Bredesen grants 15-day stay in Alley execution

Governor Bredesen granted death-row inmate Sedley Alley a 15-day stay this afternoon. Alley had been scheduled to die by lethal injection at 1 a.m. Wednesday. Earlier in the day, lawyers for Alley asked the U.S. Supreme Court to stay the execution and decide whether convicted criminals have a constitutional right to (1) perform DNA testing on evidence in their cases and (2) be spared death by lethal injection. View the Supreme Court filings at http://www.tsc.state.tn.us/OPINIONS/TSC/CapCases/Alley/Alley.htm

Earlier today five judges on the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals issued a dissent to a Friday opinion, arguing that the appeals court should not have lifted the stay of execution given the U.S. Supreme Court's upcoming review of the constitutionality of lethal injection in another case. Read their dissenting opinion

http://www.tba2.org/tbatoday/news/2006/alleys_diss051606.pdf

TODAY'S OPINIONS
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Howard H. Vogel
Knoxville, Tennessee
Editor-in-Chief, TBALink

HERSHELL JERRY FRIZZELL, JR. v. MOHAWK INDUSTRIES, ET AL.

Court: TCA

Attorneys:

Alexander W. Gothard, Chattanooga, Tennessee, for the appellant, Hershell Jerry Frizzell, Jr.

J. Harvey Cameron, Jasper, Tennessee, for the appellee, Mohawk Industries, d/b/a Galaxy Carpet Mills, Inc.

Judge: CLEMENT

An employee of Mohawk Industries filed this retaliatory discharge action contending he was wrongfully terminated because he filed a workers' compensation claim for benefits. Mohawk denies he was fired because of the workers' compensation claim and insists he was fired due to repeated violations of its attendance policy. Following discovery, Mohawk filed a motion for summary judgment contending Plaintiff failed to establish his workers' compensation claim was a substantial factor in the motivation to terminate his employment. The trial court granted the motion. Plaintiff appeals contending genuine disputes of material fact exist. Finding no error, the judgment of the trial court is affirmed.

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCA/2006/frizzellh051606.pdf


J. O. HOUSE v. J. K. EDMONDSON
With Partial Dissenting Opinion


Court: TCA

Attorneys:

Tim Edwards, Memphis, TN; Kent J. Rubens, West Memphis, AR, for Appellant.

Jef Feibelman, Memphis, TN, for Appellee.

John McQuiston, II, Memphis, TN, for Intervenor, Ram-Tenn, Inc.

Judge: HIGHERS

In 1997, the Appellant, a shareholder in a Tennessee corporation, reviewed the corporation's records and discovered that the corporation's majority shareholder, who also served as the corporation's president and chairman of the board of directors, had been misappropriating corporate funds for his personal use. In 1999, the Appellant filed a shareholder's derivative action against the majority shareholder of the corporation alleging breach of fiduciary duty. In addition to his derivative claim, the Appellant also filed a direct claim against the majority shareholder for breach of a Pre-Incorporation Agreement signed by the shareholders at the corporation's inception. The corporation appointed a one person special litigation committee to investigate the Appellant's derivative action. The committee determined that the majority shareholder had indeed misappropriated corporate funds. In its report to the board of directors, the committee recommended that the corporation either attempt to settle the lawsuit with the majority shareholder pursuant to terms suggested by the committee or, in the event the majority shareholder declined such terms, proceed with the litigation. The trial court subsequently approved the report, and the corporation settled the derivative litigation. Regarding the direct claim for breach of the Pre-Incorporation Agreement, the majority shareholder moved for summary judgment, and the trial court granted the motion. The Appellant filed an appeal to this Court. We affirm the trial court's decision to approve the special litigation committee's report. We reverse the trial court's decision to grant summary judgment to the majority shareholder on the Appellant's direct claim, as a genuine issue of material fact exists as to whether the Appellant's claim is barred by the applicable statute of limitations.

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCA/2006/housej051606.pdf

Kirby Dissenting in Part
http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCA/2006/housej_diss051606.pdf


NORTHEAST KNOX UTILITY DISTRICT v. STANFORT CONSTRUCTION COMPANY, SOUTHERN CONSTRUCTORS, INC., and AMERICAN ARBITRATION ASSOCIATION, INC., STANFORT CONSTRUCTION COMPANY C v. NORTHEAST KNOX UTILITY DISTRICT, ROBERT G. CAMPBELL & ASSOCIATES, LP., and RICHARD PHILLIPS
With Dissenting Opinion


Court: TCA

Attorneys:

Andrew R. Tillman and Joshua R. Walker, Knoxville, Tennessee, for counter-plaintiff/appellant, Stanfort Construction Company.

John M. Neal, Knoxville, Tennessee, for appellee, Richard Phillips.

Robert H. Green, Knoxville, Tennessee, for third party defendant/appellee, Robert G. Campbell & Associates, LP.

Judge: FRANKS

The Trial Court granted defendants summary judgment on the grounds the statute of limitations had run on plaintiff's claims. On appeal, we vacate and remand.

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCA/2006/northeast051606.pdf

Susano Dissenting
http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCA/2006/northeast_diss051606.pdf


TODAY'S NEWS

Legal News
Election 2006
Online CLE

Legal News
Shootout with police leaves deputy U.S. marshal dead
Mary Fisher, a deputy U.S. marshal who had shown recent signs of erratic behavior, was killed in a shootout with Memphis police in her driveway early Sunday, the Memphis Commercial Appeal reports.
Read more
Five seek Anderson County position
Five attorneys want to fill the newly created post of Anderson County law director, but only current Assistant County Attorney N. Jay Yeager appears to meet all advertised criteria, the Knoxville News Sentinel reports. Commissioners recently voted to do away with the elected position of county attorney and instead create a full-time law director's post.

New website for the Tennessee Justice Center
The Tennessee Justice Center has launched a new website that contains information about the center's work in health care and welfare reform and offers tools for clients and advocates. The site also carries TennCare news, coverage of recent organizational events, photographs and stories of clients and contact information for TJC staff.
Visit the site
Mississippi justice returns to work
The final step in clearing Mississippi Supreme Court Justice Oliver Diaz Jr. for a return to the bench came last week with a judicial tribunal's vote lifting his suspension. Two weeks ago a federal jury acquitted the 46-year-old justice on tax-evasion charges. In August, he was acquitted of all charges in a high-profile judicial bribery case. Diaz took a voluntary leave of absence in July 2003 and was suspended without pay in December of that year, reports WREG-TV in Memphis.

Duff appointed U.S. courts director
Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. recently announced the appointment of James C. Duff as director of the Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts. Having already served as chief of staff of the U.S. Supreme Court under the late Chief Justice William H. Rehnquist, Duff will soon lead the administration of the federal court system under Roberts. Duff is currently co-chair of Baker Donelson's Federal Public Policy Group and managing shareholder of the firm's Washington, D.C. office. He also manages appellate cases for the firm.
Read the firm's press release
Supreme Court clerks command bonuses
U.S. Supreme Court law clerks are benefiting from signing bonuses in the $200,000 range when they make the move to law firms. The "law clerk bonus," as it's known, has led Justice Anthony Kennedy to argue that soaring clerk bonuses devalue the position of the judiciary. Associate justices on the high court earn $203,000.
Read more in the Commercial Appeal
Knoxville lawyer sentenced in DUI case
Knoxville lawyer James Joseph Montague Jr. pleaded guilty yesterday to driving under the influence of an intoxicant. The plea was made in Sevier County General Sessions Court after Knox County judges recused themselves because of their association with Montague, who was an assistant Knox County public defender when the incident occurred.
The Knoxville News Sentinel has the full story
Election 2006
Hamilton announces bid for re-election
Judge Jim T. Hamilton announced he is a candidate for re-election to the office of circuit court judge, part I in the 22nd Judicial District. The district serves Maury, Giles, Lawrence and Wayne counties. If re-elected, Hamilton would serve a fourth 8-year term. He is unopposed on the ballot, reports the Columbia Daily Herald.
Read more about his candidacy
Online CLE
Disaster Recovery: Your Ethical Duty
Tornados, fires and hurricanes happen. This TennBarU® online course will help you prepare for and respond to a disaster with the purpose of improving your chance to successfully recover from it.
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