Argued: October 18, 2018
J. MacDonald, attorney general (Stephen D. Fuller, senior
assistant attorney general, on the memorandum of law and
orally), for the State.
& Associates, PLLC, of Portsmouth (Albert Hansen on the
brief and orally), for the defendant.
defendant, Reilly O. Leith, appeals her conviction in the
Superior Court (Wageling, J.) for theft by
unauthorized taking. See RSA 637:3 (2016). She
raises issues concerning the admissibility and sufficiency of
the evidence presented by the State to establish that the
value of the stolen property exceeded $1, 000, and thus
rendered the offense a class B felony. See RSA
637:11, II(a) (2016). We affirm.
jury could have found the following facts. On September 21,
2013, a loss prevention officer apprehended the defendant
outside a Kohl's store in Newington after observing what
she identified as shoplifting through store security cameras.
The officer retrieved 30 stolen items from the
defendant's person, as well as a bag she was carrying,
and contacted the police. Using an inventory form, the
officer recorded the price of the stolen merchandise by
matching each item with its corresponding price tag. The
total tagged price of the items stolen by the defendant, as
recorded by the loss prevention officer on the inventory
form, was $1, 174. The defendant was subsequently charged
with felony-level theft. See RSA 637:3, :11, II(a).
direct examination of the loss prevention officer at trial,
the State sought to admit the inventory form completed by the
officer immediately following the theft. The defendant
objected on hearsay, relevance, best evidence, confrontation,
and burden-shifting grounds. The trial court admitted the
inventory form and overruled the defendant's objections,
explaining that: (1) the jurors could give the form "the
weight that they think it deserves"; (2) the form was
admissible under the business records exception to the
hearsay rule; (3) "the accuracy and authenticity and use
of numbers aren't substantially in doubt"; (4) the
defendant was able to effectively cross-examine the loss
prevention officer; and (5) no burden shifting had occurred.
The defendant did not call any witnesses.
close of evidence, the defendant moved to dismiss the felony
indictment, arguing that "viewing all evidence in a
light most favorable to the State, no rational trier of fact
could conclude beyond a reasonable doubt that [the defendant]
took merchandise in excess of $1, 000." The State
responded that it had introduced sufficient evidence to prove
that the defendant had stolen over $1, 000 worth of property,
given the evidence of the "retail value" of the
items, which, the State asserted, represented the
"highest market value." The trial court denied the
defendant's motion to dismiss, finding that there was
sufficient evidence upon which a rational jury could find
that the State had sustained its burden.
defendant did not object to the court's proposed jury
instructions on the definition of value. The court instructed
the jury that:
Value means the market value or the price which the property
will bring in a fair market at the time of the alleged theft,
after reasonable efforts have been made to find the purchaser
who will give the highest price for it. Value means the
highest amount determined by any reasonable standard of
jury convicted the defendant, and ...