Pilot Rebate Suits Joined, Sent to East Kentucky District

A federal judicial panel has merged seven pending civil suits against truck stop chain Pilot Flying J before a judge in Lexington, Ky., The Tennessean reports. The order issued Monday follows a hearing in which lawyers for Pilot had requested the cases be consolidated in Knoxville. The trucking companies, with operations in Alabama, New Jersey, New Mexico and Ohio opposed that move. The panel decided that the Eastern District of Kentucky was the most appropriate venue for the suits since a judge there is already presiding over a criminal investigation into allegations that Pilot withheld rebates from its trucking partners.

Today's Opinions

Click on the category of your choice to view summaries of today’s opinions from that court, or other body. A link at the end of each case summary will let you download the full opinion in PDF format.

00 - TN Supreme Court
00 - TN Workers Comp Appeals
00 - TN Supreme Court - Rules
00 - TN Court of Appeals
02 - TN Court of Criminal Appeals
02 - TN Attorney General Opinions
00 - Judicial Ethics Opinions
00 - Formal Ethics Opinions - BPR
00 - TN Supreme Court - Disciplinary Orders









You can obtain full-text versions of the opinions two ways. We recommend that you download the Opinions to your computer and then open them from there. 1) Click the URL at end of each Opinion paragraph below. This should give you the option to download the original document. If not, you may need to right-click on the URL to get the option to save the file to your computer.


TN Court of Criminal Appeals

RONALD E. BOYKIN v. JERRY LESTER, WARDEN

Court: TN Court of Criminal Appeals

Attorneys:

Ronald E. Boykin, Henning, Tennessee, Pro Se.

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; and Lacy Wilber, Assistant Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge: GLENN

The petitioner, Ronald E. Boykin, appeals the Lauderdale County Circuit Court’s denial of his petition for writ of habeas corpus, arguing that his judgments for sexual battery by an authority figure are void because he never agreed to a hybrid plea and was not informed that he would be subject to community supervision for life. He further argues that the condition of lifetime community supervision is in direct contravention of a statute and is, therefore, illegal. Following our review, we affirm the judgment of the habeas court denying the petition.


FLOYD LEE PERRY, JR. V. STATE OF TENNESSEE

Court: TN Court of Criminal Appeals

Attorneys:

John M. Miles, Union City, Tennessee, for the appellant, Floyd Lee Perry, Jr.

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; John H. Bledsoe, Senior Counsel; Thomas A. Thomas, District Attorney General; and Jim Cannon, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge: WILLIAMS

The petitioner, Floyd Lee Perry, Jr., appeals the dismissal of his motion to re-open his original petition for post-conviction relief. The petitioner is currently serving a sentence of life with the possibility of parole for a murder he committed as a juvenile. On appeal, he claims that he is entitled to relief pursuant to the new precedent established in Miller v. Alabama, 132 S. Ct. 2455 (2012), which held that it violated the Eighth Amendment prohibition against cruel and inhuman punishment to sentence a juvenile to life imprisonment without the possibility of parole without individual consideration of mitigating circumstances. Following review of the applicable law and the record before us, we conclude that the motion was properly denied and affirm the judgment of the post-conviction court.


TN Attorney General Opinions

County’s Authority to Impose Ticket Surcharge at County Agricultural Center

Court: TN Attorney General Opinions

Date: 2014-04-07

Opinion Number: 43


Constitutionality of Amendments to Bribery, Extortion, Riot, and Trespass Laws

Court: TN Attorney General Opinions

Date: 2014-04-07

Opinion Number: 44


Nashville DA Candidates Emphasize Differences

The first competitive race in decades to be Nashville's top prosecutor pits three lawyers with very different backgrounds against one another, The Tennessean reports. The candidates are criminal defense attorney Glenn Funk, whose campaign slogan is “GLENN gives a FUNK about JUSTICE"; Diane Lance, who has devoted the last 15 years to victims of abuse and sexual violence, both as a volunteer and as special counsel to Mayor Karl Dean; and assistant district attorney Rob McGuire, who has spent his entire 13-year career in the DA's office. All three have focused on domestic violence, a high-profile issue that came to a head recently with the release of a major plan by the city to overhaul how victims are treated in the system. Further controversy developed when it was discovered the city had withheld a larger, more detailed report critical of police, prosecutors, judges and judicial employees.


Cohen Supports DOJ Monitoring of Memphis Elections

U.S. Rep. Steve Cohen, D-Memphis, has endorsed a request to have the Department of Justice monitor the Shelby County Election Commission’s operations during the upcoming election cycle. The original request came last week from Kenneth T. Whalum Jr., a candidate for the Democratic nomination for county mayor. In a letter to the department, Whalum requested federal “intervention, supervision and/or assistance regarding a troubling pattern of errors and documented incompetency” at the commission. Cohen wrote to U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder to echo the request. The Commercial Appeal reports that Holder responded to the request at a hearing in Washington, D.C., saying, "We'll look at that."


2 Vie in Primary for Hawkins Sessions Court Race

Hawkins County Democrats will have a rare contested primary race on the May 6 ballot with two seeking the nomination for sessions judge, the Kingsport Times News reports. Surgoinsville Municipal Judge Chris Raines and Mount Carmel Municipal Judge Terry Risner are both seeking the party nod to challenge incumbent Republican Hawkins Sessions Court Judge J. Todd Ross in the general election. The paper looks at Raines’ and Risner’s background and qualifications.


Assistant DA Drops Complaint Against Bebb

The Cleveland Police Department reportedly asked the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation (TBI) to look into a complaint that 10th Judicial District Attorney Steve Bebb assaulted a female assistant district attorney in his office last week. Police spokeswoman Evie West said Cynthia LeCroy Schemel, who works with Bebb, filed a complaint saying he assaulted her Wednesday and then fired her Friday. According to WRCB-TV, Schemel said Bebb grabbed her and acted like he was going to punch her after she tried to intervene in an office argument. Schemel also claimed she was targeted because she is supporting Steve Crump in the race for district attorney over Stephen Hatchett, who is supported by Bebb. Late today, however, Chattanoogan.com reported that Bebb agreed to reinstate Schemel, who in turn, agreed to drop her assault charge.


Media Group Files Appeal in Vandy Rape Case

Access to records in a high-profile Vanderbilt University rape case is essential to ensuring the public can judge the effectiveness of Metro police and prosecutors, a media coalition argues in a new filing with the Tennessee Court of Appeals. The group is seeking access to records related to the case including text messages between players and coaches, The Tennessean reports. Chancery Court Judge Russell Perkins has ruled that some records in the case that led to charges against four former Vanderbilt football players should be made available under the state’s open records law. But he put a stay on the order pending an anticipated appeal by the city, the victim and/or the state attorney general’s office.


Event Honors Seigenthaler’s Contributions to Justice, Dignity

John Seigenthaler will be honored at an April 29 event sponsored by You Have the Power, a crime prevention group founded by former Tennessee First Lady Andrea Conte. The award ceremony will be held at the Country Music Hall of Fame and will feature friends speaking about Seigenthaler’s work with the Freedom Riders and Civil Rights Movement while a special assistant to Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy; his career as reporter, editor and publisher of The Tennessean newspaper; his role as founding editorial director for USA Today; and his commitment to the First Amendment Center and Freedom Forum at Vanderbilt University. Tickets are $150 and sponsorships are available. Business Clarksville has the story.


Memphis Law Hosts Open House, ABA President

The University of Memphis School of Law will host its annual Open House for admitted students this Saturday. The program will provide an opportunity for incoming first years to meet professors, learn about academic curriculum and financial aid, talk with current students and interact with alumni. Then on Tuesday, the school will host American Bar Association President Jim Silkenat. He will speak at 2:30 p.m. in the historic courtroom.


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About this publication: Today's News is a compilation of digests of news reports of interest to Tennessee lawyers compiled by TBA staff, links to digested press releases, and occasional stories about the TBA and other activities written by the TBA staff or members. Statements or opinions herein are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect those of the Tennessee Bar Association, its officers, board or staff.


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