PEOPLE v. SANCHEZ


268 A.D.2d 364 (2000)

702 N.Y.S.2d 261

THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, Respondent, v. LAMAR SANCHEZ, Appellant.

Appellate Division of the Supreme Court of the State of New York, First Department.

Decided January 25, 2000.


The trial record, taken together with the record of the reconstruction hearing, establishes that defendant knowingly, voluntarily and intelligently waived his right to be present at the voir dire sidebar conference in question (see, People v Spotford, 85 N.Y.2d 593, 599), in that, at the outset of jury selection, the court advised defendant, on the record, of his right to attend all sidebars, and defendant followed his counsel's advice that his attendance at sidebars while escorted to the bench by court officers would give the jurors an unfavorable impression.

To the extent that the prosecutor's summation improperly included references to matters not in evidence and matters calculated to evoke sympathy, these errors were harmless in light of the overwhelming evidence of defendant's guilt. The remaining challenged portions of the prosecutor's summation were fair comment on the evidence and proper responses to defendant's summation (see, People v Overlee, 236 A.D.2d 133, lv denied 91 N.Y.2d 976; People v D'Alessandro, 184 A.D.2d 114, 118-119, lv denied 81 N.Y.2d 884).


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