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Click here for the full text of this decision FACTS:Thomas Vick reported to police that his Chevrolet truck and five firearms were stolen from his Bosque County home on May 16, 2003. Police in Coryell County found the truck during an unrelated investigation at the home of Paul Bundrant. A search of the truck conducted after Bundrant was arrested on drug charges did not turn up the missing firearms. David Sneed, who had been with Bundrant at the time of the police investigation, said that Abner Lee Cocke had brought the truck to Bundrant’s property a few days earlier. Sneed said he bought tow firearms from Cocke, who appeared desperate. The two firearms were later identified as two of the ones stolen from Vick, each one worth between $800 and $1,000. Sneed also said that two more firearms were on Bundrant’s property. Bundrant gave his consent to search the property, where two firearms were found. Bundrant told police that Cocke and another man, Warner Massingill, had stayed on Bundrant’s property a few days earlier when Bundrant was not around. Cocke came back to the property with the stolen truck, Bundrant said, and he gave Bundrant the two firearms as “rent.” Bundrant further said that when he saw Massingill and Cocke sanding down the rear bumper of the truck, he told them that if the truck was stolen, they needed to take it somewhere else, which they did. Bundrant also said that he heard Cocke offer to sell a firearm to Sid Harmon, a sale that was later confirmed. Cocke was charged with and convicted of burglary of a habitation. At the punishment phase of his trial, Cocke asked the trial court to give the jury an instruction on accomplice witnesses, arguing that Bundrant and Sneed were his accomplices because of their possession of the property stolen from Vick’s house. The trial court refused the request, and after pleading true to an enhancement paragraph, Cocke was sentenced to life in prison. HOLDING:Reversed and remanded. The court confirms that a person need not actually participate in nor be physically present at the offense to be criminally responsible. Where there is independent evidence of a recent burglary, a person’s unexplained possession of the stolen property may constitute sufficient evidence to convict. And, to be sufficient evidence, the person’s possession must be personal, recent and unexplained. Finally, if the person’s explanation is false or unreasonable, the evidence of possession will support conviction. The court says that the parties dispute whether Bundrant’s and Sneed’s possession of the stolen firearms was recent or unexplained. The evidence shows that Bundrant and Sneed came into possession of the stolen firearms within a few days after the burglary, so the possession was recent. Whether their explanations for their possession was reasonable was for the jury to decide, the court says. Consequently, the court holds that the jury should have been instructed to determine whether Bundrant and Sneed offered reasonable explanation for their possession of the recently stolen firearms. Furthermore, the jury should have been instructed that if their explanations were unreasonable, Cocke could not be convicted without other evidence tending to connect him with the offense. “Because the non-accomplice evidence in this case is tenuous at best, we conclude that Cocke suffered”some harm’ because of the court’s denial of his requested accomplice-witness instruction.” OPINION:Reyna, J.; Gray, C.J.,Vance and Reyna, JJ. CONCURRENCE:Gray, C.J. The concurrence does not join the majority’s “further discussion . . . about what should have been included in the charge and what the jury could or could not do based upon its determination of whether Bundrant or Sneed were accomplices,” as such discussion is “merely an advisory opinion which we have no jurisdiction to render.”

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