Court of Criminal Appeals of Tennessee, Knoxville
Session March 26, 2019
from the Criminal Court for Knox County No. 109996 Steven
Wayne Sword, Judge
bifurcated jury trial, Defendant, Daron Hall, was found
guilty of three counts of possession of a firearm by a felon,
one count of aggravated assault, one count of attempted
voluntary manslaughter, and two counts of employing a firearm
during the commission of a dangerous felony. Defendant
received an effective sentence of twenty-five years. After
the denial of a motion for new trial, Defendant appeals to
this Court arguing: (1) that the trial court erred by
instructing the jury on attempted voluntary manslaughter; (2)
the trial court erred by admitting the 911 tapes into
evidence; and (3) the evidence was insufficient to support
the conviction for attempted voluntary manslaughter. After a
review, we determine the trial court did not abuse its
discretion in admitting the 911 tapes into evidence, and the
evidence was sufficient to support the conviction for
attempted voluntary manslaughter. However, we remand the
matter to the trial court for correction of the judgment
forms to reflect the sentences as imposed by the trial court
at the sentencing hearing.
R. App. P. 3 Appeal as of Right; Judgments of the Criminal
Court Affirmed and Remanded
E. Stephens, District Public Defender; and David D. Skidmore,
Assistant District Public Defender, for the appellant, Daron
Herbert H. Slatery III, Attorney General and Reporter;
Benjamin A. Ball, Senior Assistant Attorney General; Charme
P. Allen, District Attorney General; and Phil Morton,
Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State
Timothy L. Easter, J., delivered the opinion of the court, in
which Norma McGee Ogle and Camille R. McMullen, JJ., joined.
TIMOTHY L. EASTER, JUDGE
was indicted by the Knox County Grand Jury for three
variations of possession of a weapon by a convicted felon in
Counts One through Three, aggravated assault in Count Four,
attempted first degree murder in Count Five, and two
variations of employing a firearm during a dangerous felony
in Counts Six and Seven.
the proof establishing that Defendant assaulted the victim,
John Webb, while using a deadly weapon on October 27, 2016,
is not in dispute. The testimony at trial established that
the victim and his wife, Leondria Webb, went to the home of
Mrs. Webb's father, Merle Green, to gather with various
family members prior to Mr. Green's funeral. The Webbs
arrived at the house on Kim Lane in their car around 3:30
p.m. with their seventeen-year-old son. When they arrived,
they parked in the front of the house. Defendant was on the
porch with his brother, Tubbia Green, and another man named
Benjamin Franklin Gash, Jr. Defendant is Mrs. Webb's
brother. Mr. Gash had travelled from North Carolina to
Tennessee for the funeral and had known the deceased Mr.
Green for over twenty years.
to the victim, Defendant approached his vehicle and told him
that he was not welcome and that he needed to leave. Both
Mrs. Webb and Tubbia Green tried to diffuse the situation by
telling Defendant that this was not the "time" for
this discussion. According to the accounts of the victim and
his wife, Defendant became increasingly agitated.
victim eventually told Defendant that he was "not gonna
keep running from [him]" and that he was not
"scared of [him]." As the victim's son walked
around the vehicle and into the yard toward the house,
Defendant ran toward the victim and pulled out a gun. As soon
as the victim could see the gun, he started to run away.
Defendant fired the gun. The victim heard at least five or
six shots and was in fear for his life as well as the lives
of his wife and son. The victim jumped a fence and ran to the
next street over. The victim saw a woman outside her house
and asked her to call 911 because someone was "trying to
kill" him. The victim himself called 911 to report the
Gash was seated on the porch at the time that the victim
pulled up to the house. He had never met Defendant, whom he
described as "[v]ery sociable." When the victim
arrived, Defendant's "demeanor" changed. He
"became very angry" and told the victim that he
would "kill" him and told him to "get up out
of here." Mr. Gash estimated that the men argued for
"[m]aybe three to five minutes" before Mr. Gash saw
Defendant approach the victim. Defendant took "a gun out
from behind his - - his back," stepped off the porch,
and "charge[d]" toward the victim. Defendant
started firing shots and "continued to shoot at the
victim while he was running." Mr. Gash heard
"[f]our to five shots." The victim ran behind the
house. Mr. Tubbia Green attempted to calm Defendant down
after the gunfire. Mr. Gash saw Defendant a short time later
in a car.
911 calls were placed that day to report shots fired at the
house on Kim Lane. One of the callers, who identified herself
as Renee Green, reported that Defendant fired shots. The next
caller, who did not identify herself, reported that her
brother, Defendant, was shooting at her husband. Another
caller gave a description of a vehicle in which they saw
Defendant leaving the scene of the incident.
Amanda Bunch of the Knoxville Police Department responded to
the "shooting call." When she arrived, "there
was a lot of yelling and screaming, people were holding each
other back." According to Sergeant Bunch, it was
"chaotic." Sergeant Bunch was able to determine
that neither the suspect nor the victim were on the scene.
other officers arrived on the scene, the victim was located
down the street. During his conversation with officers, the
victim collapsed and lost consciousness. The victim, who
suffered from sarcoidosis,  was not on oxygen at the time but
was on oxygen as little as two months prior to the incident.
He was transported to Fort Sanders, a nearby hospital, for
evaluation and treatment. Because he was hospitalized, he was
unable to attend the funeral.
shell casings were initially recovered from the scene and a
fourth shell casing was eventually discovered. A forensic
examiner confirmed that the same gun fired all four casings.
No weapon was discovered.
victim testified that this was not the first altercation
between him and Defendant. In July of 2015, Defendant came to
the victim's house with his "clothes and
stuff." Defendant "was acting like he was gonna
stay at the house" and told the victim that it was his
sister's house and that [the victim] did not do anything
at the house. The victim stood up and told him that he could
not stay at the house and that he did not want to argue with
him. The victim was required to use oxygen at the time
because of his sarcoidosis. Defendant hit the victim. The
victim "hit the ground." When he woke up, he was
"covered in blood." The victim sustained a broken
nose, dislocated eye socket, and a severe concussion.
Defendant pled guilty to assault after the incident. The
victim did not have contact with Defendant from the time he
pled guilty to assault until the day of the funeral.
Catlett testified for Defendant. She lived nearby on the
corner of Forestdale and Kim Lane. She heard shots and saw
some people run by her house on the day of the incident. The
man she saw running had on a red shirt. He was followed by
two men "wearing white shirts like t-shirts." She
did not see Defendant, who was six feet, eight inches tall,
run by her house.
Brandon Smith, another resident of the area, testified that
he lived about five houses away from Kim Lane. He heard shots
fired and saw "four or five" people running through
his yard. They were "pretty well dressed," and all
of them seemed to be running away from the scene. He did not
did not testify. At the conclusion of the proof, the jury
found Defendant guilty of aggravated assault, the lesser
included offense of attempted voluntary manslaughter, and two
counts of employing a firearm during a dangerous felony. In a
bifurcated hearing, the State introduced certified judgments
indicating Defendant had three prior convictions for robbery
and one prior conviction for ...