Court of Criminal Appeals Opinions

Format: 07/28/2014
Format: 07/28/2014
Charles Calhoun v. State of Tennessee
M2013-01942-CCA-R3-PC
Authoring Judge: Judge Jerry L. Smith
Trial Court Judge: Judge Seth Norman

Petitioner, Charles Deon Calhoun, pled guilty to two counts of aggravated robbery. He then filed a pro se petition for post-conviction relief, alleging ineffective assistance of counsel. The post-conviction court summarily dismissed the petition for failing to state a colorable claim for relief. Petitioner appealed, arguing that the court erred in dismissing his petition without holding an evidentiary hearing and without appointing counsel to assist in presenting his claim. Upon review of the record, we affirm the decision of the post-conviction court dismissing the petition.
 

Davidson County Court of Criminal Appeals 06/17/14
STATE OF TENNESSEE v. JACQUELINE M. HIYAMA
M2013-01838-CCA-R3-CD
Authoring Judge: Judge Norma McGee Ogle
Trial Court Judge: Judge James G. Martin, III

The appellant, Jacqueline M. Hiyama, was indicted on alternative counts of driving under the influence (DUI) pursuant to Tennessee Code Annotated section 55-10-401(a)(1) and (a)(2). She filed a pretrial motion to suppress all evidence obtained as a result of her arrest, asserting that the arresting officer did not have reasonable suspicion to stop her vehicle. The trial court denied the appellant’s motion. The appellant pled guilty to the indicted offense reserving a certified question of law pursuant to Tennessee Rule of Criminal Procedure 37(b)(2) concerning whether the stop of the appellant’s vehicle by law enforcement was lawful. After review, we conclude that the trial court did not err in denying the appellant’s motion to suppress and affirm the judgment of the trial court.
 

Williamson County Court of Criminal Appeals 06/17/14
David Frazier v. State of Tennessee
E2013-02563-CCA-R3-CD
Authoring Judge: Judge D. Kelly Thomas, Jr.
Trial Court Judge: Judge Carroll L. Ross

The Defendant, David Frazier, appeals as of right from the Polk County Criminal Court’s summary dismissal of his motion to correct an illegal sentence. See Tenn. R. Crim. P. 36.1. The Defendant contends that the trial court erred by dismissing his motion without a hearing. The State concedes that the trial court erred. Following our review, we reverse the judgment of the trial court and remand the case for a hearing on the Defendant’s motion.

Polk County Court of Criminal Appeals 06/16/14
State of Tennessee v. Glenn Climer, Jr.
M2013-00651-CCA-R3-CD
Authoring Judge: Judge Jerry L. Smith
Trial Court Judge: Judge David Bragg

Appellant, Glenn Climer, Jr., was indicted by the Rutherford County Grand Jury with attempted second degree murder, attempted aggravated child abuse, child abuse, assault, and resisting arrest. Appellant was convicted of attempted voluntary manslaughter, attempted aggravated child abuse, child abuse, assault, and resisting arrest. As a result, he was sentenced to a total effective sentence of twenty-six years, eleven months, and twenty-nine days. After the denial of a motion for new trial, Appellant sought this appeal. On appeal, the following issues are presented for our review: (1) whether the evidence is sufficient to support Appellant’s convictions for attempted voluntary manslaughter, attempted aggravated child abuse, and child abuse; (2) whether the trial court erred by allowing counsel for the State to present an improper argument; (3) whether Appellant’s conviction for child abuse violates double jeopardy; and (4) whether the trial court properly sentenced Appellant. After a review of the issues raised on appeal, this Court determines that the evidence was sufficient to support the offenses; Appellant waived any issue with regard to improper argument by failing to object at trial; Appellant’s convictions do not violate double jeopardy; and the trial court did not abuse its discretion in sentencing Appellant. Consequently, the judgments of the trial court are affirmed.
 

Rutherford County Court of Criminal Appeals 06/16/14
State of Tennessee v. Billy Joe Harris
W2013-02310-CCA-R3-CD
Authoring Judge: Judge Camille R. McMullen
Trial Court Judge: Judge William B. Acree Jr.

Following a bench trial, the Defendant-Appellant, Billy Joe Harris, was convicted in the Obion County Circuit Court of violation of the sexual offender registry, a Class E felony. See T.C.A. § 40-39-208 (2012). The trial court imposed a one-year sentence with ninety days to be served in the county jail and the balance to be served on community corrections. The sole issue presented for our review is whether the evidence is sufficient to support the conviction. Upon review, we affirm the judgment of the trial court.

Obion County Court of Criminal Appeals 06/12/14
Guy Graves v. State of Tennessee
W2013-01288-CCA-R3-PC
Authoring Judge: Judge Camille R. McMullen
Trial Court Judge: Judge Donald H. Allen

The Petitioner, Guy Graves, appeals from the denial of post-conviction relief by the Madison County Circuit Court. He was convicted of two counts of burglary and received an effective sentence of twenty-four years in the Tennessee Department of Correction. On appeal, the Petitioner argues that he received ineffective assistance of counsel. Upon review, we affirm the judgment of the post-conviction court.

Madison County Court of Criminal Appeals 06/12/14
State of Tennessee v. Paul Epps
W2013-02194-CCA-R3-CD
Authoring Judge: Judge Camille R. McMullen
Trial Court Judge: Judge J. Weber McCraw

The Defendant, Paul Epps, appeals the trial court’s revocation of his probation and reinstatement of his original two-year sentence in the Department of Correction. On appeal, the Defendant argues that the record does not contain substantial evidence to show that a violation of probation occurred and that the trial court erred in failing to consider a disposition other than incarceration after revoking his probation. Upon our review, we affirm the judgment of the trial court.

Fayette County Court of Criminal Appeals 06/12/14
State of Tennessee v. Christopher Lee Richardson
M2013-01178-CCA-R3-CD
Authoring Judge: Judge James Curwood Witt, Jr.
Trial Court Judge: Judge Lee Russell

The defendant, Christopher Lee Richardson, appeals his Bedford County Circuit Court jury convictions of attempted theft of property valued at $1,000 or more but less than $10,000; disorderly conduct; simple possession of a Schedule IV controlled substance; resisting arrest; simple possession of a Schedule VI controlled substance; and attempted promotion of the manufacture of methamphetamine, claiming that the trial court erred by failing to grant his motion to sever the counts of the indictment; that the trial court erred by refusing to disqualify a juror; that the evidence is insufficient to support his convictions of attempted theft of property and attempted promotion of the manufacture of methamphetamine; and that the sentence is excessive. Discerning no error, we affirm the judgments of the trial court.

Bedford County Court of Criminal Appeals 06/12/14
Terry R. Whitefield v. State of Tennessee
M2013-02029-CCA-R3-PC
Authoring Judge: Judge James Curwood Witt, Jr.
Trial Court Judge: Judge Monte Watkins

The petitioner, Terry R. Whitefield, appeals the denial of post-conviction relief from his 2012 Davidson County Criminal Court
guilty-pleaded convictions of aggravated sexual battery, for which he received a sentence of 16 years’ incarceration. In this appeal, the petitioner contends that he was denied the effective assistance of counsel and that his guilty pleas were not knowingly and voluntarily entered. Discerning no error, we affirm.

Davidson County Court of Criminal Appeals 06/12/14
State of Tennessee v. Jeffrey Wayne Rowe
M2013-02341-CCA-R3-CD
Authoring Judge: Judge James Curwood Witt, Jr.
Trial Court Judge: Judge Forest A. Durand, Jr.

The defendant, Jeffrey Wayne Rowe, pleaded guilty to four counts of aggravated burglary, one count of attempted aggravated burglary, one count of vandalism, and two counts of misdemeanor theft, and the Marshall County Circuit Court sentenced him as a Range I, standard offender to a term of 10 years’ imprisonment. On appeal, the defendant challenges the manner of service of his sentence. Discerning no error, we affirm.

Marshall County Court of Criminal Appeals 06/11/14
State of Tennessee v. Shawn Thompson
M2013-01274-CCA-R3-CD
Authoring Judge: Judge John Everett Williams
Trial Court Judge: Judge Dee David Gay

The defendant, Shawn Thompson, was convicted after a jury trial of three counts of attempted voluntary manslaughter, a Class D felony; one count of reckless endangerment with a deadly weapon, a Class E felony; and one count of employing a firearm during the commission of a dangerous felony, a Class C felony. The trial court ordered the defendant’s attempted voluntary manslaughter convictions to run concurrently with one another, but ordered the reckless endangerment conviction to run consecutively to the first three counts and the weapons conviction to run consecutively to all counts. On appeal, the defendant asserts error in the trial court’s failure to dismiss the weapons charge in light of what he asserts is a material variance; in the trial court’s failure to charge the jury on the issue of self-defense; in the State’s improper argument to the jury; and in the trial court’s allegedly erroneous consideration of non-statutory factors in imposing a consecutive sentence. After a thorough review of the record, we affirm the judgments of the trial court.

Sumner County Court of Criminal Appeals 06/11/14
Cornelius O. Williams v. State of Tennessee
M2013-01470-CCA-R3-PC
Authoring Judge: Judge John Everett Williams
Trial Court Judge: Judge Michael R. Jones

The petitioner, Cornelius O. Williams, appeals the denial of his petition for post-conviction relief. He alleges that he received ineffective assistance of counsel because his guilty plea was unlawfully induced and involuntarily made. After thoroughly reviewing the record, we conclude that the petitioner entered a knowing and voluntary plea of guilty and affirm the judgment of the post-conviction court.

Montgomery County Court of Criminal Appeals 06/11/14
State of Tennessee v. Robert D. Ewing and Anthony T. Ewing
E2013-01587-CCA-R3-CD
Authoring Judge: Judge Jeffrey S. Bivins
Trial Court Judge: Judge Carroll L. Ross

Robert D. Ewing (“Defendant Robert”) and Anthony T. Ewing (“Defendant Anthony”) (collectively “the Defendants”) each pleaded guilty to sexual exploitation of a minor. The Defendants reserved a certified question of law as to whether information received several months prior to obtaining and executing a search warrant was too stale to support probable cause. Pursuant to plea agreements, the trial court sentenced each of the Defendants to two years, suspended to supervised probation. This Court consolidated the Defendants’ appeals. Upon our thorough review of the record and applicable law, we reject the Defendants’ challenges to the search warrant and affirm the judgments of the trial court.

Bradley County Court of Criminal Appeals 06/11/14