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State v. Matarazzo
South Carolina Supreme Court
262 S.C. 662 (1974)
On April 27, 1973, law-enforcement officers went to a trailer rented by Joe Frank Matarazzo (defendant) after receiving informant information. When they arrived, Matarazzo was not home, but two guests who were living with him at the time, Russell Curl and Willie Mays, were present, along with nine other people between the ages of 13 and 18. The officers detected the smell of burning marijuana and discovered a warm marijuana pipe in the living area. There were also several bags of marijuana hidden in the trailer. Matarazzo knew about the bags of marijuana, and there was conflicting testimony as to whether he owned any of it. Matarazzo knew the nine other individuals who were present and that they had been to parties at his home before, but Matarazzo denied knowing there was marijuana present at such gatherings. Matarazzo was charged with possession of marijuana with intent to distribute. At trial, Matarazzo moved for a directed verdict on the grounds that there was insufficient evidence to support a conviction. The judge denied the motion, and Matarazzo was convicted.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Bussey, J.)
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