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Criminal Case Summaries 2013


2012-341   State v. John Amaral    (show cause)


The Attorney General appeals in this case, seeking to reverse a Superior Court order dismissing a criminal information against the defendant, who was charged with engaging in sexual contact with a 17-year-old male, by force or coercion, while on the bike path in East Providence.  The motion justice ruled that while defendant’s physical contact with the victim—by touching, with his hand, the victim’s penis through the outside of his shorts—may have been unwelcome and deplorable, defendant’s actions do not amount to a second-degree sexual assault.

2013-74    Jeffrey Motyka v. State    (show cause)


Before the Court is the indigent petitioner’s appeal from a Superior Court denial and dismissal of his application for postconviction relief.  Petitioner’s appointed postconviction relief counsel was allowed by that court to withdraw following a motion made pursuant to Shatney v. State, 755 A.2d 130 (R.I. 2000) (per curiam).  However, petitioner contends before this Court that the attorney’s “de minimus” memorandum in support of the motion to withdraw failed to satisfy the standards set forth by this Court in Shatney and its progeny.  According to petitioner, the court-appointed attorney “failed to provide the [c]ourt and [applicant] with a competent analysis of the issues in a ‘legally meaningful fashion.’” 

2013-4    State v. Mohammed Nabe     (show cause)


This case is before the Court on appeal by the defendant from a judgment of conviction on one count of possession of a firearm in a motor vehicle without a license to carry a firearm.  On appeal, defendant argues that the trial justice erred in denying his motion for new trial and asserts that there was no evidence that defendant was aware that his codefendant was in possession of a gun prior to its discharge.  Specifically, he attacks the testimony of a witness, which he asserts lacked any indicia of reliability.


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