Criminal Cases – Opinions Released in Calendar Year 2022
State of Tennessee v. Quinton Devon Perry (Sentencing Issues) (Decided Dec. 9, 2022)
Style: State of Tennessee v. Quinton Devon Perry
TSC Docket Number: W2019-01553-SC-R11-CD
Date of TSC Opinion: December 9, 2022
Opinion of the TSC: Click here.
TSC Summary of the Opinion:
In this appeal, we address principles governing the imposition of consecutive sentencing for “an offender whose record of criminal activity is extensive.” Tenn. Code Ann. § 40- 35-115(b)(2) (2019). Quinton Devon Perry pleaded guilty to twenty-four counts of aggravated sexual exploitation of a minor that took place during the years 2016 and 2017, stemming from the discovery that he had uploaded 174 images or videos comprising child pornography or child erotica to his electronic file sharing account. Although Mr. Perry had no prior criminal convictions, the trial court imposed partial consecutive sentencing after finding that he qual- fied as an offender whose record of criminal activity was extensive. A divided panel of the Court of Criminal Appeals affirmed. State v. Perry, No. W2019-01553-CCA-R3-CD, 2021 WL 2563039, at *7 (Tenn. Crim. App. June 22, 2021), perm. app. granted, (Tenn. Nov. 18, 2021). The dissenting judge, citing a lack of proof that Mr. Perry engaged in a continuous course of downloading and uploading materials over the alleged time period, concluded that the record did not establish him as an offender whose record of criminal activity was extensive. Id. at *6–7 (McMullen, J., dissenting). Mr. Perry sought permission to appeal, arguing that the lower courts improperly found him to be an offender whose record of criminal activity was extensive based solely on the number of offenses to which he pleaded guilty. We accepted Mr. Perry’s appeal. In this opinion, we clarify certain principles for imposing consecutive sentencing under Tennessee Code Annotated section 40-35-115(b)(2) and set forth a non-exclusive list of considerations to aid determining whether a defendant qualifies as an offender whose record of criminal activity is extensive. Based on our review, we have determined that the trial court adequately articulated the reasons for ordering consecutive sentencing on the record. Affording the trial court’s decision a presumption of reasonableness, we conclude that the trial court did not err in imposing partial consecutive sentencing. Accordingly, we affirm the decision of the Court of Criminal Appeals.
Link to Court of Appeals Opinion:
Court of Criminal Appeals Summary:
Defendant-Appellant, Quinton Devon Perry, entered guilty pleas to eighteen counts of aggravated sexual exploitation of a minor, a Class C felony, and six counts of aggravated sexual exploitation of a minor where the number of exploitive materials exceeded twenty- five, a Class B felony under Tennessee Code Annotated sections 39-17-1004(a)(1) and (2). The trial court ordered partial consecutive sentencing and imposed an effective sentence of eighteen years’ imprisonment. In this appeal as of right, the Defendant argues the trial court erred in applying certain enhancement factors and in imposing partial consecutive sentencing. Upon review, the judgment of the trial court is affirmed.
Permission to Appeal Granted: November 18, 2021
Appellants’ Briefs Filed: December 20, 2021
Appellees’ Briefs Filed: January 18, 2022
Appellants’ Reply Brief Filed: February 1, 2022
Appellees’ Reply Brief Filed:
Amicus Briefs Permitted: None
Oral Argument Date: April 5, 2022
Link to Oral Argument Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nD_ru5RsNDY
- Judge McMullen authored the majority opin-ion. In that opinion, however, Judge McMullen disagreed with the majority as to the trial court’s decision to impose partial consecutive sentencing. For purposes of our opinion, we have characterized Judge McMullen’s view of the issue as a dissent. ↵