Court of Criminal Appeals Opinions

Format: 04/19/2014
Format: 04/19/2014
State of Tennessee v. Daniel A. Rogers
E2013-01356-CCA-R3-CD
Authoring Judge: Judge Jeffrey S. Bivins
Trial Court Judge: Judge Steven W. Sword

Daniel A. Rogers (“the Defendant”) was convicted by a jury of driving under the influence, simple possession of a Schedule IV controlled substance, and driving on a suspended driver’s license. The Defendant also was convicted by the trial court of violating the implied consent law, resulting in the suspension of his driver’s license for one year. Following a sentencing hearing on his remaining convictions, the Defendant received a total effective sentence of eleven months and twenty-nine days suspended to supervised probation after the service of sixty days. In this direct appeal, the Defendant contends that he was denied a fair trial when the trial court declined to provide a jury instruction regarding the State’s duty to preserve evidence, and he challenges the sufficiency of the evidence supporting his convictions. After a thorough review of the record and applicable law, we affirm the judgments of the trial court.

Knox County Court of Criminal Appeals 04/02/14
Michael Morris v. State of Tennessee
M2013-01652-CCA-R3-PC
Authoring Judge: Judge Jerry L. Smith
Trial Court Judge: Judge Monte Watkins

Petitioner, Michael Morris, was indicted by the Davidson County Grand Jury in July of 2004 for possession of less than .5 grams of cocaine with the intent to sell. Petitioner pled guilty to the charge in September of 2004 in exchange for a suspended four-year sentence and drug treatment. In September of 2012, Petitioner filed a pro se petition for post-conviction relief. The post-conviction court dismissed the petition as time-barred. Petitioner appeals. After a review of the record, we determine that the post-conviction court properly dismissed the petition for post-conviction relief as time-barred by the statute of limitations. Accordingly, the judgment of the post-conviction court is affirmed.

Davidson County Court of Criminal Appeals 04/02/14
Robert D. Mendenhall v. State of Tennessee
M2012-01890-CCA-R3-PC
Authoring Judge: Judge Jerry L. Smith
Trial Court Judge: Judge Cheryl Blackburn

Petitioner, Robert D. Mendenhall, was indicted in case number 2006-A-231 for two counts of solicitation to commit first degree murder and in case number 2006-C-2134 for two counts of theft of property valued at over $60,000, and four counts of violations of the Tennessee Securities Laws. Subsequently, Petitioner pled guilty to two counts of solicitation to commit first degree murder in case number 2006-A-231. He also pled guilty to two counts of theft of property over $60,000, one count of securities fraud by a device, scheme, or artifice, and securities fraud by sale of an unregistered security in case number 2006-C-2134. As a result of the guilty pleas, Petitioner received an effective sentence of forty years. He was represented by separate counsel in each case. Petitioner filed a timely pro se petition for post-conviction relief in which he alleged that he received ineffective assistance of counsel, among other things. After a hearing on the petition, the post-conviction court denied relief. On appeal, Petitioner challenges the denial of post-conviction relief. Upon review, we determine that Petitioner has failed to show clear and convincing evidence that he received ineffective assistance of counsel or that his guilty plea was unknowing and involuntary. Accordingly, the judgment of the post-conviction court is affirmed.

Davidson County Court of Criminal Appeals 04/02/14
Anthony Washington v. State of Tennessee
W2013-01494-CCA-R3-CO
Authoring Judge: Judge D. Kelly Thomas Jr.
Trial Court Judge: Judge John W. Campbell

The Petitioner, Anthony Washington, appeals as of right from the Shelby County Criminal Court’s dismissal of his petition for writ of error coram nobis. The Petitioner contends that the coram nobis court erred by summarily dismissing his petition as having been untimely filed and failing to state a cognizable claim. Discerning no error, we affirm the judgment of the coram nobis court.

Shelby County Court of Criminal Appeals 03/31/14
State of Tennessee v. Terry Johnson
W2012-01510-CCA-R3-CD
Authoring Judge: Judge Norma McGee Ogle
Trial Court Judge: Judge John T. Fowlkes Jr.

A Shelby County Criminal Court Jury convicted the appellant, Terry Johnson, of one count of second degree murder, three counts of attempted second degree murder, and one count of possession of a firearm during a dangerous felony. The trial court imposed a total effective sentence of twenty-six years in the Tennessee Department of Correction. On appeal, the appellant challenges the sufficiency of the evidence sustaining his convictions and the trial court’s refusal to allow the appellant to introduce evidence of the deceased victim’s involvement in an unrelated murder. Upon review, we affirm the judgments of the trial court.

Shelby County Court of Criminal Appeals 03/31/14
State of Tennessee v. Michael Anthony Foster
W2013-00558-CCA-R3-CD
Authoring Judge: Judge Camille R. McMullen
Trial Court Judge: Judge Roy B. Morgan Jr.

The Defendant-Appellant, Michael Anthony Foster, was convicted by a Madison County Circuit Court jury of reckless endangerment and aggravated assault. The trial court merged the reckless endangerment conviction with the aggravated assault conviction and sentenced Foster to eight years in the Tennessee Department of Correction. On appeal, Foster argues that the evidence is insufficient to sustain his conviction for aggravated assault and that the trial court erred in denying alternative sentencing. Upon review, we affirm the judgment of the trial court but remand for entry of a corrected judgment showing that Foster was charged with and convicted of aggravated assault pursuant to Tennessee Code Annotated section 39-13-102(a)(1)(A)(iii), which is a Class C felony.

Madison County Court of Criminal Appeals 03/31/14
Steven Anderson v. State of Tennessee
W2013-00975-CCA-R3-HC
Authoring Judge: Judge Thomas T. Woodall
Trial Court Judge: Judge James M. Lammey

Petitioner, Steven Anderson, filed what he designated was his fourth petition for habeas corpus relief attacking his 1994 convictions for aggravated robbery, especially aggravated robbery, and second degree murder. The convictions were the result of guilty pleas pursuant to a negotiated plea agreement resulting in an effective sentence of 50 years’ incarceration. The State filed a motion for summary dismissal because the claims had been brought three previous times, and no colorable claim was alleged. The habeas corpus trial court granted the motion and dismissed the petition for habeas corpus, and also a petition for writ of error coram nobis. The coram nobis petition is not in the appellate record. Petitioner appeals, and after a thorough review, we affirm pursuant to Rule 20 of the Rules of the Court of Criminal Appeals.

Shelby County Court of Criminal Appeals 03/31/14
State of Tennessee v. Robert Dwight Davis, Alias
E2013-01797-CCA-R3-CD
Authoring Judge: Judge Jeffrey S. Bivins
Trial Court Judge: Judge Steven W. Sword

Robert Dwight Davis, alias (“the Defendant”), pleaded guilty to one count each of possession with intent to sell cocaine with priors, aggravated burglary, attempted aggravated robbery, and criminal impersonation. Pursuant to the plea agreement, the Defendant was sentenced to an effective sentence of sixteen years, to be suspended on “enhanced probation.” Upon the filing of a probation revocation warrant, the Defendant was taken into custody, and a revocation hearing was held. At the conclusion of the hearing, the trial court revoked the Defendant’s probation and ordered him to serve his original sentence in confinement. The Defendant timely appealed the trial court’s ruling. Upon a thorough review of the record, we affirm the trial court’s judgment.

Knox County Court of Criminal Appeals 03/31/14
Dominque Simons v. State of Tennessee
M2013-01663-CCA-R3-PC
Authoring Judge: Judge Robert W. Wedemeyer
Trial Court Judge: Judge Michael R. Jones

The Appellant appeals the trial court’s summary dismissal of his motion to withdraw his guilty plea. The ruling of the trial court is affirmed.

Montgomery County Court of Criminal Appeals 03/31/14
Rolly William Whitford v. State of Tennessee
M2013-01402-CCA-R3-CD
Authoring Judge: Judge Robert W. Wedemeyer
Trial Court Judge: Judge J. Randall Wyatt, Jr.

The Petitioner, Rolly William Whitford, pled guilty to sexual battery and rape, with the trial court to determine the length and manner of service of his sentence. The trial court imposed an effective sentence of twelve years, to be served in the Tennessee Department of Correction. This Court affirmed the Petitioner’s sentence on appeal. State v. Rolly William Whitford, No. M2009-02525-CCA-R3-CD, 2011 WL 255310 at *1 (Tenn. Crim. App., at Nashville, Jan. 20, 2011), perm. app. denied (Tenn. May 25, 2011). The Petitioner timely filed a petition seeking post-conviction relief, asserting that his guilty plea was not entered knowingly and voluntarily, which the post-conviction court denied after a hearing. The Petitioner now appeals, maintaining that his guilty pleas were not entered knowingly and voluntarily because he was never advised of the lifetime supervision requirement for sex offenders. After a thorough review of the record, the briefs, and relevant authorities, we affirm the post-conviction court’s judgment.

Davidson County Court of Criminal Appeals 03/31/14
State of Tennessee v. Jimmy Wayne Wilson
E2013-02354-CCA-R3-CD
Authoring Judge: Judge Jeffrey S. Bivins
Trial Court Judge: Judge Robert H. Montgomery

Jimmy Wayne Wilson (“the Defendant”) was convicted by a jury in 1985 of committing a rape in 1984. The jury also determined the Defendant to be an habitual criminal, and the Defendant, accordingly, was sentenced to life imprisonment. In this proceeding, the Defendant is attacking his sentence pursuant to Tennessee Rule of Criminal Procedure 36.1. The trial court summarily denied the Defendant’s motion, and this appeal followed. Upon our thorough review of the record and applicable law, we affirm the trial court’s judgment.

Sullivan County Court of Criminal Appeals 03/31/14
Jimmie R. Robinson, Sr. v. State of Tennessee
E2013-01163-CCA-R3-PC
Authoring Judge: Judge Jeffrey S. Bivins
Trial Court Judge: Judge Richard R. Vance

Jimmie R. Robinson, Sr., (“the Petitioner”) pleaded guilty to second degree murder after he shot and killed his son-in-law. The plea agreement provided for a sentence of seventeen years and six months in prison. The Petitioner subsequently filed a petition for post-conviction relief on the grounds that his guilty plea was the product of ineffective assistance of counsel and that his plea was constitutionally infirm. After an evidentiary hearing, the post-conviction court denied relief, and this appeal followed. Upon our thorough review of the record and applicable law, we affirm the post-conviction court’s judgment.

Sevier County Court of Criminal Appeals 03/31/14
Matthew Jackson v. State of Tennessee
W2013-01794-CCA-R3-HC
Authoring Judge: Judge Thomas T. Woodall
Trial Court Judge: Judge R. Lee Moore Jr.

Petitioner, Matthew Jackson, appeals from the Lake County Circuit Court’s order denying his requested habeas corpus relief. In his petition, Petitioner attacked his convictions for two counts of aggravated rape, one count of aggravated kidnapping, and one count of aggravated robbery. He was convicted following his entry of guilty pleas in the Robertson County Circuit Court in 2001. The record shows there were no agreements as to sentencing except the parties agreed all sentences would be served concurrently. In this habeas corpus petition, Petitioner asserts he was sentenced to an illegal sentence because the trial court did not inform him of the following consequences of his guilty pleas: (a) mandatory registration as a sex offender; and (b) mandatory sentence of community supervision for life in addition to incarceration. Petitioner also sought habeas corpus relief on the ground that his guilty pleas were not knowingly, voluntarily, and intelligently entered. The trial court denied Petitioner habeas corpus relief to the extent of not setting aside the convictions or the sentences. However, the trial court remanded the cases to the Robertson County Circuit Court for entry of corrected judgments for the aggravated rape convictions regarding registration as a sexual offender and community supervision for life. We affirm the judgment of the Circuit Court of Lake County.

Lake County Court of Criminal Appeals 03/31/14