Crossville Chronicle, Crossville, TN

May 16, 2013

Statement in shooting death attacked

By Michael R. Moser

CROSSVILLE — Motions in the shooting death of a Daysville community man one year ago included a motion to suppress a statement given to investigators by the suspect in the case.

Carson Ray Norris, 66, 1109 Daysville Rd., was indicted on a first-degree murder charge by the Cumberland County Grand Jury last September for the shooting death of Samuel A. Baker, and for aggravated assault on James Baker in the same incident.

Defense attorney Randal Boston last Wednesday attempted to have the statement Norris gave to sheriff's investigators tossed out because the defendant was intoxicated the night of the incident and because he had been held in jail for more than eight hours without being charged. Boston argued that Norris could not have understood his right not to make a voluntary statement.

Sheriff's Investigator Scott Griffin was the only witness, testifying he was called to the scene of the shooting on Daysville Rd. around midnight, but while en route, was told the suspect was at the Linda and Danny Sherrill residence, not far from the scene.

Griffin testified he went to that residence, took Norris into custody on an investigative hold, and then traveled to the victim's home where the shooting took place to process the crime scene.

Griffin said he and Sheriff's Investigator Jerry Jackson arrived at the Justice Center and started their interview with Norris at around 8:30 a.m. He added that Jackson read Norris his rights and that Norris signed a waiver of rights, which both he and Jackson witnessed.

Griffin also testified that, even though Norris had been drinking the night of the shooting, he was sober and aware of what he was doing when he provided investigators with his statement.

Criminal Court Judge David Patterson ruled that Carson gave the statement being aware of his rights, and that the statement was admissible during trial.

Another motion hearing will be held on June 26.