May 23, 2000
Volume 6 -- Number 077

What follows is the case style or name, first paragraph, author's name, and the names of attorneys for the parties of each opinion released eletronically today to TBALink.

This Issue (IN THIS ORDER):
00 New Opinion(s) from the Tennessee Supreme Court
00 New Opinion(s) from the Tennessee Supreme Court Workers' Compensation Panel
00 New Document(s) or Proposed Rule(s) from the Tennessee Supreme Court
04 New Opinion(s) from the Tennessee Court of Appeals
00 New Opinion(s) from the Tennessee Court of Criminal Appeals
00 New Opinion(s) from the Tennessee Attorney General (PDF format)
00 New Judicial Ethics Opinion(s)
00 New Formal Ethics Opinion(s) from the Board of Professional Responsibility

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Lucian T. Pera
Editor-in-Chief, TBALink




Jerred A. Creasy, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellants, John
Harrison and Chuck Zingale.

William L. Moore, Jr., Gallatin, Tennessee, for the appellee, A. L.
Belcher & Associates, L.L.C.


First Paragraph:

A. L. Belcher & Associates sued its former employees, John Harrison
and Chuck Zingale, alleging that they breached the non-compete clauses
in their respective employment contracts.  The employees appeal the 
trial court's order granting an injunction and an award of damages to
the employer.  Because the employer failed to satisfy its burden of
proving that its former employees breached the non-compete clauses or
caused the alleged damages, we reverse the trial court's decision.

In re C.W.W., N.W.W., Z.W.W., & A.L.W. Court:TCA Attorneys: Jennifer Lynn Thompson, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Christine Shroth Wideman. Dennis L. Nordhoff, Franklin, Tennessee, for the appellant, Christopher Wayne Wideman. Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter, and Douglas Earl Dimond, Assistant Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee, Department of Children's Services. Stephanie Cantrell Hatchett, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellees, Jamie and Jorge Flores. Judge: FARMER First Paragraph: Christine Stroth Wideman (Mother) appeals the trial court's judgment terminating her parental rights to three of her children, C.W.W., N.W.W., and Z.W.W. The Department of Children's Services (DCS) obtained custody of these children for the second time in February 1998. Several days earlier, the Mother instructed the children to go to a neighbor's house for a few hours. When the Mother did not return for the children, school officials notified DCS that the children had been abandoned. The Mother was arrested and incarcerated on March 31, 1998, on prostitution and other charges. In November 1998, approximately one month after her release, DCS filed this petition to terminate the Mother's parental rights. At the trial's conclusion, the trial court entered a final decree terminating the Mother's parental rights based upon the court's findings that the Mother had abandoned the children and that the conditions which led to the children's removal still persisted. We affirm the trial court's judgment based upon our conclusion that the record contains clear and convincing evidence to support the trial court's findings that the Mother abandoned the children by engaging in conduct prior to her incarceration which exhibited a wanton disregard for the children's welfare and that termination of the Mother's parental rights was in the children's best interests.
PETER GREGG McKEE VS. PENNY MARIE PEARSALL McKEE Court:TCA Attorneys: Robert L. Holloway, Jr., Columbia, Tennessee, for the appellant, Penny Marie Pearsall McKee. Thomas W. Hardin and Darren J. Scoggins, Columbia, Tennessee, for the appellee, Peter Gregg McKee. Judge: KOCH First Paragraph: This appeal involves the financial aspects of a marriage that lasted less than ten years. Both parties sought a divorce and vigorously joined issue over the classification of their property, the division of the marital estate, and the wife's demands for spousal support and attorney's fees. Following a bench trial, the Chancery Court for Maury County declared the parties divorced. The trial court also awarded the parties their separate property, distributed 37% of the marital estate to the wife, and declined to award the wife spousal support. On this appeal, the wife takes issue with the trial court's classification and division of the property and its refusal to award her either spousal support or attorney's fees. While the trial court erred in the classification of the marital property, we have determined that its division of the marital estate, once corrected, is equitable. We have also determined that the trial court should have granted the wife short-term spousal support but properly denied her request for attorney's fees.
DAVID ALTON REECE, et al. VS. ROBY BROWN Court:TCA Attorneys: Howard G. Swafford, Jasper, Tennessee, for the appellants, David Alton Reece and Connie Irene Reece. J. Harvey Cameron, Jasper, Tennessee, for the appellee, Roby Brown. Judge: KOCH First Paragraph: This appeal involves a dispute over whether a passageway through private land has been dedicated to public use. The owners of a tract adjoining the tract through which the passageway runs filed suit in the Chancery Court for Marion County seeking a declaration that the passageway had been dedicated for public use. After a bench trial, the trial court dismissed the complaint, and the property owners seeking to prove dedication appeal. We affirm the trial court because the evidence does not preponderate against it's finding that there was no manifest intention to give the passageway to public use.

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