SUPREME COURT OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK APPELLATE DIVISION SECOND JUDICIAL DEPARTMENT
June 30, 2009
THE PEOPLE, ETC., RESPONDENT,
VINCENT ARTIS, APPELLANT.
Appeal by the defendant from a judgment of the County Court, Rockland County (Kelly, J.), rendered May 1, 2006, convicting him of conspiracy in the fourth degree, upon a jury verdict, and imposing sentence.
Published by New York State Law Reporting Bureau pursuant to Judiciary Law § 431.
This opinion is uncorrected and subject to revision before publication in the Official Reports.
ROBERT A. SPOLZINO, J.P., DANIEL D. ANGIOLILLO, CHERYL E. CHAMBERS and L. PRISCILLA HALL, JJ.
(Ind. No. 05-00156)
DECISION & ORDER
ORDERED that the judgment is affirmed.
Viewing the evidence in the light most favorable to the prosecution (see People v Contes, 60 NY2d 620, 621), we find that it was legally sufficient to establish the defendant's guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. The overt act necessary to the conspiracy (see People v Ribowsky, 77 NY2d 284, 293; People v Bongarzone, 116 AD2d 164, affd 69 NY2d 892) was established through evidence of a series of telephone conversations concerning the delivery of the illicit substances (see People v Hernandez, 242 AD2d 339, 340; People v Menache, 98 AD2d 335, 337-338), as explained by a police officer qualified as an expert in narcotics code and jargon (see People v Hunt, 249 AD2d 246; People v White, 184 AD2d 798). Moreover, in fulfilling our responsibility to conduct an independent review of the weight of the evidence (see CPL 470.15; People v Danielson, 9 NY3d 342), we nevertheless accord great deference to the jury's opportunity to view the witnesses, hear the testimony, and observe demeanor (see People v Mateo, 2 NY3d 383, cert denied 542 US 946; People v Bleakley, 69 NY2d 490, 495). Upon reviewing the record here, we are satisfied that the verdict of guilt was not against the weight of the evidence (see People v Romero, 7 NY3d 633).
The defendant's claim that the County Court erred in failing to declare a mistrial was waived by the defendant's rejection of the County Court's offer to do so (see People v White, 53 NY2d 721, 723; People v Cerami, 33 NY2d 243, 248). In any event, any prejudice to the defendant was overcome by the prompt curative instruction given by the County Court (see People v Berg, 59 NY2d 294; People v Smith, 288 AD2d 244).
SPOLZINO, J.P., ANGIOLILLO, CHAMBERS and HALL, JJ., concur.
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