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Woman claims entrapment is her case

The convictions in this criminal case come from a storefront operation that was conducted by undercover agents that work for the State Police and the Attorney General’s office. The operation was set up as a way to buy stolen property and guns. The principal operator of the store was an investigator for the Organized Crime Unit of the Attorney General’s office.

During the operation, the investigator met with a man and asked if he knew of any handguns that he could purchase. Thereafter, the investigator met with the man and the defendant several times and was unsuccessful in purchasing a handgun for $400 from someone that was only known as “the kid.”

The defendant remained in the car when the investigator scheduled a meeting with the other gentleman to meet “the kid,” but was present at the actual meeting. Five days after the failed attempt, the defendant called the investigator and arranged another meeting and asked for $400 to make the purchase. The purchase was again not made and the money was returned by the defendant to the investigator.

After several similar attempts, the other gentleman obtained $400 from the investigator and told him he would call him after he bought the gun. Instead of calling he appeared at the store without a shirt and told the detective that he would find the gun wrapped in a t-shirt behind a piece of cardboard at the back of the store.

The detective followed the instructions and found an unloaded .38 caliber handgun and returned to the store with the gun. No drugs like cocaine were found. The defendant asked for $20 more for all of the efforts that she had made in arranging the sale of the gun. After she was given the $20, the defendant asked if he was interested in buying any more guns that evening. The detective declined stating he didn’t have any more money, but told the defendant and the other individual to let him know if they had additional guns in the future.

Before they left the store, the individual asked the detective to return the t-shirt that the gun was wrapped in because it was his.

The defendant was arrested and sentenced to concurrent prison terms of three and a half years to seven years for criminal possession of a weapon in the third degree and one and a third years to four years on the conviction for criminal sale of a firearm in the third degree. The defendant is appealing these convictions.

Court Decision
The defendant claims that she was trapped and that the Supreme Court made an error in refusing to charge the jury with respect to the affirmative defense of entrapment. However, in order to support this claim the defendant has to show that the public officer actively induced or encouraged her to commit the crime.

The court finds the claim to be without merit and the judgment is affirmed.

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