There is no direct evidence tying Gary Sutton to the death of his close friend Tommy Griffin or Tommy’s sister Connie Branam.
The prosecution's theory of the case was that Gary and his uncle bailed Tommy out of jail around 11:45 pm on Friday night, February 21, and then about 15 minutes later shot and killed him.
To establish this time of death, the linchpin of its case, the State offered the testimony of the now disgraced Dr. Charles Harlan. But Dr. Harlan’s testimony has been found scientifically impossible by numerous experts.
Furthermore, Gary had no motive to kill his close friend Tommy–a point which the state admitted during trial. Gary and Tommy were close friends who looked out for each other in a rural, mountainous community. They were drinking buddies and were often seen together.
Gary is set to die by the hands of the State of Tennessee despite a lack of direct evidence tying him to Tommy’s murder.