Opinion FlashMay 27, 2004
Volume 10 Number 103
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):
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Howard H. Vogel
ROBERT L. "LARRY" CARRIER v. SPEEDWAY MOTORSPORTS, INC., ET AL. Court:TCA Attorneys: Cecil W. Laws, Kingsport, Tennessee, for the appellant, Robert L. "Larry" Carrier. Dwight E. Tarwater and Travis Graham, Knoxville, Tennessee, for the appellees, Speedway Motorsports, Inc. and Bristol Motor Speedway, Inc. Judge: SUSANO First Paragraph: This case involves a dispute as to exactly what property was leased to the plaintiff, Robert L. "Larry" Carrier. In January, 1996, the plaintiff and his family sold their 100% stock ownership interest in National Raceways, Inc., to the defendant, Speedway Motorsports, Inc. ("SMI"). National Raceways, Inc., operated the well-known Bristol Motor Speedway ("the Speedway"). In conjunction with the sale, the parties executed a lease agreement, wherein SMI leased back a portion of the Speedway's property to the plaintiff. The plaintiff filed suit against SMI and Bristol Motor Speedway, Inc., the new corporate name of National Raceways, Inc., claiming that the defendants had breached the lease by interfering with the plaintiff's leasehold interest. Specifically, the plaintiff claims that the lease covers a 15.54 acre parcel of land lying adjacent to the grandstand at the racetrack. The defendants answered, denying that they had breached the lease and asserting that the subject matter of the lease is limited to three buildings on the 15.54 acre tract rather than to the entire tract. The defendants also filed a counterclaim for an unpaid debt. Following a bench trial, the court found in favor of the plaintiff, concluding that the lease involves the entire parcel of land rather than just the three buildings. It ultimately awarded the plaintiff damages of $2,401,728. The trial court dismissed the defendants' counterclaim. From this judgment, both sides appeal. We affirm the dismissal of the counterclaim, but reverse the trial court's judgment in favor of the plaintiff on the original complaint. That complaint is dismissed at the plaintiff's costs. http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCA/carrierrobertl.wpd
ESTATE OF LISA DUNCAN, BY AND THROUGH EDWARD HUMAN, PERSONAL REPRESENTATIVE. v. STATE OF TENNESSEE Court:TCA Attorneys: Daryl A. Colson and Anthony C. Maxwell of Livingston for Appellant, The Estate of Lisa J. Duncan, by and through Edward Human, Personal Representative Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; Michael E. Moore, Solicitor General; Sarah T. Chambers, Assistant Attorney General for Appellee, State of Tennessee Judge: CRAWFORD First Paragraph: This case involves the death of a passenger who was involved in a high speed police chase. The Tennessee Claims Commission granted summary judgment to the State and passenger's personal representative appealed, primarily on the ground that the Claims Commission erred in granting summary judgment prior to an opportunity to take the discovery deposition of the involved highway patrolman. We affirm. http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCA/duncanlisa.wpd
DR. KENNETH F. FREELS, KENNETH F. FREELS, D.D.S., P.C., and KENNETH F. FREELS, D.D.S., P.C., DEFINED BENEFIT PENSION TRUST, v. JOSEPH C. TAYLOR & ASSOCIATES, INC., and HOWARD G. HOGAN, SUCCESSOR RECEIVER FOR JOSEPH C. TAYLOR & ASSOCIATES, INC. Court:TCA Attorneys: Robert S. Stone, Knoxville, Tennessee, for Appellants. James R. Moore, Knoxville, Tennessee, for Appellees. Judge: FRANKS First Paragraph: Plaintiffs sought recovery of cashier's check on theory of bailment or resulting or constructive trust. From an adverse Judgment by the Chancellor, plaintiffs appealed. We affirm. http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCA/freelskennethf.wpd
RANDALL C. HAGY v. COMMISSIONER, TENNESSEE DEPARTMENT OF LABOR AND WORKFORCE DEVELOPMENT and TENNESSEE DISTRIBUTION, INC. Court:TCA Attorneys: Randall C. Hagy, Bristol, Tennessee, pro se. Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter, and Warren A. Jasper, Assistant Attorney General, Nashville, Tennessee, for Appellee, Michael E. Magill, Commissioner, Department of Labor and Workforce Development. Jennifer P. Keller, Johnson City, Tennessee, for Appellee, Tennessee Distribution, Inc. Judge: FRANKS First Paragraph: Employee was discharged from employment for refusing to follow orders. The Commissioner denied employee unemployment benefits, and employee appealed to the Court which affirmed the ruling of the Commissioner. On appeal to this Court, we affirm. http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCA/hagyrandallc.wpd
CLIFFORD MICHAEL JOHNSON v. NISSAN NORTH AMERICA, INC. Court:TCA Attorneys: Larry G. Trail and Van A. French, Murfreesboro, Tennessee, for the appellant, Nissan North America, Inc. Joy L. Davis, Franklin, Tennessee, for the appellee, Clifford Michael Johnson. Judge: CLEMENT First Paragraph: Former employee of Nissan North America, Inc. filed this action against Nissan alleging retaliatory discharge following his filing of a workers' compensation claim. A discovery dispute ensued wherein Nissan objected claiming the requests were not relevant and that it would violate the Americans with Disabilities Act if it provided the discovery. The trial court modified the discovery and ordered Nissan to: 1) list every employee terminated between August 2000 and January 2002 and the reason for the termination; 2) identify which of these employees filed workers' compensation claims or received workers' compensation benefits within one year preceding their respective termination; and 3) identify each employee that Nissan or its agents either conducted surveillance on or requested that surveillance be conducted on between August 2000 and January 2002. We reverse, finding that the plaintiff failed to make a compelling showing of relevance and failed to establish that the value of the discovery sought, which pertained to information contained in the personnel and medical records of current and former employees of Nissan, outweighed the privacy interests of those individuals who were not parties to this action. http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCA/johnsonclifford.wpd
JERRY LOU ROGERS v. DAVID STANLEY DAVIS and VANETTA DAVIS Court:TCA Attorneys: William P. Biddle, III, Athens, Tennessee, for Appellants. Michael E. Jenne, Cleveland, Tennessee, for Appellee. Judge: FRANKS First Paragraph: The Trial Court awarded plaintiff Judgment for rents on property occupied by defendants, but refused Judgment for defendants for improvements made by them to plaintiff's property. On appeal, we reverse and award defendants Judgment for improvements made to the property and modify plaintiff's Judgment for the rental value of land. http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCA/rogersjerryl.wpd
STATE OF TENNESSEE v. ANTHONY LEBRON CARTER Court:TCCA Attorneys: Ardena J. Garth, District Public Defender (at hearing and on appeal); and Donna Robinson Miller, Assistant District Public Defender (on appeal), for the appellant, Anthony Lebron Carter. Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; David H. Findley, Assistant Attorney General; William H. Cox, III, District Attorney General; and Mary Sullivan Moore, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee. Judge: RILEY First Paragraph: The defendant, Anthony Lebron Carter, appeals the revocation of his probation. We affirm the judgment of the trial court. http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCCA/carteranthony.wpd
MATTHEW L. MOATES v. STATE OF TENNESSEE Court:TCCA Attorneys: Peter J. Alliman, Madisonville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Matthew L. Moates. Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; Renee W. Turner, Assistant Attorney General; Jerry N. Estes, District Attorney General; and William W. Reedy, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee. Judge: TIPTON First Paragraph: The petitioner, Matthew L. Moates, appeals the Monroe County Criminal Court's denial of his petition for post-conviction relief from his conviction for aggravated robbery and resulting sixteen- year sentence. He claims (1) that he received the ineffective assistance of counsel because his attorney failed to call witnesses to testify at trial about the length of his hair at the time of the robbery, (2) that the state improperly struck an African-American juror from the jury, (3) that he is entitled to a new trial because he was not present during a conference in which the state and his trial attorney discussed the African-American juror's dismissal, and (4) that a state witness improperly communicated with a juror during his trial. We affirm the trial court's denial of the petition. http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCCA/moatesmatthewl.wpd
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