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1985 - Missouri - College - Kelly J. Lovera meets Alicia Shayne Mills.
Shayne's parents are Gatlinburg, TN. socialites, her step father Brent,
and her mother Sandy Mills. Shayne was used to the good life money
Brent Mills' lax policy in granting loans at a bank built by his father
caused the bank to fall on hard times. Hours before bank examiners
were to conduct an audit Brent Mill died of a self inflicted gun shot
During the next five years of their marriage Kelly & Shayne have two
1990 - Shayne Mills Lovera convinces her husband, Kelly Lovera, to move their family back to her
hometown in Tennessee.
Kelly Lovera worked on finishing his Master's degree and obtains a Math Professor
teaching position at Pellissippi College, Knoxville, TN. Shayne Lovera works at various job
The couple likes to hold bbq's with friends and neighbors. Weekends are for poker playing.
Photo: Alicia Shayne Lovera
Shayne Lovera is tired of marriage and begins having extra-marital affairs. She tries to
manipulate her various lovers into helping her get rid of her husband. One of her boyfriends,
Brett Rae, is besotted by Shayne and will do anything she wants him to do, and believe
anything she tells him.
BLUDGEONED TO DEATH
1994 - November - Kelly Lovera is at home in their apartment, relaxing or sleeping
upon the sofa.
At some point, Brett Rae picks up Kelly's son's baseball bat and
goes over to the apartment where he either confronts Kelly, or begins
to bludgeon him while he's asleep. Kelly Lovera is unconscious and
severely wounded by the time Brett Rae bundles him into his jeep.
Brett Rae drives onto Highway 14 near the bypass. Rae then pushes
the jeep down the side of the embankment hoping it will continue on
down the mountain.
He telephones a friend to pick him up.
LOOSE BRAGGART LIPS
Rae brags to two of his friends "I put him (Lovera) over a hundred foot
embankment." He further brags about his affair with Shayne Lovera
and that he'd been promised "more sex and a lot of money" to get
rid of Kelly Lovera. Rae also tells them about his previous unsuccessful
prior attempt to kill Kelly Lovera, and other plots he'd thought about
using to kill him.
baseball bat and then staged his "car crash."
MURDER STAGED AS ACCIDENT
1994 - 6 November - Great Smoky Mountains National Park - Jerry Grubb (Park Ranger) is
notified of an accident.
At the overlook on the Gatlinburg bypass Highway 44,100 feet off the embankment of the mountain road, lodged against a tree down the mountainside is a jeep.
Jerry Grubb "Just wasn't any skid marks, any disturbed gravel. There just wasn't any disturbance in that area."
Inside, on the back seat floorboard, lies the body of Kelly J. Lovera. He's lying in a pool of blood
with blood trails streaming towards the front seat.
Photo: Kelly Lovera's hand
The scene is roped off, and the investigation begins.
The autopsy reveals Kelly Lovera has suffered extensive injuries as a result of
having been beaten to death. Kelly Lovera's death is not an accident.
Kelly Lovera's death from injuries, the position of the injuries on his body, the location of his body within the jeep, all factors that investigators use to determine Lovera's death is a homicide.
Police begin to question neighbors, friends and family and learn that multiple fingers
are pointing directly at Brett Rae, boyfriend of Shayne Lovera, wife of Kelly Lovera.
2 months before the trial - Alan Feltes (Sevier County Attorney) is appointed to represent Brett Rae. Both he and Robert Ogle (Attorney) are to jointly represent Rae. He meets at least twice a week with Rae not including telephone conversations. Feltes discusses the potential punishment that Brett Rae faces if found guilty. Feltes determines that with the overwhelming amount of evidence against his client, there is no way a rational defense can be presented.
Lovera is prepared to enter a plea of guilty, waiving her right to direct appeal and post
conviction relief in exhange for a life sentence with possibility of parole.
Feltes conveys the plea agreement offer to Brett Rae. He also informs him that it's a good possibility he's facing a sentence of life without parole and that the plea agreement would guarantee him a life sentence (at the time was 25 years) with possibility of parole.
Feltes also informs Brett Rae that there is not any major error in the trial that would warrant any type of reversal in appellate courts. He tells Rae that he didn't think he could waive his post conviction rights. He advises him to go thru the motions like we're going to do that as part of the deal.
Attorney Feltes is told not to do anything to hurt Mrs. Lovera. Brett Rae insists upon some private time with Shayne Lovera before he accepts the plea agreement offered by the State.
Brett Rae accepts the plea agreement deal.
Shayne Lovera accepts the plea agreement deal.
Kelly J. Lovera's children are in the care of, and custody is awarded to, Kelly J. Lovera's parents.
Brett Rae & Shayne Lovera both receive life with parole after 25 years.
As part of the plea agreement both Rae & Lovera waive their right to file either a direct appeal or a collateral post-conviction attack their convictions.
Bret Rae appeals to the Criminal Court of Appeals of Tennesse for post-conviction relief.
The court denies his petition.
1999 - November - Brett Rae Appeals to the Criminal Court of Appeals of Tennesse.
Brett Rae appeals the court's denial of his petition for post-conviction relief.
Rae claims "his trial was ineffective for encouraging him to accept the state's offer of life with possibilty of parole; failing to prepare for mitigating circumstances at the sentencing phase; failing to properly conduct a pre-trial investigation; failing to adequately consult with him during critical stages of the proceedings; failing to advise him of his rights to direct appeal and collateral attack of his conviction; deficient performance of counsel at trial; his guilty plea was coerced and involuntary;
and his conviction is void as violating the protection against double jeopardy."
Brett Rae claims "he had conceded his guilt during the guilty plea hearing and that his attorneys did the best they could." But, he states, "he made these admissions only because the attorneys instructed him to do so." "Although he agreed that he believed himself to be guilty of first degree murder at the time of his plea, he now retracts that admission."
Attorney Feltes testifies and opines that during his representation of Brett Rae, he never had any problem with Rae being incoherent or not understanding anything he was told or advised. He testifies to his advice to Rae prior to sentencing; about his client's obsession with Lovera and that he, as his attorney, not do anything to hurt Lovera's case.
THE APPEAL IS DENIED.
2000- February - Alicia Shayne Lovera files a motion with the Court of Criminal Appeals of Tennessee.
(Alicia) Shayne Lovera alleges "her trial counsel failed to explain a sentence of life without parole to her; her state of mind precluded a knowing and voluntary plea; she was not informed that she was entitled to a hearing prior to imposition of sentence; that she was coereced by threats of new evidence against her."
THE APPEAL IS DENIED.
BRETT RAE - JUNE 30, 2025
Oxygen.com - Snapped
Shayne Lovera - In prison
LU President Randy Lowry visits with the members of the Lipscomb class who still reside at TPFW - TN Prison for Women students show Lowry the impact of LU program on their lives.
"Shayne Lovera, one of 15 inmates at the Tennessee Prison for Women (TPFW), who has earned 18 undergraduate credit hours at Lipscomb University over the past two years through an innovative program that brings traditional students and the inmates of the prison together to study a liberal arts topic."
Shayne Lovera' s speech for President Lowry
It is often said that the goal of incarceration is rehabilitation, but what does that mean? Isn't rehabilitation simply changing the way one thinks? For some, landing behind bars is enough to prompt change, but for most, major obstacles, such as anger, resentment, fear, or lack of self worth and education keep not only the body, but the mind imprisoned.
Due to budget constraints, among other things, educational opportunities in prison have been limited to the basics, G.E.D. and a few vocational classes. The partnership established between Lipscomb University and the Tennessee Department of Correction not only offers access to higher education but also to hope.
Hope is a precious commodity to prisoners and the Lipscomb collaboration continues to make it attainable through curricula and coursework, by doubling the available scholarships and providing amazing, unbelievably supportive educators.
From day one, I have felt like I was on equal footing with the traditional students -- no condescension, and no judgment. These kids have been a revelation and a joy. The unique setting has allowed for development of unexpected friendships and the discovery of surprising commonalities. I knew that I wanted the opportunity to get a college education; I just didn't realize that it would be so much more.
I can't think of a better time than this season of thanksgiving and gift giving to express my gratitude. Rehabilitation may not be easy to recognize but education is the gift that keeps on giving. So I want to say thank you to everyone at Lipscomb for your dedication to this program and to us.