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Knox Co. Court: Man accused of dismembering his parents denied motions to suppress evidence

The court said Joel Guy Jr. did not have any standing to challenge the legality of officers entering his parents' home without a warrant.

The man accused of  killing and dismembering his parents over Thanksgiving weekend 2016 in Knox County will not be allowed to suppress evidence in his trial.

According to court records, the defense for Joel Guy Jr. filed several motions to suppress evidence in his trial, saying that evidence was developed as a result of a warrantless intrusion into his parents' home and that he had a reasonable expectation of privacy in those premises.

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The state challenged his objection to police entry, and the court found he had no legal right or interest in being at his parents' home because he did not reside there. According to the court filing, it concluded Guy had no standing to challenge the legality of officers entering his parents' home without a warrant, and said he had no reasonable expectation of privacy outside his bedroom. 

"His only connection to the property was a 'smattering' (his word) of yearly visits. He never moved in for any extended period of time," the court filing said. "The court found further that the magnitude and nature of the crime scene evidence created an exigent circumstance which justified a warrantless search of the bedroom." 

As a result, the court has denied the motions to suppress evidence in the case. 

Guy faces a murder trial in February and is charged with first-degree murder and abuse of a corpse.

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The defense argued Guy had a say in who came into the home because he used it when he visited his parents. They said the Knox County Sheriff's Office should have gotten a search warrant before making their first trip in the house.

Guy, 28 at the time, had lived in a Baton Rouge, Louisiana, apartment for many years and relied on his parents for financial support, according to authorities. His parents were about to move to Surgoinsville, Tenn., and cut him off from further help, according to authorities.

Prosecutors suggest Guy likely killed his parents on the afternoon of Saturday, Nov. 26, soon after his mother came home from buying groceries. Besides her head, Guy's father's hands were found on the floor of another room, and other body parts were located in blue plastic bins in an upstairs bathroom, court records state.

On the afternoon of Nov. 26, evidence such as receipts indicates Guy went to a Knox County Lowe's, Walmart and Home Depot, buying things like isopropyl alcohol and hydrogen peroxide. Video recovered from one store showed him with a bandaged hand, according to the prosecution.

Guy testified last year at a hearing that he left his parents' home, with the thermostat on high and space heaters blazing, on Sunday, Nov. 27, to get treatment in Baton Rouge for cuts to his hand. He left a dog shut up in an upstairs bedroom.

After his hand was treated, the defense says he headed back to Knox County. He knew he'd left his laptop and other items in the room, according to the defense, but when he drove into the neighborhood late on Nov. 28 or early on Nov. 29 and saw crime scene tape around the home, he decided to turn around and go back to Louisiana. 

He was arrested in Baton Rouge the following day, Nov. 29, 2016.