State v. Juene, ___ N.C. App. ___, 823 S.E.2d 889 (Jan. 15, 2019)

In this case involving armed robbery and other convictions, the trial court did not err by denying the defendant’s motion to suppress evidence which asserted that the pre-trial identification was impermissibly suggestive. Three victims were robbed in a mall parking lot by three assailants. The defendant was apprehended and identified by the victims as one of the perpetrators. The defendant unsuccessfully moved to suppress the show-up identification made by the victims, was convicted and appealed. On appeal the defendant argued that the show-up identification should been suppressed because it was impermissibly suggestive. Before the robbery occurred the defendant and the other perpetrators followed the victims around the mall and the parking lot; the defendant was 2 feet from one of the victims at the time of the robbery; the show-up occurred approximately 15 minutes after the crime; before the show-up the victims gave a physical description of the defendant to law enforcement; all three victims were seated together in the back of a police car during the show-up; the defendant and the other perpetrators were handcuffed during the show-up and standing in a well-lit area of the parking lot in front of the police car; the defendant matched the description given by the victims; upon approaching the area where the defendant and the others were detained, all three victims spontaneously shouted, “That’s him, that’s him”; and all of the victims identified the defendant in court. Although these procedures “were not perfect,” there was not a substantial likelihood of misidentification in light of the reliability factors surrounding the crime and the identification. “Even though the show-up may have been suggestive, it did not rise to the level of irreparable misidentification.”

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