'Anatomy of an Acquittal' features attorneys in the news

Attorney Hal Hardin, who just won an acquittal in the Hope Mercer case, and Ed Yarbrough, who successfully defended baby sitter Irina Geiculescu against homicide charges in a recent high-profile trial, will join attorney Roger May and District Attorney Tommy Thompson in the upcoming TennBarU "Anatomy of an Acquittal" program in Nashville. Find out more or register now:


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


Court: TCA


Dexter L. McMillan, Knoxville, Tennessee, pro se Appellant

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; Michael E. Moore, Solicitor General; and Lizabeth A. Hale, Assistant Attorney General, for the Appellees, Judge Ray Lee Jenkins and Robert E. Edwards

Judge: LEE

The appellant, Dexter L. McMillan, appeals the trial court's dismissal of his suit to set aside his June 7, 1988, criminal conviction. After careful review, we find no error and affirm.



Court: TCCA


Lindsay C. Barrett, Dickson, Tennessee, for the Petitioner, Vanory Askew

Robert E. Cooper Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; Elizabeth B. Marney and Michael Markham, Assistant Attorneys General, for the Appellee, State of Tennessee


The Petitioner, Vanory Askew, pled guilty to intent to sell or deliver 300 grams or more of cocaine, and one count of possession of a deadly weapon with intent to employ it in the commission of an offense, and he was sentenced to eighteen years. Subsequently, the Petitioner pled guilty to possession of cocaine in an amount under .5 grams and was sentenced to four years in the Department of Correction to be served concurrently with his previous sentence. The Petitioner filed a petition for a writ of habeas corpus, alleging that: (1) the trial court erred by summarily dismissing the his pro se petition for writ of habeas corpus and denying his request for the appointment of counsel; and (2) the concurrent sentence he received for his 2003 conviction was illegal, because he was on parole at the time of the offense. The trial court dismissed the petition, and we reversed the judgment of the trial court, and remanded the case for the appointment of counsel. The State filed an application to appeal the case to the Tennessee Supreme Court. The Supreme Court granted the application for the purpose of remanding the case for our reconsideration in light of that Court's recent opinion in Charles G. Summers v. State, No. M2004-02806-SC-R11-HC, S.W.3d , 2007 WL 160955 (Tenn. Jan. 23, 2007). On remand, we affirm the trial court's dismissal of the petitioner's habeas corpus petition.



Court: TCCA


Patty Grissom, McMinnville, Tennessee, Pro Se

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; Brent C. Cherry, Assistant Attorney General; Dale Potter, District Attorney General; and Thomas Miner, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee

Judge: OGLE

The appellant, Patty Grissom, was convicted of misdemeanor possession of drug paraphernalia in violation of Tennessee Code Annotated section 39-17-425, and she was sentenced to eleven months and twenty-nine days, with forty-five days to be served in confinement. She appealed, arguing that she was improperly sentenced and that trial counsel was ineffective. We conclude that the record on appeal is insufficient for our review, and, therefore, we affirm the judgment of the trial court.



Court: TCCA


Richard McGee, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Pauline Lacey

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; Renee W. Turner, Assistant Attorney General; Victor S. Johnson, III, District Attorney General; and Amy Eisenbeck, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee


The Defendant, Pauline Lacey, appeals from the sentencing decision of the Davidson County Criminal Court. The Defendant was indicted for four counts of aggravated assault, and she subsequently pled guilty as charged. Pursuant to the terms of the negotiated plea agreement, the Defendant received an effective four-year and six-month sentence, and the trial court was to determine the manner of service. Following a sentencing hearing, the trial court ordered the Defendant to serve sixty days in jail, followed by probation for the remainder of her sentence. On appeal, the Defendant argues that the trial court erred in denying her request for full probation. Finding no error, we affirm the judgment of the trial court.


Posting Notices that Handguns Are Not Permitted in Private Buildings

TN Attorney General Opinions

Date: 2007-04-09

Opinion Number: 07-43


Fireworks in Hamilton County

TN Attorney General Opinions

Date: 2007-04-09

Opinion Number: 07-44


Constitutionality of Proposed Legislation Requiring a Person Arrested For a Violent Felony to Provide a Biological Specimen For DNA Analysis

TN Attorney General Opinions

Date: 2007-04-09

Opinion Number: 07-45


Benton County Budget Act

TN Attorney General Opinions

Date: 2007-04-10

Opinion Number: 07-46


Spending Capital Outlay Note Proceeds under 1996 Tenn. Priv. Acts Ch. 193

TN Attorney General Opinions

Date: 2007-04-10

Opinion Number: 07-47


Juvenile Court Jurisdiction over Violations of City Ordinances by Children

TN Attorney General Opinions

Date: 2007-04-10

Opinion Number: 07-48


Authority of the Tennessee Department of Agriculture to Regulate Wild Elk Imported by the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency

TN Attorney General Opinions

Date: 2007-04-10

Opinion Number: 07-49



Legal News
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TBA Member Services

Legal News
Country singer's husband sues divorce lawyer for slander
The husband of country music singer Sara Evans filed a $20 million lawsuit today against Nashville lawyer John Hollins Sr. and firm, claiming the prominent divorce lawyer slandered him and caused him great emotional harm by telling untruths to the media.
Read more in the Tennessean
Council fails to officially request Lee's departure
A majority of Memphis City Council members say Joseph Lee should step down as president and CEO of Memphis Light Gas and Water Division, but a resolution to officially request his resignation failed yesterday in a 6-6 vote, with one abstention that angered members. The vote capped a volatile meeting in which some black members, including Edmund Ford, charged that racism was at play.
Read more in the Commercial Appeal
Ford trial in full swing
Attorneys completed opening statements in the trial of former state Sen. John Ford yesterday and began presenting evidence and witnesses today. Ford's attorney began his opening statement by addressing the key issue in the case, maintaining that, "John Ford did not take bribes."
WMC-TV reports on these and other highlights from yesterday's action
The Commercial Appeal has created a John Ford Blog to follow the details of the trial.
Read it here
Jury selection continues in Winkler trial
Three issues -- gun safety, spousal abuse and the definition of premeditation -- were at the heart of questions posed to potential jurors in Mary Winkler's first-degree murder trial, according to the Commercial Appeal.
Read more
Once chosen, jurors will live simple life
Once a jury is chosen in the Winkler case, jurors will be sequestered at Selmer's Southwood Inn -- a simple, brown, ranch-style motel. Their rooms will be free of televisions, radios and telephones. They will not be allowed to have cell phones or laptops. And they will not be allowed to leave the motel without an escort, reports the Commercial Appeal.
Read the story
Judge Bailey honored by CASA
Hamilton County Juvenile Court Judge Suzanne Bailey was honored today for her work by CASA, or Court Appointed Special Advocates. Hamilton County Mayor Claude Ramsey and volunteers with the child advocate program presented the award, the Chattanooga Times Free Press reports.

New bar presidents named
Brad Davidson of Newport has been elected president of the Cocke County Bar Association, while Andrea P. Perry with Bone McAllester Norton PLLC in Nashville was named president of the Napier-Looby Bar Association. The association also selected Jonathan E. Richardson as president-elect, Kyonzte Hughes as secretary and Denise N. Phillips treasurer.
Visit www.tba.org for a complete list of local bar leaders
Rival sugar substitutes sue Splenda over tag line
Merisant Co., which makes Equal and NutraSweet, is suing McNeil Nutritionals, the maker of Splenda, over the product's slogan "Made from sugar, so it tastes like sugar." Merisant says the marketing confuses consumers into thinking the product is not an artificial sweetener and that this false advertising has allowed Splenda to corner the market. Splenda argues it uses sugar in the manufacturing process, even though it is burned off and not part of the final product. The Kingsport Times News carried an AP story of this billion-dollar business brawl.
Learn more
Spy chief eyes broader surveillance powers
National Intelligence Director Mike McConnell is pushing to expand the government's surveillance authority at the same time the Bush Administration is under attack for stretching its domestic eavesdropping powers. An AP story in the Commercial Appeal examines the issue and summarizes McConnell's proposal.
Learn more
Florida lawyer seeks $11,000 an hour for legal fees
Flamboyant Florida litigator Willie Gary has upped the stakes in his post-trial sanctions case against electronics giant Motorola, asking for as much as $93 million in attorney fees.
Law.com has the story from the Daily Business Review
Legislative News
Legislative briefs from Tuesday
Legislative action yesterday included consideration of a resurrected proposal for the Tennessee Highway Patrol to enforce immigration laws, increased penalties for child rape, public access to law enforcement personnel files and an earlier presidential primary date.
Read more in the Tennessean
Committee rejects bail career for former felons
Earlier today, the House Judiciary Committee rejected a proposal allowing rehabilitated felons to become bail bondsmen. The bill, sponsored by Rep. Barbara Cooper, D-Memphis, failed on a voice vote after the Tennessee Association of Bail Agents said it would hurt public perception of the industry.
The News Sentinel has more
Henderson court clerk dies
Henderson County Circuit Court Clerk Kenny Cavness, 58, passed away April 7. Cavness was serving in his 25th year as court clerk. He was a member and deacon of the Wildersville Baptist Church, a Gideon, a U.S. Army veteran and a father of five. Funeral services were conducted yesterday at the Wildersville Baptist Church.

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