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Court: TCA


Petitioner/Appellant James C. McWhorter, Nashville, Tennessee, pro se

Lynn Omohundro, Sparta, Tennessee, for the Respondents/Appellees Allen Selby and City of Sparta OPINION FACTS AND PROCEDURAL HISTORY The facts in this appeal are not disputed. At all times pertinent to this appeal, Respondent/Appellee

Judge: KIRBY

This appeal concerns the return of seized property. In the course of a criminal investigation, the respondents seized personal property from the petitioner. After a year passed with no forfeiture proceeding, the petitioner filed a petition for the return of his seized property, pursuant to Tennessee Code Annotated Section 39-11-709. The respondents filed a motion to dismiss or for summary judgment, asserting that they no longer had possession of the property. The trial court granted the motion. The petitioner now appeals. We reverse and remand, finding that the petition was correctly filed in the county in which the property was seized, that it correctly named as the respondents the parties who seized the property, and that the respondents were not entitled to dismissal of the petition on the basis that the respondents had transferred possession of the property.



Court: TCCA


James M. Gulley and Deena L. Knopf, Memphis, Tennessee, for the Petitioner-Appellant, Raymond Bailey.

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; Rachel E. Willis, Assistant Attorney General; William L. Gibbons, District Attorney General; and Abby V. Wallace, Assistant District Attorney General, for the Appellee, State of Tennessee.


postconviction relief from his convictions for especially aggravated kidnapping, a Class A felony, and carjacking, a Class B felony. For the especially aggravated kidnapping conviction, he received a sentence of twenty-eight years at one hundred percent. For the carjacking conviction, he received a sentence of twelve years at thirty-five percent. These two sentences were to be served consecutively for an effective sentence of forty years in confinement. In his appeal, the petitioner argues that he received ineffective assistance of counsel because (1) trial counsel failed to challenge his dual convictions as violating due process under State v. Anthony, 817 S.W.2d 299 (Tenn. 1991) and State v. Dixon, 957 S.W.2d 532 (Tenn. 1997); and (2) trial counsel failed to investigate and call William Isom to testify at trial. Upon review, we affirm the judgment of the trial court.



Court: TCCA


Steve Sams, Knoxville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Carrie Ann Brewster.

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; Clarence E. Lutz, Assistant Attorney General; Randall E. Nichols, District Attorney General; and Leslie Nassios, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.


The Petitioner, Carrie Ann Brewster, appeals the Knox County Criminal Court's denial of her petition for post-conviction relief from her convictions for felony murder, especially aggravated robbery, and aggravated burglary. In this appeal, the Petitioner contends that the trial court erred in finding that she received the effective assistance of counsel. We affirm the judgment of the trial court.



Court: TCCA


Randall W. Pierce (at trial) and Randall B. Tolley (on appeal), Memphis, Tennessee, for the Defendant-Appellant, Tarik Robertson.

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; David H. Findley, Assistant Attorney General; William L. Gibbons, District Attorney General; and Tiffani S. Taylor, Assistant District Attorney General, for the Appellee, State of Tennessee.


The Defendant-Appellant, Tarik Robertson, was convicted by a Shelby County jury of observation without consent, a Class A misdemeanor. He received the maximum sentence of eleven months and twenty-nine days, with four months to be served in a county workhouse. On appeal, he claims: (1) the insufficiency of the evidence; (2) the trial court did not properly exercise its role as the thirteenth juror; (3) the State committed prosecutorial misconduct in its closing argument; and (4) the trial court erred in imposing both the length and manner of his sentence. Following our review, we affirm the judgment of the trial court.



Court: TCCA


C.E. Bud Cunningham, Morristown, Tennessee (on appeal); and R. B. Baird, III, Rogersville, Tennessee (at trial), for the appellant, Richard Ellis Stapleton.

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; Matthew Bryant Haskell, Assistant Attorney General; James B. Dunn, District Attorney General; and Charles L. Murphy, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.


The Defendant, Richard Ellis Stapleton, was convicted on his guilty pleas of attempted especially aggravated robbery, a Class B felony; especially aggravated burglary, a Class B felony; and two counts of facilitation of especially aggravated kidnapping, a Class B felony. The trial court imposed concurrent, Range I, twelve-year sentences to be served in the Department of Correction. In this appeal, the Defendant challenges the length of the sentences. We modify the sentences for attempted especially aggravated robbery and especially aggravated burglary to eleven years each and modify the sentences for facilitation of especially aggravated kidnapping to nine years each.



Court: TCCA


Charles M. Agee, Jr., Dyersburg, Tennessee, for the appellant, Delawrence Williams.

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; Leslie E. Price, Assistant Attorney General; and C. Phillip Bivens, District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge: GLENN

The defendant, Delawrence Williams, was convicted by a Dyer County jury of possession of .5 grams or more of cocaine with the intent to deliver or sell, a Class B felony, and assault, a Class A misdemeanor. He was subsequently sentenced by the trial court to fourteen years for the drug possession offense and eleven months, twenty-nine days for the assault offense, with the sentences to be served concurrently to each other and concurrently to his sentence in a federal case but consecutively to his sentence in another Dyer County case. The sole issue the defendant raises in this appeal is whether the evidence was sufficient to sustain the convictions. Following our review, we affirm the judgments of the trial court.


County Commissioner Employed by the County

TN Attorney General Opinions

Date: 2009-11-10

Opinion Number: 09-175



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About this publication: Today's News is a compilation of digests of news reports of interest to Tennessee lawyers compiled by TBA staff, links to digested press releases, and occasional stories about the TBA and other activities written by the TBA staff or members. Statements or opinions herein are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect those of the Tennessee Bar Association, its officers, board or staff.

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