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Appeals court upholds life sentence in CU robbery
WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. (2/17/09)--A North Carolina Court of Appeals has upheld the life sentence of a man convicted as a violent habitual felon in a 2006 robbery of Charlotte, N.C.-based Carolina Postal CU. Gregory Edward Stacey appealed the March 6, 2008 decision by Judge Edwin G. Wilson Jr. in Forsyth County Superior Court. He had been convicted in the Oct. 27, 2006, heist of the credit union, in which he placed a semi-automatic handgun on the counter and told the tellers to fill up a bag. He left with more than $4,229. Stacey had several prior records and served prison terms for previous robberies with firearms. He was convicted of attaining the status of a violent habitual felon and sentenced to life imprisonment without parole. The appeals court said the lower court did not err when it allowed inclusion of evidence related to previous crimes committed during the credit union case and that the evidence was not prejudicial. It overruled Stacey's motion for a new trial based on insufficiency of evidence that he had endangered the lives of the tellers. The appeals court also disagreed with the defendant's argument that the lower trial court abused its discretion in denying his motion for a mistrial after a jury twice informed the court it couldn't reach a unanimous court also was refused. And it said the life sentence did not violate the Eighth Amendment.
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