Justice Koch Talks About Career, Retirement

Tennessee Supreme Court Justice Bill Koch, who leaves the court in two weeks to become dean at the Nashville School of Law, addresses the timing of his retirement in the July issue of the Tennessee Bar Journal.  "A lot of folks have asked me whether my decision to accept the NSL job was somehow influenced by what my colleagues are going through now," he says. Read his response to that -- as well as his thoughts on the direction of NSL, his career and his role in the historic early swearing-in of Gov. Lamar Alexander in 1979.

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
01 - TN Court of Appeals
02 - TN Court of Criminal Appeals
00 - 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 Appeals


Court: TN Court of Appeals


Allan J. Wade and Brandy S. Parrish, Memphis, Tennessee, for the appellant, The City of Memphis.

Ricky E. Wilkins and Sharon H. Loy, Memphis, Tennessee, for the appellees, Doyle S. Silliman, Larry Sawyer, Wanda Sawyer, Harry E. Smith, III, Kathleen J. Smith, Robert E. Teutsch, Marilyn Williams, Frank G. Witherspoon, Martha C. Witherspoon.


In this case, we are called upon to review the trial court’s decision to set aside a consent order regarding an annexation on the basis of the subsequent passage of legislation allegedly affecting the agreed-upon annexation. Because we conclude that Tennessee Code Annotated Section 6-51-122 does not apply to prohibit the annexation ordinance at issue, we reverse the trial court’s judgment and reinstate the consent order.

TN Court of Criminal Appeals


Court: TN Court of Criminal Appeals


Kevin C. Angel, Oak Ridge, Tennessee, for the appellant, Aaron Guilliams.

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; Clarence E. Lutz, Senior Counsel; Dave Clark, District Attorney General; and Sandra Donaghy, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.


Aaron Guilliams (“the Defendant”) pleaded guilty to one count of attempted aggravated assault. Pursuant to a plea agreement, the Defendant was sentenced to two years, suspended to supervised probation, and reserved the right to have a hearing to determine his eligibility for judicial diversion. After a hearing, the trial court denied the Defendant’s request for judicial diversion. The Defendant timely appealed the trial court’s ruling. After a thorough review of the record and applicable law, we affirm the trial court’s judgment.


Court: TN Court of Criminal Appeals


Jason F. Hicks, Cookeville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Kenneth Moore.

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; Benjamin A. Ball, Assistant Attorney General; Randall A. York, District Attorney General; and Greg Strong and Amanda Worley, Assistant District Attorneys General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge: WITT

The defendant, Kenneth Moore, appeals his DeKalb County Criminal Court jury conviction of aggravated sexual battery, claiming that the trial court erred by denying his motions to introduce certain evidence, including evidence offered pursuant to Tennessee Rule of Evidence 412, and that the evidence was insufficient to support his conviction. Discerning no error, we affirm the judgment of the trial court.

Haslam Appoints DA in 10th Judicial District

Stephen Crump has been appointed district attorney general for the 10th Judicial District by Gov. Bill Haslam, WATE reports from the Associated Press. Crump replaces Steve Bebb, who submitted his resignation in May after serving the district for nearly 40 years as district attorney general, criminal court judge and assistant district attorney general. The 10th Judicial District includes Bradley, McMinn, Monroe and Polk counties.

Hamilton County Election Commission Facing Lawsuit

The Hamilton County Election Commission is facing a lawsuit from Lt. Corliss Cooper regarding same-sex benefits to city employees, WDEF News 12 reports. Cooper’s lawyer Stevie Phillips said the recent event leading up to and the changes in the ordinance for domestic partner benefits for city employees are in violation of both the Open Meetings Act and Chattanooga's City Charter. "The Hamilton County Election Commission held a meeting at the last possible minute without notice to the public,” said Phillips. “The City Charter requires that the entire ordinance be printed on the ballot without alteration.” Election Commissioner Chris Clem said that is not true, and that the commission gave 48 hours notice and notified the media, the city and the petitioners of the meeting.

BP Says it Overpaid for Claims in Gulf Spill

In a filing Friday, BP asked a federal judge to order restitution — plus interest — to what it says are hundred of millions of dollars in overpayments to some businesses that claimed losses due to the 2010 Gulf oil spill, News 5 reports. BP points to a revised policy for calculating losses that was approved by the court in May and says the court should order recalculation of awards paid prior to that change.

Juvenile Court Addressing Mental Health

The Shelby County Juvenile Court has improved its approach to mental health, one of the many reforms outlined in the 2012 mandate from the U.S. Department of Justice. The report called for improvements in the competency evaluations used in court and in the detainees’ overall mental health care. Changes began in August 2013, the Commercial Appeal reports, when the court’s health care budget jumped from $100,000 to $800,000 annually, thanks to a $700,000 contribution from the Shelby County Commission. Now, there is a nurse on call 24 hours a day and full-time mental health professionals available seven days a week. 

Public Defenders Conference Elects Middle Tennessee Rep

The Tennessee District Public Defenders Conference has elected Donna Orr Hargrove to serve as the Middle Tennessee Representative on its Executive Committee. Hargrove is the District Public Defender for the 17th Judicial District, which includes Bedford, Lincoln, Marshall and Moore counties. The Elk Valley Times has more.

16th Judicial District Circuit Court Judges Seek Re-election

Sixteenth Judicial District Circuit Court Judges J. Mark Rogers and Royce Taylor announced their respective bids for re-election, the Cannon Courier reports. Rogers practiced law for 27 years before being appointed by the Governor in 2004. He was elected in 2006 for an 8-year term. Taylor has 23 years of experience as a lawyer before being elected as judge in 1998. The 16th Judicial District covers Cannon and Rutherford counties.

Judicial Candidate Forum Set for July 17

The Knoxville Bar Association (KBA) and the League of Women Voters of Knoxville/Knox County will hold a forum on July 17 to inform voters about their choices among judicial candidates competing in the general election. All candidates have been invited to participate in the forum, which will take place from 6 to 7:30 p.m. at the South College Auditorium, 400 Goodys Lane, Knoxville 37922. Seating is limited. RSVP online at the KBA website.

Retirement Reception for DA July 17

Twenty-third Judicial District Attorney General Dan Alsobrooks yesterday announced that he will retire effective Aug. 31 after 36 years in public service. There will be a reception for Alsobrooks on July 17 from 5-7 p.m. at the Clement Railroad Museum in Dickson. The public is invited to stop by and talk with Alsobrooks and his family about his years of service. The Tennessean has more.

Reduced-Rate Display Ads Available for Lawyers

Lawyers and firms now may promote outstanding achievements, new associates, new partners, mergers, awards or any other news in the Tennessee Bar Journal. These Professional Announcements are display ads, available at special, lower-rate pricing. Show your peers across the state about your accomplishments by placing an announcement in the Journal. For information, contact Debbie Taylor at (503) 445-2231 or Debbie@llm.com. To have an announcement placed in the next issue, please contact her as soon as possible.


Questions, comments: Email us at TBAToday@tnbar.org

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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