Appeals panel upholds murder, attempted murder convictions

A man who was among a group of armed, masked people who entered a house around 3 a.m. on a November morning four years ago leading to a fatal gun battle lost his appeal of murder and attempted murder convictions Monday.

Camron Douglas Perkins was among a group of three people who drove to the house where Jessie Fulton lived with friends in Spiceland. The home invasion took place after a friend told Perkins that Fulton had pulled a gun on him and another man.

House guest Chance Smith was fatally shot during the confrontation, and Fulton was shot in the arm but survived. Perkins was convicted of murder after evidence showed the shot that killed Smith came from his gun. A Henry Circuit Court jury also convicted him of Level 1 felony attempted murder and imposed an aggregate 95-year sentence.

On appeal, Perkins argued his Fifth Amendment rights were violated by the admission of evidence he made during a police interrogation after he initially said he wanted an attorney. He later asked to speak to investigators, and after a brief exchange, a captain said, “I came back in here because I was told you want to talk to us, so . . . do you want to talk to us or not, it’s totally up to you?

Perkins replied, “I don’t know man,” then said, “Sure.” The captain then confirmed, “So is that a yes?” and Perkins said “yeah.”

“Based on the totality of the circumstances, we conclude that Perkins knowingly, voluntarily, and intelligently waived his right to counsel following his request for an attorney. Accordingly, we hold that Perkins’ right to counsel was not violated and the trial court did not abuse its discretion by admitting the statements Perkins made during the second interview,” Judge Patricia Riley wrote in Camron Douglas Perkins v. State of Indiana, 20A-CR-695.

Likewise, the panel found sufficient evidence to support Perkins’ attempted murder conviction.

“… While we note the plan of attacking Fulton and stealing from Fulton was not Perkins’ plan, his course of conduct, before, during, and after the occurrence of the crimes showed that he actively participated in the attempted murder of Fulton,” Riley wrote.

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