Opinion Flash

March 27, 2003
Volume 9 — Number 055

Following this index are summaries of each case, including its name, first paragraph, author's name, and the names of attorneys for the parties of each opinion.

This Issue (IN THIS ORDER):
00 New Opinion(s) from the Tennessee Supreme Court
00 New Opinion(s) from the Tennessee Supreme Court Workers' Compensation Panel
00 New Document(s) or Proposed Rule(s) from the Tennessee Supreme Court
01 New Opinion(s) from the Tennessee Court of Appeals
15 New Opinion(s) from the Tennessee Court of Criminal Appeals
00 New Opinion(s) from the Tennessee Attorney General (PDF format)
00 New Judicial Ethics Opinion(s)
00 New Formal Ethics Opinion(s) from the Board of Professional Responsibility

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Howard H. Vogel
Knoxville, Tennessee
Editor-in-Chief, TBALink


STATE OF TENNESSEE, DEPARTMENT OF HUMAN SERVICES, EX REL., TENNESSEE
DEPARTMENT OF CHILDREN'S SERVICES v. DEBRA WILSON, et al.

Court:TCA

Attorneys:     

Paul G. Summers, Attorney General & Reporter, and Stuart F.
Wilson-Patton, Senior Counsel, for the appellant, State of Tennessee
Department of Human Services ex rel., Tennessee Department of
Children's Services.

Debra Wilson, Pro se.

Woodrow Wilson, Pro se.                      

Judge: FARMER

First Paragraph:

This case involves the State's request that the parents of a minor
child taken into the State's custody pay child support retroactive to
the date the child was taken into custody.  The State did not request
such support until almost two years after the child was taken into
custody.  The trial court refused to grant the State support beyond
the date of the filing of the petition requesting support.  We affirm,
as modified.

http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCA/wilsond_opn.wpd
								
STATE OF TENNESSEE, DEPARTMENT OF HUMAN SERVICES, EX REL., TENNESSEE DEPARTMENT OF CHILDREN'S SERVICES v. DEBRA WILSON, et al. Court:TCA COTTRELL DISSENTING http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCA/wilsond_dis.wpd
STATE OF TENNESSEE v. KENNETH RUSSELL AMICK Court:TCCA Attorneys: David A. Doyle, District Public Defender, for the appellant, Kenneth Russell Amick. Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; Christine M. Lapps, Assistant Attorney General; Lawrence Ray Whitley, District Attorney General; and Sallie Wade Brown, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee. Judge: RILEY First Paragraph: The defendant challenges the revocation of his probation by the Sumner County Criminal Court. We affirm. http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCCA/amickkenneth.wpd
STATE OF TENNESSEE v. GUADALUPE ARROYO, ALIAS Court:TCCA Attorneys: Glen B. Rutherford, Knoxville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Guadalupe Arroyo. Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; John H. Bledsoe, Assistant Attorney General; Randall E. Nichols, District Attorney General; Philip H. Morton, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee. Judge: MCGEE OGLE First Paragraph: The appellant, Guadalupe Arroyo, entered guilty pleas to two counts of vehicular homicide by intoxication, Class B felonies. The trial court sentenced the appellant on each count to twelve years incarceration in the Tennessee Department of Correction and ordered that the sentences be served consecutively. On appeal, the appellant contends that the trial court erred in imposing the maximum sentences and in ordering the sentences to be served consecutively. Upon review of the record and the parties' briefs, we affirm the convictions of vehicular homicide; however, finding error in the trial court's sentencing determinations, we remand for resentencing. http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCCA/arroyog.wpd
STATE OF TENNESSEE v. HOMER FRANK BEAVERS Court:TCCA Attorneys: Mike A. Little, Chattanooga, Tennessee, for the appellant, Homer Frank Beavers. Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; Elizabeth B. Marney, Assistant Attorney General; William H. Cox, District Attorney General; and Carl Huskins, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee. Judge: MCGEE OGLE First Paragraph: The appellant, Homer Frank Beavers, pled guilty in the Hamilton County Criminal Court to two counts of aggravated assault and one count of assault. The trial court sentenced the appellant as a standard Range I offender to a total effective sentence of five years incarceration in the Tennessee Department of Correction. The trial court denied the appellant's request for probation and the appellant appealed to this court. Upon review of the record and the parties' briefs, we affirm the judgment of the trial court. http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCCA/beavershf.wpd
STATE OF TENNESSEE v. RACHEL N. BENNETT Court:TCCA Attorneys: C. Diane Crosier, Franklin, Tennessee, for the appellant, Rachel N. Bennett. Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; Thomas E. Williams, III, Assistant Attorney General; Ronald L. Davis, District Attorney General; and Derek K. Smith and Mary Katharine White, Assistant District Attorneys General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee. Judge: MCGEE OGLE First Paragraph: The appellant, Rachel N. Bennett, pled guilty in the Williamson County Circuit Court to eighteen felony offenses. The trial court sentenced the appellant to a total effective sentence of nine years incarceration in the Tennessee Department of Correction. On appeal, the appellant contests the trial court's imposition of consecutive sentencing. Upon review of the record and the parties' briefs, we affirm the judgment of the trial court. http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCCA/bennettr.wpd
STATE OF TENNESSEE v. CONSUELA P. CARTER Court:TCCA Attorneys: Russ F. Eagle, Murfreesboro, Tennessee, for the appellant, Consuela P. Carter. Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; Renee W. Turner, Assistant Attorney General; William C. Whitesell, Jr., District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee. Judge: TIPTON First Paragraph: The defendant, Consuela P. Carter, appeals the Rutherford County Circuit Court's denial of full probation for her conviction for possessing with intent to sell less than one-half gram of cocaine, a Class C felony. She was sentenced to five years, with probation after serving nine months. We affirm the judgment of the trial court. http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCCA/carterconsuelap.wpd
STATE OF TENNESSEE v. GARY S. GREVE Court:TCCA Attorneys: Leonard M. Caputo, Chattanooga, Tennessee, for the appellant, Gary S. Greve. Paul G. Summers, Attorney General & Reporter; Elizabeth B. Marney, Assistant Attorney General; and Carl Huskins, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee. Judge: WADE First Paragraph: The defendant, Gary S. Greve, was convicted after a bench trial of driving under the influence. See Tenn. Code Ann. S 55-10-401. The trial court imposed a sentence of eleven months, twenty- nine days, with all but forty-eight hours suspended. In this appeal as of right, the defendant contends that his initial stop by police was not supported by reasonable suspicion. The judgment is affirmed. http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCCA/grevegarys.wpd
STATE OF TENNESSEE v. DAVID L. GROOM Court:TCCA Attorneys: Mark C. Scruggs, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellant, David L. Groom. Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; Renee W. Turner, Assistant Attorney General; Victor S. Johnson, III, District Attorney General; and Robert E. McGuire, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee. Judge: RILEY First Paragraph: The defendant, David L. Groom, pled guilty to driving under the influence, reserving a certified question of law. On appeal, the defendant contends, pursuant to the certified question of law, that the trial court erred in denying his motion to suppress evidence resulting from an unlawful arrest or seizure. We affirm the judgment of the trial court. http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCCA/groomdavid.wpd
LEONARD HUTCHISON and JAMES HARPER v. STATE OF TENNESSEE Court:TCCA Attorneys: Paul G. Summers, Attorney General & Reporter; Kathy D. Aslinger, Assistant Attorney General; and John A. Bobo, Jr., Attorney General Pro Tem, for the appellant, State of Tennessee. Mark E. Stephens, District Public Defender (on appeal), and Robert C. Edwards, Assistant District Public Defender (on appeal and at trial), for the appellee, Leonard Hutchison. J. Liddell Kirk, Knoxville, Tennessee, for the appellee, James Harper. Judge: WADE First Paragraph: The post-conviction court granted each of the petitioners post-conviction relief on the grounds that the state had violated the requirements of Brady v. Maryland, 373 U.S. 83 (1963), by failing to disclose an exculpatory FBI laboratory report and an exculpatory witness statement. In this appeal of right, the state contends (1) that Harper's petition is barred by the applicable statute of limitations; (2) that the trial court erred by permitting the petitioners to amend their petitions and allege new grounds after a remand from this court; (3) that the trial court erred by determining that the state suppressed the FBI laboratory reports and a witness statement; and (4) that Hutchison received the effective assistance of counsel at trial, an alternative ground for relief asserted by Hutchison. In response to the state's appeal, the petitioners assert that the trial court erred by excluding from evidence the affidavit of a juror which would demonstrate that the FBI lab reports would have created reasonable doubt. The judgment is affirmed. http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCCA/hutchisonharper.wpd
GARCIA FLORES ISODORO v. STATE OF TENNESSEE Court:TCCA Attorneys: Garcia Flores Idodoro, Only, Tennessee, Pro Se. Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; Thomas E. Williams, III, Assistant Attorney General; Victor S. Johnson, District Attorney General; and Dan Hamm, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee. Judge: WELLES First Paragraph: The Defendant, Garcia Flores Isidoro, filed for post-conviction relief, which was denied without a hearing as being untimely filed. The Defendant now appeals as of right. We affirm the judgment of the trial court. http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCCA/isodorogf.wpd
STATE OF TENNESSEE v. WILLIAM RHEA JACKSON Court:TCCA Attorneys: Jeffrey A. DeVasher, Assistant Public Defender, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellant, William Rhea Jackson. Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; Helena Walton Yarbrough, Assistant Attorney General; Victor S. Johnson, District Attorney General; and Renee Erb and Kristen Shea, Assistant District Attorneys General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee. Judge: WELLES First Paragraph: The Defendant, William Rhea Jackson, was convicted by a jury of aggravated burglary, robbery, misdemeanor theft, attempted rape, aggravated kidnapping, and two counts of rape. The trial court sentenced the Defendant to an effective term of thirty-four years in the Department of Correction. In this direct appeal, the Defendant raises eight issues: (1) whether the trial court erred in denying his motion to suppress his statement to the police; (2) whether the trial court erred in admitting certain testimony concerning fingerprints; (3) whether the trial court erred in admitting hearsay testimony about the victim's response to a photographic line-up; (4) whether the Defendant was entitled to a mistrial due to statements made by the prosecutor during closing argument; (5) whether the evidence is sufficient to support his convictions; (6) whether the conviction for aggravated kidnapping violates due process under State v. Anthony; (7) whether the trial court properly instructed the jury concerning lesser-included offenses; and (8) whether the Defendant's sentences are excessive. Because the trial court committed reversible error when it failed to instruct the jury on all of the lesser-included offenses of the indicted offenses of robbery and aggravated rape, we reverse and remand for retrial the Defendant's convictions of robbery and rape. In all other respects, we affirm the judgment of the trial court. http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCCA/jacksonwr.wpd
STATE OF TENNESSEE v. WALLACE JONES Court:TCCA Attorneys: Eddie Taylor, Hartsville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Wallace Jones. Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; Kim R. Helper, Assistant Attorney General; Tom P. Thompson, Jr., District Attorney General; and Robert N. Hibbett, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee. Judge: WOODALL First Paragraph: In a four-count indictment, Defendant, Wallace Jones, was charged with statutory rape, sexual battery, contributing to the delinquency of a minor, and exhibition of material harmful to a minor. He applied for pre-trial diversion, which the district attorney general declined to grant. Defendant filed a petition for writ of certiorari, and following a hearing, the trial court entered an order denying Defendant's request to be placed on pre-trial diversion. Defendant filed a motion for an interlocutory appeal pursuant to Rule 9 of the Tennessee Rules of Appellate Procedure, which was granted by the trial court and this court. On appeal, the State concedes that the district attorney abused his discretion and that the judgment of the trial court should be reversed and this case remanded to the district attorney general to properly consider all facts pursuant to State v. Bell, 69 S.W.3d 171 (Tenn. 2002). We agree. Accordingly, the judgment of the trial court is reversed and this case is remanded to the district attorney general to consider and weigh all relevant factors to the pre-trial diversion determination. Furthermore, we conclude that the trial judge should be recused from further proceedings in this matter. http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCCA/joneswallace.wpd
STATE OF TENNESSEE v. BUREN EFFORD LANEY Court:TCCA Attorneys: Richard A. Spivey, Kingsport, Tennessee, for the Appellant, Buren Efford Laney. Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; Renee W. Turner, Assistant Attorney General; H. Greeley Wells, Jr., District Attorney General; and B. Todd Martin, Assistant District Attorney General, for the Appellee, State of Tennessee. Judge: WITT First Paragraph: Buren E. Laney, convicted on his guilty plea to the offense of violation of an habitual traffic offender order, appeals from the lower court's imposition of a six-year incarcerative sentence. Because we disagree with Laney, a career offender, that the sentence imposed was improper, we affirm. http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCCA/laneyburenefford.wpd
CONNIE PARSONS v. STATE OF TENNESSEE Court:TCCA Attorneys: Connie Parsons, Nashville, Tennessee, Pro se. Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; David H. Findley, Assistant Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee. Judge: MCGEE OGLE First Paragraph: The petitioner, Connie Parsons, pled guilty to two counts of criminal responsibility for facilitation of rape of a child and was sentenced to an effective sentence of twenty years in the Tennessee Department of Correction. On September 17, 2001, the petitioner filed pro se in the Davidson County Circuit Court a petition for habeas corpus relief, alleging that the trial court impermissibly interfered in the plea negotiations and, thus, her convictions were void. The habeas corpus court dismissed the petition and the petitioner timely appealed. Upon review of the record and the parties' briefs, we affirm the judgment of the habeas corpus court. http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCCA/parsonsc.wpd
STATE OF TENNESSEE v. JESSE DAVID TEASLEY Court:TCCA Attorneys: Bruce E. Poston, Knoxville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Jesse David Teasley. Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; John H. Bledsoe, Assistant Attorney General; Randall E. Nichols, District Attorney General; and Patricia Cristil, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee. Judge: WEDEMEYER First Paragraph: The Defendant appeals from the Knox County Criminal Court's revocation of his probation. He contends that the trial court abused its discretion in revoking his probation and ordering him to serve the remainder of his sentences in confinement. We affirm the judgment of the trial court. http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCCA/teasleyjd.wpd
STATE OF TENNESSEE v. JOHNNIE C. WEEMS Court:TCCA Attorneys: Roger Eric Nell, District Public Defender, for the appellant, Johnnie C. Weems. Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; Brent C. Cherry, Assistant Attorney General; John Wesley Carney, Jr., District Attorney General; and B. Dent Morriss, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee. Judge: RILEY First Paragraph: The defendant, Johnnie C. Weems, pled nolo contendere to three separate counts of Class C felony vehicular homicide, was sentenced as a Range I standard offender to five years on each count to run concurrently, and was denied alternative sentencing. On appeal, he contends the sentences are excessive and the trial court erred in denying alternative sentencing. We affirm the judgments of the trial court. http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCCA/weemsjohnnie.wpd

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