Opinion Flash

April 11, 2003
Volume 9 — Number 065

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
00 New Opinion(s) from the Tennessee Court of Appeals
11 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


MOHAMED F. ALI v. STATE OF TENNESSEE

Court:TCCA

Attorneys:      

Janie L. Lindamood, Johnson City, Tennessee, for the appellant,
Mohamed F. Ali.

Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; Mark A. Fulks,
Assistant Attorney General; Joe C. Crumley, Jr., District Attorney
General; and Victor J. Vaughn, Assistant District Attorney General,
for the appellee, State of Tennessee.                    

Judge: TIPTON 

First Paragraph:

The petitioner, Mohamed F. Ali, appeals from the judgment of the
Washington County Criminal Court denying him post-conviction relief
from his convictions for rape and attempted bribery.  He is serving an
effective sentence of fifteen years in the Department of Correction. 
The petitioner contends that the post-conviction court erred in (1)
applying incorrect law governing judicial bias, (2) finding that the
convicting trial judge was not biased against him, (3) excluding
evidence of judicial bias, (4) refusing the petitioner's discovery
requests regarding the issue of bias, and (5) denying the petitioner's
claim of ineffective assistance of counsel.  We affirm the
post-conviction court.

http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCCA/alimf.wpd

CECIL EUGENE BRANNAN v. STATE OF TENNESSEE

Court:TCCA

Attorneys:  

Curtis H. Gann (on appeal) and Andrew Jackson Dearing, III (at trial),
Shelbyville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Cecil Eugene Brannan.

Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; Renee W. Turner,
Assistant Attorney General; W. Michael McCown, District Attorney
General; and Michael Randles, Assistant District Attorney General, for
the appellee, State of Tennessee.                        

Judge: OGLE

First Paragraph:

The petitioner, Cecil Eugene Brannan, pled guilty in the Bedford
County Circuit Court to three counts of vehicular assault and one
count of driving under the influence (DUI), fourth offense.  The plea
agreement stipulated that the petitioner would receive a total
effective sentence of eight years incarceration.  The petitioner
subsequently filed for post-conviction relief, alleging that trial
counsel failed to advise him that his plea agreement violated double
jeopardy principles.  The post- conviction court dismissed the
petition and the petitioner timely appealed.  Upon review of the
record and the parties' briefs, we affirm the judgment of the
post-conviction court.

http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCCA/brannance.wpd

STATE OF TENNESSEE v. KRISTINA DAWN CATRON

Court:TCCA

Attorneys: 

Stephen M. Wallace, District Public Defender; and Joseph H. Harrison,
Assistant District Public Defender, for the Appellant, Kristina Dawn
Catron.

Paul G. Summers, Attorney General & Reporter; Kim R. Helper, 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:

The defendant, Kristina Dawn Catron, pleaded guilty to one count of
fabricating evidence, one count of making a false report, and one
count of misdemeanor theft under $500.  The negotiated plea agreement
produced an effective sentence of three years.  The manner of service
of the sentence was to be determined by the trial court.  Following a
presentence investigation and a sentence hearing, the trial court
ordered the defendant to serve the sentence in confinement.  It is
from this sentencing determination that the defendant appeals.  We
affirm the judgment of the trial court based on the need to avoid
depreciating the seriousness of the offense.

http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCCA/catronkristinad.wpd

STATE OF TENNESSEE v. KENNETH LEE ENGLAND

Court:TCCA

Attorneys: 

Julie A. Rice, Knoxville, Tennessee (on appeal); Martha J. Yoakum,
District Public Defender; and Charles Albert Herman, Assistant
District Public Defender (at trial), for the appellant, Kenneth Lee
England.

Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; Kathy D. Aslinger,
Assistant Attorney General; William Paul Phillips, District Attorney
General; and Michael O. Ripley, Assistant District Attorney General,
for the appellee, State of Tennessee.                         

Judge: TIPTON

First Paragraph:

The defendant, Kenneth Lee England, was convicted by a Campbell County
Criminal Court jury of retaliation for past action, a Class E felony,
and the trial court sentenced him as a career offender to six years in
the Department of Correction.  The defendant appeals, claiming that
the evidence is insufficient and that the trial court erred by
allowing the state to impeach him with his prior retaliation for past
action convictions under Tenn. R. Evid. 609.  We affirm the judgment
of the trial court.

http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCCA/englandkennethlee.wpd

WILLIE TOM ENSLEY v. STATE OF TENNESSEE

Court:TCCA

Attorneys: 

Willie Tom Ensley, Mountain City, Tennessee, pro se.

Paul G. Summers, Attorney General & Reporter; Angele M. Gregory,
Assistant Attorney General; and Tom Thurman, Assistant District
Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.                         

Judge: WADE

First Paragraph:

The petitioner, Willie Tom Ensley, appeals the trial court's denial of
his post-conviction petition requesting DNA analysis.  The issue
presented for review is whether the trial court erred by summarily
dismissing the petition without the appointment of counsel, an
opportunity to amend, or an evidentiary hearing.  The judgment is
reversed and the cause is remanded for further proceedings.

http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCCA/ensleywt.wpd

JAMES L. FEENIN v. KEVIN MYERS, WARDEN 

Court:TCCA

Attorneys:

James L. Feenin, Pro Se, Clifton, Tennessee.

Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; Michael Moore,
Solicitor General; Renee W. Turner, Assistant Attorney General, for
the Appellee, State of Tennessee.                          

Judge: HAYES

First Paragraph:

The Appellant, James L. Feenin, proceeding pro se, appeals the summary
dismissal of his petition for writ of habeas corpus.  Feenin is
currently a Department of Correction inmate at the South Central
Correctional Facility in Wayne County, where he is serving an
effective nineteen-year sentence.  On appeal, Feenin argues that his
incarceration stems from a void indictment.  Specifically, he contends
that two counts of the indictment, to which he pled guilty, were not
signed by the district attorney general.  Finding this argument
without merit, the judgment of the Wayne County Circuit Court is
affirmed.

http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCCA/feeninjamesl.wpd

DELBERT LEE HARRIS v. STATE OF TENNESSEE
ORDER

Court:TCCA

First Paragraph:

The State has filed a petition for rehearing pursuant to Rule 39(a),
Tennessee Rules of Appellate Procedure. In its petition, the State
asserts that this Court's opinion incorrectly concludes that the State
did not timely file its appellate brief.  Having carefully reviewed
the matters set out in the petition, we conclude that the State's
brief was timely filed.

http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCCA/harrisd_frm.wpd

STATE OF TENNESSEE v. WILLIAM RHEA JACKSON

Court:TCCA

Attorneys: 

Ross E. Alderman, District Public Defender; Jeffrey A. DeVasher,
Assistant District Public Defender (on appeal); and Robert David
Baker, Assistant District Public Defender (at trial), for the
appellant, William Rhea Jackson.

Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; Helena Walton
Yarbrough, Assistant Attorney General; Victor S. (Torry) Johnson, III,
District Attorney General; Renee Ruth Erb, Assistant District Attorney
General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.                         

Judge: TIPTON

First Paragraph:

The defendant, William Rhea Jackson, pled guilty in the Davidson
County Criminal Court to aggravated assault and aggravated burglary,
Class C felonies, and the trial court sentenced him as a Range I,
standard offender to consecutive sentences of six and five years,
respectively.  The trial court also ordered that the defendant serve
his effective eleven-year sentence consecutive to an effective
thirty-four-year sentence that he received for offenses committed five
days before the current crimes.  He appeals, claiming that his
sentences are excessive. We affirm the judgments of the trial court.

http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCCA/jacksonwilliamrhea.wpd

MARK A. MITCHELL v. STATE OF TENNESSEE

Court:TCCA

Attorneys:

Mark A. Mitchell, Nashville, Tennessee, pro se.

Paul G. Summers, Attorney General & Reporter; David H. Findley,
Assistant Attorney General; and Jon P. Seaborg, Assistant District
Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.                          

Judge: WADE

First Paragraph:

The petitioner, Mark A. Mitchell, appeals the trial court's dismissal
of his petition, which sought post-conviction relief and
post-conviction DNA analysis.  The single issue presented for review
is whether the petition was properly dismissed.  The judgment is
affirmed.

http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCCA/mitchellma.wpd

STATE OF TENNESSEE v. PHAREZ PRICE

Court:TCCA

Attorneys:  

Gary M. Howell and Delilah A. Speed, Columbia, Tennessee, for the
appellant, Pharez Price.

Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; Renee W. Turner,
Assistant Attorney General; Mike Bottoms, District Attorney General;
and Robert C. Sanders and Daniel J. Runde, Assistant District
Attorneys General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.                        

Judge: RILEY

First Paragraph:

A Maury County jury convicted the defendant, Pharez Price, of
facilitation of felony murder, facilitation of attempted first degree
murder, facilitation of attempted second degree murder, facilitation
of attempted especially aggravated robbery, and criminal
responsibility for the conduct of another for felony reckless
endangerment.  The trial court imposed an effective sentence of forty-
three years.  On appeal, the defendant contends (1) the trial court
improperly found a child witness competent to testify, and (2) the
evidence was insufficient to support his convictions for any of the
offenses other than felony reckless endangerment.  We reverse and
dismiss the convictions for facilitation of attempted first degree
murder and facilitation of attempted second degree murder, affirm the
other convictions, and remand for a determination of
concurrent/consecutive sentencing.

http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCCA/pricepharez.wpd

STATE OF TENNESSEE v. LOUIS TYRONE ROBINSON
ORDER

Court:TCCA

First Paragraph:

In this appeal the appellant, Louis Tyrone Robinson, complains that
the Davidson County Criminal Court erroneously dismissed his petition
for the writ of habeas corpus without affording the appellant a
hearing on the petition.  After reviewing the record in this matter we
are of the opinion that the criminal court was correct in its summary
dismissal of the petition and we therefore affirm the action of the
trial court pursuant to Rule 20 of the Rules of the Court of Criminal
Appeals.

http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCCA/robinsonlouis_ord.wpd

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