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Sentencing Archives

3 reasons why you need an attorney

If you are facing criminal charges for a DUI in Knoxville, the last thing you should do is represent yourself. You may feel tempted to forgo hiring an attorney so you can save money. But the costs relating to the consequences you face are often more expensive. Being charged with a DUI means you may have to pay fines and restitutions costs or even serve jail time. You may also lose your driving privileges and have to deal with the long-lasting consequences that often come from having a DUI arrests and conviction. You should take some time to learn how a criminal defense attorney can help your case.

Court Upholds 32 Year Sentence in Child Rape Case

Trial court sentencing decisions in Tennessee criminal cases are presumed on appeal to be reasonable when the sentence is within the range of options provided by the applicable sentencing statutes for the crime at issue. Within a range of possible sentences defined by statute for a particular crime, criminal trial courts have discretion to select the sentence the trial court believes is most appropriate for the circumstances of the particular case. In the recent case of State v. Breeze, W2013-00798-CCA-R3-CD (Tenn.Crim.App. 10-21-2013), the Tennessee Court of Criminal Appeals upheld the trial court's decision to impose a total effective sentence of thirty-two years for a person convicted of rape of a child and rape of his two stepdaughters.

Court Upholds 32 Year Sentence in Child Rape Case

Trial court sentencing decisions in Tennessee criminal cases are presumed on appeal to be reasonable when the sentence is within the range of options provided by the applicable sentencing statutes for the crime at issue. Within a range of possible sentences defined by statute for a particular crime, criminal trial courts have discretion to select the sentence the trial court believes is most appropriate for the circumstances of the particular case. In the recent case of State v. Breeze, W2013-00798-CCA-R3-CD (Tenn.Crim.App. 10-21-2013), the Tennessee Court of Criminal Appeals upheld the trial court's decision to impose a total effective sentence of thirty-two years for a person convicted of rape of a child and rape of his two stepdaughters.

Court Upholds 32 Year Sentence in Child Rape Case

Trial court sentencing decisions in Tennessee criminal cases are presumed on appeal to be reasonable when the sentence is within the range of options provided by the applicable sentencing statutes for the crime at issue. Within a range of possible sentences defined by statute for a particular crime, criminal trial courts have discretion to select the sentence the trial court believes is most appropriate for the circumstances of the particular case. In the recent case of State v. Breeze, W2013-00798-CCA-R3-CD (Tenn.Crim.App. 10-21-2013), the Tennessee Court of Criminal Appeals upheld the trial court's decision to impose a total effective sentence of thirty-two years for a person convicted of rape of a child and rape of his two stepdaughters.

Sentence Based on "Professional Criminal" Factor Upheld

When sentencing a defendant found guilty of multiple crimes, a trial court must not only determine the specific sentence for each crime, but also determine whether those sentences should be served at the same time or stacked consecutively. A few crimes and circumstances require consecutive sentencing. But in many cases, the decision is left to the discretion of the trial court. In those cases, a trial court must still find at least one of the statutory factors which are required before the trial court has the discretion to order consecutive sentencing. In the recent case of State v. McCathern, M2011-01612-CCA-R3-CD (Tenn.Crim.App. 11-16-2012), the trial court ordered consecutive sentences after finding that the Defendant had an extensive criminal history and was a professional criminal who makes much of his living from committing crime.

Sentence Based on "Professional Criminal" Factor Upheld

When sentencing a defendant found guilty of multiple crimes, a trial court must not only determine the specific sentence for each crime, but also determine whether those sentences should be served at the same time or stacked consecutively. A few crimes and circumstances require consecutive sentencing. But in many cases, the decision is left to the discretion of the trial court. In those cases, a trial court must still find at least one of the statutory factors which are required before the trial court has the discretion to order consecutive sentencing. In the recent case of State v. McCathern, M2011-01612-CCA-R3-CD (Tenn.Crim.App. 11-16-2012), the trial court ordered consecutive sentences after finding that the Defendant had an extensive criminal history and was a professional criminal who makes much of his living from committing crime.

Sentence Based on "Professional Criminal" Factor Upheld

When sentencing a defendant found guilty of multiple crimes, a trial court must not only determine the specific sentence for each crime, but also determine whether those sentences should be served at the same time or stacked consecutively. A few crimes and circumstances require consecutive sentencing. But in many cases, the decision is left to the discretion of the trial court. In those cases, a trial court must still find at least one of the statutory factors which are required before the trial court has the discretion to order consecutive sentencing. In the recent case of State v. McCathern, M2011-01612-CCA-R3-CD (Tenn.Crim.App. 11-16-2012), the trial court ordered consecutive sentences after finding that the Defendant had an extensive criminal history and was a professional criminal who makes much of his living from committing crime.

Trial Court Has Wide Discretion in Weighing Sentencing Factors

Since the 2005 amendments to the Sentencing Act in Tennessee, trial courts were afforded expanded discretion in the consideration of enhancement and mitigating factors and in selecting a sentence within the appropriate statutory range for a criminal offense. In addition to no longer requiring enhancement factors to impose a sentence anywhere within the statutory range, the Sentencing Act amendments effectively changed the standard of review on appeal of the sentence imposed. This of course all applies to felony DUI convictions as well, as illustrated in the recent case of State v. Tipton, E2011-02354-CCA-R3-CD (Tenn.Crim.App. 11-7-2012).

Trial Court Has Wide Discretion in Weighing Sentencing Factors

Since the 2005 amendments to the Sentencing Act in Tennessee, trial courts were afforded expanded discretion in the consideration of enhancement and mitigating factors and in selecting a sentence within the appropriate statutory range for a criminal offense. In addition to no longer requiring enhancement factors to impose a sentence anywhere within the statutory range, the Sentencing Act amendments effectively changed the standard of review on appeal of the sentence imposed. This of course all applies to felony DUI convictions as well, as illustrated in the recent case of State v. Tipton, E2011-02354-CCA-R3-CD (Tenn.Crim.App. 11-7-2012).

Trial Court Has Wide Discretion in Weighing Sentencing Factors

Since the 2005 amendments to the Sentencing Act in Tennessee, trial courts were afforded expanded discretion in the consideration of enhancement and mitigating factors and in selecting a sentence within the appropriate statutory range for a criminal offense. In addition to no longer requiring enhancement factors to impose a sentence anywhere within the statutory range, the Sentencing Act amendments effectively changed the standard of review on appeal of the sentence imposed. This of course all applies to felony DUI convictions as well, as illustrated in the recent case of State v. Tipton, E2011-02354-CCA-R3-CD (Tenn.Crim.App. 11-7-2012).

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