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Posted by: Tanja Trezise on Nov 19, 2014

Court: TN Court of Criminal Appeals

Attorneys 1:

Amy Rao Mohan, Nashville, Tennessee, and Kellen S. Dwyer, Washington, D.C. (on appeal); Michael Johnson and Garland Erguden, Memphis, Tennessee (at trial), for the appellant, Terry Norris.

Attorneys 2:

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; Andrew C. Coulam, Assistant Attorney General; William L. Gibbons, District Attorney General; and Karen Cook, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.


In this procedurally complex case, a Shelby County jury convicted the Defendant, Terry Norris, of second degree murder in 1999, and the trial court sentenced him to twenty-one years of incarceration. After several proceedings and filings, discussed in detail below, the U.S. Sixth Circuit granted the Defendant habeas corpus relief unless the State allowed the Defendant to reopen his original direct appeal and raise an issue regarding whether his confession should have been suppressed pursuant to County of Riverside v. McLaughlin, 500 U.S. 44 (1991). The State allowed the Defendant to reopen his appeal. On appeal, the Defendant contends that the trial court erred when it denied his motion to suppress his confession to police because he gave his confession after being held for more than forty-eight hours without a probable cause hearing. After a thorough review of the record and the applicable authorities, we conclude that we must address the issue before us for plain error. After conducting our plain error review, we conclude that the Defendant is not entitled to relief.