Criminal

Brown Named as Recipient of McCutchen Award

Twenty-eighth Judicial District Attorney General Garry G. Brown last week was honored as the recipient of this year’s McCutchen Award, The Jackson Sun reports. Established in 2000 in memory of Tennessee District Attorneys General Conference Director Pat McCutchen, the award is given to a prosecutor who has made a significant effort in the advancement of justice to Tennesseans. Brown is a graduate of the University of Memphis Law School; served as an Assistant District Attorney in the 28th District from 1989 to 1996 and was elected General Sessions Judge in 1998. He became District Attorney in 2000, with subsequent elections in 2002, 2006 and 2014.

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Tennessee Board of Professional Responsibility Seeks Disciplinary Counsel – Litigation, Appeals

The Tennessee Board of Professional Responsibility is seeking a motivated attorney for the position of Disciplinary Counsel – Litigation Section, Appeals. The duties and responsibilities include: investigate and conduct discovery related to complaints of attorney misconduct; prepare pleadings and appear in disciplinary hearings before hearing panels; represent the Board in appellate proceedings before special judges in trial courts and before the Tennessee Supreme Court; prepare and present continuing legal education; and other duties as assigned.
 
Excellent written and oral communication required. Applicants must be licensed in Tennessee and have a minimum of seven (7) years experience in the practice of law. Must have significant experience in appellate advocacy. Practice before the Tennessee Supreme Court is preferred. You can find out more about the position including how to apply by using this link.
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Tennessee Death Row Inmate Must Choose Execution Method This Afternoon

Tennessee death row inmate David Earl Miller must choose death by lethal injection or electric chair by this afternoon, The Times Free Press reports. Miller was convicted and sentenced to death for the gruesome murder of Lee Standifer, a mentally handicapped woman he had been dating at the time. Though lethal injection is the preferred method of execution in Tennessee, those convicted prior to 1999 can still opt for the chair. Miller's execution is set for Dec. 6.

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Attorney Testifies to Extortion in Trial of Hamilton County Commissioner

A witness in the trial of Hamilton County Commissioner Tim Boyd told a jury on Wednesday that he received a call from an attorney who said that Boyd had damaging information about East Ridge Mayor Brent Lambert which would be released if Lambert did not "pull his papers" when running against Boyd, The Chattanoogan reports. Attorney Allen McCallie said the call was from Mike Mallen — his former law partner — regarding a special meeting called by Lambert to ask the East Ridge City Council to approve a deal with Exit One developers. District Attorney Neal Pinkston told the jury the call and follow-up conversations that Lambert secretly recorded went beyond free speech, amounting to extortion, the paper reported.

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Zagorski Petitions U.S. Supreme Court, 6th Circuit for Stay of Execution

Lawyers for Edmund Zagorski on Wednesday filed a Writ of Certiorari and an Application for Stay of Execution with the U.S. Supreme Court asserting errors made at his trial and maintaining that he was required to choose between two torturous execution methods, The Tennessean reports. Zagorski’s execution was previously delayed after he selected the electric chair for his execution method so that prison staff could ready the device. The Supreme Court has already declined to intervene in the case earlier this month. A separate challenge with the 6th Circuit also focused on his attorneys' objections to the electric chair, the method Zagorski chose for his execution. It was denied Wednesday night. Zagorski's attorneys said Wednesday they would also appeal the electric chair challenge to the high court. The maker of the device has recently expressed concern, saying the chair may not work properly.

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19th Judicial District Seeks Assistant District Public Defender

The 19th Judicial District is seeking an Assistant District Public Defender to serve in General Sessions Court in Robertson County (Springfield). In addition to outstanding ability as a trial lawyer, attorneys interested in this position must possess unquestionable integrity, a high degree of personal time management skill, enthusiastic desire to continue to learn and grow in the craft of trial advocacy, recognition of the importance of attending to administrative details and duties, and unquenchable thirst to obtain justice for the clients. The attorney in this position will also likely contribute to cases in Circuit Court to include jury trials. You can learn more about the position including how to apply using this link.

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Georgia County Requires Sex Offenders to Display 'No Trick-Or-Treat' Signs

The sheriff's office of Butts County, Georgia, is taking a new approach to protect trick-or-treaters, CBS News reports. Signs reading "Warning! No trick-or-treat at this address!!” were placed in the yards of the 54 registered sex offenders who reside in the county, an effort Butts County Sheriff Gary Long believes will ensure the safety of children in the community. Long said deputies will remove the signs by Thursday morning.

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Electric Chair Builder Expresses Concerns Over Zagorski Execution

The self-taught execution expert and builder of the electric chair that will be used to execute Edmund Zagorski on Thursday has expressed concerns over the reliability of his handiwork, The Knoxville News Sentinel reports. Fred Leuchter, who has worked on a number of execution devices during his career from 1979 – 1990, said that many of the chairs are "decrepit, defunct, didn't work properly — if they ever had in the first place." Gov. Bill Haslam has said he is confident the chair execution can be carried out without problems despite not having been used since 2007.

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This Week: Criminal Law Forum 2018

This year’s half-day Criminal Law Forum will feature a specialized format, allowing state and federal prosecutors, defenders and judges to take a deep dive into DNA evidence and analysis led by professionals at the forefront of the field. We will also examine the interaction between immigration and criminal law, identifying the often-overlooked collateral consequences that come into play. Rounding out the day will be an ethics presentation from a former judge who will share well-being tips for lawyers to incorporate into their life and practice. A networking lunch will be provided following the program. Don’t miss this opportunity to learn and tie-in with attorneys of a shared focus. Here are the key details:

When: Dec. 7, 8 a.m. – 12:45 p.m., CST
Where: The Tennessee Car Center, 221 Fourth Ave N., Nashville
 
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Memphis Reevaluates Its Pre-trial Bonding Process

The city of Memphis is evaluating changes to its bail bond system, The Commercial Appeal reports. The Shelby County Sheriff's Office (SCSO) received a MacArthur Foundation grant last year to help reduce jail overcrowding, especially related to pre-trial detention. SCSO will use a portion of the grant to update the Pre-Trial Services process, used for everyone brought in by law enforcement. The new system will focus on specific risk factors based on the individual's arrest record and likelihood that they will come to court, replacing current questions that focus on factors that may preference affluent suspects. The new screening process is expected to reduce the number of people jailed by 25 percent or more.

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