December 23, 2013
STATE OF NEW JERSEY, Plaintiff-Respondent,
STANFORD ARMSTEAD, Defendant-Appellant.
NOT FOR PUBLICATION WITHOUT THE APPROVAL OF THE APPELLATE DIVISION
Submitted December 10, 2013
On appeal from Superior Court of New Jersey, Law Division, Cumberland County, Indictment No. 06-04-328.
Joseph E. Krakora, Public Defender, attorney for appellant (David A. Snyder, Designated Counsel, on the brief).
Jennifer Webb-McRae, Cumberland County Prosecutor, attorney for respondent (G. Harrison Walters, Assistant Prosecutor, of counsel and on the brief).
Before Judges Fisher and Koblitz.
Defendant Stanford Armstead appeals from a May 9, 2012 order denying his petition for post-conviction relief (PCR) without an evidentiary hearing. We affirm on the basis of the thorough, well-reasoned opinion of Judge Darrell M. Fineman.
After an initial dead-locked jury, a second jury convicted defendant of third-degree endangering the welfare of a twelve-year-old child. N.J.S.A. 2C:24-4(a). He was acquitted of first-degree aggravated sexual assault. N.J.S.A. 2C:14-2(a)(1). Defendant was sentenced as a persistent offender, N.J.S.A. 2C:44-3(a), to an extended term of eight years in prison with a four-year term of parole ineligibility. We affirmed on direct appeal. State v. Armstead, No. A-4142-08 (App. Div. December 7, 2010). We incorporate herein the facts as outlined in that opinion. Id. slip op. at 3-4. Only the victim and a police officer testified at trial. Defendant claimed in his PCR petition that, although trial counsel cross-examined the victim extensively, counsel was ineffective in not developing all of the inconsistencies in the victim's testimony.
On appeal, defendant raises the following issue:
POINT I: THE PCR COURT COMMITTED ERROR BY NOT GRANTING THE DEFENDANT AN EVIDENTIARY HEARING.
A deprivation of the constitutional right to effective assistance occurs when: (1) an attorney provides inadequate representation and (2) that deficient performance causes the defendant prejudice. Strickland v. Washington, 466 U.S. 668, 687, 104 S.Ct. 2052, 2064, 80 L.Ed.2d 674, 693 (1984); State v. Fritz, 105 N.J. 42, 57-58 (1987). An evidentiary hearing is only necessary if defendant has made a prima facie demonstration of ineffective assistance of counsel
State v Preciose 129 N.J. 451 462-63 (1992) A defendant must set forth more than "bald assertions" State v Cummings, 321 N.J.Super. 154 170 (App Div) certif denied 162 N.J. 199 (1999)
We affirm for the reasons expressed in Judge Fineman's thorough opinion of May 9 2012