Opinion Flash

August 8, 2003
Volume 9 — Number 143

Following this index are summaries of each case, including its name, first paragraph, author's name, and the names of attorneys for the parties of each opinion.

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
03 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


JIMMY ALLEN, ET AL. v. WILSON COUNTY INVESTORS, LLC, ET AL.

Court:TCA

Attorneys:                          

David W. Kious, Murfreesboro, Tennessee, for the appellants, Jimmy
Allen and Donna Allen.

Barbara Hawley Smith, Nashville, Tennessee and Josh A. McCreary,
Murfreesboro, Tennessee, for the appellees, Wilson County Investors,
LLC and Tom Paschal, Trustee for Cumberland Bank.

Alan C. Housholder, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellees, J. Atwell
Scruggs, III and Eleanor S. Lowe.

Judge: CAIN

First Paragraph:

This case involves an uncollected 1981 judgment against Mrs. Ruth
Scruggs, individually and as trustee.  Ms. Scruggs died intestate on
September 20, 1998.  On June 3, 1998, the judgment creditors received
a writ of scire facias and the judgment was revived on June 26, 1998. 
The judgment was registered in Wilson County on November 9, 1998.  Her
Wilson County property was sold by her heirs on January 15, 2000.  On
October 19, 2001, the judgment creditors filed suit to enforce their
lien.  The trial court held for the defendants finding that Ms.
Scruggs died over a month prior to the lien's filing; thus, she was
not vested with any real property, pursuant to Tennessee Code
Annotated section 31-2-103, at the time the lien was filed.  We affirm
the trial court, finding, in addition, that Ms. Scruggs was never
properly served with the scire facias, thus the judgment on that writ
is void, and that the registered lien had expired under S 25-1-105 of
the Code.

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

RICHARD HUGHEY v. THE METROPOLITAN GOVERNMENT OF NASHVILLE AND
DAVIDSON COUNTY

Court:TCA

Attorneys:                          

Phillip L. Davidson, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Richard
Hughey.

Karl F. Dean and William Michael Safley, Nashville, Tennessee, for the
appellee, Metropolitan Government of Nashville and Davidson County.

Judge: CAIN

First Paragraph:

Richard Hughey, a former Metropolitan Nashville police officer,
appeals the action of the Chancery Court of Davidson County in
affirming the adverse decision of the Metropolitan Civil Service
Commission, which had rejected his application for police department
employment.  We affirm the action of the Chancellor.

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

CHRISTOPHER POPE v. TENNESSEE DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTION

Court:TCA

Attorneys:                          

Christopher Pope, Nashville, Tennessee, Pro Se.

Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; Michael E. Moore,
Solicitor General; Stephen R. Butler, Assistant Attorney General, for
the appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge: CANTRELL

First Paragraph:

A prisoner in the custody of the Department of Correction was found
guilty of a disciplinary offense and sentenced to punitive
segregation.  He subsequently filed a Petition for Writ of Certiorari,
claiming that he was not afforded due process during the disciplinary
hearing at which he was convicted.  The trial court dismissed his
Petition for failure to state a claim.  We affirm the trial court.

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

ALEXANDER C. WELLS v. STATE OF TENNESSEE

Court:TCA

Attorneys:                          

Phillip L. Davidson, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellant,
Alexander C. Wells.

Paul G. Summers, Attorney General & Reporter and Kae Carpenter Todd,
Assistant Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge: CANTRELL

First Paragraph:

A tenured professor successfully challenged his dismissal through a
review in the Chancery Court of Davidson County.  Subsequently he
filed a claim against the state in the Claims Commission for breach of
contract.  The Commission dismissed the claim on jurisdictional
grounds.  We affirm the conclusion that the claim was not based on a
"written contract."

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

STATE OF TENNESSEE v. STEPHEN EUGENE DAVIS

Court:TCCA

Attorneys:                          

W. Gerald Tidwell, Jr., Chattanooga, Tennessee, for the appellant,
Stephen Eugene Davis.

Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; Christine M. Lapps,
Assistant Attorney General; William H. Cox III, District Attorney
General; and Ben Boyer, Assistant District Attorney General, for the
appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge: WOODALL

First Paragraph:

Defendant, Stephen Eugene Davis, was convicted of violating Tenn. Code
Ann. S 55-10-401, which prohibits driving under the influence of an
intoxicant.  Following a bench trial, Defendant was fined $360 and
sentenced to eleven months and twenty-nine days to be suspended after
serving thirty days in jail.  In this appeal as of right, Defendant
argues that the period of confinement imposed is excessive for a first
offense and that the trial court placed undue emphasis on Defendant's
former employment as a police officer.  We agree and conclude that the
trial court improperly considered Defendant's failure to accept the
State's plea offer.  Accordingly, we reduce the period of confinement
involved in Defendant's sentence to fifteen days of continuous
confinement and affirm the judgment of the trial court in all other
respects.

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

STATE OF TENNESSEE v. OSCAR REYNOLDS

Court:TCCA

Attorneys:                          

Robert Wilson Jones, District Public Defender; Garland Ergueden and
Henry Sayle, Assistant Public Defenders, for the appellant, Oscar
Reynolds.

Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; David H. Findley,
Assistant Attorney General; William L. Gibbons, District Attorney
General; and Steve Jones, Assistant District Attorney General,  for
the appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge: WILLIAMS

First Paragraph:

The defendant was found guilty of robbery.  His sole issue on appeal
is whether the trial court erred in refusing to instruct the jury on
the lesser included offense of theft.  Theft is a lesser included
offense of robbery.  However, we conclude the failure to instruct the
jury was harmless beyond a reasonable doubt.  We affirm the judgment
of the trial court.

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

STATE OF TENNESSEE v. WALTER SANCHEZ, JR. 

Court:TCCA

Attorneys:                          

Joseph F. Harrison, Blountville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Walter
Sanchez, Jr.

Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; Jennifer L. Bledsoe,
Assistant Attorney General; H. Greeley Wells, Jr., District Attorney
General; and B. Todd Martin and James Goodwin, Assistant District
Attorneys General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge: OGLE

First Paragraph:

The appellant, Walter Sanchez, Jr., pled guilty to violating an order
declaring him to be an habitual motor vehicle offender.  The plea
agreement provided that the appellant would receive a sentence of two
years incarceration in the Tennessee Department of Correction and pay
a $500.00 fine.  The manner of service of the sentence was to be
determined by the trial court.  On appeal, the appellant argues that
the trial court erred in denying him probation or some other form of
alternative sentencing.  Upon review of the record and the parties'
briefs, we affirm the judgment of the trial court.

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

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