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Silver v. State

Florida Court of Appeals, Third District

September 4, 2019

Kendrick Silver, Appellant,
v.
The State of Florida, Appellee.

         Not final until disposition of timely filed motion for rehearing.

          An appeal from the Circuit Court for Miami-Dade County, Marisa Tinkler Mendez, Judge Lower Tribunal No. 09-30889A .

          Carlos J. Martinez, Public Defender, and Manuel Alvarez, Assistant Public Defender, for appellant.

          Ashley Moody, Attorney General, and Gabrielle Raemy Charest-Turken, Assistant Attorney General, for appellee.

          Before SALTER, LINDSEY, and MILLER, JJ.

          MILLER, J.

         Appellant, Kendrick Silver, challenges his convictions for first-degree murder and conspiracy to commit armed robbery, contending the lower tribunal erred in admitting Williams[1] rule evidence and hearsay by inescapable inference during his trial. For the reasons set forth below, we discern no error and affirm.[2]

         FACTS

         In 2006, Silver and his cohort, Oniel Pedley, embarked on a crime spree spanning an eight-month time period. The episode involved four armed robberies, two of which culminated in the deaths of hapless individuals. Eventually, forensic evidence and witness testimony betrayed the identity of the perpetrators.

         On December 16, 2006, Solemus Accimeus, then sixty-two years of age, was working as an armed security guard at Esther's Restaurant located on Northwest 103rd Street ("Esther's 103rd Street") in Miami-Dade County, Florida. At the conclusion of his shift, Accimeus disarmed himself, placing his firearm inside his vehicle parked at the rear of the restaurant. Shortly thereafter, he was fatally gunned down by a masked man attired in dark clothing. As Accimeus was shot at close range, blood spattered on the exterior of the assailant's mask.

         Clinton Saunders resided in close proximity to the restaurant. On the evening of the homicide, he detected the sound of gunshots, immediately followed by the reverberation of an accelerating engine. Moments later, he observed a man he later deduced to be the perpetrator of the homicide, cloaked in a ski mask and dark apparel. As the man traversed the street, secreting himself between parked vehicles, he locked eyes with Saunders and brandished his firearm. Saunders sought refuge underneath his vehicle and the individual fled, discarding numerous objects along the way.

         Homicide detectives responded to the crime scene and discovered several items of evidentiary value, among them the ski mask. Nonetheless, the case remained unsolved for a protracted period of time. Eventually, law enforcement officers interviewed Pedley's girlfriend and confidante, Shana Wright. Wright was not extended immunity during her initial statement. She inculpated both Pedley and Silver in multiple crimes, but she did not originally disclose any knowledge regarding the homicide.

         Shortly after obtaining Wright's statement, Miami-Dade Police Department Homicide Detective Michael Scott sought and procured DNA samples from Silver and Pedley. A forensic analysis of the ski mask later revealed Silver as a possible contributor to serological specimens recovered from three areas of the interior, at varying degrees of statistical significance, and Accimeus as a contributor to a blood sample harvested from the exterior. Additionally, Accimeus's blood was identified on a semi-automatic firearm, an item of clothing, a piece of twine, and gloves recovered from the scene.

         Wright was arrested for a third-unrelated robbery, and agreed to a plea bargain requiring her to testify under a grant of immunity. She eventually recounted that, while studying at Florida International University ("FIU"), she allowed Pedley, Silver, and Silver's girlfriend, Jonika Maynor, to reside in her dormitory room located on the FIU Biscayne Bay Campus.[3] At that time, Silver was employed at Esther's Restaurant on 27th Avenue ("Esther's 27th Avenue"), also located in Miami-Dade County, Florida, and Pedley was employed at Esther's 103rd Street. Each man owned a firearm. The men routinely wore two layers of dark ...


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