Louisiana v. Gray
Court: Louisiana Supreme Court
Opinion Date: March 15, 2017
Judge: Jefferson D. Hughes, III
Areas of Law: Constitutional Law, Criminal Law
Derroceus Abney was murdered on or about February 10, 2007. His body was found on or about February 23, 2007 hidden in an inoperable freezer. Investigators determined that the body had been moved to the freezer immediately after his murder. A fingerprint found at the scene was entered into a national database, and it was determined to be the fingerprint of defendant Channing Gray. Gray was arrested in 2013. The issue this case presented for the Louisiana Supreme Court's review was whether La. C.Cr.P. art. 576 could be applied to render timely the institution of a prosecution against defendant for obstruction of justice, following the dismissal of a prosecution for murder. The trial court denied the defendant’s motion to quash the bill of information charging him with obstruction of justice; however, the appellate court granted the defendant’s writ application, granted defendant’s motion to quash, and dismissed the bill of information. The appellate court concluded that the charge of obstruction of justice was not “based on the same facts” as the murder prosecution, contrary to the requirements of La. C.Cr.P. art. 576, and therefore was untimely filed. The Supreme Court disagreed with this, vacated the appellate court's judgment and reinstated the trial court judgment.
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