Dinkins v. State (1995)

In Dinkins v. State, 894 S.W.2d 330 (Tex. Crim. App.), cert. denied, 516 U.S. 832, 133 L. Ed. 2d 59, 116 S. Ct. 106 (1995), the victim's appointment book and patient application form, recording an appointment the defendant had with the victim about the same time of the murder, were admitted over a hearsay objection. Dinkins, 894 S.W.2d at 347. The officer testified that the defendant became a suspect based upon the information in the appointment book and patient application form. Id. The court found the extrajudicial writing was not hearsay because it was offered to explain how the defendant became a suspect, rather than for the truth of the matter stated. Id. In Dinkins v. State, the appellant argued that the jury charge erroneously authorized a capital murder conviction without requiring that the second murder involved in the offense be committed intentionally or knowingly. Although the abstract portion of the charge defined capital murder and murder, the application portion did not state a culpable mental state for a second murder. Id. The court concluded that, because the application portion of the charge allowed the jury to convict the appellant of capital murder only if it found that both killings were murders and the abstract portion provided the statutory definition of murder, "the jury was instructed that a person commits capital murder only if both killings were committed intentionally and knowingly" and, as a result, the jury charge was not defective. Id. at 339-40. In sum, Dinkins v. State, was a capital murder prosecution, the State offered into evidence a patient application form and an appointment book listing Dinkins' name and a name similar to Dinkins', respectively. See Dinkins, 894 S.W.2d at 347. The Court of Criminal Appeals held the evidence not hearsay, finding the two exhibits were tendered by the State to show how Dinkins became a suspect in the murder investigation. Id. Thus, the patient application form and the appointment book were not hearsay. Id.