Argued April 23, 2015
THIS OPINION IS SUBJECT TO FORMAL REVISION BEFORE PUBLICATION IN THE ATLANTIC AND MARYLAND REPORTERS. USERS ARE REQUESTED TO NOTIFY THE CLERK OF THE COURT OF ANY FORMAL ERRORS SO THAT CORRECTIONS MAY BE MADE BEFORE THE BOUND VOLUMES GO TO PRESS.
Appeal from the Superior Court of the District of Columbia. (CTF-19104-12). (Hon. Richard H. Ringell, Trial Judge). (Hon. John Ramsey Johnson, Reviewing Judge).
Jamison Koehler for appellant.
John D. Martorana, Assistant Attorney General. Irvin B. Nathan, Attorney General for the District of Columbia at the time the brief was filed, Todd S. Kim, Solicitor General, Rosalyn Calbert Groce, Deputy Solicitor General, and John W. Donovan, Assistant Attorney General, were on the brief, for appellee.
Before THOMPSON and BECKWITH, Associate Judges, and KING, Senior Judge.
King, Senior Judge.
After a bench trial before Magistrate Judge Richard Ringell, appellant Josue Lopez Ambrocio was convicted of driving under the influence of alcohol (DUI), D.C. Code § 50-2206.11, and leaving after colliding (LAC), D.C. Code § 50-2201.05. On appeal, Ambrocio argues that the trial court erred by declining to sanction the District or grant his motion for judgment of acquittal in response to the District's failure to turn over alleged Jencks material. Ambrocio also argues that the evidence is insufficient to sustain his convictions. We are satisfied the evidence was sufficient to support both convictions. However, we hold that the trial court erred by failing to fully inquire about the alleged Jencks material and we accordingly remand the case for an evidentiary hearing and further evaluation of the sufficiency of the District's Jencks disclosures.
On October 26, 2012, around 11:50 p.m., Natasha Miller was driving home when she encountered a car standing in the middle of the intersection at Fifth and Longfellow Streets, N.W. in the District of Columbia. Miller thought the vehicle looked as though it had been in a collision, so she and her passenger stopped to see if the man at the vehicle--later identified as Ambrocio--was injured. Miller asked Ambrocio
if he needed help and, instead of responding to Miller, Ambrocio began pacing around the vehicle in an " anxious" and " panic[ked]" manner. Ambrocio then entered and exited the vehicle several times, sitting in both the driver's and passenger's seats; Miller testified that Ambrocio sat in the driver's seat for approximately one minute during this time. Ambrocio also attempted to move the vehicle from the intersection and " jump" the vehicle (Miller testified that he removed the jumper cables from the vehicle). However, according to Miller, the vehicle was not " driveable."
Miller called the police, and three Metropolitan Police Department officers responded to the call. The first officer, Michael Beeler, testified that he received the call about Ambrocio's disabled vehicle while he was responding to an earlier call for a " hit and run" accident, during which a vehicle collided with and damaged several parked cars, in the 700 block of Tuckerman Street, N.W., approximately nine to ten blocks from the intersection of Fifth and Longfellow Streets, N.W. where the wrecked vehicle was located. While at the Tuckerman Street scene, Officer Beeler received the " disabled vehicle" call at Fifth and Longfellow Streets. As he traveled from the Tuckerman Street scene to the Fifth and Longfellow Streets scene, he observed a quarter-inch-deep, " continuous" mark in the road between the two scenes; Officer Beeler testified that he believed the mark was caused by a car " riding on [its] rim." He also saw a dislodged car tire at the corner of Tuckerman and Seventh Streets. When he arrived at the Fifth and Longfellow Street scene, Officer Beeler saw Ambrocio's ...