Opinion Flash

March 6, 2002
Volume 8 — Number 041

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
02 New Opinion(s) from the Tennessee Supreme Court Workers' Compensation Panel
00 New Document(s) or Proposed Rule(s) from the Tennessee Supreme Court
01 New Opinion(s) from the Tennessee Court of Appeals
02 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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Howard H. Vogel
Knoxville, Tennessee
Editor-in-Chief, TBALink


TAMATHA MARIE HOWE v. JONES PLASTIC AND ENGINEERING COMPANY, LLC,
d/b/a CAMDEN PLASTICS

Court:TSC - Workers Comp Panel

Attorneys:        

John D. Burleson and V. Latosha Mason, Jackson, Tennessee, for the
appellant, Jones Plastic and Engineering Company.

Charles L. Hicks, Camden, Tennessee, for the appellee, Tamatha Marie
Howe.

Judge: LAFFERTY

First Paragraph:

This workers' compensation appeal has been referred to the Special
Workers' Compensation Appeals Panel in accordance with Tennessee Code
Annotated S 50-6-225(e)(3) for hearing and reporting to the Supreme
Court of findings of fact and conclusions of law.  In this appeal,
Defendant asserts: (1) the trial court erred in not limiting
Plaintiff's permanent partial disability award to two and one-half
(2-1/2) times her medical impairment rating of ten percent (10%) as
provided by Tenn. Code Ann. S 50-6-241(a)(1); (2) the trial court's
award of seventy-five percent (75%) disability, a multiple of seven
and one half (7-1/2) times her impairment rating, should be reduced
when there are no specific findings supported by clear and convincing
evidence of at least three of four factors contained in Tenn. Code
Ann. S 50-6-242; and (3) the trial court erred in granting Plaintiff
temporary total disability benefits from May 20, 1999 until November
30, 1999.  After a review of the entire record, applicable law and as
discussed below, the Panel affirms in part, reverses in part, and
remands to the trial court for specific findings with respect to
permanent partial disability benefits.

http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TSC_WCP/howetm.wpd

JIMMY WAGNER V. TOWER AUTOMOTIVE PRODUCTS COMPANY, INC. 

Court:TSC - Workers Comp Panel

Attorneys: 

Deana C. Seymour, Jackson, Tennessee, for appellant, Tower Automotive
Products Company, Inc.

Gayden Drew IV, Jackson, Tennessee, for appellee, Jimmy Wagner                         

Judge: MALOAN

First Paragraph:

This workers' compensation appeal has been referred to the Special
Workers' Compensation Appeals Panel of the Supreme Court in accordance
with Tenn. Code Ann. S50-6-285(e)(3) for hearing and reporting to the
Supreme Court of findings and fact and conclusions of law.  The
defendant, Tower Automotive appeals the judgment of the trial court
which awarded fifteen percent (15%) permanent partial disability to
each arm as being excessive.  For the reasons stated in this opinion,
we affirm the judgment of the trial court.

http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TSC_WCP/wagnerj.wpd

CAROL HANKINS, et al. v. CHEVCO, INC., d/b/a CURTIS PRODUCTS SO.
CENTRAL, INC., et al.

Court:TCA

Attorneys:    

C. Douglas Fields, Crossville, Tennessee, for the Appellants, Carol
and Randall Hankins.

David L. Franklin, Chattanooga, Tennessee, for the Appellee, Chevco,
Inc., d/b/a Curtis Products So. Central, Inc.

Paul Campbell, III, Chattanooga, Tennessee, for the Appellee, Concord
Confections, Inc.

Judge: SWINEY

First Paragraph:

Carol Hankins ("Plaintiff") filed a Complaint against Chevco, Inc.,
d/b/a Curtis Products So. Central, Inc., and Concord Confections, Inc.
("Defendants") alleging injuries to her jaw and one of her teeth which
occurred when she chewed a gumball.  Defendants filed a motion for
summary judgment, arguing they were entitled to partial summary
judgment as a matter of law on the issue of causation of Plaintiff's
temporomandibular joint disorder ("TMJ").  The Trial Court granted
Defendants' motion.  Plaintiff appeals.  We vacate the partial summary
judgment and remand.

http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCA/hankinsc.wpd

STATE OF TENNESSEE v. MICHAEL W. COOPER

Court:TCCA

Attorneys:

Zack Griffith, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Michael
Cooper.

Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; Jennifer L. Bledsoe,
Assistant Attorney General; Victor S. Johnson, District Attorney
General; and Bret Gunn, Assistant District Attorney General, for the
appellee, State of Tennessee.                      

Judge: WELLES

First Paragraph:

The Defendant, Michael W. Cooper, pled guilty to one count of
aggravated burglary and one count of aggravated assault.  His plea
agreement provided that he would be sentenced as a Range II offender;
however, the length and manner of service of his sentences were left
for the trial court's determination.  After a hearing, the trial court
sentenced the Defendant to nine years incarceration for each offense,
to be served consecutively.  The Defendant now appeals, contending
that the trial court misapplied an enhancement factor; that the trial
court erred in sentencing him to equivalent terms for each offense in
spite of finding fewer enhancement factors applicable to the
aggravated  assault; and that the trial court erred in ordering his
sentences to run consecutively.  We affirm the judgment of the trial
court.

http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCCA/coopermw.wpd

STATE OF TENNESSEE v. ALFIO ORLANDO LEWIS

Court:TCCA

Attorneys:  

David A. Collins, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Alfio
Orlando Lewis.

Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; Christine M. Lapps,
Assistant Attorney General; Victor S. Johnson, District Attorney
General; and Bret Gunn, Assistant District Attorney General, for the
appellee, State of Tennessee.                        

Judge: WELLES

First Paragraph:

The Defendant, Alfio Orlando Lewis, was convicted by a Davidson County
jury of two counts of attempted second degree murder and two counts of
aggravated assault.  After a sentencing hearing, the trial court
merged the two aggravated assault convictions into the two attempted
second degree murder convictions.  The Defendant was sentenced to 12
years to be served consecutively in the Department of Correction on
each of the attempted second degree murder convictions for an
effective sentence of 24 years.  On appeal, the Defendant contends
that (1) the evidence is insufficient to support the convictions, (2)
the trial court erroneously prevented him from testifying that a
fellow inmate confessed to the crime, and (3) the trial court
improperly sentenced the Defendant.  We affirm the judgment of the
trial court.

http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCCA/lewisao.wpd

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