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State of New Jersey v. Kingsley Penianah

April 30, 2012

STATE OF NEW JERSEY, PLAINTIFF-RESPONDENT,
v.
KINGSLEY PENIANAH, DEFENDANT-APPELLANT.



On appeal from the Superior Court of New Jersey, Law Division, Ocean County, Indictment No. 08-09-1444.

Per curiam.

NOT FOR PUBLICATION WITHOUT THE APPROVAL OF THE APPELLATE DIVISION

Submitted March 20, 2012

Before Judges Yannotti and Guadagno.

Defendant Kingsley Penianah appeals from the denial of his petition for post-conviction relief (PCR) and raises the following points:

POINT I

IT WAS JUDICIAL ERROR TO DENY THE MOTION FOR POST-CONVICTION RELIEF POINT II

THE DEFENDANT IS ENTITLED TO A REMAND TO THE TRIAL COURT FOR AN EVIDENTIARY HEARING TO DETERMINE THE MERITS OF HIS CONTENTION THAT HE WAS DENIED THE EFFECTIVE ASSISTANCE OF COUNSEL POINT III

ALL POINTS RAISED BY DEFENDANT-APPELLANT IN ANY AND ALL PRIOR AND SUBSEQUENT SUBMISSIONS TO THE COURT ARE INCORPORATED BY REFERENCE INTO THIS BRIEF We have carefully considered these arguments in light of the record and applicable legal standards. We affirm.

Defendant entered the United States in September 2007 on a tourist visa from his home country of Ghana under the name Kingsley Penianah. The visa allowed defendant to remain for six months but did not permit employment. Nevertheless, defendant took a job as a home health aide with At Home Senior Care (At Home), under the name Evans Gambler. To obtain the position, defendant presented documents in the name Evans Gambler, including a New Jersey Division of Consumer Affairs (NJDCA) home health aide license. At Home placed defendant in the home of a customer to provide care. He remained in the United States after March 16, 2008, the end of his permitted stay, without applying for an extension.

On April 2, 2008, the director of At Home learned that defendant was not Evans Gambler and sent a representative to defendant's home to question him about his identity. There was a confrontation, the police were called, and defendant was arrested and charged with harassment.

The police later determined that defendant had overstayed his visa and notified federal immigration authorities. A warrant was issued by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) for defendant's arrest and removal proceedings were initiated to deport him. Defendant was released after posting $10,000 bail.

Shortly after his release, defendant returned to At Home to attempt to collect a paycheck. The police were again summoned and questioned defendant as to his true identity. Defendant admitted assuming the identity of Evans Gambler to obtain employment, but denied presenting false identification. During the investigation, the police seized a NJDCA license and a forged alien card, both in the name of Evans Gambler, from defendant.

Defendant was rearrested and charged with two counts of impersonation/identity theft, in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:21-17(a)(1) and (a)(4). ICE filed another detainer, but bail ...


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