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State v. Trammell

Court of Criminal Appeals of Tennessee, Knoxville

June 5, 2017


          Assigned on Briefs April 26, 2017

         Appeal from the Criminal Court for Knox County No. 106956 G. Scott Green, Judge

         The Defendant, Terry Trammell, was convicted by a Knox County Criminal Court jury of two counts of burglary, a Class D felony, and two counts of theft of property, a Class E felony. See T.C.A. §§ 39-14-402 (2014) (burglary), 39-14-103 (2014) (theft). The trial court merged the burglary and theft convictions and sentenced the Defendant to concurrent terms of twelve years for the burglary conviction and six years for the theft conviction, which were ordered to be served consecutively to a previously imposed sentence. On appeal, the Defendant contends that the evidence is insufficient to support his convictions. We affirm the judgments of the trial court.

         Tenn. R. App. P. 3 Appeal as of Right; Judgments of the Criminal Court Affirmed

          Nicholas W. Lee, Knoxville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Terry Trammell.

          Herbert H. Slatery III, Attorney General and Reporter; Renee W. Turner, Senior Counsel; Charme P. Allen, District Attorney General; and Ta Kisha Fitzgerald, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.

          Robert H. Montgomery, Jr., J., delivered the opinion of the court, in which D. Kelly Thomas, Jr., and Robert L. Holloway, Jr., JJ. joined.



         This case arises from a July 2015 burglary of Rodem Process Equipment (Rodem) in which a conference room television was stolen at night. At the trial, Bridger Yancey testified that he worked for Rodem, which distributed stainless steel valves and parts to businesses. He said that the majority of Rodem's customers placed orders on the telephone and that Rodem was located in a "strip type office" building.

         Mr. Yancey testified that on July 8, 2015, Rodem had a television inside the conference room in the rear of the building. He said that Rodem closed at 8:00 p.m. and that it opened at 8:00 a.m. on July 9, 2015. He said that when he arrived on July 9, the office suite was warm, that a rear window was broken, that glass shards from the broken window were everywhere, and that the conference room television was missing.

         Mr. Yancey testified that he provided the television's serial number to the responding police officers, that the television was later found at a pawn shop, and that he provided the television's paperwork to the police and to the pawn shop employee in order to have the television returned. Mr. Yancey said that Rodem's corporate office maintained serial number records of the office equipment and that initially the corporate records showed that the television was shipped to the Burford, Georgia office, rather than the Knoxville office. He said that it was a data entry error and that the proper number was provided to the police. He said that the television was valued at more than $500 and that the Defendant did not have permission to enter the business and to take the television.

         On cross-examination, Mr. Yancey testified that he did not know what time the television was taken. He said the conference room was used often, that the room was not used the night of the burglary, and that the door remained open when the room was not used. He said that the television was about one year old, that it was a "flat screen, " that it was used for conference calls, and that it had not been damaged. He agreed that his assessment of the television's value was based upon his general knowledge of television costs and that he did not know the cost of the television in this case. He said that he did not see the Defendant in the area before the burglary and that he did not see the Defendant take the television or break into the building.

         Amy Zarychta, assistant manager for Cash America Pawn Shop, testified that her company maintained transaction records for seven years and that the records contained the pawn ticket and the signature and thumbprint of the person who pawned an item. She identified a copy of a July 9, 2015 pawn ticket, reflecting the Defendant pawned a forty-inch Samsung television, the television's serial number, and its model number.

         On cross-examination, Ms. Zarychta testified that anyone was permitted to pawn an item and that she recalled occasions in which she suspected someone pawned an item for another person. She said that if a person attempted to pawn an item belonging to another person, she advised the person that the owner had to pawn the item. She conceded, though, that ...

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