Appeal by defendants from judgments dated 22 October 2004 by
Judge W. Douglas Albright in Superior Court, Forsyth County. Heard
in the Court of Appeals 23 January 2006.
Attorney General Roy Cooper, by Assistant Attorney General
Jeffrey R. Edwards, for the State.
White and Crumpler, by David B. Freedman, for defendant-
appellant Henry Willis Brown, Jr.
Moser Schmidly & Roose, by Richard G. Roose, for defendant-
appellant Albert Gadson.
Henry Willis Brown, Jr. (Brown) and Albert Gadson (Gadson)
(collectively defendants) were convicted of common law robbery and
assault inflicting serious bodily injury. Brown was sentenced to
a minimum of 15 months and maximum of 18 months on the common law
robbery conviction, and a minimum of 19 months and maximum of 23
months on the assault conviction. Gadson also pleaded guilty to
the status of habitual felon and was sentenced to a minimum of 120
months and maximum of 153 months.
The State's evidence at trial tended to show that in November
2002, Steven Allen Hall (Hall) was introduced to defendants by a
friend, Stanley Blair (Blair). Defendants introduced themselves as
brothers. Hall and Blair agreed to do some roofing work on Brown's
home. Before Hall and Blair began work on the roof, they metdefendants at Home Depot to purchase lumber. Hall testified that
Brown paid for the lumber and gave Hall and Blair a check to cover
partial payment of the roofing work and to cover the cost of
shingles that Hall was to purchase later. Gadson spent eight hours
one day helping Hall and Blair with the roofing job. Hall and
Blair paid Gadson forty dollars for his help and owed him another
On the afternoon of 21 November 2002, defendants went to the
apartment Hall shared with his girlfriend and demanded the forty
dollars owed to Gadson. Defendants told Hall they were going to
find Blair and collect the forty dollars. Brown told Hall they
were "going to get that money because they'd been known to f---
people up before." Defendants left Hall's apartment, and Hall
called the police because he felt "threatened."
The next day, defendants returned to Hall's apartment and
ordered Hall to go with them to find Blair. Hall attempted to call
911, but Brown yanked the phone cord out of the wall. Gadson hit
Hall in the mouth, knocking out one of Hall's teeth. Defendants
grabbed Hall in order to take him out to their vehicle, but Hall
fell to the ground, and defendants stomped on his head. Defendants
went back inside Hall's apartment, and Hall followed. Gadson again
hit Hall in the mouth, and Brown threw a coffee table at Hall.
Hall's neighbor, Joel Chapman (Chapman), testified that he saw
defendants take two television sets from Hall's apartment and saw
defendants load the televisions into the trunk of their vehicle.
Dr. Mark Hess (Dr. Hess) testified that Hall suffered multiple
facial fractures around his eye and multiple lacerations. He alsotestified that Hall had lost a lower tooth. Hall's vision in his
injured eye was 20/100 after the assault and his vision was still
affected at the time of trial two years later.
 On appeal, Brown argues eight assignments of error, and
Gadson argues four assignments of error. Defendants' assignments
of error not argued on appeal are deemed abandoned. N.C.R. App. P.
 Defendants argue the trial court erred in denying their
motions to sequester the State's witnesses. Brown filed a pretrial
motion to sequester, and Gadson made an oral motion at trial. The
trial court denied the motions, stating:
Well, the last couple of times I've tried to
sequester witnesses, frankly stated, it's been
a miserable experience. . . . There's no
central place where I can put witnesses. It
inevitably becomes a time-consuming process.
And when I weigh what, if any, gain might be
had by keeping the witnesses out versus
keeping them in, in the exercise of my
discretion I'm going to deny that motion.
"A ruling on a motion to sequester witnesses rests within the
sound discretion of the trial court[.]" State v. Call
, 349 N.C.
382, 400, 508 S.E.2d 496, 507-08 (1998). A trial court's denial of
a motion to sequester will not be disturbed "in the absence of a
showing that the ruling was so arbitrary that it could not have
been the result of a reasoned decision." Id
. Citing State v.
, 323 N.C. 371, 373 S.E.2d 518 (1988), vacated and remanded
on other grounds
, 494 U.S. 1022, 108 L. Ed. 2d 602 (1990),
defendants argue that the trial court failed to consider the merits
of the motion to sequester. However, we find the trial court'sruling shows adequate deliberation and weighing of the merits of
the motion. Moreover, in State v. Anthony
, 354 N.C. 372, 396, 555
S.E.2d 557, 575 (2001), cert. denied
, 536 U.S. 930, 153 L. Ed. 2d
791 (2002), our Supreme Court held that where a defendant failed to
point to any instance in the record where a witness conformed his
or her testimony to that of another witness, the defendant failed
to show an abuse of discretion in the trial court's denial of a
motion to sequester witnesses. In the present case, neither
defendant identified any instance of a witness conforming testimony
to that of another witness. Accordingly,
we find no error.
 Defendants argue the trial court erred in allowing Hall's
father, Clarence Hall, to testify at trial when Clarence Hall's
name did not appear on the witness list disclosed by the State
prior to trial. For the reasons below, we find no error.
Gadson argues the State was required, under N.C. Gen. Stat. §
15A-903(a)(3), to provide a written list of the names of all
witnesses the State reasonably expected to call at trial. N.C.
Gen. Stat. § 15A-903 provides:
(a) Upon motion of the defendant
, the court
must order the State to:
. . . .
(3) Give the defendant, at the
beginning of jury selection, a
written list of the names of all
other witnesses whom the State
reasonably expects to call during
the trial. . . . If there are
witnesses that the State did not
reasonably expect to call at the
time of the provision of the witness
list, and as a result are notlisted, the court upon a good faith
showing shall allow the witnesses to
be called. Additionally, in the
interest of justice, the court may
in its discretion permit any
undisclosed witness to testify.
(emphasis added). The record does not reveal that either defendant
made a motion requesting the trial court to order the State to
provide a list of witnesses. Therefore, the State was not required
by N.C.G.S. § 15A-903(a)(3) to provide defendants with a list of
the witnesses it intended to call during trial. Gadson's
assignment of error is overruled.
Brown concedes the State was not required to provide
defendants with a witness list under N.C.G.S. § 15A-903(a)(3).
Instead, he argues that because the State volunteered to provide
defendants with a witness list, the State's voluntary list should
have complied with N.C. Gen. Stat. § 15A-903(b) and should have
provided the names of all witnesses the State expected to call.
N.C. Gen. Stat. § 15A-903(b) (2005) provides that "[i]f the State
voluntarily provides disclosure under N.C.G.S. § 15A-902(a), the
disclosure shall be to the same extent as required by subsection
(a) of this section." N.C. Gen. Stat. § 15A-902 provides in
(a) A party seeking discovery under [Article
48] must, before filing any motion before a
judge, request in writing that the other party
comply voluntarily with the discovery request.
A written request is not required if the
parties agree in writing to voluntarily comply
with the provisions of [this Article]. . . .
(b) To the extent that discovery authorized in
this Article is voluntarily made in response
to a request or written agreement, the
discovery is deemed to have been made under anorder of the court for the purposes of this
N.C. Gen. Stat. § 15A-902(a)(b) (2005).
Brown cites State v. Smith
, 291 N.C. 505, 231 S.E.2d 663
(1977), in which
our Supreme Court held that where the State
provides a list of witnesses pursuant to a court order, and the
State subsequently seeks to call a witness not on the list, the
trial court must "look to see whether the district attorney acted
in bad faith, and whether the defendant was prejudiced thereby."
at 523, 231 S.E.2d at 675 (internal citations omitted). Brown
argues the standard set forth in Smith
should be "equally
applicable in the case of a voluntary disclosure as court ordered
disclosure." In noting the distinction between court-ordered
discovery and voluntary discovery, Brown presages our analysis.
Unlike the facts of Smith
, in the present case, there is no
indication from the record that either defendant made a request for
voluntary discovery by the State. Nor is there any evidence in the
record of a written agreement between the State and either
defendant to voluntarily comply with the provisions of Article 48.
Reading the plain language of N.C.G.S. § 15A-902(b), it seems that
absent a request or written agreement, the State's witness list is
not deemed to have been made under an order of the trial court.
N.C.G.S. § 15A-902(b) ("To the extent that discovery authorized
in this Article is voluntarily made in response to a request or
, the discovery is deemed to have been made under
an order of the court for the purposes of this Article.") (emphasis
added). If not deemed to have been made under a court order, suchvoluntary discovery would seem not to need to be "to the same
extent as required by [N.C.G.S. § 15A-902(a)]." N.C.G.S. § 15A-
However, we note that North Carolina cases since Smith
used the Smith
standard in cases where discovery was not court-
ordered. In State v. Myers
, 299 N.C. 671, 263 S.E.2d 768 (1980),
the defendant made an oral request during jury selection that the
State orally list the names of all witnesses the State planned to
call to testify. Id.
at 675, 263 S.E.2d at 771. When the State
complied with the oral request, but then later sought to call
witnesses not named during jury selection, our Supreme Court
analyzed the case pursuant to Smith
. The Court held that the trial
court's voir dire
examination of the jury satisfied the
requirements of Smith
: "The voir dire established that the jurors
did not know either of the witnesses the State had failed to name
during jury selection. Such inquiry negated the possibility that
the State was surreptitiously attempting to place before the jury
witnesses who were friendly or influential with the jurors."
, 299 N.C. at 676, 263 S.E.2d at 772. In State v. Mitchell
62 N.C. App. 21, 302 S.E.2d 265 (1983), this Court applied the
standard absent any evidence that the defendant had requested
or received a list of witnesses from the State. The defendant in
appealed the admission of testimony by a witness whose
name had not been disclosed by the State prior to jury selection.
. at 27, 302 S.E.2d at 269. The trial court
conducted a voir
of the jury, was satisfied that none of the jurors knew the
witness, and allowed the witness to testify. Id
. On review, ourCourt noted that there was no indication from the record whether
the State had voluntarily provided a list of witnesses to the
. Applying the Smith
standard, our Court found an
insufficient showing of bad faith or prejudice, and upheld the
trial court's decision. Id
In the present case, the trial court conducted a voir dire
the jury to determine whether any juror knew Clarence Hall
personally or knew anything about him. None of the jurors was
familiar with Clarence Hall. Accordingly, under Myers
, we find this voir dire
disproved any bad faith on the
part of the State in calling Clarence Hall as a witness. Moreover,
defendant was not unfairly prejudiced by Clarence Hall's testimony,
which the jury was instructed to consider solely for the purpose of
corroboration. See State v. Harden
, 42 N.C. App. 677, 682, 257
S.E.2d 635, 639 (1979) (finding no unfair prejudice where exhibits
not provided to the defendant served only to corroborate the
testimony of witnesses).
Additionally, N.C.G.S. § 15A-903(a)(3) empowers the trial
court "upon a good faith showing" to allow the State to call a
witness whom the State "did not reasonably expect to call at the
time of the provision of the witness list." In the present case,
the State informed the trial court that prior to being approached
by Clarence Hall the morning of trial, the State was not aware of
Clarence Hall, or that he had observed his son's injuries. The
trial court conducted a voir dire
of Clarence Hall, who testified
that he had not previously spoken with the State about the case.
Following the voir dire
of Clarence Hall and of the jury, the trialcourt, in its discretion, permitted Clarence Hall's testimony,
which the trial court "strictly limited to corroboration." We hold
that the trial court made the requisite good faith showing and was
permitted under N.C.G.S. § 15A-903(a)(3) to allow the State to call
Clarence Hall. This assignment of error is overruled.
Defendants argue the trial court erred in denying their
motions to dismiss the charges against them for lack of sufficient
evidence. Brown challenges the sufficiency of the evidence as to
both charges; Gadson argues only as to the charge of assault
inflicting serious bodily injury.
In ruling on a motion to dismiss, a trial court must determine
"'whether there is substantial evidence of each essential element
of the offense charged and of the defendant being the perpetrator
of the offense.'" State v. Williams
, 150 N.C. App. 497, 501, 563
S.E.2d 616, 618 (2002) (quoting State v. Crawford
, 344 N.C. 65, 73,
472 S.E.2d 920, 925 (1996)). Substantial evidence is any evidence
that a reasonable juror would consider sufficient to support a
conclusion that each essential element of the crime exists. State
, 141 N.C. App. 596, 604, 540 S.E.2d 815, 821 (2000). A
trial court must consider the evidence in the light most favorable
to the State and give the State every reasonable inference to be
drawn therefrom. Williams
, 150 N.C. App. at 501, 563 S.E.2d at
 Defendants were charged with assault inflicting serious
bodily injury pursuant to N.C. Gen. Stat. § 14-32.4, which provides
in pertinent part: (a) Unless the conduct is covered under some
other provision of law providing greater
punishment, any person who assaults another
person and inflicts serious bodily injury is
guilty of a Class F felony. "Serious bodily
injury" is defined as bodily injury that
creates a substantial risk of death, or that
causes serious permanent disfigurement, coma,
a permanent or protracted condition that
causes extreme pain, or permanent or
protracted loss or impairment of the function
of any bodily member or organ, or that results
in prolonged hospitalization.
N.C. Gen. Stat. § 14-32.4(a) (2005). The offense "requires proof
of two elements: (1) the commission of an assault on another, which
(2) inflicts serious bodily injury." State v. Hannah
, 149 N.C.
App. 713, 717, 563 S.E.2d 1, 4, disc. review denied
, 355 N.C. 754,
566 S.E.2d 81 (2002).
Brown argues there was insufficient evidence as to the first
element, that he perpetrated an assault on Hall. We disagree and
find there was sufficient evidence to submit the question to the
jury. At trial, both Hall and Chapman testified that Brown
participated in the assault. Brown argues there were
inconsistencies in Hall's testimony and that initially, Chapman did
not identify Brown in a photographic lineup. These arguments,
however, do not address the sufficiency of the evidence. Alleged
contradictions or issues of credibility are for a jury to resolve
and do not warrant dismissal. State v. Smith
, 300 N.C. 71, 78, 265
S.E.2d 164, 169 (1980).
Both defendants argue the State failed to present substantial
evidence of the element of serious bodily injury. The statute
defines serious bodily injury in three ways: (1) bodily injury that
creates a substantial risk of death, or (2) bodily injury thatcauses serious permanent disfigurement, coma, a permanent or
protracted condition that causes extreme pain, or permanent or
protracted loss or impairment of the function of any bodily member
or organ, or (3) bodily injury that results in prolonged
hospitalization. N.C.G.S. § 14-32.4. Serious bodily injury as
defined in N.C.G.S. § 14-32.4 requires proof of more severe injury
than the serious injury element in other assault offenses.
, 150 N.C. App. at 503, 563 S.E.2d at 619-20.
In the present case, as to Gadson, the trial court's
instruction to the jury on the element of serious bodily injury was
identical to the statutory definition. As to Brown, however, the
trial court did not instruct the jury on the entire statutory
definition of serious bodily injury. The trial court omitted the
word "impairment" from the instruction regarding Brown. Since a
defendant may not be convicted of an offense on a theory different
from that presented to a jury, our Court must determine whether the
State presented substantial evidence of each element of assault
inflicting serious bodily injury based on the definition of the
offense given to the jury in the trial court's instructions.
, 150 N.C. App. at 503, 563 S.E.2d at 620.
, our Court addressed the sufficiency of evidence
of serious bodily injury where a jury instruction limited the
definition of serious bodily injury to "'an injury that creates or
causes a permanent or protracted condition that causes extreme
, 150 N.C. App. at 503, 563 S.E.2d at 620. In
that case, the State presented evidence that the victim suffered a
broken jaw that was wired shut for two months, and suffered backspasms for eight months, which resulted in two visits to the
emergency room because of difficulty breathing. Id.
physician testified the victim's injury was the type of injury that
caused "'quite a bit' of pain and discomfort." Id.
at 503-04, 563
S.E.2d at 620. Our Court concluded that "a reasonable juror could
find this evidence sufficient to conclude that [the victim's]
injuries created a 'protracted condition that cause[d] extreme
at 504, 563 S.E.2d at 620.
In the present case, Hall testified his facial injuries were
"very" painful, he suffered pain in his mouth for "about a month,"
and his right eye "felt like it fell out of [his] head." Hall's
father testified that Hall complained of pain for "about ten
months." Dr. Hess testified that Hall suffered multiple facial
fractures and multiple lacerations, and characterized Hall's
injuries as the type of injuries that caused "severe" and "extreme"
pain. Viewing this evidence in the light most favorable to the
State, we find there was sufficient evidence that Hall's injuries
created a "protracted condition that cause[d] extreme pain."
N.C.G.S. § 14-32.4(a). Since the jury was instructed as to this
part of the definition of serious bodily injury for both Gadson and
Brown, we hold the State presented sufficient evidence of this
element as to both defendants.
 Brown also challenges the sufficiency of the evidence on
the charge of common law robbery. He argues there was insufficient
evidence of Brown's intent to permanently deprive Hall or Hall's
girlfriend of property, or to convert it to Brown's own use. We
find no merit in this argument. It is well-established that"[i]ntent is a mental attitude seldom provable by direct evidence.
It must ordinarily be proved by circumstances from which it may be
inferred." State v. Bell
, 285 N.C. 746, 750, 208 S.E.2d 506, 508
(1974). Chapman testified that both Gadson and Brown took part in
assaulting Hall, and that both defendants took televisions and
other electrical appliances from the apartment, loaded them into
the trunk of their vehicle, and left the scene. This evidence of
a forceful taking is sufficient evidence from which the jury could
infer Brown intended to deprive Hall and Hall's girlfriend of the
property. Although Brown claims there was some evidence tending to
show he told Hall the property would be returned when Hall paid
Brown, such discrepancy was for the jury to resolve. See Smith
300 N.C. at 78, 265 S.E.2d at 169.
We find no error in the trial court's denial of defendants'
motions to dismiss. This assignment of error is overruled as to
 Defendants argue the trial court erred in submitting a
verdict sheet to the jury that listed the assault charge as
"felonious" assault inflicting serious bodily injury. Defendants
contend that the inclusion of the word "felonious" improperly
allowed the jury to consider the severity of the potential
sentence. Defendants argue the error unfairly prejudiced them
because, absent this error, there was a reasonable possibility that
the jury result would have been different. We find no merit to
Defendants correctly state that
"the function of the juryduring the guilt phase is to determine the guilt or innocence of
the defendant, not to be concerned about [the defendant's]
penalty[.]" State v. Artis
, 325 N.C. 278, 295, 384 S.E.2d 470, 479
(1989), sentence vacated on other grounds
, 494 U.S. 1023, 108 L.
Ed. 2d 604 (1990).
However, even assuming arguendo
that it was
error for the trial court to characterize the charge as
"felonious," upon examination of the record, we conclude there is
no reasonable possibility that the outcome would have differed had
the jury verdict sheet not included the word "felonious."
 Brown argues the trial court committed reversible error
when it denied his motion for a mistrial after closing arguments.
At trial, Brown objected to the State's statements to the jury that
the lesser-included assault inflicting serious injury was a
"misdemeanor," and that convicting defendants of the lesser-
included offense would be "a slap on the wrist."
"It is within the trial court's discretion to determine
whether to grant a mistrial, and the trial court's decision is to
be given great deference because the trial court is in the best
position to determine whether the degree of influence on the jury
was irreparable." State v. Hill
, 347 N.C. 275, 297, 493 S.E.2d
264, 276 (1997), cert. denied
, 523 U.S. 1142, 140 L. Ed. 2d 1099
(1988). Absent a showing of gross abuse of a trial court's
discretion, the trial court's ruling will not be disturbed on
appeal. State v. Roland
, 88 N.C. App. 19, 26, 362 S.E.2d 800, 805
(1987), disc. review denied
, 321 N.C. 478, 364 S.E.2d 666 (1988).
Ordinarily, when the State's jury argument is challenged asimproper, the argument of both counsel should be included in the
record on appeal. State v. Quilliams
, 55 N.C. App. 349, 352, 285
S.E.2d 617, 620, cert. denied
, 305 N.C. 590, 292 S.E.2d 11 (1982).
When arguments are not contained in the record, the arguments are
presumed to be proper. Id.
Brown explains that closing arguments
are not included in the record on appeal because the arguments were
not recorded at trial. Therefore, we have only the colloquy
regarding Brown's objection and motion for mistrial in the record
for our review. Without the transcript of the State's argument, we
cannot be certain of the accuracy of Brown's characterization of
the State's argument. However, even assuming arguendo
characterization is proper, we find no abuse of discretion.
The contested argument did not unfairly prejudice Brown. As
discussed in Part III of this opinion, there was sufficient
evidence to support the charge of assault inflicting serious bodily
injury. The trial court, in its discretion, did not find the
contested statements in the State's argument to constitute an
impropriety sufficient for a mistrial. Given the degree of
deference afforded a trial court's decision on a motion for a
mistrial, we are not persuaded that the trial court's denial of
Brown's motion amounted to an abuse of discretion.
 Brown next argues the trial court erred in allowing the
introduction of an exhibit pertaining to a real estate transaction
between Gadson and Blair. The State called Blair as a witness and
questioned him about a proposed real estate sale between Blair and
Gadson. Blair testified that Gadson offered to sell Blair somereal property, but Gadson did not in fact own the property. The
State then moved to introduce Exhibit 27, a bill for a survey of
the property Gadson claimed to own. Over Gadson's objection, the
trial court admitted Exhibit 27, stating: "I'll let it in as to
Gadson only, to explain the relationship between the parties. Do
not consider that land deal against Defendant Brown, members of the
first note that Brown failed to object to either the
exhibit or the related testimony at trial. Therefore, Brown must
show that any error by the trial court amounted to plain error, an
error "so fundamental that it undermine[d] the fairness of the
trial, or . . . had a probable impact on the guilty verdict."
State v. Floyd
, 148 N.C. App. 290, 295, 558 S.E.2d 237, 240 (2002).
We also note the exhibit and testimony were admitted against Gadson
only, and the trial court instructed the jury not to consider the
evidence against Brown. Brown argues on appeal that "the taint
attributed to Mr. Gadson's character through the improper
questioning firmly attached itself to Mr. Brown's character and
credibility." We are not persuaded.
"[O]ur legal system through trial by jury operates on the
assumption that a jury is composed of men and women of sufficient
intelligence to comply with the court's instructions and they are
presumed to have done so." State v. Glover
, 77 N.C. App. 418, 421,
335 S.E.2d 86, 88 (1985); State v. Richardson
, 346 N.C. 520, 534,
488 S.E.2d 148, 156 (1997), cert. denied
, 522 U.S. 1056, 139 L. Ed.
2d 652 (1998). In light of the fact that the evidence pertained
only to Gadson, and the trial court's limiting instruction to thejury, Brown has not shown that any alleged error was so fundamental
as to amount to plain error. This assignment of error is
 Brown next argues the trial court erred in overruling his
objection to a question posed by the State to Brown during cross-
examination. The questioning at issue was as follows:
Q. What felony have you been convicted of in
the last ten years for which you could have
received a penalty of more than 60 days, Mr.
A. Social Security fraud, for faulty
. . . .
Q. And that's something you're on probation
for right now. Correct?
. . . .
A. Yes, sir. It was up in April, I think.
Q. And the reason you're denying any
involvement in even going over to Mr. Hall's
house is because you know it would violate
this federal probation, don't you?
MR. JORDAN: Objection.
THE COURT: Overruled.
. . . .
Q. My question to you, Mr. Brown, is the
reason why you don't want to admit any
involvement in this thing is because you know
you're going to have to do this federal time
as a result of it. Correct?
On appeal, Brown concedes the State's initial questions about
Brown's felony conviction were permissible under N.C. Gen. Stat. §
8C-1, Rule 609, which permits evidence that a witness has been
convicted of a felony, for purposes of impeachment. N.C. Gen.Stat. § 8C-1, Rule 609 (2005). Brown argues the State's follow-up
question about Brown's motivation for denying involvement went
beyond the permissible scope of Rule 609, which limits details of
a prior conviction to "name of the crime, the time and place of the
conviction, and the punishment imposed." State v. Lynch
, 334 N.C.
402, 409, 432 S.E.2d 349, 352 (1993). Brown's reliance on Rule 609
is misplaced. The State's question about Brown's denial of
involvement did not concern any impermissible details about Brown's
prior felony conviction. Rather, the State sought to elicit that
Brown had a motive for untruthfulness when he denied involvement in
the crime. The State concedes the question could be considered a
question concerning a prior bad act, but contends the question was
permissible under Rule 404(b), in that it was admitted for the
purpose of showing motive. We agree. Under N.C. Gen. Stat. § 8C-
1, Rule 404(b) (2005), evidence of prior bad acts or crimes is
admissible for purposes other than to prove a witness's conformity
with the prior act. Such evidence is admissible to show, inter
, the witness's motive. Id
. Accordingly, this assignment of
error is overruled.
 Brown argues the trial court abused its discretion by
sentencing him to consecutive sentences upon conviction of the two
offenses. Brown acknowledges the trial court's authority, under
N.C. Gen. Stat. § 15A-1354, to impose a sentence consecutively
urges this Court to reconsider its rulings upholding the trial
court's statutory authority. We decline. We reiterate our
response to a similar argument promulgated by the defendant in
State v. Love
, 131 N.C. App. 350, 507 S.E.2d 577 (1998), aff'd
, 350N.C. 586, 516 S.E.2d 382, cert. denied
, 350 N.C. 586, 539 S.E.2d
653 (1999). In Love
, our Court addressed the question of a trial
court's discretion under N.C.G.S. § 15A-1354, and we reiterate our
response in Love
: "This is, at best, a question for the legislature
to resolve, but for our purposes it is an argument without merit on
at 359, 507 S.E.2d at 584.
No prejudicial error.
Chief Judge MARTIN and Judge STEELMAN concur.
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