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STATE v. JONES

March 2, 1990.

STATE OF KANSAS, Appellee,
v.
JESSIE L. JONES, Appellant.



The opinion of the court was delivered by

In this action Jessie Jones appeals from jury convictions of two counts of first-degree murder, K.S.A. 21-3401; and two counts of aggravated battery, K.S.A. 21-3414. Jones was sentenced to life imprisonment on each count of first-degree murder and received a three- to ten-year sentence on each count of aggravated battery. All sentences are to run concurrently.

This case arises from a drug transaction. On the morning of January 14, 1988, Julia Dawn, Frank Morris, Michael Mills, and

[246 Kan. 215]

      Donna Barrett were gathered at Barrett's residence at 916 Haskell in Kansas City, Wyandotte County, Kansas. Dawn was there to lend her car to Mills and Barrett. Morris was present to lend Mills a suitcase. Soon after Morris' arrival, Mills informed him that someone was coming over to conduct a drug deal.

  The record clearly establishes that Jessie Jones was involved in the shooting spree which followed. Julia Dawn testified that three men came to the residence shortly after she arrived. She saw Damon Huff carrying a handgun and Jessie Jones a shotgun. Dawn heard loud talking before she was shot in the head and lost consciousness.

  Frank Morris testified that Damon Huff and Darrell Stallings arrived shortly after Dawn arrived. Morris saw Jessie Jones enter soon after and saw that he carried a shotgun. While seated on the couch with the others, Morris saw Jones raise the shotgun and heard two shots before he lost consciousness. Morris received shotgun wounds to his eye, face, hand, arm, and hip.

  Michael Mills was killed by pistol and shotgun wounds to the head. Donna Barrett died from a pistol wound to the brain. Two other witnesses testified that on the same morning they saw Darrell Stallings and Jessie Jones get out of a blue BMW automobile on a nearby street. Both witnesses saw Stallings and Jones exit the BMW and get into a red Ford Escort.

  Damon Huff testified he had had possession of the blue BMW in exchange for cocaine received by Michael Mills, but that title to the car belonged to Mills. Huff further testified Stallings and Jones went with him to meet Mills in order to obtain title to the automobile. The three men drove the BMW and the Ford Escort to within a block of Barrett's residence. Huff stated he and Stallings entered the house first and that Jones entered shortly after with a shotgun. While Huff was talking with Mills about the drug deal, Stallings shot Mills, Barrett, and Morris, and Jones fired several shots at Morris before the three left.

  Jessie Jones relied upon an alibi defense. He testified he spent the night with his girlfriend and was helping her children get ready for school at the time of the shootings. Jones also stated he spent the rest of the morning at his mother's house.

  Huff was arrested soon after the incident. Stallings, however, escaped and was a fugitive at the time of Jessie Jones' trial. On

[246 Kan. 216]

      January 21, 1988, Jones made a statement to police which contained an admission that he knew Damon Huff and Darrell Stallings and had had contact with them on the morning of the incident. Further, Jones admitted he was told by Huff he could pay off a debt by going along on a transaction. This statement was introduced at trial over Jones' objection.

  Jones was found guilty of the first-degree murders of Donna Barrett and Michael Mills and of aggravated battery against Julia Dawn and Frank Morris. This appeal followed.

  The first issue is whether the district court erred in admitting the statement of Jessie Jones. Jones contends he was subjected to a custodial interrogation by police without receiving Miranda warnings and ...


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