STATE OF TENNESSEE v. MARLON SONTAY - Articles

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Posted by: Tanja Trezise on Jul 31, 2013

Court: TN Court of Criminal Appeals

Attorneys 1:

Kathleen G. Morris, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Marlon Sontay.

Attorneys 2:

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; Rachel Harmon, Assistant Attorney General; Victor S. Johnson, III, District Attorney General, and Sharon Reddick, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge(s): SMITH

Appellant, Marlon E. Sontay, was indicted by the Davidson County Grand Jury for four counts of rape of a child, two counts of aggravated sexual battery, and one count of rape. Appellant was convicted by a jury of all counts. Appellant was sentenced to twenty five years for each count of rape of a child, eight years for each count of aggravated sexual battery, and eight years for rape. The trial court ordered Count Two for rape of a child to run consecutively to Count One for rape of a child. The remaining counts were ordered to run concurrently to each other, for a total effective sentence of 50 years at 100%. Appellant filed a timely motion for a new trial, which was denied by the trial court. Appellant raises the following issues for our review: (1) whether the trial court erred in denying the motion to suppress; (2) whether the trial court improperly admitted hearsay testimony of statements made by the victim during the testimony of the nurse practitioner who performed the victim’s medical examination; (3) whether the evidence was sufficient to support the convictions; (4) whether the trial court improperly sentenced Appellant; and (5) whether the trial court erred in declining to find Tennessee Code Annotated sections 39-13-504, 39-13-522, and 39-13- 523 unconstitutional. After a review of the record and applicable authorities, we hold that: (1) the trial court did not abuse its discretion in denying the motion to suppress where Appellant voluntarily confessed to detectives; (2) Appellant has waived any issue with regard to the admission of hearsay testimony by failing to object to the testimony at trial and raise the issue in a motion for new trial; (3) the evidence is sufficient to support the convictions for rape of a child, aggravated sexual battery, and rape; (4) the trial court did not abuse its discretion in sentencing Appellant within the range of punishment for his convictions; and (5) the trial court did not err in refusing to find Tennessee Code Annotated sections 39-13- 504, 39-13-522, and 39-13-523 unconstitutional. Accordingly, the judgments of the trial court are affirmed.

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