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Court of Appeals of Georgia.


No. A02A1420.

Decided: May 13, 2002

James W. Bradley, Jonesboro, for appellant. Robert E. Keller, Dist. Atty., for appellee.

A Clayton County jury found Martin Benjamin Newby guilty of child molestation for an act he committed against his nine-year-old stepdaughter.   He appeals and claims solely that “similar transaction” evidence of other sexual overtures Newby made toward the victim during the same time period as the indicted act were introduced without compliance with Uniform Superior Court Rule 31.3.   This argument is unavailing.   The evidence about which Newby complains demonstrated “prior difficulties” between the victim and Newby.  “USCR 31.1 and 31.3 [do] not apply to evidence of ‘prior difficulties' between a defendant and a victim.” 1

Judgment affirmed.


1.   Smith v. State, 270 Ga. 123, 124(2), 508 S.E.2d 173 (1998).   See also State v. Belt, 269 Ga. 763, 764-765, 505 S.E.2d 1 (1998) ( “Neither Wall v. State, 269 Ga. 506(2), 500 S.E.2d 904 (1998), nor Spearman v. State, 267 Ga. 600(4), 481 S.E.2d 814 (1997), nor Kettman v. State, 257 Ga. 603(7), 362 S.E.2d 342 (1987), can be read to require a trial court to give a limiting charge, in the absence of a request, when evidence of prior difficulties is admitted.”).


SMITH, P.J., and ELLINGTON, J., concur.

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