Supreme Court to Hear Four Cases in Knoxville

August 31, 2017

The Tennessee Supreme Court will hear four cases on September 6, 2017, in Knoxville, TN. The first two cases will be heard at the University of Tennessee College of Law.  The latter two cases will be heard at the Knoxville Courthouse.  The details of the cases are as follows:

State v. Angela Faye Daniel

            This case is before the Court to review a trial court’s suppression of evidence.  The appeal examines whether an officer’s failure to leave a copy of a search warrant with the person on whom it was served can ever constitute a “good faith mistake or technical violation” under the Exclusionary Rule Reform Act (ERRA).  The Court also requested that the parties brief and argue whether the Court should expand the good faith exception adopted in State v. Davidson to include technical violations during the service of a search warrant when the search otherwise is constitutional and whether the ERRA violates the Separation of Powers Clause of the Tennessee Constitution.

State v. Lindsey Brooke Lowe

            This case involves a defendant who was convicted of the first-degree murder and aggravated child abuse of her newborn twins.  The issues include whether a search of the defendant’s home was unlawful under the Fifth, Sixth, and Fourteenth Amendments of the U.S. Constitution, and Article 1, Section 9 of the Tennessee Constitution. As in State v. Angela Faye Daniel,the Court also has requested the parties to brief whether the Court should expand the good faith exception adopted in State v. Davidson to include technical violations during the service of a search warrant when the search otherwise is constitutional and whether the ERRA violates the Separation of Powers Clause of the Tennessee Constitution.

In re Estate of J. Don Brock

            This case involves the issue of whether the children of a deceased person have legal standing to challenge a will when those children were disinherited in a previous unprobated will.  The children also request that the Court overrule or limit existing Tennessee case law relied upon by the Court of Appeals to deprive them of standing.

C.W.H. v. L.A.S.

            In this child custody case, the mother and father entered into a parenting plan in which mother was designated the primary residential parent. The father subsequently discovered that the mother was working as a licensed prostitute in Nevada and sought a change of custody.  The Court will examine whether the Court of Appeals erred in reversing the trial court’s decision to award custody to the father.