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Posted by: Tanja Trezise on Feb 2, 2015

Head Comment: With dissenting opinion.

Court: TN Court of Criminal Appeals

Attorneys 1:

Patrick Newsom, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Linzey Danielle Smith.

Attorneys 2:

Herbert H. Slatery, III, Attorney General and Reporter; Tracy L. Alcock, Assistant Attorney General; Kim R. Helper, District Attorney General; and Carlin Hess, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge(s): WOODALL

Defendant, Linzey Danielle Smith, entered a plea of guilty to the offense of driving while her blood or breath alcohol concentration was 0.08% or more (DUI) in violation of T.C.A. § 55- 10-401(2), but explicitly reserved the right to appeal a certified question of law pursuant to Tenn. R. Crim. P. 37(b)(2)(A). The certified question of law limits this court to the following narrow issue: whether probable cause that Defendant had committed the Class C misdemeanor offense described in T.C.A. § 55-8-123(1) (a driver must maintain a vehicle entirely within a single lane “as nearly as practicable”) authorized a stop of Defendant’s vehicle by a state trooper or, alternatively, whether the trooper had reasonable suspicion, based on specific and articulable facts, that Defendant had committed or was about to commit the Class C misdemeanor offense set forth in T.C.A. § 55-8-123(1). Based upon the General Assembly’s classification as a criminal offense the failure of a driver to maintain her vehicle totally within a single lane of traffic “as nearly as practicable” and guidance from our supreme court’s decision in State v. Brotherton, 323 S.W.3d 866 (Tenn. 2010), we affirm the judgment of the trial court.