STATE OF TENNESSEE v. WILLIAM CHRISTOPHER DAVIS - Articles

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Posted by: Landry Butler on Aug 25, 2017

Court: TN Court of Criminal Appeals

Attorneys 1:

Herbert H. Slatery III, Attorney General and Reporter; Katherine C. Redding, Assistant Attorney General; Charme Allen, District Attorney General; and Gregory Eshbaugh, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellant, State of Tennessee.

Attorneys 2:

James R. Owen, Knoxville, Tennessee, for the appellee, William Christopher Davis.

Judge(s): HOLLOWAY

Upon the request of the Department of Safety, the State filed a petition to declare William Christopher Davis, the Defendant, a “habitual offender” pursuant to Motor Vehicle Habitual Offenders Act (“the MVHO Act”). The trial court dismissed the petition after concluding that the MVHO Act was ambiguous regarding when the State had a duty to file a petition. On appeal, the State argues that it has an appeal as of right under Tennessee Rule of Appellate Procedure 3(c) from the dismissal of its petition and that the trial court erred in dismissing its petition on the grounds that the MVHO Act was ambiguous and penal in nature. The Defendant argues that the State does not have an appeal as of right from the dismissal of its petition and that the trial court correctly dismissed the petition. After a thorough review of the facts of this case and applicable case law, we conclude that the State does not have an appeal as of right from the dismissal of a motor vehicle habitual offender petition, and thus we dismiss the State’s appeal.