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Posted by: Suzanne Craig Robertson on Sep 10, 2015

Court: TN Court of Criminal Appeals

Attorneys 1:

Kevin McGee, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Freddie Lee Johnson.

Attorneys 2:

Herbert H. Slatery III, Attorney General and Reporter; David H. Findley, Senior Counsel; Victor S. Johnson, III, District Attorney General; and Rob McGuire and Sarah Davis, Assistant District Attorneys General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge(s): HOLLOWAY

The Defendant, Freddie Lee Johnson, appeals his conviction for first degree felony murder, arguing: (1) the State failed to establish a sufficient chain of custody for a latent fingerprint lifted from the crime scene; (2) the Defendant?s right to confrontation was violated when the trial court allowed testimony that the Defendant?s fingerprint was lifted from an area in the crime scene that “raised a red flag”; (3) the Defendant?s right to present a defense was violated when the trial court prohibited trial counsel from arguing an alternative location for the Defendant?s fingerprint; (4) the trial court erred by failing to grant a mistrial when a witness testified that the latent print was lifted from a cup; (5) the trial court erred by refusing to dismiss the indictment pursuant to State v. Ferguson; (6) the trial court erred by allowing the victim?s daughter to testify about comments made by the victim about the Defendant; (7) the trial court violated the Defendant?s right to present a defense by refusing to allow the defense to introduce a prior statement from an unavailable witness; (8) the State committed prosecutorial misconduct in closing argument; (9) the trial court erred in its instruction to the jury on flight; (10) the trial court erred by allowing the State to introduce into evidence portions of the Defendant?s police interview; and (11) the trial court erred by ruling that the State could use the Defendant?s prior theft convictions for impeachment. Following a careful review of the record and applicable law, we affirm the Defendant?s convictions but remand for correction of the judgments.