Davis v. State (1992)

In Davis v. State, 830 S.W.2d 762 (Tex. App.--Houston 1st Dist. 1992, pet. ref'd), the defendant was charged with possession of narcotics, and during closing argument, the State argued that the jury could infer from the evidence that the defendant intended to sell narcotics and was "out there selling dope." The trial court overruled appellant's counsel's relevance objections. Id. In considering these arguments on appeal, this Court noted that "a prosecutor may freely draw inferences from the evidence as long as they are reasonable, fair, legitimate, and offered in good faith." Id. The evidence in that case "showed that the defendant was arrested in a neighborhood notorious for its use as a forum for drug transactions," the defendant "attempted to dispose of a matchbox which contained 21 individually wrapped bags" of narcotics, and the defendant had on his person $ 671 in small bills at the time of his arrest. Id. The Court concluded, based upon this evidence, that the State's inference that the defendant "was a drug dealer was reasonable, fair, legitimate, and offered in good faith," and, thus, the argument was permissible. Id.