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The People v. Edmund Kieth Burch

February 29, 2012

THE PEOPLE, PLAINTIFF AND RESPONDENT,
v.
EDMUND KIETH BURCH, DEFENDANT AND APPELLANT.



(Super. Ct. No. 09F06663)

The opinion of the court was delivered by: Robie , Acting P. J.

P. v. Burch

CA3

NOT TO BE PUBLISHED

California Rules of Court, rule 8.1115(a), prohibits courts and parties from citing or relying on opinions not certified for publication or ordered published, except as specified by rule 8.1115(b). This opinion has not been certified for publication or ordered published for purposes of rule 8.1115.

On the evening of August 19, 2009, the McGuire family drove to the Doubletree Hotel to check in for the night. Fourteen-year-old Spencer was seated in the rear, driver's side seat; his aunt Bettie was next to him. Spencer's parents left the car under the hotel overhang and went inside. Spencer was watching a movie, Bettie was not.

As Spencer and Bettie waited in the car, defendant opened the door next to Spencer. He stuck a handgun in Spencer's rib cage and, in a normal but aggressive tone of voice, demanded cash or he would shoot them. Defendant repeated the threat several times. Spencer told defendant he had no cash, only a credit card. Bettie added, "He's 14. He doesn't have any money." Spencer showed defendant his wallet, in which there was no cash.

Defendant then pointed the gun at Bettie and demanded she give him her rings and her money. Bettie offered defendant $20 and began looking in her wallet. Defendant grabbed the wallet, but Bettie grabbed it back. Defendant then grabbed Bettie's checkbook, but she grabbed that back as well. Defendant said, "Don't test me bitch." Bettie then gave defendant a $20 bill.

Defendant took the money and said, "Don't look at me. This wasn't meant to be. This didn't happen. Just don't worry about it." Then he closed the car door and left. Spencer locked the doors. Minutes later, hotel security approached the car; Spencer told them what happened and they went looking for defendant.

Spencer and Bettie each gave law enforcement officials a physical description of the man who robbed them. Based on their descriptions, they assembled a "six-pack" photographic lineup. Although a recent photograph of defendant was included in the six-pack, neither Spencer nor Bettie was able to identify defendant as the man who robbed them.

That same evening, a Doubletree security guard, Eric Potts, was patrolling the hotel grounds. While in the front area of the hotel, Potts saw a gold-colored Acura enter the parking area, circle in "random" fashion, then park. The driver parked the car in a red zone, near the entrance, facing opposite the "normal" direction.

Potts then saw defendant get out of the car and walk toward the hotel entrance. Then, Potts saw defendant approach the McGuires' vehicle, open the left rear door, and bend in as though he were talking to someone. Potts watched defendant for about 30-40 seconds as defendant walked back to the Acura. Meanwhile, Potts was "creeping up" in his security van.

Potts used his intercom radio to report a suspected robbery. It was Potts and his superior who approached the vehicle and were told by Spencer and Bettie that they had just been robbed. Potts's supervisor called 911 and Potts got back into his van to follow defendant. Potts found defendant driving toward Potts, headed for the exit. Potts had to turn the van to avoid a head-on collision. Potts then made a U-turn and followed defendant off the hotel property.

As he followed defendant, Potts saw there was a female in the Acura, who was "covering up" with a jacket or blanket. Potts read the car's license plate number as "4GTT572." Potts also saw the Acura ...


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