Court of Appeals of Missouri, Western District, Special Division
from the Circuit Court of Cole County, Missouri The Honorable
Patricia S. Joyce, Judge
Before: Zel M. Fischer, Special Judge, Presiding, Cynthia L.
Martin, Judge and Gary D. Witt, Judge
Cynthia L. Martin, Judge
Thompson ("Thompson") appeals from the trial
court's judgment convicting him of burglary in the first
degree. Thompson claims that the evidence was insufficient to
support his conviction. Thompson also claims that the trial
court committed plain error by failing to grant him
allocution before pronouncing sentence. Finding no error, we
and Procedural Background
Saturday, February 14, 2015, Thompson drove to Jefferson City
with a female acquaintance. The couple stayed at an apartment
belonging to Thompson's friend. At some point on
Saturday, Thompson took a gun from an upstairs closet.
Sunday morning, Thompson left the apartment and met with
Vincent Smith ("Smith"). Thompson and Smith talked
about "going to take something from someone."
Thompson and Smith decided to take drugs from Johnny Evans
("Evans"). Thompson and Smith knew that Evans would
have drugs and money based on conversations with people in
and Smith asked Robert Burks ("Burks") for a ride
to East High Street, where Evans lived. Thompson and Smith
told Burks that they were going to East High Street to
"get a lick off some weed." A "lick"
refers to obtaining drugs or money illegally. Burks drove
Thompson and Smith to East High Street.
and Smith exited Burks's car and headed toward
Evans's apartment. Burks saw Thompson pull a gun from his
pocket. Thompson and Smith approached the backdoor of
Evans's apartment. Smith kicked in the back door, and the
two men entered. Smith testified that he and Thompson entered
Evans's apartment to take drugs and money.
and Smith found Evans lying on a couch in his living room.
Thompson and Smith asked Evans for drugs. Evans said that he
did not know what they were talking about. Smith began
looking around the living room, and then heard a gunshot.
Smith looked up and saw Thompson holding a gun. Thompson
fired another shot, which Smith saw hit Evans. Thompson and
Smith fled the apartment, and left the scene in Burks's
car. Evans later died.
State charged Thompson with murder in the second degree,
burglary in the first degree, attempted robbery in the first
degree, and armed criminal action. The jury found Thompson
guilty of burglary in the first degree. The jury acquitted
Thompson on the other charges. Thompson waived jury
sentencing. Prior to his sentencing hearing, Thompson filed a
motion for new trial.
sentencing hearing, the trial court asked defense counsel if
he would like to make additional argument regarding the
motion for new trial. Defense counsel advised that he would
stand on the motion. The trial court then stated that it had
reviewed Thompson's motion for new trial, and denied the
motion. The trial court then heard counsel's arguments
regarding sentencing before imposing a sentence of fifteen