T J was convicted of attempted robbery in the second degree and assault in the second degree stemming from an incident that occurred on June 16th, 1983. In that incident, high school student N T stated that a gym bag had been stolen from her locker. She went looking for the bag and found it in the first floor ladies’ room where Ms. J and two other students were in the process of looking through it. T took the bag and was attempting to leave the bathroom when Ms. J began to assault her. Another young woman became involved and grabbed at a gold chain Ms. T had around her neck. The girl was unsuccessful in taking the chain and left the bathroom.
The jury found Ms. J guilty of the second degree attempted robbery involving the physical assault of another person but not guilty of attempted robbery involving the aid of another person. Although the jury found Ms. J guilty of the attempted robbery and assault, the trial court set aside the jury’s verdict. The court argued that the since the jury acquitted Ms. J on the second count of attempted robbery involving the aid of another person, a guilty verdict for the other attempted robbery count could not be sustained. The court further noted that the victim had testified that someone else other than Ms. J had attempted to steal the chain around her neck. The verdict was set aside on grounds of repugnancy, which is when a jury convicts a defendant of one offense but acquits them of another when both have the same underlying circumstances and elements.