STATE OF TENNESSEE v. RICHARD CLEOPHUS SMITH - Articles

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Posted by: Tanja Trezise on Aug 27, 2014

Court: TN Court of Criminal Appeals

Attorneys 1:

Robert L. Jolley, Jr., and Jennifer L. Gower, Knoxville, Tennessee for appellant, Richard Cleophus Smith.

Attorneys 2:

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; Renee W. Turner, Assistant Attorney General; Randall E. Nichols, District Attorney General; and Kevin Allen, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge(s): SMITH

Appellant, Richard Cleophus Smith, was indicted by presentment by the Knox County Grand Jury for felony murder, first degree murder, attempted first degree murder, employing a firearm during the commission of a dangerous felony, evading arrest by motor vehicle, evading arrest, aggravated assault, reckless endangerment, leaving the scene of an accident involving injury, driving while privilege suspended, and failure to provide proof of financial responsibility. At the conclusion of a jury trial, the jury found Appellant guilty of all charges except aggravated assault for which he was found guilty of the lesser included offense of reckless endangerment. The trial court sentenced Appellant to an effective sentence of life plus twenty-six years. On appeal, Appellant argues that: (1) the evidence was insufficient; (2) that the trial court constructively amended the presentment charging driving while license suspended, after jeopardy attached by instructing the jury on the offense of driving without a license in possession; (3) that the trial court erred in denying Appellant’s request for a special jury instruction; (4) that the trial court erred in allowing the testimony of two officers; (5) the trial court erred in denying his request for notes and memoranda generated by State witnesses when generating their reports; and (5) the trial court erred in imposing consecutive sentences. We have thoroughly reviewed the record on appeal. We affirm all judgments except the judgment for driving without a license in possession which must be dismissed because the trial court constructively amended the presentment by giving the contested jury instruction.

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