David Jordan was sentenced to death by the State of Tennessee for multiple murders linked to a mass shooting. According to court documents David Jordan went to the workplace of his estranged wife and would open fire killing her and two other people. David Jordan would be convicted and sentenced to death.
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This case arises from a shooting incident on January 11, 2005, at the Tennessee Department of Transportation (TDOT) facility in Jackson, where David Lynn Jordan (“Defendant”) killed three people: Renee Jordan, his thirty-one-year-old wife who was employed at TDOT; Jerry Hopper, an employee of the Tennessee Division of Forestry who was at the TDOT office; and David Gordon, a motorist Defendant ran off the road en route to the TDOT garage. Defendant also shot and injured two other TDOT employees, James Goff and Larry Taylor.
The State’s theory at trial was that Defendant first threatened and then decided to murder his wife because he believed she was having an affair with a co-worker, Johnny Emerson, and because she told him she wanted a divorce.
Johnny Emerson testified that he was employed as a mechanic at the TDOT garage where Mrs. Jordan worked. Emerson explained that he and Mrs. Jordan were “just real good friends,” but acknowledged that their relationship had developed “[a] little bit” beyond a co-worker relationship. Physically, their relationship was limited to hugging and kissing. Emerson said that Mrs. Jordan had been talking about getting a divorce. On one occasion, Defendant telephoned Emerson at home regarding his relationship with Mrs. Jordan. Defendant told Emerson that he was “too old” for Mrs. Jordan and that he “needed [his] ass whooped.” Emerson agreed with Defendant that he “didn’t have no business doing what [he] did.” Defendant also contacted Emerson’s wife on numerous occasions. At some point prior to January 11, 2005, Emerson informed Mrs. Jordan that he was not going to divorce his wife. Emerson testified that he was not at work on January 11, 2005, because he was on medical leave.
Linda Sesson Taylor, an attorney in Jackson, testified that Mrs. Jordan hired her on December 14, 2004, to represent her in divorce proceedings against Defendant. She said she initially prepared the necessary documents for a contested divorce, and Mrs. Jordan told her she would have the money to pay her fee after the Christmas holiday. Taylor said she also prepared the paperwork to obtain a restraining order against Defendant, and Mrs. Jordan had an appointment scheduled for January 12, 2005.2 Taylor identified a page out of her phone message book indicating that Mrs. Jordan had called her office on January 11, 2005, at 9:56 a.m. wanting to know how much Taylor charged for an uncontested divorce.
Kevin Deberry, the next-door neighbor of Defendant and Mrs. Jordan, testified that Mrs. Jordan called him on the night of January 10, 2005, and was upset with Defendant. About an hour later, Defendant came to Deberry’s house and asked Deberry to take Mrs. Jordan’s dog to their house and get his house key, but Deberry refused to do so. Defendant then told Deberry if he did not take Mrs. Jordan’s dog to her, he “was gonna take it over there and shoot it in the driveway.” As Defendant turned to walk away, Deberry noticed what he believed to be a “snub-nose .38” in Defendant’s back pocket. Defendant then turned around and told Deberry that he “better watch [his] back, you never kn[o]w which way the bullets are gonna fly.” Deberry called Mrs. Jordan and told her to take her child and leave the house because Defendant was on his way over there. Mrs. Jordan told Deberry that Defendant had left some threatening voice mails on her phone. Defendant later called Deberry and apologized. The two men talked “for awhile” and Deberry offered Defendant a drink. Defendant declined but called back later and accepted Deberry’s offer of alcohol. Deberry said that he took a half-gallon bottle of vodka to Defendant’s house at about 1:00 a.m. and put it in the freezer. Although Defendant and his children were still up when he arrived, Deberry did not stay and returned home.
Kenneth Evans, Mrs. Jordan’s cousin, testified that he was aware that Defendant and Mrs. Jordan were having marital problems and, on January 10, 2005, Mrs. Jordan called and told him that “she was about to have a nervous breakdown, and she was scared of [Defendant], that he was calling threatening her.” Mrs. Jordan told Evans that Defendant “was on his way out to the house and that he said ․ it didn’t matter how many lawyers she had and how much money she had, that what he had for her wasn’t going to do her any good.” Evans advised Mrs. Jordan to leave the house and go to the police department, but she refused to do so, saying that Defendant had “had run-ins with the police department before. He would shoot me there whether the police was there or not, and he would probably shoot them, too.” Evans then told her to come to his house, which she did. After she arrived, they took Mrs. Jordan’s three-year-old daughter to Mrs. Jordan’s mother’s house. Evans later hid Mrs. Jordan’s car at a friend’s house, and they returned to Evans’ home around 10:30 p.m.
The following morning, January 11, 2005, Mrs. Jordan and Evans, a TDOT “[p]arts runner,” went to work. Mrs. Jordan worked in the office of the TDOT garage, which was commonly referred to as “the crow’s nest.” That morning, Evans was in the crow’s nest with Mrs. Jordan until approximately 11:10 a.m., when he left to go pick up some parts. Ricky Simpson and James Goff were in the office with Mrs. Jordan when he left.
Vernon L. Stockton, Sr. testified that on January 11, 2005, he was employed as an equipment mechanic at the TDOT garage which was located in the same building as the crow’s nest where Mrs. Jordan worked. He said he knew that Mrs. Jordan and Defendant were having marital problems. Between 9:30 and 10:00 a.m. on the morning of January 11, Mrs. Jordan handed Stockton her portable phone when it rang and asked him to answer it. Stockton recognized the caller’s voice as that of Defendant. Defendant asked to speak to Mrs. Jordan, but Stockton told him that she was in the restroom because she did not want to talk to him. Stockton said he later left TDOT to pick up some parts and was not present when the shooting occurred.
Sonny Grimm testified that he was riding in a Ford pickup while Paul Forsythe was driving it westbound on Lower Brownsville Road on January 11, 2005. The two men worked for Ralph’s Trailers and were on their way to pick up some starter fluid for a backhoe. A green car was traveling in front of them. As they approached Anglin Lane, Grimm saw Defendant, who was driving a red pickup truck, run a stop sign and strike the green car, knocking it off the road. Grimm wrote down the license plate number of Defendant’s vehicle; he said that Defendant continued traveling toward the TDOT garage. Grimm, Forsythe, and the driver of the green car followed Defendant to the garage. There, Grimm saw people running everywhere. Forsythe gave the driver of the green car the license plate number of the red pickup truck. Defendant came out of the garage and told the driver of the green car, “You better leave.” The driver responded, “I’m not going [any]where.” Defendant said, “yes, you are, too,” reached inside his truck, pulled out a rifle, and shot the driver.
Paul Forsythe testified that, on the morning of January 11, 2005, he and Sonny Grimm were traveling west on Lower Brownsville Road behind a green car when they saw a red Mazda pickup truck come down Anglin Lane, run a stop sign, and strike the green car, knocking it off the road. Forsythe followed the truck to get its license plate number for the driver of the green car. Because he was driving, Forsythe called out the license number to Grimm, who wrote it down. The pickup truck then ran a four-way stop and turned into the main entrance of TDOT. Forsythe called 911 and pulled into the TDOT parking lot. The green car then pulled up, the driver got out, and Forsythe gave the driver, David Gordon, the tag number of the pickup truck. As Gordon was walking back to his car, Defendant came out of the TDOT building and told Gordon to leave. When Gordon said, “I’m not going [any]where,” Defendant said, “You will” and then reached inside his truck and pulled out a long gun. Gordon threw his hands up in the air and told Defendant, “Please don’t shoot. Wait a minute.” However, Defendant started shooting, and Forsythe and Grimm fled the scene.
Randy Joe Perry, a TDOT employee, testified that on January 11, 2005, Defendant came to the TDOT garage and pushed Perry out of his way as he approached the steps leading up to the crow’s nest where Mrs. Jordan worked. David Pickard, another TDOT employee who was standing near Perry, said, “Who was that son-of-a-bitch?” Defendant, who had his right hand in his coat pocket, turned around and gave Perry and Pickard a “hard look” before going upstairs to the crow’s nest. Perry then heard three or four gunshots and, looking through the window in the crow’s nest, saw Defendant pointing a gun at Jerry Hopper who was sitting in a chair. Perry heard another gunshot and saw Hopper slump over. Hearing more gunshots, Perry ran and got behind his truck. Shortly thereafter, Defendant calmly walked outside to his vehicle. Perry next noticed a man get out of another vehicle and walk toward Defendant. Defendant reached inside his truck and retrieved a rifle. The man who had been walking toward Defendant stopped and raised his hands. A few seconds later, Defendant fired several shots at the man. Perry described the shots as coming from a “fully automatic” and so quick that he could not count them. The man Defendant shot “went out of sight down behind the vehicle.” Defendant walked over to the fallen man, shot again, “and then he turned and just calmly walked back towards his truck, put the rifle in his truck, just eased in there and drove off just as easy” toward the front gate.
David Thomas Pickard testified that he was standing near the stairs with Randy Perry and other employees when Defendant came in the garage and shoved him and Perry backwards as he walked past the group of men. Pickard responded by saying, “Who does that crazy son-of-a-bitch think he is?” Defendant, who smelled of alcohol, turned around and got in Pickard’s face “like he wanted to whoop [him].” Defendant then proceeded upstairs to the crow’s nest where Mrs. Jordan was facing the window. Pickard saw Defendant shoot Mrs. Jordan and described the shooting: “The first time it went ‘Pow’ and she went like this and come back and he went ‘Pow, Pow, Pow,’ like that.” Pickard ran out of the garage to his office located across from the garage. After instructing the employees in his office to lock the door, Pickard went back outside and saw Defendant, pistol in hand, exit the garage and go to his truck and retrieve a rifle. Pickard went back inside the office and, a few minutes later, saw Defendant leave in his truck. Pickard then went to the crow’s nest where he saw Mrs. Jordan and Jerry Hopper lying on the floor. He said he looked at Mrs. Jordan and knew she was dead, but Hopper was still alive and a man was trying to resuscitate him. Outside in the parking lot, Pickard saw another man lying on the ground. He said the man was not dead at that time, but he “was turning real yellow-looking and blood was everywhere.”
James Goff testified that he was in the crow’s nest with Mrs. Jordan, Larry Taylor, and Jerry Hopper when Defendant came in, raised his shirt, and pulled out what appeared to be a nine-millimeter pistol. Mrs. Jordan had her back to the door, and Defendant called out her name. Mrs. Jordan turned around, and Defendant started shooting. Goff stated that Defendant was about 6 feet away. Defendant shot Mrs. Jordan in the chest and fired additional shots, including what appeared to be a shot to the forehead. Defendant then shot Hopper. Taylor dove under a desk, and Defendant shot Goff in the leg, the right side of the neck, the arm, and the stomach. Although he did not see Taylor being shot, Goff heard two more shots and heard Taylor grunt. As Defendant was leaving the crow’s nest, Goff heard him mutter, “I love you, Renee.”
After Defendant left the room, Goff got up and asked Taylor about his condition. He saw Hopper lying on the floor “in bad shape” and Mrs. Jordan was dead. Goff was then able to make his way to the main office for help. He said he was hospitalized for three days as a result of his injuries.
Larry Taylor testified that he was ending a telephone call inside the crow’s nest when Defendant entered the room, stood there “for a moment or so,” pulled his coat back, brandished a weapon, and took a “police stance.” Defendant then called Mrs. Jordan by name and, when she turned to face him, shot her. One gunshot struck her in the stomach area. She fell back in a chair, and Defendant fired two additional shots, with the second shot striking her torso “a little higher up” and the third shot striking her in the head. Mrs. Jordan fell to the floor, and Taylor could tell that she was dead. Taylor dove under a desk for protection, heard more gunshots, and saw Goff fall. He then heard more gunshots and felt pain in his legs. Taylor heard the door close, and Goff asked him if he was all right before leaving the room. Taylor then got up and saw Hopper on the floor on his knees with his face in his hands and saw Mrs. Jordan on the floor with her face in a pool of blood. He called 911 and was trying to assist Hopper when he heard the door open and saw Defendant with “a rifle-type gun.” Taylor looked Defendant “square in the eye” and stood back up, holding both his hands in front of him. He asked Defendant if he could leave, and, after a brief pause, Defendant said, “Yeah, you can go out now.” After Taylor got downstairs, he heard gunshots in rapid succession and hurriedly went out the door. He saw Goff, who was “kind of delirious” and holding a towel to his neck, and told another employee, Alvin Harris, to drive Goff to the hospital in the parts truck. Taylor then got in his car and drove himself to the hospital where he was treated for the gunshot wounds to his legs.
Freddie Ellison, a reserve sheriff’s deputy and a mechanic at TDOT, testified that when he returned to the garage from his lunch break around 11:30 a.m., people were running out of the garage. He then observed Defendant, whom he had known for approximately twenty years, walk out the roll-up doors of the garage. Ellison asked Defendant what he was doing. Defendant raised his right hand and Ellison saw two semi-automatic handguns. Defendant said, “Go on. Back off. Just go on. Back off.” Defendant had his hand on one of the guns. Ellison retreated to the back of the building where he observed David Gordon pull up in a green car. Gordon announced that “[t]he guy in the red pickup truck has run over me,” and Ellison advised Gordon to “back off” because Defendant had a gun. Gordon refused, stating that he had the police on the way. Ellison then heard “automatic” gunfire and called the Madison County Sheriff’s Department for assistance. He and Willie Martin left TDOT and went “out on 223.” He saw Defendant leave in his red pickup truck, driving normally and headed toward Jackson.
Shortly thereafter, Ellison observed an unmarked police unit and advised dispatch to instruct the unit to follow Defendant. Ellison then returned to the TDOT garage and saw David Gordon on the ground. Gordon had been shot multiple times. Inside the crow’s nest, Ellison discovered “blood all over the floor” and saw Mrs. Jordan lying on the floor with multiple gunshot wounds. He described Mrs. Jordan as being “shot all to pieces,” including being shot in the forehead. Jerry Hopper had been shot several times in the chest.
Alvin Harris, a “store clerk” at TDOT who picked up and delivered parts, testified that he heard gunshots and went to the garage where he encountered Goff who was holding his throat and bleeding. He also saw Taylor who was “real panicky” and pointed to his legs when Harris asked him if he was hurt. Taylor told Harris that Defendant had shot Mrs. Jordan and that she was “gone.” Because Goff was losing a lot of blood and Harris feared death was imminent, Harris decided to drive Goff to the hospital rather than wait for the ambulance.
Darrell Vaulx, a TDOT mechanic, testified that as he was leaving the shop on January 11, 2005, he saw Defendant, Mrs. Jordan, Hopper, and Taylor through the glass window in the crow’s nest. Defendant pointed a gun at Mrs. Jordan, and she fell. Vaulx heard two more gunshots and saw Defendant turn toward the men in the crow’s nest. Vaulx said he and other employees ran outside to the parking lot where Vaulx saw Defendant’s red Mazda pickup truck. Vaulx then saw Defendant come outside and calmly walk to his truck. Thinking that Defendant was leaving, Vaulx ran inside to the crow’s nest where he found Mrs. Jordan on the floor with three gunshot wounds to the head. Someone yelled, “He’s coming back,” and Vaulx ran back outside to the parking lot and noticed that Defendant’s truck was still there. He then heard a noise that sounded like an airgun or a rifle. After someone said Defendant was getting in his truck and leaving, Vaulx went back inside and found Hopper who was “breathing just a little bit” and “[s]quirming” like he was in pain. Vaulx administered CPR to Hopper until the paramedics arrived.
George Washington Bond, a TDOT employee who worked in the car wash room in the garage, testified that he heard “three pops,” looked out the window in the garage door, and saw Defendant standing over “the victim.” Defendant then looked at Bond and shook his head, which Bond interpreted to mean “[d]on’t get involved.” Bond saw what appeared to be the grip of a gun in Defendant’s hand. Defendant then walked into the garage and went to the crow’s nest. Bond saw Defendant pointing a long gun toward where Mrs. Jordan sat. Bond then ran to another building and did not return to the garage. On cross-examination, Bond acknowledged that he did not see Defendant shoot “the victim.”3
Barbara Surratt, Mrs. Jordan’s mother-in-law from a previous marriage, testified that, even after Mrs. Jordan and her son divorced, she remained “very close” with Mrs. Jordan. During the early part of 2005, Mrs. Jordan was staying with Surratt at her home on Old Pinson Road. On January 11, 2005, at approximately 1:30 a.m., Surratt received a telephone call from Defendant. Defendant told her that he knew Mrs. Jordan was not there and asked her to tell Mrs. Jordan “happy birthday” the next time she saw her. Surratt stated that Mrs. Jordan’s birthday was not until February. Around 11:30 a.m., Surratt telephoned Mrs. Jordan at work and, during their conversation, heard an “ungodly racket, loud noises” and a sound like “a chair go across the room.” She screamed Mrs. Jordan’s name, but got no answer. After it became quiet, Surratt heard Defendant say, “Renee. Renee. I hate you.”
Jackson Police Sergeant Mike Thomas testified that he was on patrol in an unmarked cruiser on Vann Drive when he received a call about the shooting at the TDOT garage. En route to the scene, Sergeant Thomas was advised that the suspect had a machine gun. Before reaching the TDOT garage, he observed a red Mazda pickup truck matching the description of the suspect’s vehicle and began pursuit of the truck. The truck ran a stop sign. Shortly thereafter, a marked patrol unit, driven by Sergeant Sain, passed the truck on Anglin Lane. Sergeant Sain turned his cruiser around and joined the pursuit. Another unmarked unit, driven by Captain Priddy, joined the pursuit after the suspect’s vehicle forced Captain Priddy’s vehicle off the road. Officer Maxwell placed his patrol cruiser in position to do a partial roadblock. The suspect’s vehicle hit Officer Maxwell’s car, and Sergeant Thomas pulled in behind it to block it from leaving. The suspect, identified as Defendant, was taken into custody. A search of Defendant’s person revealed a loaded .45 caliber pistol and a loaded nine-millimeter pistol. Inside Defendant’s truck, the officers discovered a rifle and a shotgun.
Officer Ted Maxwell of the Jackson Police Department testified that he responded to a call concerning the shooting at the TDOT garage. En route to the scene, he encountered Defendant, driving a red pickup truck, followed by two police units. Officer Maxwell said he was traveling north on Anglin Lane, and Defendant was traveling south. Ultimately, Maxwell managed to stop Defendant by ramming the front of his vehicle. Defendant got out of his vehicle, and Maxwell noticed a gun in the small of his back under his belt. Sergeants Sain and Thomas placed Defendant on the ground and removed two handguns from him that Maxwell identified as an Intra Arm Star .45-caliber semi-automatic with a clip containing six live rounds and one live round inside the chamber, and an Intra Arm Star nine-millimeter semi-automatic with a clip containing two live rounds and one live round in the chamber. Maxwell said that eight .45-caliber and nineteen nine-millimeter rounds were recovered from Defendant’s pockets.
Tennessee Highway Patrol Sergeant Johnny Briley testified that he initially received a call regarding a hit-and-run accident on Lower Brownsville Road at Anglin Lane involving a red Mazda pickup truck. While proceeding to that location, he received another call about the shooting at the TDOT garage. He received information that there were multiple victims involved. Before he reached the TDOT garage, he observed that the suspect vehicle had been pulled over by Jackson police officers. He stopped at the scene. Sergeant Briley said that he had known Mrs. Jordan and her family for thirty years and also knew Defendant. As Defendant stood up, he told Sergeant Briley, “She fucked me over, Johnny.” Sergeant Briley responded, “No, she didn’t, David.” Sergeant Briley, who was standing within a foot of Defendant, detected an odor of alcohol on Defendant’s person. Defendant was subsequently placed in the backseat of a police car.
Jackson Police Officer Rodney Anderson testified that, en route to the scene of the shooting, he received a call that the suspect was headed down Anglin Lane. Officer Anderson turned onto Anglin Lane where he observed a vehicle matching the description of the suspect’s vehicle between two patrol cars. The driver of the vehicle, Defendant, was taken into custody and placed in the backseat of Officer Greer’s marked police unit. As Officers Greer and Anderson were transporting Defendant to the Criminal Justice Complex, Defendant spontaneously told them that:
he could have cut the police in half with his weapon, that he had full auto. He stated that his wife’s dead and she’s full of holes. He stated she drove him crazy ․ by fucking around on him, and he advised that he shot her with her brother’s gun. He also stated that he feels sorry for his daughters, and that Mrs. Jordan wouldn’t be fucking around on anybody else.
Defendant also said that the other people “just got in the way” and asked how many people were hurt. Defendant also said that his wife “hurt him and tore his heart out” and that he had been “going crazy” for a month. Officer Anderson said that Defendant smelled of alcohol.
Investigator Jeff Shepherd of the Jackson Police Department testified that, as part of his investigation, he retrieved and recorded voice mail messages left on Mrs. Jordan’s cell phone. The audiotape of the messages was entered into evidence and played for the jury; a transcript of the messages was also provided. The messages included one left at 10:48 p.m. on January 10, 2005, stating “You’re the only asshole on the face of this earth that I truly hate”; one left at 2:11 a.m. on January 11, 2005, stating “I’ll see you at work, bitch”; one left at 2:17 a.m. on January 11, 2005, stating “I hope you go to work tomorrow, bitch, ‘cause you’ll be there one day. It may not be tomorrow, but I will catch up with your raggedy ass. Your day is coming.”; and one left at 2:19 a.m. on January 11, 2005, stating “You home wreckin’, low life, sorry mother fuckin’ bitch. Your ass is gonna pay.” Additionally, Investigator Shepherd was involved in the booking process of Defendant, during which Defendant asked him if Mrs. Jordan was “real bad messed up.” Defendant started crying and told Shepherd that most people probably thought he was crazy, but he was not crazy, he was “driven to crazy.” Defendant also said that the assault rifle he used in the shooting belonged to his brother-in-law, Dale Robinson.4
Trent Harris, a paramedic at Jackson-Madison County General Hospital, testified that he and Corey Shumate, an emergency medical technician, responded to the scene at the TDOT garage, arriving at 11:39 a.m. They first attended David Gordon, who was lying on his back in the parking lot and appeared to have gunshot wounds to the upper right and upper left portion of his abdomen. Gordon was not breathing but had a faint pulse. Harris intubated Gordon and immediately began transportation to the hospital. En route, Gordon lost a pulse and CPR was initiated. Upon their arrival at the hospital, Gordon’s care was transferred to the hospital’s trauma team.
Dr. Herbert Lee Sutton, a trauma surgeon at Jackson-Madison County General Hospital, testified that he tried to save David Gordon’s life once he arrived at the hospital. Dr. Sutton was able to regain a heartbeat on Gordon and performed surgery to try to stop the bleeding in his abdomen and perineum. Dr. Sutton described what he saw when he surgically opened Gordon’s abdomen: “[T]he blast injury from what he was shot with had almost morselized his intestines. It was like soup. And I’m quite sure even if I had stopped him from bleeding and he had regained everything, he probably wouldn’t have had any small intestine left from what I could see.” Despite all of Dr. Sutton’s lifesaving procedures, Gordon died at 12:47 p.m.
Dr. Sutton testified that he also treated James Goff on January 11, 2005, for multiple gunshot wounds which he described as wounds to the left arm, abdomen, left thigh, and neck. The gunshot wound to the neck “went anterior to the trachea and the carotid vessels which are the main vessels that go[ ] to his brain.” The bullet did not hit any major arteries or veins. Dr. Sutton stated that Goff remained hospitalized until January 13, 2005.
Eric Leath, a paramedic with the Medical Center EMS, testified that he was also dispatched to the TDOT garage. Upon his arrival, he was directed inside to an office where he observed a man lying on the floor on his back and a woman lying inside the door to the left. The woman had “a massive ․ injury to her head that had blood tissue lying all around, pooled around her head” and had no signs of life. The other victim, Jerry Hopper, was very pale and had “some gasping or ․ agona[l], gasping-type breaths, just very shallow, slow.” Hopper had a faint carotid pulse. Leath inserted a breathing tube, but Hopper was unresponsive. A Jackson police officer offered assistance to Leath and began CPR. Hopper was then moved to an ambulance and transported to the hospital. Upon arrival at the hospital, Hopper exhibited no signs of life.
Dr. David James testified that he treated Jerry Hopper, who had two gunshot wounds to his abdomen. Upon Hopper’s arrival at the hospital, he was not breathing and all attempts at resuscitation were unsuccessful. Hopper was pronounced dead at 12:34 p.m. Dr. James also treated Larry Taylor at the Jackson-Madison County General Hospital. Taylor had suffered gunshot wounds to both of his upper legs.
Dr. Tony R. Emison, the medical examiner and coroner for Madison County, testified that he requested autopsies on the bodies of the three deceased victims. The bodies were sent to the state medical examiner’s office in Nashville.
Dr. Staci Turner testified that she performed the autopsy on Mrs. Jordan. Dr. Turner found that Mrs. Jordan had been shot eleven times, resulting in wounds to the head, torso, and right leg. Dr. Turner found injuries to the scalp, the skull, the bones of the face, the brain, multiple ribs, the right lung, the diaphragm, the liver, the right kidney, the stomach, the small intestine, the urinary bladder, and the uterus. Dr. Turner recovered multiple bullets, bullet jackets, bullet cores and white plastic disk fragments during the autopsy. The gunshot wound to Mrs. Jordan’s forehead was fired from a handgun within a foot of the body.
Dr. Turner discovered a visible bullet in a partial exit wound in the back of Mrs. Jordan’s head. She recovered the bullet and the jacket that had separated from the bullet. The bullet was identified as a Black Talon-type bullet, one fired from a handgun. She described the bullet as having a bullet core and a jacket, “and when it enters the body, the jacket usually opens and forms sharp points that look like talons.” Other fragments discovered in Mrs. Jordan’s body were identified as coming from a high-powered assault rifle. Dr. Turner described the wounds associated with the bullets fired from the assault rifle: “They went through multiple ribs on the right side of the body, through the right lung, through the diaphragm ․ , through the liver and the kidney and into the spinal column and then lodged in the muscle of the back with some fragments scattered throughout the organs.” Two notes were found in the victim’s clothing, both addressed to Mrs. Jordan. One note was signed, “Your faithful faithful worried David.” The second note was signed, “Your forgiving husband, David Lynn Jordan.” Dr. Turner concluded that the cause of Mrs. Jordan’s death was multiple gunshot wounds.
Dr. Amy R. McMaster testified that she performed the autopsy on Jerry Hopper. Hopper had suffered multiple gunshot wounds and had multiple abrasions and lacerations resulting from these wounds. Dr. McMaster discovered a gunshot wound to the right wrist and two gunshot wounds to the right side of his abdomen. She recovered two projectiles from Hopper’s body. The projectiles were large caliber deformed hollow point bullets, which were consistent with those fired from a nine-millimeter weapon. Dr. McMaster concluded that the cause of Jerry Hopper’s death was multiple gunshot wounds.
Dr. McMaster testified that she also performed the autopsy on David Gordon. Gordon had multiple gunshot wounds and injuries associated with the wounds. Although no exact number of wounds could be determined, Gordon had been shot at least thirteen times. He had wounds to his right thigh, right forearm, right lower abdomen, right and left sides of the torso, buttocks, and left hip. The projectiles recovered from these wounds were consistent with a 7.62 millimeter round. Dr. McMaster concluded that the cause of Gordon’s death was multiple gunshot wounds.
Sergeant Mike Turner of the Jackson Police Department testified that he collected evidence from the red Mazda pickup truck. Among the items he recovered were: a loaded Norinco SKS 7.62 assault rifle with twenty-six rounds in the magazine and one in the chamber; a black bag containing a large quantity of assorted ammunition; a loaded Mossberg twelve-gauge shotgun with two rounds in the magazine and one in the chamber; loose ammunition; a 7.62 magazine with fourteen rounds of ammunition; two spent 7.62 casings; and a .38 special caliber Winchester spent casing.
Agent Cathy Ferguson of the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation (TBI) testified that, on January 11, 2005, she was employed as a violent crimes investigator with the Jackson Police Department. She said she responded to the scene at the TDOT garage and was directed to the crow’s nest area where she found Mrs. Jordan lying in a large pool of blood that contained brain matter. Realizing that she could not help Mrs. Jordan, Ferguson assisted with the CPR on Jerry Hopper. Ferguson subsequently recovered evidence found inside the crow’s nest and outside the garage, including nine-millimeter and 7.62 shell casings, bullet fragments, and a note on which Grimm had written Defendant’s license tag number. She said that fifteen 7.62 shell casings were recovered from the exterior crime scene and four from inside the crow’s nest. Nine nine-millimeter shell casings and one live nine-millimeter round were found inside the crow’s nest.
TBI Agent Scott Lott testified that he and other agents executed a search warrant at Defendant’s house on January 11, 2005. Among the items recovered were: a Thompson Center Firearms .50 caliber muzzle loader, a Montgomery Ward 30/30 rifle, a Remington 20-gauge pump shotgun, a Remington 30.06 rifle, a Remington Caliber .243 rifle, a Ruger .22-caliber rifle, a Savage Firearms .22-caliber rifle, a Ruger .44 magnum rifle, a Springfield .410-gauge shotgun, a Pioneer 750 .22-caliber rifle, a Bauer Firearms .25-caliber automatic handgun, a .38 Special revolver, five live rounds of Winchester .38 Special ammunition, and a trigger group assembly.
TBI Agent Shelly Betts, accepted by the trial court as an expert in ballistics, testified that she examined evidence collected in this matter, including a 12-gauge shotgun, a Norinco SKS rifle, a Star .45-caliber semi-automatic pistol, and an Inter Arms Star nine-millimeter semi-automatic pistol. She said that the safety feature functions on the SKS rifle had been converted to fire in fully automatic mode, rather than the semi-automatic mode, which was how it had been manufactured to function. She explained that several modifications had been made to the rifle’s trigger housing assembly, causing the weapon to fire continuously once the trigger was pulled. Agent Betts tested several cartridge cases recovered from the crime scene and determined that they had been fired from the SKS rifle. Additionally, she tested nine-millimeter cartridge cases recovered from the interior crime scene and determined that they had been fired from the Star nine-millimeter pistol. She examined bullet fragments recovered from David Gordon’s right thigh and determined that one had “conclusively been fired through the barrel of the SKS rifle.” Agent Betts further determined that some of the fragments recovered from Gordon’s right hip and abdomen had been fired through the barrel of the SKS rifle. She also examined nine-millimeter projectiles recovered from Jerry Hopper’s back and pelvis and determined they had been fired from the Star nine-millimeter pistol. Her examination of the nine-millimeter projectiles recovered from Renee Jordan’s leg and uterus revealed they had been fired from the Star nine-millimeter pistol. Agent Betts said that the nine-millimeter projectile recovered from Mrs. Jordan’s brain had “probably” been fired from the Star pistol. Fragments recovered from Mrs. Jordan’s liver and chest were conclusively identified to the SKS rifle. Agent Betts explained that the 7.62 rounds found in the bodies of Mrs. Jordan and David Gordon were hollow point bullets, meaning that as soon as they struck the skin they fragmented into numerous pieces. She examined the 7.62 magazine found inside Defendant’s truck and described it as “an SKS-type detachable magazine that would function in this SKS rifle, and it holds approximately 31 rounds.”
Madison County Sheriff’s Department Sergeant Chad Lowery testified that, shortly after Defendant was apprehended, he went to Defendant’s home to check on the welfare of any children who may have been at the home, but no children were present when he arrived. Sergeant Lowery discovered a loaded pistol on top of the refrigerator and saw several other weapons in the home. On the kitchen counter, Sergeant Lowery observed a handwritten note, which stated: “Renee got what she deserved. Bitch. I’m sorry. I love you. Thanks for being so good to me. Love you Shelby, Sydney, Deanna. Thanks, Mom and Dad. You did all you could.” On cross-examination, Sergeant Lowery acknowledged that, during Defendant’s apprehension, he “smelled alcohol, or what [he] thought to be alcohol” on Defendant.