Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Ellis v. State case brief

Ellis v. State case brief summary
643 P.2d 330 (Okla. Crim. App. 1982)

Defendant appealed a judgment entered in the District Court of Kiowa County (Oklahoma), wherein he was convicted of larceny of domestic animals and sentenced to three years' imprisonment. The sentence was suspended.

The complaining witness noticed that one of his newborn calves, a black baldy bull, was missing. Three days later, his son observed a calf fitting the description of the missing calf secreted in a shed with five other calves on an adjoining neighbor's property. He notified the Sheriff's office, and, thus, the calves were transported to a storage barn pending further investigation. A neighbor testified that all the calves were defendant's, who was residing with her, and that the shed was the property of a tenant who leased her land. An undersheriff took the calf to the complaining witness's pasture. The calf tried to suckle several cows, but was rebuffed. Then the mother cow came running over, licked the calf, and allowed it to nurse. Cattlemen testified that the acts constituted and accepted test for determining maternal lineage. Defendant asserted that he purchased the calf from a friend and had the sales slip to prove it. A witness testified that he sold a calf to defendant.

On review, the court held that the case was proven circumstantially and that the district court properly denied defendant's motion for a directed verdict.

The court affirmed the judgment of the district court.

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