Criminal Defense Blog

Obiter Dictum

Obiter Dictum Obiter dictum is something that is said in passing. It is an observation or opinion of the court but one not necessary to the decision at hand. It is sometimes a persuasive point but not ...
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nolle prosequi,

nolle prosequi, Nolle Prosequi or nolle pros. as it is typically said is notice that a prosecution is abandoned. This is accomplished by an announcement from the prosecutor that the state no longer ...
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Judge Dismisses All Charges Against Tawana Blair In 1999 Cleveland Triple Murder

Tuesday, June 17, 2014 A special judge has dismissed all charges against Tawana "Tart" Blair in the 1999 triple murder in Cleveland, Tn. Judge Jon Kerry Blackwood, in a 13-page ruling, noted ...
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Twanna Blair's attorney says she can't be retried in 1999 Valentine's Day triple slaying

by Judy Walton Twanna Blair, right, talks to her attorney, Lee Davis, in this photo from her 2009 trial in Bradley County. Photo by Angela Lewis Foster /Chattanooga Times Free Press. Motion to Dismiss ...
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Supreme Court Clarifies Standard for Review of Judicial Diversion

T he Tennessee Supreme Court in a unanimous opinion clarified the standard of appellate review for a trial court's decision regarding judicial diversion, the Administrative Office of the Court ...
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Supreme Court Ruling Negatively Impacts Immigrants With Expunged Criminal Records

If you get a crime wiped off of your record through an expungement, you're safe from that crime being used against you in the future, right? Unfortunately, this might not be the case if you are an ...
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What is Burden of Proof in a Criminal Case?

In a criminal case, the prosecution will need to prove or disprove a disputed fact. This duty is termed the burden of proof. Generally, the prosecution will be proving that the defendant is guilty so ...
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Supreme Court Annual Report

Justice Roberts' 2013 annual report on the Supreme Court. Here is a link to the Report.
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GPS Tracking Case May Lead To Changes Amongst The Circuits

An important decision was recently handed down by the Third Circuit Court of Appeals concerning law enforcement's ability to track suspects through GPS. Previously, appeals courts have allowed ...
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Sixth Circuit Grants Writ Of Habeas Corpus In Tennessee Murder Case

A recent Sixth Circuit opinion concerned a Tennessee man, Ronald Michael Cauthern v. Roland Colson, who was convicted of murder and rape and sentenced to death for his crimes. Cauthern sought a writ ...
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Supreme Court Tackles Two Drug Cases

Last week, the Supreme Court heard two important criminal law cases involving drugs, both of which fit with a larger theme of clarifying what prosecutors must prove before they can successfully ...
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Sixth Circuit Tackles Another Crack Cocaine Case

U.S. v. Hughes In another confusing and unfortunate case involving the Fair Sentencing Act, the Sixth Circuit recently ruled against a man who had been convicted of possession with intent to ...
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Supreme Court To Hear Death Row Appeal Concerning IQ Test

The Supreme Court announced that it would hear an appeal from a death row inmate in Florida who was ruled mentally disabled in 1992 but later found to be competent after receiving the minimum score on ...
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Sixth Circuit Reverses Lower Court In First-Degree Murder Case

Jasubhai K Desai v. Raymond Booker This case begins with a doctor, Jasubhai Desai, and a nurse, Anna Marie Turetzky, agreeing to open a medical clinic together back in the 1970s. Their business did ...
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TN Supreme Court Affirms Attempted Murder Conviction

The Tennessee Supreme Court released an opinion,Tennessee v. Kevin Anthony Dickson</a>, earlier this week that affirmed the attempted murder conviction for one East Tennessean, Kevin Anthony ...
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Mug Shot Websites Receive Scrutiny From Lawmakers

A recent New York Times story dealt with the surprising issue of mug shots available online and how these commercial operations can end up haunting individuals for years after they have finished ...
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Supreme Court To Hear Tennessee Case Regarding Gun Ban For Domestic Abusers

U.S. v. Castleman The U.S. Supreme Court agreed to hear a Tennessee case about whether one man's conviction for domestic assault is sufficient to justify him being unable to own a gun. The case, ...
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Supreme Court Agrees To Hear Anonymous Tip Case

The U.S. Supreme Court decided to hear a criminal case out of California so it can decide whether police are allowed to stop cars based solely on an anonymous tip. The Supreme Court agreed to hear ...
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Despite Name, Criminal Contempt Not Actually A Crime According To Tennessee Supreme Court

The Tennessee Supreme Court decided a case recently, Tracy Rose Baker v. Tennessee, about whether a person is allowed to seek post-conviction relief from a judgment in a civil case where he or she was ...
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Fair Sentencing Act Leads To Confusion In The Sixth Circuit

The Sixth Circuit recently issued yet another opinion regarding the impact of the Fair Sentencing Act. This latest case, U.S. v. Bell, involved a guilty plea by Gregory Bell to crack cocaine and gun ...
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Judge Rules 2 Fired Police Officers In Adam Tatum Case Get Their Jobs Back

An administrative law judge ruled today that two Chattanooga Police officers who were fired will get their jobs back. Bryan Hoss and Stevie Phillips of Davis & Hoss represented Officer Sean Emmer ...
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Sixth Circuit Rules Against "Dirtiest Hotel in America"

In an incident that puts the notion that all publicity is good publicity to the test, a hotel in Pigeon Forge recently lost an appeal before the Sixth Circuit-- Grand Resort v. TripAdvisor --regarding ...
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Tennessee Highway Patrol Takes "No-Refusal" Approach To DUIs

In a curious development over the recent Labor Day weekend, Tennessee Highway Patrol officers working in 10 counties implemented a new procedure meant to keep drunk drivers off the roads. The new ...
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Facebook Message Gets Murder Case Tossed

In, State of Tennessee v. William Darelle Smith, a story that highlights just how seriously online actions can impact real world events, the Tennessee Supreme Court issued an important ruling last ...
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Supreme Court Upholds Trial Court’s Dismissal of DUI Charges After Video of Arrest Lost

This was posted today on the TN Courts website. The Tennessee Supreme Court, in a unanimous opinion, today upheld a trial court’s dismissal of DUI and other charges against a McMinnville woman ...
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