June 3, 2015
PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF MICHIGAN, Plaintiff-Appellee,
CHANTON LEWIN BLACKSHIRE, Defendant-Appellant
COA: 317594. Wayne CC: 12-003666-FC.
Robert P. Young, Jr., Chief Justice. Stephen J. Markman, Mary Beth Kelly, Brian K. Zahra, Bridget M. McCormack, David F. Viviano, Richard H. Bernstein, Justices.
On order of the Court, the application for leave to appeal the December 9, 2014 judgment of the Court of Appeals is considered and, pursuant to MCR 7.302(H)(1), in lieu of granting leave to appeal, we REVERSE that part of the Court of Appeals judgment holding that trial counsel made a strategic decision to allow the Wayne Circuit Court to instruct jurors on the lesser offense of unlawfully driving away an automobile. Trial counsel mentioned the lesser offense during her closing argument in the course of arguing that the prosecutor failed to prove the charged offense of carjacking. The record suggests that trial counsel was actually opposed to the instruction on the lesser offense. We REMAND this case to the trial court for an evidentiary hearing pursuant to People v Ginther, 390 Mich. 436; 212 N.W.2d 922 (1973). The trial court shall determine whether trial counsel made a deliberate and sound strategic decision to allow jurors to consider the lesser offense of unlawfully driving away an automobile or whether counsel was ineffective for failing to argue that the instruction on the lesser offense was barred by People v Cornell, 466 Mich. 335; 646 N.W.2d 127 (2002). We further ORDER the trial court, in accordance with Administrative Order 2003-03, to determine whether the defendant is indigent and, if so, to appoint counsel to represent the defendant at the evidentiary hearing. In all other respects, leave to appeal is DENIED, because we are not persuaded that the remaining questions presented should be reviewed by this Court.
We do not retain jurisdiction.