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Criminal procedure — Jury verdict — Rehearkening

In a sixteen-count murder trial, a jury in Howard County returned verdicts against appellant Derrick Charles Johnson (“Johnson”) that included: (1) guilty of first-degree premeditated murder; (2) guilty of first-degree felony murder; but (3) not guilty of either armed robbery or robbery, when the State had specifically premised the felony murder charge on the predicate felonies of armed robbery and robbery.1 After the verdicts were announced and hearkened, the trial judge sent the jury back to resolve the legal inconsistency between the felony murder conviction and the robbery acquittals, but subsequently decided to accept all the verdicts as previously announced, without rehearkening the jury. On appeal, Johnson contends that the judge’s actions require us to vacate all of his convictions and remand for a new trial, including the conviction for firstdegree premeditated murder.

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