Robinson’s appeal denied

Published 7:00 am Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Last week the Mississippi Court of Appeals upheld Scooter Robinson’s 2012 convictions.

According to Mississippi Court of Appeals documents, Robinson was convicted of failure to stop a motor vehicle and aggravated assault of a peace officer on July 6, 2012. He was sentenced to two life sentences as a habitual offender without eligibility of parole with the sentences to run concurrently.

According to court documents, before his 2012 conviction, Robinson had previously been convicted six times, including a 2002 conviction of burglary of a dwelling and aggravated assault.

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Robinson escaped from Pearl River County Sheriff Department custody on Jan. 17, 2009, led officers on a high-speed chase into Hancock County before assaulting Capt. Donnie Saucier.

The trial was held in July 2012 in Hancock County’s Circuit Court.

According to court of appeals documents, before Robinson filed a pro se brief in the court of appeals, his appellate attorney filed a brief indicating that he had “diligently searched the procedural and factual history of this criminal action and scoured the record, searching for any arguable issues,” for an appeal, but found none.

Robinson then filed a pro se brief claiming he was denied a speedy trial, the trial court erred in denying his motion for new counsel, he was denied an initial appearance or preliminary hearing and his due-process rights were violated by the unreasonable delay between the arraignment and indictment, court documents stated.

According to court documents, Robinson pleaded guilty to possession of precursor chemicals on July 13, 2009 and was sentenced to fifteen years, with five years to be served in prison and 10 years served under post-release supervision.

Those documents state that since Robinson was incarcerated on other convictions during the time between his arraignment and indictment, any delay didn’t result in “oppressive pretrial imprisonment.”

Court documents state that during Robinson’s original trial, he requested new defense counsel. Before ruling, the trial court questioned Robinson and his defense counsel and the trial judge found the counsel was “fully competent, fully prepared, and fully capable” and didn’t warrant a change in counsel.

Robinson escaped from Pearl River County Sheriff Department’s custody on Jan. 17, 2009 while being escorted from Highland Community Hospital. Robinson was being held by the sheriff’s department for the charges he was later convicted of in July 2009.

According to a previous story in the Item, Robinson escaped with his girlfriend, then 39-year-old Michelle Morris.

A Mississippi Highway Patrol Trooper passed what turned out to be Robinson speeding down Mississippi Highway 607 in Hancock County, which prompted him to pull the vehicle over, according to a previous story in the Item.

When the trooper pulled over the vehicle at the intersection of Mississippi Highway 607 and U.S. Highway 90 in Bay St. Louis,

he asked Robinson for his driver’s license, Robinson said he didn’t have one. when asked to exit the vehicle, Robinson fled at a high rate of speed, the previous story states.

Det. Christa Groom, Capt. Donnie Saucier and another deputy met with the Hancock County Sheriff’s Department to check out an address in Bay St. Louis where Robinson was suspected to be. After checking the home and not finding Robinson, the officers heard the trooper state the chase was heading to a school on Lakeshore Drive, where other officers were gathered, according to the previous Item story.

A roadblock was set up and the trooper noticed it appeared as though Robinson was preparing to avoid it. The trooper nudged Robinson’s vehicle, but in the process the cars collided causing Robinson’s vehicle to spin out. Law enforcement officers from Pearl River County and Hancock County Sheriff’s Departments, Waveland Police Department and Mississippi Highway Patrol descended on the car, firing shots into the tires and engine compartment in an attempt to disable the car, according to the previous Item story.

The story also states that Saucier approached the vehicle to pull Robinson from the car and as Saucier reached into the vehicle, Robinson grabbed Saucier’s arm and pulled him into the vehicle before driving off.

Robinson dragged Saucier until Saucier shot Robinson in the leg to force him to drop Saucier, who then rolled onto the pavement and received minor injuries.

Robinson’s car died about a mile from the roadblock and caught fire. When the car died, Robinson put his hands out the window and he and Morris were taken into custody, said the previous Item story.

Morris was later convicted of aiding and abetting.