In 2018, Madison P.D. was dispatched to Canton Garden Apartments for a disturbance involving a shotgun. A man stuck his head out of the apartment window and then backed away. Police then got Tyrone Body and Kenosha Brown out of the apartment at gunpoint.
Brown had injuries from a physical altercation. On securing the apartment, Officer Jermaine Hamlin noticed the door latch was broken and wood was chipped from the back of the door implying a forced entry. He also discovered a cocked and loaded .12 gauge Beretta firearm under the couch and four minor children inside the apartment.
Brown told police that Body was a boyfriend and that she spent an evening at a hotel with him and her children. When Body refused to let her leave the hotel, Brown called a former boyfriend to pick them up. Body let them leave but then broke into her locked apartment with a shotgun accusing her of having an affair. Body was convicted of burglary and sentenced to 25 years. On appeal, Body argued he had consent to be at the apartment. MSC affirmed.
Body argued in cases of marriage or its functional equivalent, spouses are recognized to have “conjugal rights,” and per the marriage contract, the spouse would expect to be admitted into the marital dwelling absent a restraining order or an order granting one spouse exclusive possession of the marital dwelling. This argument, however, is without merit.
No evidence suggests Body had an ownership interest in Brown’s apartment or that Body and Brown had any form of a marital relationship outside of an ongoing affair. Therefore, Body lacked implied consent to enter Brown’s apartment.
Moreover, the evidence suggests Body lacked explicit permission to enter the apartment. Brown testified she ignored Body’s calls prior to his arrival and that her door had been closed and locked with the deadbolt, which Body broke open in order to enter. Officer Hamlin’s testimony corroborated these events. He described the latch that was used to lock the door appeared “busted in,” and a piece of wood had been chipped off from the back of the door, indicating that someone had forced their way inside.