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United States v. Bailey

United States Court of Appeals, Fourth Circuit

April 12, 2016

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, Plaintiff - Appellee,
v.
KENNETH LEE BAILEY, JR., a/k/a Simba, Defendant - Appellant

         Argued March 24, 2016.

          Appeal from the United States District Court for the Middle District of North Carolina, at Greensboro. (1:14-cr-00193-NCT-1). N. Carlton Tilley, Jr., Senior District Judge.

         ARGUED:

         Gregory Davis, OFFICE OF THE FEDERAL PUBLIC DEFENDER, Winston-Salem, North Carolina, for Appellant.

         Kyle David Pousson, OFFICE OF THE UNITED STATES ATTORNEY, Greensboro, North Carolina, for Appellee.

         ON BRIEF:

         Louis C. Allen, Federal Public Defender, OFFICE OF THE FEDERAL PUBLIC DEFENDER, Greensboro, North Carolina, for Appellant.

         Ripley Rand, United States Attorney, OFFICE OF THE UNITED STATES ATTORNEY, Greensboro, North Carolina, North Carolina, for Appellee.

         Before DUNCAN and THACKER, Circuit Judges, and DAVIS, Senior Circuit Judge. Senior Judge Davis wrote the opinion, in which Judge Duncan and Judge Thacker joined.

          OPINION

         DAVIS, Senior Circuit Judge:

         Following a two-day trial, a jury in the Middle District of North Carolina convicted Kenneth Lee Bailey, Jr., of carjacking in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 2119. Bailey appeals on the ground that the government adduced insufficient evidence to support the jury's determination that he acted with the requisite intent to sustain a federal carjacking conviction.[1] We hold that, under the teaching of Holloway v. United States, 526 U.S. 1, 119 S.Ct. 966, 143 L.Ed.2d 1 (1999), the evidence was insufficient to support a rational finding beyond a reasonable doubt that Bailey possessed the specific intent, conditional or otherwise, to kill or seriously harm his victim when he took control of the vehicle. Accordingly, we vacate the judgment and remand with instructions that a judgment of acquittal be entered forthwith.

         I

         Viewed in the light most favorable to the government, see United States v. Perry, 757 F.3d 166, 175 (4th Cir. 2014), the record may be summarized as follows.

         On the night of April 17, 2014, while sitting in a marked patrol car at the intersection of Railroad and Liberty Streets in Durham, North Carolina, Durham Police Officer Kimberly Schooley (" Officer Schooley" ) observed a burgundy Nissan Maxima driven by Bailey turn onto Railroad Street. As the Maxima passed her, Officer Schooley noticed that both of the vehicle's tag lights ...


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