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Posted by: Landry Butler on Sep 29, 2016

Court: TN Court of Criminal Appeals

Attorneys 1:

William Joshua Morrow (on appeal), Lawrenceburg, Tennessee; Lee E. Brooks (at trial), Spring Hill, Tennessee; and Cory Ricci (at first hearing on self-representation), Columbia, Tennessee, for the appellant, Michael Alonzo Alderson.

Attorneys 2:

Herbert H. Slatery III, Attorney General and Reporter; Jeffrey D. Zentner, Assistant Attorney General; Brent Cooper, District Attorney General; and Dan Runde, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge(s): WILLIAMS

The defendant, Michael A. Alderson, was convicted by a jury of introducing drugs into a penal institution, a Class C felony, after he was arrested for an unrelated offense and disburdened himself of a small amount of marijuana in the "trap" room leading to the Maury County jail. The trial court sentenced the defendant as a Range II offender to ten years' imprisonment. On appeal, the defendant asserts that he was denied his right to self-representation. The defendant also argues that the marijuana should have been suppressed because his initial arrest was unlawful, and he asserts error in sentencing. Because we conclude that the trial court erred in denying the defendant his right to self-representation, we reverse the judgment and remand for further proceedings consistent with this opinion.