Court offers amendments to rules
The Tennessee Supreme Court has promulgated, subject to legislative approval, amendments to the Rules of Appellate Procedure, Rules of Civil Procedure, Rules of Juvenile Procedure and Rules of Evidence. The final rules are substantially the same as those published by the court in September, with a change in the Rules of Appellate Procedure to require written reasons for denial of leave to proceed as a poor person by appellate courts. The rules changes will be effective July 1 2006, if ratified by resolutions of both houses of the General Assembly.
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Howard H. Vogel
| WANDA BARRON and RONALD BARRON v. LOUISE STEPHENSON
d/b/a LOUISE LEARNING TREE
Erich M. Shultz, Memphis, TN, for Appellant.
Kevin D. Bernstein, Memphis, TN, for Appelle.
In this appeal, we are called upon to evaluate the trial court’s grant of summary judgment to the
defendant in a premises liability suit. After reviewing the record, we hold that the plaintiff failed to
establish that the defendant owed her a duty of care. Specifically, the plaintiff failed to offer any
proof tending to show that the ramp on which she slipped and fell constituted a defective and/or
dangerous condition. Accordingly, we affirm the trial court’s grant of summary judgment to the
YELENA UTKINA KESTERSON v. THOMAS MICHAEL KESTERSON, ET AL.
W. Brown Hawley, II, Paris, TN, for Appellant.
Larry J. Logan, McKenzie, TN, for Appellees.
This case involves issues arising out of the parties’ divorce. The chancery court designated and
divided the parties’ assets and placed an equitable lien on the separate property of the husband. The
chancery court did not award alimony or attorney’s fees and discretionary costs to the wife. We
affirm in part, vacate in part, reverse in part, and remand for further proceedings. Further, we decline
to award attorney’s fees and costs on appeal.
AMSOUTH BANK v. DOUGLAS A. SOLTIS, ET AL.
Douglas A. Soltis and Bonnie Soltis, Seymour, Tennessee, Appellants, Pro Se.
Christopher W. Conner at trial, Lars E. Schuller and Alisa Peppel Schuller on appeal, Knoxville,
Tennessee, for the Appellee.
This is a suit for collection of a credit card debt. AmSouth Bank (“AmSouth”) filed a complaint on
a sworn account seeking a judgment against Mr. and Mrs. Soltis for the unpaid balance on three
credit card accounts. Mr. and Mrs. Soltis answered and denied AmSouth was entitled to any relief.
AmSouth filed a motion for summary judgment. Mr. and Mrs. Soltis responded by filing three
documents entitled “Verified Application to Confirm and Enforce Arbitration Award” and three
“Award” documents indicating that AmSouth Bank owed Mr. and Mrs. Soltis money. The parties
had not agreed to arbitration and had not participated in arbitration. The trial court granted
AmSouth’s motion for summary judgment and Mr. and Mrs. Soltis appealed. The issue presented
on appeal is whether the trial court erred in granting AmSouth’s motion for summary judgment and
in entering judgment against Mr. and Mrs. Soltis. After careful review of the record and applicable
authorities, we affirm the judgment of the trial court.
KENNY VAUGHN, ET AL. v. NOTIE L. CUNNINGHAM, ET AL.
J. Taylor Walker and Thomas H. O’Neal, Chattanooga, Tennessee for the Appeallants, Kenny Vaughn and wife, Barbara Vaughn
Angela Cirina Kopet and Christine M. Vanasse, Chattanooga, Tennessee for the Appellee, Notie
Scott M. Shaw, Chattanooga, Tennessee for the Appellee, John Doe.
Kenny Vaughn and Barbara Vaughn (“Plaintiffs” or “Mr. Vaughn” and “Mrs. Vaughn” as
appropriate) sued Notie L. Cunningham and John Doe concerning an automobile accident that
occurred in Hamilton County. The case was tried before a jury and the Trial Court entered
judgment on the jury’s verdict. The jury found John Doe 100% at fault for the accident, but
awarded Plaintiffs no damages. Plaintiffs appeal to this Court claiming that the jury verdict is
contrary to the evidence because the amount of damages is not within the range of
reasonableness, and that the Trial Court erred by not granting a new trial and by awarding court
costs against Plaintiffs. We affirm as modified.
STATE OF TENNESSEE v. MONSANTO UNDREZ CANNON
Fannie J. Harris, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Monsanto Undrez Cannon.
Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; Elizabeth Marney, Assistant
Attorney General; Mike McCown, District Attorney General; and Michael D. Randles and Ann
Filer, Assistant District Attorneys General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.
The Defendant pled guilty to and was convicted of misdemeanor casual exchange of marijuana
not in excess of one-half ounce, Class E felony possession with intent for resale of not less than
one-half ounce nor more than ten pounds of marijuana, and possession of a handgun as a felon,
also a Class E felony. The Defendant was sentenced to eleven months and twenty-nine days for
his misdemeanor conviction, and three years as a Range II, multiple offender for each felony
conviction. The trial court ordered the two felony conviction sentences to be served
consecutively, for an effective six year term of incarceration. On appeal, the Defendant
challenges his sentence, claiming the court erred by: 1) imposing consecutive sentences, and 2)
denying alternative sentencing. We affirm the judgments of the trial court.
TERRY LYNN ROBERTS v. STATE OF TENNESSEE
Steven L. West, McKenzie, Tennessee, for the appellant, Terry Lynn Roberts.
Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; Leslie Price, Assistant Attorney General; G.
Robert Radford, District Attorney General; and Stephen D. Jackson, Assistant District Attorney
General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.
The petitioner, Terry Lynn Roberts, was convicted of rape of a child, aggravated sexual battery,
and rape and sentenced, respectively, to terms of twenty-five years, eleven years, and twelve
years, with the sentences to be served consecutively. The convictions and sentences were
affirmed on direct appeal, with the petitioner then filing a petition for post-conviction relief,
relying on the holding in Blakely v. Washington, 542 U.S. 296, 124 S. Ct. 2531 (2004), and
asserting that it should be applied retroactively and, as a result, the court erred in enhancing his
sentences. The post-conviction court dismissed the petition, and we concur in that dismissal.
STATE OF TENNESSEE v. TROY WAYNE STEPP
David S. Stockton, Assistant Public Defender, for the appellant, Troy Wayne Stepp.
Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; David H. Findley, Assistant Attorney
General; Elizabeth T. Rice, District Attorney General; and James Walter Freeland, Jr., Assistant
District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.
The defendant, Troy Wayne Stepp, was convicted of delivery of a Schedule II controlled
substance, methamphetamine, a Class C felony, and sentenced as a multiple offender to eight
years in the Department of Correction. On appeal, he argues: (1) the trial court erred in allowing
the introduction of a transcript of a taped-recorded conversation; and (2) the evidence was
insufficient to support his conviction. Following our review, we affirm the judgment of the trial
MARCUS E. THOMPSON v. STATE OF TENNESSEE
Larry R. Dillow, Kingsport, Tennessee, for the appellant, Marcus E. Thompson.
Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; Jennifer L. Bledsoe, Assistant Attorney General;
H. Greeley Wells, Jr., District Attorney General; and Robert H. Montgomery, Jr., Assistant District
Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.
The petitioner, Marcus E. Thompson, appeals the denial of his petition for post-conviction relief,
arguing that the post-conviction court erred in finding he received effective assistance of trial and
appellate counsel. Following our review, we affirm the denial of the petition.
STATE OF TENNESSEE v. BERNARD MIGUEL WALLACE
Curtis F. Hopper, Savannah, Tennessee, for the appellant, Bernard Miguel Wallace.
Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; Rachel E. Willis, Assistant Attorney General;
G. Robert Radford, District Attorney General; and John W. Overton, Jr., Assistant District
Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.
The defendant, Bernard Miguel Wallace, was convicted by a Hardin County jury of the sale of
under .5 grams of a Schedule II controlled substance, cocaine, a Class C felony. He was
sentenced as a Range II, multiple offender to nine years in the Department of Correction and
fined $2000. On appeal, he argues: (1) the evidence was insufficient to support his conviction;
and (2) his sentence is illegal pursuant to Blakely v. Washington, 542 U.S. 296, 124 S. Ct. 2531
(2004). Following our review, we affirm the judgment of the trial court.
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