Vanderbilt Law Review


Clyde L. Ball

First Page



Most of the criminal law cases in the Tennessee courts during the past year have dealt with matters of procedure. The basic principles derived from these cases are treated in the Procedure and Evidence article of this 1954 Survey.' However, those cases of especial interest and significance will be considered here in somewhat greater detail. In addition to procedural matters there were a few cases which turned on concepts basic in the substantive law of crimes.

Substantive Law

Homicide: Tennessee has enunciated and followed a rule which states that driving an automobile while intoxicated is an act malum in se, and that when this act results in the death of a human being, the drunken driver is criminally responsible without further showing of facts to establish criminal negligence. This rule was extended in the case of Reed v. States to cover a driver, not intoxicated, who deliberately tried to pass another vehicle in the face of heavy oncoming traffic.