After a month, the Arkansas Court of Appeals came back with a decision denying Robelo relief on his Petition for Rehearing. The irony is that it went to a five judge panel, and a new opinion was written; however, the result was the same. At least the judges on the Court of Appeals realized their obvious oversight of the critical facts. Yet, with their ingenuity, they contrived a new way to deny Robelo justice. The new opinion held that, because a search warrant was obtained for Apartment A, the jury could reasonable conclude that a drug transaction with the confidential informant took place in Apartment A.
This is more ridiculous than the original opinion, which simply overlooked the operative facts. Instead, this opinion creates more questions than answers. Essentially, the Court is stating that a jury can infer that the search warrant was based on what happened on a particular day in a particular place for a particular reason, yet there be no evidence of that in the record. SHOCKING? No. This is simply another case where judges desired a result and were willing to say anything to get to it.
The one honest judge: Judge (soon to be Justice) Jo Hart. Judge Hart concurred, and stated that there was NO EVIDENCE that a transaction occurred in Apartment A. However, my problem with Judge Hart’s concurrence, is that it does not detail what the additional linking factor is if it is not the transaction in Apartment A.
It is getting to the point with the Arkansas Court of Appeals that I am more amused at the unbelievable reaches made in the criminal opinions than I am shocked or outraged. I look forward to the new batch of judges to appear at the Court. Hope is all I have, something Jomy Robelo was robbed of.