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Posted by: Tanja Trezise on Feb 4, 2014

Court: TN Court of Criminal Appeals

Attorneys 1:

Isaac T. Conner, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Kevin Lamont Church.

Attorneys 2:

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; Tracy L. Bradshaw, Assistant Attorney General; Victor S. Johnson, District Attorney General, and Roger Moore, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge(s): SMITH

A Davidson County Jury convicted Appellant, Kevin Lamont Church, of kidnapping and simple assault. The trial court sentenced him to twelve years as a Range III, persistent offender. The judgments were entered January 6, 2010. A motion for new trial was never filed. On July 6, 2011, Appellant filed a post-conviction petition requesting a delayed appeal. The trial court granted the request on October 7, 2011, and Appellant filed a motion for new trial on November 8, 2011. At the hearing on the motion for new trial, the State conceded that the simple assault conviction should be merged into the kidnapping conviction. The trial court agreed and dismissed count two for assault. The trial court denied the remaining arguments included in the motion on October 10, 2012. Appellant subsequently filed a notice of appeal on November 13, 2012. On appeal, Appellant argues that the evidence was insufficient to support his conviction for kidnapping. The State argues that Appellant did not file a timely notice of appeal, and this Court should dismiss the appeal. Although we agree with the State that the notice of appeal is untimely, we have decided to waive the timely notice of appeal in the interest of justice and address Appellant’s claim that the evidence was insufficient to support his conviction of kidnapping on the merits. We have thoroughly reviewed the record on appeal and conclude that the evidence was sufficient to support Appellant’s conviction.