PEOPLE v. WASHINGTON

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Supreme Court, Appellate Division, First Department, New York.

The PEOPLE of the State of New York, Respondent, v. Alfonso WASHINGTON, Defendant-Appellant.

Decided: May 11, 2006

BUCKLEY, P.J., SAXE, NARDELLI, GONZALEZ, CATTERSON, JJ. Richard M. Greenberg, Office of the Appellate Defender, New York (Brian W. Stull of counsel), for appellant. Robert T. Johnson, District Attorney, Bronx (Na Na Park of counsel), for respondent.

Judgment, Supreme Court, Bronx County (Caesar Cirigliano, J.), rendered April 28, 2004, convicting defendant, after a nonjury trial, of conspiracy in the second degree, and sentencing him, as a second felony offender, to a term of 6 to 12 years, unanimously affirmed.

 The verdict was based on legally sufficient evidence and was not against the weight of the evidence.   The evidence established that defendant and his coconspirators entered into an agreement to kill defendant's rival for a specific price, with the killing to take place after certain contingencies had occurred.   Defendant expected these contingent events to take place within a short time, and the fact that he insisted the killing be deferred until after their occurrence neither negated the existence of a conspiracy (see People v. Caban, 5 N.Y.3d 143, 800 N.Y.S.2d 70, 833 N.E.2d 213 [2005];  United States v. Palmer, 203 F.3d 55, 63-64 [1st Cir.2000], cert. denied 530 U.S. 1281, 120 S.Ct. 2756, 147 L.Ed.2d 1018 [2000] ), nor established the defense of renunciation (see Penal Law § 40.10;  People v. Taylor, 80 N.Y.2d 1, 586 N.Y.S.2d 545, 598 N.E.2d 693 [1992] ).   Throughout the various conversations among the conspirators, the agreement to kill the intended victim remained firm, notwithstanding that defendant wanted the killing postponed.   The evidence also established numerous overt acts in furtherance of the agreement, including steps taken to enable the hired killer to locate and identify the intended victim (see e.g. People v. Rolle, 282 A.D.2d 624, 723 N.Y.S.2d 381 [2001], lv. denied 97 N.Y.2d 643, 735 N.Y.S.2d 500, 761 N.E.2d 5 [2001] ).

We perceive no basis for reducing the sentence.