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Posted by: Tanja Trezise on Mar 27, 2013

Court: TN Supreme Court

Attorneys 1:

William B. Lockert, III, District Public Defender, for the appellant, Kimberly Mangrum.

Attorneys 2:

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; William E. Young, Solicitor General; and Rachel Harmon, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge(s): WADE

A Dickson County grand jury returned an indictment charging the defendant with especially aggravated burglary, especially aggravated kidnapping, first degree premeditated murder, and first degree felony murder. Later the same day, the grand jury returned a superseding indictment re-charging the defendant and her husband with the same offenses, but adding a charge of criminal conspiracy as to each. The prosecution subsequently granted immunity to the defendant’s step-daughter and issued a subpoena for her appearance, and the grand jury reconvened to hear her testimony. The defendant filed a motion to quash the subpoena, arguing that the purpose of the testimony was to improperly acquire evidence to support the pending charges against her. The trial court denied the motion to quash. After the defendant’s step-daughter testified before the grand jury, a second superseding indictment was issued charging all offenses in the first indictment and adding a charge of accessory after the fact against the defendant’s husband. The defendant then filed motions to suppress any testimony by the defendant’s step-daughter at trial and to dismiss all pending indictments. The trial court denied each motion. At the conclusion of the trial, the jury found the defendant guilty of aggravated burglary, especially aggravated kidnapping, attempted first degree premeditated murder, and first degree felony murder. After merging the convictions for attempted premeditated murder and felony murder, the trial court imposed a life sentence for the murder and concurrent sentences of twenty-five and six years, respectively, for the especially aggravated kidnapping and the aggravated burglary. On appeal, the defendant claimed that the trial court should have dismissed the charges because of prosecutorial abuse of the grand jury process. The Court of Criminal Appeals disagreed and affirmed the judgment of the trial court. We affirm the judgment of the Court of Criminal Appeals.