Latest Tennessee Supreme Court News

Tennessee Supreme Court schedules 2 more execution dates

Jan. 15, 2020 7:42 PM EST

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — The Tennessee Supreme Court on Wednesday scheduled dates to execute two more death row inmates, but justices still haven't ruled on the attorney general's requests to set seven more. Continuing Tennessee's trend toward capital punishment, the court scheduled Oscar Franklin Smith to...

Tennessee appellate judge to retire after 25 years on bench

Jan. 7, 2020 2:53 PM EST

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Tennessee Court of Appeals Judge Charles D. Susano Jr. is retiring from the bench this spring. Susano will retire from the bench effective April 30, the state Supreme Court said in a news release Monday. Susano told Gov. Bill Lee by letter that his service “has been the...

FILE - In this Aug. 28, 2019, file photo, Abu-Ali Abdur'Rahman attends a hearing in Nashville, Tenn. Tennessee's highest court has put a hold on the pending execution of a black inmate after he raised claims that racism tainted the jury selection at his trial. A Nashville judge earlier this year approved an agreement with local prosecutors to resentence Abu-Ali Abdur'Rahman to life in prison. The agreement came after Abdur'Rahman presented evidence that prosecutors at his trial showed a preference for white jurors. Tennessee' attorney general has appealed the agreement.. The state Supreme Court on Wednesday ordered that Abdur'Rahman's April execution date be put on hold until the appeal can be heard. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey, File)

Execution on hold in Tennessee after racism argument raised

Dec. 11, 2019 5:33 PM EST

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — The pending execution of a black inmate was put on hold Wednesday by Tennessee's highest court after the inmate said racism tainted the jury selection at his trial. In August, a Nashville judge approved an agreement between Abu-Ali Abdur-Rahman and Nashville's district attorney to...

FILE - This 2017 file photo provided by the Tennessee Department of Correction shows Lee Hall, formerly known as Leroy Hall Jr. Hall, a death row inmate. Hall is scheduled to be electrocuted Thursday, Dec. 5, 2019. Hall walked onto death row nearly three decades ago with his sight, but attorneys for the 53-year-old prisoner say he’s since become functionally blind due to improperly treated glaucoma. (Tennessee Department of Correction via AP)

Blind inmate executed in Tennessee for woman's 1991 killing

Dec. 5, 2019 10:33 PM EST

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — A blind prisoner convicted of killing his estranged girlfriend by setting her on fire in her car was put to death Thursday in Tennessee's electric chair, becoming only the second inmate without sight to be executed in the U.S. since the reinstatement of the nation's death penalty in...

Tennessee high court rules against paper in defamation case

Dec. 5, 2019 5:40 PM EST

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — The Tennessee Supreme Court ruled on Thursday that a newspaper cannot use the state's fair report privilege law as a shield against a defamation lawsuit for a story that was based on a one-on-one interview with a police detective. The unanimous ruling found that the privilege only...

FILE - This 2017 file photo provided by the Tennessee Department of Correction shows Lee Hall, formerly known as Leroy Hall Jr. Hall, a death row inmate. Hall is scheduled to be electrocuted Thursday, Dec. 5, 2019. Hall walked onto death row nearly three decades ago with his sight, but attorneys for the 53-year-old prisoner say he’s since become functionally blind due to improperly treated glaucoma. (Tennessee Department of Correction via AP)

Tennessee governor not stopping planned execution Thursday

Dec. 4, 2019 4:21 PM EST

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee announced Wednesday that he won't stop the state from putting a blind inmate to death in the electric chair later this week, clearing the way for the execution unless a federal court intervenes. Lee Hall, a 53-year-old inmate who became blind from glaucoma...

FILE - This 2017 file photo provided by the Tennessee Department of Correction shows Lee Hall, formerly known as Leroy Hall Jr. Hall, a death row inmate. Hall is scheduled to be electrocuted Thursday, Dec. 5, 2019. Hall walked onto death row nearly three decades ago with his sight, but attorneys for the 53-year-old prisoner say he’s since become functionally blind due to improperly treated glaucoma. (Tennessee Department of Correction via AP)

Court declines to intervene in upcoming Tennessee execution

Dec. 3, 2019 9:50 PM EST

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Two days before a Tennessee prisoner’s scheduled execution, the state’s Supreme Court has denied request for more time to consider the possible bias of a juror who helped hand down the original death sentence decades ago. The state’s top justices ruled Tuesday...

Death row inmate asks high court to intervene in execution

Nov. 30, 2019 2:43 PM EST

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — A Tennessee death row inmate is asking the state’s highest court to pause his upcoming execution to allow more time to consider questions surrounding the possible bias of a juror who helped hand down the original death sentence decades ago. Attorneys for 53-year-old Lee Hall...