MAY 22, 2001
Volume 7 — Number 093

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
01 New Document(s) or Proposed Rule(s) from the Tennessee Supreme Court
09 New Opinion(s) from the Tennessee Court of Appeals
05 New Opinion(s) from the Tennessee Court of Criminal Appeals
00 New Opinion(s) from the Tennessee Attorney General (PDF format)
01 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

Opinion 01-01

TOM B. HARRIS, JR., ADMINISTRATOR C.T.A., et al. v. SARAH ANN COLES, et al. Court:TCA Attorneys: Dan E. Huffstuter, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellants, Sarah Ann Coles, Mary Elam, and Helen Francis Felts. Robert L. Perry, Jr., Ashland City, Tennessee, for the appellee Claude Murray Neal. Judge: CANTRELL First Paragraph: The trial court held that the terms of a promissory note did not entitle its beneficial owners to compound interest arising from the obligor's failure to make timely installment payments, but only to simple interest on the principal. We affirm.
JACK HUTTER, v. ROBERT M. COHEN, and JACK HUTTER v. H. ALLEN BRAY Court:TCA Attorneys: Dail R. Cantrell, Clinton, Tennessee, for Appellant. R. Franklin Norton and Geoffrey D. Kressin, Knoxville, Tennessee for Appellees, Robert M. Cohen and H. Allen Bray. Judge: FRANKS First Paragraph: In these actions charging legal malpractice, the Trial Court granted summary judgment to defendants on the grounds that the defendants' actions did not deviate from the standard of conduct required of them. We affirm.
JAN GENTRY MAYER v. JAMES PAUL MAYER Court:TCA Attorneys: Mary Jo Middlebrooks, Jackson, For Appellant, James Paul Mayer Larry S. Banks, Brownsville, For Appellee, Jan Gentry Mayer Judge: CRAWFORD First Paragraph: Husband appeals a final decree of divorce granting an absolute divorce to Appellee/Plaintiff. The issues are the division of the marital property, the amount and type of alimony awarded to Wife, and the award of attorney's fees. For the reasons stated below, we affirm the chancery court on the division of marital property and alimony in futuro, and we modify the award of Wife's attorney's fees.
STEFFONE MCCLENDON, FATHER OF DAMIEN O'SHAY MAURICE MCCLENDON, THE NEXT OF KIN OF CYNTHIA VANESSA FRANCIS, DECEASED v. DR. ELAINE BUNICK Court:TCA Attorneys: H. Naill Falls, Jr., James B. Johnson, Nashville, for Appellant Wayne C. Hall, Summer H. Stevens, Knoxville, for Appellee Judge: HIGHERS First Paragraph: In this medical malpractice action, Plaintiff appeals the trial court's entry of summary judgment in favor of the Defendant, Dr. Bunick. For the reasons set forth below, we affirm the trial court in all respects.
STATE OF TENNESSEE, ex rel, PURLIE PAGE, v. RICARDO TRABAL Court:TCA Attorneys: Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter, and Stuart Wilson-Patton, Assistant Attorney General, Nashville, Tennessee, for Appellant, State of Tennessee, ex rel., Purlie Page. Charles M. Torres, Knoxville, Tennessee, for Appellee, Ricardo Trabal. Judge: FRANKS First Paragraph: This action to establish paternity was dismissed by the Trial Court on the grounds of estoppel and laches. We reinstate the action and remand.
KNOX COUNTY EX REL. THOMAS H. SCHUMPERT v. UNION LIVESTOCK YARD, INC. Court:TCA Attorneys: W. Richard Baker, Jr., Christopher J. Oldham, and Gerald L. Gulley, Jr., Knoxville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Union Livestock Yard, Inc. David D. Creekmore, Deputy Law Director, for the appellee, Knox County ex rel. Thomas Schumpert. Judge: SUSANO First Paragraph: In the instant case, the trial court dismissed a condemnation petition filed by Knox County. The court then proceeded to award the defendant landowner $30,000 in expenses pursuant to the provisions of T.C.A. S 29-17-812. The landowner appeals, arguing that the trial court erred in failing to award all of its claimed expenses. The landowner also seeks attorney's fees and expenses related to this appeal. We affirm the trial court's judgment that the landowner is entitled to an award of expenses, but we find that the evidence preponderates in favor of a larger award. We also find that the landowner is entitled to its attorney's fees and expenses incurred as a result of this appeal. As modified, we affirm.
DONALD SMITH v. ALTON HESSON Court:TCA Attorneys: Donald Smith, Pro Se, Henning Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; Michael E. Moore, Solicitor General; Stephanie R. Reevers, Senior Counsel, Nashville, For Appellee, Alton Hesson Judge: CRAWFORD First Paragraph: Prisoner filed petition for habeas corpus alleging that the Commissioner of Corrections unlawfully increased prisoner's parole eligibility date by 30%. Petitioner alleges that, because the statute governing such an increase was not in effect when he was convicted of his criminal offenses, the Commissioner's actions violated his rights under the United States and Tennessee constitutions. The trial court dismissed the petition, and petitioner has appealed. We affirm.
CAROLYN MARIE LEASURE WHITE, et al. v. TIMOTHY WADE MOODY Court:TCA Attorneys: Charlotte U. Fleming, Springfield, Tennessee, for the Appellant, Timothy Wade Moody Frank E. Mondelli, Nashville, Tennessee, for the Appellees, Carolyn Marie Leasure White and Robert Wayne White Judge: GODDARD First Paragraph: This is a suit wherein the Plaintiffs seek a termination of the Defendant father's parental rights and an adoption by the mother's present husband. The Trial Court terminated the father's rights and granted the adoption. We vacate and remand for a determination of the best interest of the child as required by T.C.A. 36-1-113(c)(2).
TERRY YATES v. THE CITY OF CHATTANOOGA, et al. Court:TCA Attorneys: W. Jeffrey Hollingsworth, Chattanooga, Tennessee, for the appellant, Terry Yates. Arnold A. Stulce, Jr., Chattanooga, Tennessee, for the appellees, the City of Chattanooga and the City Council for the City of Chattanooga. Judge: SUSANO First Paragraph: Chattanooga Police Officer Terry Yates filed a petition for certiorari in the trial court, claiming that he was denied due process in connection with an adverse employment decision. Yates, who was demoted from the rank of sergeant in 1994, sought reinstatement to his former rank. An administrator initially reinstated him, but subsequently rescinded the reinstatement. Yates claimed that the rescission was a "demotion," and, consequently, demanded a hearing before the defendant City Council for the City of Chattanooga ("the City Council"). Following a hearing, the City Council found that the administrator did not have the authority to reinstate Yates to his former rank. This being the case, the City Council found that there had been no "demotion" by virtue of the subsequent rescinding of the reinstatement. The trial court agreed with the City Council and dismissed Yates' petition. He appeals. We affirm.
STATE OF TENNESSEE v. JUDY K. CARUSO Court:TCCA Attorneys: J. Daniel Freemon, Lawrenceburg, Tennessee, for the appellant, Judy K. Caruso. Paul G. Summers, Attorney General & Reporter; Thomas E. Williams, III, Assistant Attorney General; Jeffrey L. Long, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee. Judge: WADE First Paragraph: The defendant, Judy K. Caruso, entered pleas of guilt to two counts of aggravated burglary and two counts of theft of property over $1,000. As a part of the plea agreement, the state agreed to dismiss two charges of possession of stolen property and one charge of misdemeanor vandalism. The defendant negotiated concurrent sentences of four years on the burglary convictions and two years on the theft convictions. The trial court denied a request for probation, ordered a 200-day jail sentence to be served day for day, and required the balance of the four-year sentence to be served in a Community Corrections program. In this appeal of right, the defendant claims that she should have been granted an alternative sentence involving immediate release. The judgment is affirmed.
STATE OF TENNESSEE v. NOAH HAMILTON Court:TCCA Attorneys: Charles M. Corn, District Public Defender, for the appellant, Noah Hamilton. Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; Lucian D. Geise, Assistant Attorney General; Jerry N. Estes, District Attorney General; and Jon Chalmers Thompson, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee. Judge: WILLIAMS First Paragraph: The defendant appeals and asserts that the evidence was insufficient to support his conviction of vandalism. Specifically, he contends that the State's evidence failed to prove the amount of damage beyond a reasonable doubt to establish a felony. After review, we hold that the trial court properly calculated the value of the amount of damages done by the defendant and that the evidence was sufficient to support the defendant's conviction for felony vandalism.
ANTWAN LAMAR PATTON v. STATE OF TENNESSEE Court:TCCA Attorneys: Ralph Newman, Nashville, Tennessee, at trial and sentencing; C. LeAnn Smith, Nashville, Tennessee, on post-conviction, for appellant, Antwan L. Patton. Paul G. Summers, Attorney General & Reporter; Jennifer L. Bledsoe, Assistant Attorney General; Victor S. Johnson, District Attorney General, Pam Anderson, Assistant District Attorney, for appellee, State of Tennessee. Judge: SMITH First Paragraph: A Davidson County jury convicted the petitioner of two counts of child rape. For each of these offenses, he received a sentence of eighteen years, and the trial court ordered the sentences to be run consecutively. On direct appeal this Court modified the petitioner's sentences to sixteen and one half years each, resulting in an effective sentence of thirty-three years, but otherwise found the petitioner's claims merited no relief. Subsequently the petitioner filed a pro se post-conviction petition alleging ineffective assistance of counsel. Determining that the petitioner had raised a colorable claim, the trial court appointed counsel to represent him and later conducted an evidentiary hearing on the petition. After taking the matter under advisement, the trial court filed an opinion denying the petition. From this denial the petitioner brings the instant appeal alleging that trial counsel provided ineffective assistance by inadequately advising the petitioner of the potential sentence he could receive should he elect to go to trial. However, following our review of the record, we find that the trial court correctly denied the petition, and we, therefore, affirm the lower court's decision.
LELAND RAY REEVES v. STATE OF TENNESSEE Court:TCCA Attorneys: A. Russell Brown, Lafayette, Tennessee, for the appellant, Leland Ray Reeves. Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; David H. Findley, Assistant Attorney General; Tom P. Thompson, Jr., District Attorney General; and Guy E. Yelton, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee. Judge: GLENN First Paragraph: The petitioner's conviction for rape was affirmed on direct appeal. He filed a petition for post- conviction relief in which he claimed that he received inadequate assistance of counsel at his trial. Following a hearing, the post-conviction court dismissed the petition. We affirm the judgment of the post-conviction court.
STATE OF TENNESSEE v. HENRY FORD WILLIAMS, JR. Court:TCCA Attorneys: Gregory D. Smith, on appeal, Clarksville, Tennessee; and Michael R. Jones, Public Defender, Springfield, Tennessee, for the Appellant, Henry Ford Williams, Jr. Paul G. Summers, Attorney General & Reporter; Elizabeth T. Ryan, Assistant Attorney General; John Wesley Carney, Jr., District Attorney General; and Dent Morriss, Assistant District Attorney General, for the Appellee, State of Tennessee. Judge: WITT First Paragraph: The defendant, Henry Ford Williams, appeals the Robertson County Circuit Court's revocation of his community corrections sentence. The trial court accepted the defendant's guilty pleas to Class B felony possession of cocaine for resale and to Class C felony possession of cocaine. On September 16, 1993, the trial court imposed an effective sentence of ten years, with eleven months and 29 days to be served in local confinement and the balance to be served in community corrections. On February 18, 2000, the state filed a community corrections revocation warrant. The trial court conducted an evidentiary hearing and revoked the defendant's community corrections placement. From that order, the defendant has appealed to this court. Upon our review of the record, the briefs of the parties, and the applicable law, we affirm the action of the trial court.

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