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Posted by: Tanja Trezise on Oct 18, 2013

Court: TN Court of Criminal Appeals

Attorneys 1:

Jeremy W. Parham, Manchester, Tennessee, for the appellant, Justin Gibson.

Attorneys 2:

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; Brent C. Cherry, Senior Counsel; Kim R. Helper, District Attorney General; and Sean B. Duddy and Kelly A. Lawrence, Assistant District Attorneys General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge(s): THOMAS

The Defendant, Justin Gibson, entered a guilty plea to driving under the influence, first offense. He agreed to a sentence of eleven months and twenty-nine days, all of which was suspended after seven days’ incarceration. As a condition of his guilty plea, the Defendant reserved a certified question of law challenging the warrantless search of his home as not justified by either consent or exigent circumstances. After a thorough review of the applicable law, we conclude that the officer’s entry into the Defendant’s home was supported by neither exigent circumstances nor as a part of the community caretaker function; therefore, the trial court erred when it denied the Defendant’s motion to suppress. Accordingly, we reverse the judgment of the trial court and dismiss the charge against the Defendant.