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Law School Case Brief

Davis v. State - 937 So. 2d 300 (Fla. Dist. Ct. App. 2006)


An accused alleging entrapment has the initial burden of establishing by the preponderance of the evidence that he was induced to commit the crime. The accused must demonstrate that an agent of the government induced him or her to commit the crime. If the accused establishes inducement by the government, then the accused must demonstrate a lack of predisposition to commit the crime. If the accused produces evidence establishing lack of predisposition, the State of Florida is given the opportunity to rebut the evidence beyond a reasonable doubt. The subjective test set forth in § 777.201, Fla. Stat. (2005), is the test to be applied on the issue of entrapment in the absence of egregious law enforcement conduct. 


A professional confidential informant (CI) bought crack cocaine from defendant Jerome Davis. The transaction was videotaped, and the 20 dollar bill the CI used to buy the crack cocaine was found on Davis after his arrest. At trial in Florida state court, Davis claimed that he was induced into the drug transaction because of the loose-fitting garments the CI wore, which exposed her ***, and their conversation about having sex. Davis requested a jury instruction on entrapment, which was denied by the court. At trial, the CI testified that she dressed the way she did to fit the role of a crack buyer, and that even if the conversation involved sexual overtones, she clearly told Davis, "No." Davis was convicted of one count of sale of cocaine and one count of possession of cocaine. He appealed.


Was the conviction proper?




The judgment convicting Davis was affirmed. The appellate court held that Davis' claim that he was induced to sell the crack cocaine because the CI was a white woman in a predominately black neighborhood, wearing loose-fitting clothing, was without merit. He was not entitled to an entrapment instruction under § 777.201(1) because his conversation with the CI about sex took place after the drug sale and the CI made it clear that she was not interested in sexual relations with Davis.

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