Court of Criminal Appeals Opinions

Format: 11/22/2014
Format: 11/22/2014
State of Tennessee v. Everett Russ
W2012-00461-CCA-R3-CD
Authoring Judge: Presiding Judge Joseph M. Tipton
Trial Court Judge: Judge Chris Craft

The Tennessee Supreme Court has remanded this case for reconsideration in light of State v. James Allen Pollard, — S.W.3d —, No. M2011-00332-SC-R11-CD (Tenn. Dec. 20, 2013). See State v. Everett Russ, No. M2012-00461-CCA-R3-CD (Tenn. Crim. App. Dec. 9, 2013), perm. app. granted, case remanded (Tenn. May 15, 2014). Relevant to the current remand, this court concluded in the previous appeal that the trial court erred in imposing consecutive sentences when only one of the statutory aggravating factors applied to the Defendant’s two offenses involving the sexual abuse of a minor. See T.C.A. § 40-35-115(b)(5) (2010). Upon further review, we conclude that the aggravating factors were sufficient to support the trial court’s imposition of consecutive sentences. We affirm the judgments of the trial court.

Shelby County Court of Criminal Appeals 07/14/14
State of Tennessee v. Christina Lee Jones Thomas
E2013-01531-CCA-R3-CD
Authoring Judge: Judge D. Kelly Thomas, Jr.
Trial Court Judge: Judge Robert E. Cupp

The Defendant, Christina Lee Jones Thomas, was convicted by a Washington County jury of especially aggravated robbery and especially aggravated kidnapping. Following a sentencing hearing, the trial court imposed concurrent terms of eighteen years at 100% for these convictions. On appeal, the Defendant claims that she had not abandoned her residence as the trial court determined and that, therefore, it was error to deny her motion to suppress the evidence found inside her home obtained without a search warrant. The Defendant also contends that the evidence adduced at trial is insufficient to support her convictions and that the trial court abused its discretion in enhancing the length of her sentences. After reviewing the record, we conclude that trial court did not err in denying the Defendant’s motion to suppress because the Defendant had abandoned the property, that the evidence produced at trial was sufficient to support the Defendant’s convictions, and that the trial court did not abuse its discretion in setting the length of the Defendant’s sentences. Accordingly, the judgments of the trial court are affirmed.

Washington County Court of Criminal Appeals 07/14/14
Craig L. Beene v. State of Tennessee
M2013-00088-CCA-R3-ECN
Authoring Judge: Judge Roger A. Page
Trial Court Judge: Judge Robert Burch

Petitioner, Craig L. Beene, pleaded guilty to attempted first degree murder, especially aggravated kidnapping, and aggravated assault.  Craig Lamont Beene v. State, No. M2005-01322-CCA-R3-PC, 2006 WL 680919, at *1 (Tenn. Crim. App. Mar. 17, 2006).  Pursuant to the plea agreement, petitioner was sentenced to seventeen years in confinement.  Id. Subsequently, he filed the instant petition for a writ of error coram nobis, claiming that affidavits and two pictures constitute newly discovered evidence.  The coram nobis court denied the petition.  Following our review, we affirm the judgment of the coram nobis court.

Dickson County Court of Criminal Appeals 07/14/14
State of Tennessee v. Cory Meeks
M2013-02379-CCA-R3-CD
Authoring Judge: Judge Thomas T. Woodall
Trial Court Judge: Judge Buddy D. Perry

Defendant, Cory Meeks, appeals the trial court’s revocation of his community corrections sentence and the imposition of a sentence of confinement.  Following our review of the record, we affirm the judgment of the trial court.

Marion County Court of Criminal Appeals 07/14/14
State of Tennessee v. Marvin Roscoe
W2013-01714-CCA-R9-CD
Authoring Judge: Judge Alan E. Glenn
Trial Court Judge: Judge Paula Skahan

This is a Rule 9, Tennessee Rules of Appellate Procedure, interlocutory appeal by the State of Tennessee of the trial court’s granting in part the defendant’s motion to suppress. On March 1, 2012, the Shelby County Grand Jury returned a two-count indictment charging the defendant, Marvin Roscoe, with DUI and DUI over .08%. The defendant filed a motion to suppress any evidence seized or statements made as a result of his stop and arrest. The trial court entered an order denying in part the defendant’s motion to suppress any evidence pertaining to the initial traffic stop and granting in part the  defendant’s motion to suppress any evidence pertaining to the defendant’s subsequent arrest. The State now appeals, arguing that the trial court erred in granting in part the defendant’s motion to suppress the evidence regarding his subsequent arrest. Based upon our review, we reverse the judgment of the trial court and remand for further proceedings consistent with this opinion.

Shelby County Court of Criminal Appeals 07/11/14
State of Tennessee v. Khaliq Ra-El-Concurring
W2013-01130-CCA-R3-CD
Authoring Judge: Judge James Curwood Witt Jr.
Trial Court Judge: Judge W. Mark Ward

I concur in the result reached by the majority. I write separately to respectfully depart from the majority’s undertaking an analysis of the sufficiency of the evidence of passion and provocation. In my view, the reference to passion and provocation in the voluntary manslaughter statue does not denote an essential element of the offense. It describes a dispensation to a defendant who, having intentionally or knowingly killed another, would otherwise be guilty of first degree or second degree murder respectively.

Shelby County Court of Criminal Appeals 07/11/14
State of Tennessee v. Khaliq Ra-El
W2013-01130-CCA-R3-CD
Authoring Judge: Judge Thomas T. Woodall
Trial Court Judge: Judge W. Mark Ward

A Shelby County Jury convicted Defendant, Khaliq Ra-el, of attempted voluntary manslaughter, reckless aggravated assault, and employing a firearm during the commission of a dangerous felony. He received concurrent sentences of three years each for attempted voluntary manslaughter and reckless aggravated assault to be served consecutively to a six-year sentence for employing a firearm during the commission of a dangerous felony. On appeal, Defendant argues that the evidence was insufficient to support his convictions for attempted voluntary manslaughter and employing a firearm during the commission of a dangerous felony. After a thorough review, we affirm the judgments of the trial court.

Shelby County Court of Criminal Appeals 07/11/14
State of Tennessee v. Ladarion Pearson
W2013-01964-CCA-R3-CD
Authoring Judge: Judge Camille R. McMullen
Trial Court Judge: Judge Donald H. Allen

The Defendant, Ladarion Pearson, entered guilty pleas to one count of aggravated criminal trespassing, two counts of assault, one count of aggravated burglary, and one count of robbery. He received an effective sentence of five years to be served in the Department of Correction. On appeal, the Defendant contends that the trial court erred in denying his request for alternative sentencing. Upon review, we affirm the judgments of the trial court.

Madison County Court of Criminal Appeals 07/11/14
Ricardo Dale v. State of Tennessee
W2013-01589-CCA-R3-PC
Authoring Judge: Jude Norma McGee Ogle
Trial Court Judge: Judge James C. Beasley Jr.

The petitioner, Ricardo Dale, filed a petition in the Shelby County Criminal Court, seeking post-conviction relief on the basis of ineffective assistance of counsel. The post-conviction court denied the petition, and the petitioner appeals this ruling. Upon review, we affirm the judgment of the post-conviction court.

Shelby County Court of Criminal Appeals 07/11/14
State of Tennessee v. Bobby Joe Croom
W2013-01863-CCA-R3-CD
Authoring Judge: Judge Camille R. McMullen
Trial Court Judge: Judge Roy B. Morgan Jr.

A Madison County Circuit Court jury convicted the Defendant-Appellant, Bobby Joe Croom, as charged of three counts of rape of a child, a Class A felony, and three counts of aggravated sexual battery, a Class B felony. See State v. Bobby Joe Croom, No. W2011-00461-CCA-R3-CD, 2012 WL 1656718, at *1 Tenn. Crim. App. May 10, 2012). In his first direct appeal, Croom argued that the trial court erred in failing to require the State to elect the particular instances of rape and sexual battery on which it was relying for each conviction and that the evidence was insufficient to support his convictions. Id. at *1. In counts 1 through 4, which charged Croom with rape of a child and aggravated sexual battery during the period of July 1-4, 2009, and with rape of a child and aggravated sexual battery during the period of July 5-11, 2009, this court reversed Croom’s convictions, dismissed his charges, and vacated his sentences after concluding that there was no proof presented at trial that the offenses occurred within the time periods charged. Id. at *8. The court also reversed Croom’s convictions in counts 5 and 6, which charged Croom with rape of a child and aggravated sexual battery during the period of July 12-18, 2009, and remanded the case for a new trial on those counts. Id. Following a retrial on counts 5 and 6, Croom was again convicted as charged, and the trial court imposed consecutive sentences of thirty-five years for the rape of a child conviction and fifteen years for the aggravated sexual battery conviction. In this direct appeal, Croom argues that (1) the trial court erred in allowing a physician to testify about the statements made by the victim and the victim’s mother during a medical examination and erred in admitting the physician’s medical report containing those statements because the statements were not made for the purposes of medical diagnosis and treatment pursuant to Tennessee Rule of Evidence 803(4), and (2) the evidence is insufficient to sustain his convictions. Upon review, we affirm the judgments of the trial court.

Madison County Court of Criminal Appeals 07/11/14
Charles McHaney v. State of Tennessee
M2013-00290-CCA-R3-PC
Authoring Judge: Judge Norma McGee Ogle
Trial Court Judge: Judge Monte Watkins

The petitioner, Charles McHaney, filed a petition in the Davidson County Criminal Court, seeking post-conviction relief.  The post-conviction court dismissed the petition as untimely. On appeal, the petitioner challenges the dismissal.  Upon review, we affirm the judgment of the post-conviction court.

Davidson County Court of Criminal Appeals 07/10/14
State of Tennessee v. Angela M. Greene
E2013-00475-CCA-R3-CD
Authoring Judge: Judge Joseph M. Tipton
Trial Court Judge: Judge Amy F. Reedy

The Defendant, Angela M. Greene, was convicted by a McMinn County Circuit Court jury of first degree felony murder in the perpetration of theft, a Class A felony; aggravated assault, a Class C felony; and theft of property valued at $1000 or more but less than $10,000, a Class D felony. See T.C.A. §§ 39-13-202(a)(2) (2010) (first degree murder), 39-13-102 (Supp. 2009) (amended 2010, 2011, 2013) (aggravated assault), 39-14-103 (2010) (theft of property); 39-14-105(3) (2010) (amended 2012) (grading of theft). The trial court sentenced the Defendant to life as a violent offender for the first degree murder conviction, six years as a Range I, standard offender for aggravated assault, and four years as a Range I, standard offender for theft. The aggravated assault and theft sentences were imposed consecutively to each other but concurrently with the life sentence. On appeal, the Defendant contends that (1) the evidence is insufficient to support the convictions and (2) the trial court erred in admitting evidence of the victim’s hearsay statements. We affirm the judgments of the trial court.

McMinn County Court of Criminal Appeals 07/10/14
State of Tennessee v. James Jones
W2013-01257-CCA-R3-CD
Authoring Judge: Judge Thomas T. Woodall
Trial Court Judge: Judge James M. Lammey Jr.

Defendant, James Jones, was charged by indictment with the offense of aggravated robbery. A jury found him guilty of the lesser included offense of facilitation of aggravated robbery, a Class C felony. At the sentencing hearing, the trial court denied Defendant’s request to be placed on judicial diversion. Instead, the trial court sentenced Defendant to serve four years of incarceration. Defendant raises one issue on appeal. He argues that the trial court should have ordered judicial diversion. After a thorough review of the record and the parties’ briefs, we affirm the judgment of the trial court.

Shelby County Court of Criminal Appeals 07/09/14