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Posted by: Tanja Trezise on Jul 5, 2012

Court: TN Court of Criminal Appeals

Attorneys 1:

John M. Miles, Union City, Tennessee, for the appellant, Bruce Alexander Tuck.

Attorneys 2:

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; Jeffrey D. Zentner, Assistant Attorney General; and Thomas A. Thomas, District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge(s): GLENN

The Weakley County Grand Jury indicted the petitioner, Bruce Alexander Tuck, in three separate cases. In each case, the petitioner was indicted for aggravated rape, especially aggravated kidnapping, and various other related offenses. The petitioner pled guilty in each case, agreeing to serve three, consecutive twenty-year sentences at 100 percent, resulting in an effective sentence of sixty years. No direct appeal was filed. The petitioner filed a petition for post-conviction relief in which he alleged that his guilty pleas were not entered voluntarily, knowingly, and intelligently. He claims that when he entered his pleas, he was mentally ill and subject to mistreatment and threats in an attempt to induce him to plead guilty. He also alleges that his trial counsel was ineffective for: (1) failing to discuss the facts and circumstances underlying each of the indictments charging the petitioner; (2) failing to review the audio and visual recordings of the petitioner’s first statement to police; (3) failing to file a motion to suppress the petitioner’s confession; and (4) failing to discuss with the petitioner the possibility of withdrawing his pleas. Following an evidentiary hearing, the post-conviction court concluded that the petitioner did not prove his assertions. Based upon our review, we conclude that the evidence does not preponderate against the findings of the post-conviction court. Therefore, we affirm the denial of the petitioner’s petition for postconviction relief.