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Valentine v. State

Court of Criminal Appeals of Tennessee, Jackson

January 10, 2018

JOHN VALENTINE
v.
STATE OF TENNESSEE

          Assigned on Briefs December 5, 2017

         Appeal from the Criminal Court for Shelby County No. 11-02890 Carolyn W. Blackett, Judge

          The petitioner, John Valentine, appeals the denial of his post-conviction petition, arguing the post-conviction court erred in finding he received effective assistance of counsel at trial. After our review of the record, briefs, and applicable law, we affirm the judgment of the post-conviction court.

          John Scott, Memphis, Tennessee, for the appellant, John Valentine.

          Herbert H. Slatery III, Attorney General and Reporter; Renee W. Turner, Senior Counsel; Amy P. Weirich, District Attorney General; and Paul Goodman, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.

          J. Ross Dyer, J., delivered the opinion of the court, in which John Everett Williams and Alan E. Glenn, JJ., joined.

          OPINION

          J. ROSS DYER, JUDGE

         Facts and Procedural History

         A. Trial Proceedings and Direct Appeal

         In 2013, a Shelby County Criminal Court jury convicted the petitioner of rape of a child and aggravated sexual battery for which he received an effective sentence of thirty-three years. On appeal, this Court affirmed the petitioner's convictions. State v. John Valentine, No. W2013-01002-CCA-R3-CD, 2014 WL 4792801, at *1 (Tenn. Crim. App. Sept. 25, 2014), perm. app. denied (Tenn. Jan. 20, 2015). The Court summarized the facts, as follows:

This case arose from the [petitioner's] convictions for rape of a child and aggravated sexual battery. According to the proof at trial, the [petitioner] penetrated the victim with his penis and forced the victim to masturbate him.
Audrean Bond-Jones was the principal at Bethel Grove Elementary School in November of 2010, where the victim was a first-grade student. On November 17, 2010, the victim was brought to Ms. Bond-Jones' office for inappropriate behavior towards another student. While in line in the cafeteria, the victim was "hunching" on another student. The victim placed the front part of her body against the back of another student and "would just do a little front back motion." Ms. Bond-Jones testified that the victim "shared quite a bit of information about some things" that occurred in her home. When the victim spoke about certain sex acts, Ms. Bond-Jones asked her where she learned about the acts, and the victim "began to demonstrate . . . what her experiences were with her father." In response to the victim's statements, Ms. Bond-Jones called the Department of Children's Services ("DCS"), and law enforcement officers came to the school.
Marion Woods had been the victim's foster mother since the end of November 2010. Ms. Woods was a teacher and testified that the victim's performance in school was somewhat deficient. She indicated that the victim sometimes struggled with the concepts of dates and times, as the victim might say that she was with her mother or sister the previous evening when she actually was with Ms. Woods. Ms. Woods testified that the victim's accounts of her interactions with the [petitioner] remained consistent.
Angelique Roshea Horace was a foster care counselor with Youth Villages and served as the victim's foster care counselor. She worked with the victim on developing "social skills[, ]" such as communication, listening skills, and "making friends." Ms. Horace's overall goal with counseling was to assist the victim and Ms. Woods in achieving the victim's permanency goal of adoption. Ms. Horace testified that when the victim ...

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