On appeal from Superior Court of New Jersey, Law Division, Hudson County, Indictment No. 05-04-0592.
NOT FOR PUBLICATION WITHOUT THE APPROVAL OF THE APPELLATE DIVISION
Before Judges Payne, Waugh and Newman.
Defendant, Eugene Basil, appeals from his conviction for unlawful possession of a weapon, N.J.S.A. 2C:39-5c(1),*fn1 and from his extended-term sentence of ten years with a five-year parole disqualifier.
On appeal, defendant presents the following arguments:
POINT I POLICE OFFICER TESTIMONY REGARDING AN ALLEGED STATEMENT AT THE POLICE STATION VIOLATED APPELLANT'S RIGHTS UNDER THE FOURTH, FIFTH AND FOURTEENTH AMENDMENTS TO THE UNITED STATES CONSTITUTION AND THE CONSTITUTIONAL AND COMMON LAW OF THE STATE OF NEW JERSEY.
A. The Unlawful Seizure and Arrest of Appellant (Fourth Amendment).
B. The Failure to Administer Miranda Rights and Violation of Appellant's Rights against Self-Incrimination (Fifth Amendment).
C. Violation of Appellant's Right to Due Process by Official Inducement of an Involuntary Confession (Fourteenth Amendment) [NOT RAISED BELOW].
POINT II ADMISSION OF POLICE OFFICERS' TESTIMONY REGARDING THE SUBSTANCE OF THE ANONYMOUS 911 CALL AND THE STATEMENTS OF THE ANONYMOUS TIPSTER CONSTITUTED INADMISSIBLE HEARSAY AND VIOLATED APPELLANT'S SIXTH AMENDMENT RIGHT TO CONFRONTATION AND HIS FOURTEENTH AMENDMENT RIGHT TO A FAIR TRIAL.
POINT III DEFENDANT WAS DENIED HIS RIGHTS UNDER THE FOURTEENTH AMENDMENT TO THE UNITED STATES CONSTITUTION BY THE GROSS FAILURE OF THE STATE TO CONDUCT A COMPETENT INVESTIGATION, THE RESULTS OF WHICH COULD WELL HAVE VINDICATED APPELLANT.
POINT IV IT WAS ERROR TO ALLOW APPELLANT'S PRIOR CONVICTIONS INTO EVIDENCE AS TO APPELLANT'S CREDIBILITY IF HE TOOK THE STAND TO TESTIFY IN HIS OWN DEFENSE.
POINT V THE TRIAL COURT ERRED IN FAILING TO ENTER A JUDGMENT SUA SPONTE ON THE SOLE CHARGE OF POSSESSION OF A GUN, AS NO EVIDENCE, OTHER THAN ANONYMOUS STATEMENTS, WAS PRESENTED BY THE STATE.
POINT VI THERE WAS INSUFFICIENT EVIDENCE OF APPELLANT'S GUILT OF POSSESSION OF A WEAPON AND THE VERDICT WAS AGAINST THE WEIGHT OF THE EVIDENCE.
POINT VII THE TRIAL JUDGE ABUSED HIS DISCRETION IN GRANTING THE MOTION FOR AN EXTENDED TERM AND THEREAFTER IN SENTENCING APPELLANT TO THE MAXIMUM EXTENDED TERM.
Prior to trial, a suppression hearing was held in this matter, at which Jersey City Police Officer Anthony Ruocco and defendant testified. Ruocco testified that, on February 12, 2005, at approximately 1:00 a.m., he and his partner, William Sullivan, received a call from dispatch conveying a report of a male with a shotgun at 199 Bidwell Avenue. Ruocco did not recall if any description of the male or the source of the information was given. Ruocco and Sullivan drove to the location, where Ruocco observed two or three black males standing on the corner. After leaving the patrol car, Ruocco was approached by a black female of approximately eighteen or nineteen years of age, who pointed to defendant and stated, in essence, "that that guy pointed a shotgun at me and told us to get off the corner." The female stated additionally that defendant had thrown the ...