclose the alleged State's Ballistic Report, you state that the State's case was premised on the possession of a rifle or a shotgun. However, in order to establish a fundamental injustice of a constitutional infirmity in the prosecution, it is incumbent to demonstrate that the "undisclosed" information is "material" to the guilt or punishment of the defendant, Brady v. Maryland, 373 U.S. 83 (1963), and "the suppressed evidence might have affected the outcome of the Trial." State v. Carter, 69 N.J. 420 [(1976)]. Assuming the accuracy of the alleged suppression of the ballistic report, and the State's representation of the use of a rifle/shotgun, there is no showing of "materiality" or how the outcome of the Trial would be affected. The alleged prosecutorial misconduct does not reach a level or magnitude to warrant a finding of "injustice" or "constitutional violation."

On appeal, defendant raised the following issues:

POINT ONE

THE POST-CONVICTION RELIEF JUDGE ERRED IN DENYING THE DEFENDANT[']S MOTION FOR POST-CONVICTION RELIEF, BY CONCLUDING THAT THE DEFENDANT COULD [HAVE] RAISED ...


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