State v. Kimbrell

362 S.E.2d 630 (1987)

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State v. Kimbrell

South Carolina Supreme Court
362 S.E.2d 630 (1987)

Facts

Roberts, a confidential informant, arranged a meeting between a suspected drug dealer, Gene Kimbrell, and an undercover police officer, O’Donald. The meeting took place at Kimbrell’s mobile home. There, O’Donald purchased an ounce of cocaine from Gene and agreed to buy more. Gene’s wife, Vicki Kimbrell (defendant), was present during the meeting but did not participate in the drug transaction. Thereafter, narcotics officers obtained a warrant to search Gene’s mobile home and planned a “buy-bust” operation. O’Donald then called Gene to arrange another meeting to purchase cocaine and marijuana. Wearing a hidden transmitter, O’Donald went into the Gene’s kitchen and saw a small amount of cocaine on a plate next to a larger plastic bag containing cocaine. When O’Donald asked to see the marijuana, Gene led him down a hallway towards the back door. Gene stopped at the bedroom door, knocked, and told Vicki to watch the cocaine that was on the table and that he and O’Donald were going outside. Vicki then walked out of the bedroom and into the kitchen. After seeing the marijuana in Gene’s truck, O’Donald and Gene went back inside the mobile home and Vicki returned to the bedroom and closed the door. Shortly thereafter, O’Donald signaled the other officers to begin the bust. Vicki ran out from the bedroom shouting that a car had just pulled up and then ran back into the bedroom. Vicki was charged with trafficking in cocaine. At the close of the prosecution’s case, Vicki made a motion for a directed verdict. The trial court denied the motion and Vicki was convicted and sentenced to serve 25 years in prison. Vicki appealed.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Chandler, J.)

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