Roy v. United States

652 A.2d 1098 (D.C. 1995)

 

RULE:

To establish aiding and abetting, the prosecution must prove that the defendant associated himself with the venture, that he participated in it as something that he wished to bring about, that he sought by his action to make it succeed. In order for one to be an accomplice, or an aider or abettor, he must be concerned in the commission of the specific crime with which the principal defendant is charged, he must be an associate in guilt of that crime, a participant in that offense as principal or accessory.

FACTS:

First defendant agreed to sell a gun to a police informant. Second defendant was to deliver the gun to the informant. When the informant and second defendant met to complete the sale, second defendant robbed the informant of the purchase money at gunpoint. Defendants were convicted of several offenses in connection with the robbery. On appeal, first defendant claimed that the trial court erred in denying his motion for a judgment of acquittal. Second defendant claimed that the trial court erred in denying his motion to sever the obstruction charge. The appellate court reversed first defendant's convictions for armed robbery and possession of a firearm during the commission of a crime of violence and affirmed his conviction for carrying a pistol without a license. The court affirmed second defendant's convictions.

ISSUE:

Could first defendant be convicted of aiding and abetting to an armed robbery committed by second defendant, when such armed robbery was committed by second defendant using a gun that he was tasked to deliver by first defendant?

ANSWER:

No.

CONCLUSION:

The evidence was insufficient to support first defendant's convictions for armed robbery and possession of a firearm because there was no evidence that he helped plan the robbery and the robbery was not a natural and probable consequence of his conduct.

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