State v. Blue, 207 N.C. App. 267 (Oct. 5, 2010)

Applying the corpus delicti rule (State may not rely solely on the extrajudicial confession of a defendant, but must produce substantial independent corroborative evidence) the court held that the State produced substantial independent corroborative evidence to show that a robbery and rape occurred. As to the robbery, aspects of the defendant’s confession were corroborated with physical evidence found at the scene (weapons, etc.) and by the medical examiner’s opinion testimony (regarding cause of death and strangulation). As to the rape, the victim’s body was partially nude, an autopsy revealed injury to her vagina, rape kit samples showed spermatozoa, and a forensic analysis showed that defendant could not be excluded as a contributor of the weaker DNA profile.