Appeal from the 177th District Court Harris County, Texas
Trial Court Cause No. 1456237
consists of Chief Justice Frost and Justices Jamison and
HILL JAMISON, JUSTICE
issues, appellant Raymond Goggins challenges the legal
sufficiency of the evidence in support of his conviction for
aggravated robbery with a deadly weapon and the trial
court's denial of his request for a jury instruction on
the lesser included offense of aggravated assault. We affirm.
and others were loitering near a bayou in Harris County,
Texas when the complainant, Mario, approached the group to
greet a friend. Appellant was holding a knife, and someone
named Gonzalez asked Mario for a dollar. Mario said no and
walked away. Appellant, Gonzalez, and another man,
Lopez-Mendez, followed Mario. Gonzalez kept asking for money.
The three men then circled Mario while appellant had the
knife in his hand.
testified that appellant wrapped his left arm around
Mario's throat and pointed the knife at Mario's
stomach while the other men emptied Mario's pockets. The
men stole approximately $41 and a cell phone.
also testified. He said he was hanging out with appellant,
Gonzalez, and others drinking beer by the bayou on the day of
the robbery. When Mario approached the group, appellant was
playing with his knife and then put it in his pocket. After
Mario refused to hand over a dollar and began walking away,
Gonzalez told the others to follow Mario. Gonzalez and
Lopez-Mendez approached Mario and came to stand on either
side of him. Appellant then approached. Gonzalez and
Lopez-Mendez checked Mario's pockets while appellant
stood nearby displaying the knife. Gonzalez took Mario's
money, and Lopez-Mendez took his phone. Lopez-Mendez
testified that it did not seem as if appellant were
threatening Mario, but "Mario was scared when he saw
[appellant] with the knife."
Legally Sufficient Evidence of Intent to Commit
first issue, appellant asserts the jury's finding that
appellant intended to rob Mario is not supported by legally
sufficient evidence. When reviewing sufficiency of the
evidence, we view all of the evidence in the light most
favorable to the verdict and determine, based on that
evidence and any reasonable inferences therefrom, whether any
rational factfinder could have found the elements of the
offense beyond a reasonable doubt. Gear v. State,
340 S.W.3d 743, 746 (Tex. Crim. App. 2011) (citing
Jackson v. Virginia, 443 U.S. 307, 318-19 (1979)).
We do not sit as a thirteenth juror and may not substitute
our judgment for that of the factfinder by reevaluating the
weight and credibility of the evidence. Isassi v.
State, 330 S.W.3d 633, 638 (Tex. Crim. App. 2010).
Rather, we defer to the factfinder to fairly resolve
conflicts in testimony, weigh the evidence, and draw
reasonable inferences from basic to ultimate facts.
Id. This standard applies equally to both
circumstantial and direct evidence. Id. Each fact
need not point directly and independently to the
appellant's guilt, as long as the cumulative effect of
all incriminating facts is sufficient to support the
conviction. Hooper v. State, 214 S.W.3d 9, 13 (Tex.
Crim. App. 2007).
establish that appellant committed aggravated robbery under
the facts of this case, the State was required to prove that
appellant committed robbery while using or exhibiting a
deadly weapon. Tex. Penal Code § 29.03(a)(2). As
relevant here, a person commits robbery if he intentionally
or knowingly threatens or places another in fear of imminent
bodily injury or death while in the course of committing
theft. Id. § 29.02(a)(2). A person is
criminally responsible for an offense committed by the
conduct of another if, acting with intent to promote or
assist the commission of the offense, the person solicits,
encourages, directs, aids, or attempts to aid the other
person to commit the offense. Id. § 7.02(a)(2).
A conviction under the law of parties requires a showing
that, at the time of the offense, the parties were acting
together, each contributing to their common purpose.
Jones v. State, 373 S.W.3d 790, 794 (Tex.
App.-Houston [14th Dist.] 2012, no pet.). Mere presence of an
accused at the scene of an offense will not support a
conviction under the law of parties, but it is a circumstance
that combined with other facts may show the accused was a
argues that the State did not establish he intended to commit
robbery because (1) Gonzalez and Mario communicated in
Spanish, which appellant purportedly does not
understand; (2) Lopez-Mendez testified that appellant
approached after Gonzalez and Lopez-Mendez already had
surrounded Mario; (3) the stolen money was found on Gonzalez;
and (4) Lopez-Mendez testified that Gonzalez and others not
including appellant were "hustling for money."
However, Mario testified that appellant put his arm around
Mario's throat and held the knife "[p]ointed
at" Mario's stomach while Gonzalez and Lopez-Mendez
emptied Mario's pockets. Lopez-Mendez also testified that
appellant was standing nearby displaying the knife while
Gonzalez and Lopez-Mendez took Mario's money and phone
and Mario seemed scared when he saw appellant with the knife.
conclude that the jury, as the sole judge of the credibility
of the witnesses, reasonably could have found beyond a
reasonable doubt that appellant threatened Mario with a knife
during the robbery and in doing so, intended to act together
with Gonzalez and Lopez-Mendez for the common purpose of
robbing Mario. See Isassi, 330 S.W.3d at 638. We
overrule appellant's first issue.
Waiver of Issue Regarding Lesser Included
second issue, appellant contends the trial court erred in
failing to submit to the jury an instruction on the lesser
included offense of aggravated assault. Appellant's
defense counsel did not request the instruction at trial.
Instead, appellant's counsel requested an instruction on
the lesser included offense of theft, which the trial court
denied. Thus, we address whether the trial court had a duty
to include an ...