Judges taking pledge show 'judicial restraint'

Tennessee Bar Association President Larry Wilks commented on judicial campaign ethics today, saying that those judges who have adopted the TBA's Fair Judicial Campaign Code of Conduct or who have declined to answer questionnaires demonstrate appropriate "judicial restraint" by not answering hypotheticals. "The interests of justice are better served by judges who show a commitment to remain impartial and not to be tempted to say how they would rule on any matter which might come before the court," Wilks said.

A story in yesterday's Chattanooga Times Free Press that was picked up at media outlets across the state, and a new story today in the Chattanooga paper have highlighted the TBA's Judicial Campaign Code in light of the circulation of a questionnaire from the Family Action Council of Tennessee.

Read the Code and view signees. Review the questionnaire. Read the news accounts in the Times Free Press
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. To search all opinions in the TBALink database, go to our OpinionSearch page. If you have forgotten your password or need to obtain a password, you can look it up on TBALink at http://www.tba.org/getpassword.mgi.

00 - TN Supreme Court
01 - TN Worker's Comp Appeals
00 - TN Supreme Court - Rules
05 - TN Court of Appeals
00 - TN Court of Criminal Appeals
00 - TN Attorney General Opinions
00 - Judicial Ethics Opinions
00 - Formal Ethics Opinions - BPR

TBA members can get the full-text versions of these opinions three ways detailed below. All methods require a TBA username and password. If you have forgotten your password or need to obtain a password, you can look it up on-line at http://www.tba.org/getpassword.mgi

Here's how you can obtain full-text version. We recommend you download the Opinions to your computer and then open them from there. 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. Do a key word search in the Search Link area of TBALink. This option will allow you to view and save a plain-text version of the opinion. Browse the Opinion List area of TBALink. This option will allow you to download the original version of the opinion.

Howard H. Vogel
Knoxville, Tennessee
Editor-in-Chief, TBALink

JANIE BELLE CORN v. HHS and JAMES FARMER, DIRECTOR, DIVISION OF WORKER'S COMPENSATION, TENNESSEE DEPT. OF LABOR AND WORKFORCE DEVELOPMENT

Court: TWCA

Attorneys:

John Mark Stewart, Winchester, Tennessee, for the Appellant, Janie Belle Corn.

David W. Noblitt, Thomas O. Sippel, Leitner, Williams, Dooley & Napolitan, PLLC, Chattanooga, Tennessee, for the Appellee, HHS.

Judge: CORLEW

This workers' compensation appeal has been referred to the Special Workers' Compensation Appeals Panel of the Tennessee Supreme Court in accordance with the provisions of Tennessee Code Annotated Section 50-6-225(e)(3) for hearing and reporting to the Supreme Court of findings of fact and conclusions of law. The Plaintiff has appealed the action of the trial court, which determined that the Plaintiff's cause of action is barred by the statute of limitations and by failure to provide notice timely in accordance with the law. Upon our consideration of all of the evidence, we find that the evidence preponderates in favor of the findings of the trial court, and we affirm.

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TSC_WCP/2006/cornj062106.pdf


STATE OF TENNESSEE v. M.L.

Court: TCA

Attorneys:

Philip A. Condra, District Public Defender; and Charles Doug Curtis, Assistant Public Defender, for the appellant, M.L.

Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; and Brent C. Cherry, Assistant Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge: CLEMENT

This is an appeal by a minor from a decision of the Circuit Court for Marion County declaring him a delinquent based upon a finding he was guilty of aggravated arson. The sole issue on appeal concerns the sufficiency of the evidence. Because the evidence is sufficient to support the finding of guilt of aggravated arson beyond a reasonable doubt, we affirm.

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCA/2006/ml062106.pdf


STATE OF TENNESSEE v. M.L.

Court: TCA

Attorneys:

Philip A. Condra, District Public Defender; and Charles Doug Curtis, Assistant Public Defender, for the appellant, M.L.

Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; and Brent C. Cherry, Assistant Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge: CLEMENT

This is an appeal by a minor from a decision of the Circuit Court for Marion County declaring him a delinquent based upon a finding he was guilty of aggravated arson. The sole issue on appeal concerns the sufficiency of the evidence. Because the evidence is sufficient to support the finding of guilt of aggravated arson beyond a reasonable doubt, we affirm.

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCA/2006/ml062106.pdf


BETTY POTTER, ET AL. v. FORD MOTOR COMPANY
With Concurring Opinion


Court: TCA

Attorneys:

P. Edward Pratt and Ashley Meredith Lowe, Knoxville, Tennessee, and Fred J. Fresard and Jeffrey T. Gorcyca, Troy, Michigan, for the Appellant, Ford Motor Company.

Andrew R. Tillman, Knoxville, Tennessee, and Clifton M. Smart, III, Springfield, Missouri, for the Appellee, Betty Potter.

Judge: LEE

While traveling on a rain-slick road at a moderate rate of speed, Betty Potter lost control of her 1997 Ford Escort which spun around and crashed into a tree. Her seat back collapsed into the rear seat and her spinal cord was severed. Betty Potter was rendered a paraplegic. She and her husband sued Ford Motor Company (Ford) for the enhanced injuries Ms. Potter received as a result of the collapse of her seat back. The jury found Ford to be 70% at fault, Ms. Potter to be 30% at fault, and determined Ms. Potter's compensatory damages to be ten million dollars. Judgment was entered for Ms. Potter in the amount of seven million dollars. The primary issues Ford raises on this appeal are (1) whether the trial court erred in refusing to grant Ford a judgment notwithstanding the verdict; and (2) whether the trial court erred in refusing to instruct the jury on the doctrine of intervening cause. We hold that Ms. Potter presented material evidence from which the jury could reasonably conclude that the Ford Escort was defective, and that the trial court correctly found the intervening cause doctrine inapplicable in a case such as this one, where the alleged intervening cause is the negligent conduct of the plaintiff. We therefore affirm the judgment of the trial court.

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCA/2006/potterb062106.pdf

Franks Concurring
http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCA/2006/potterb_con062106.pdf


RJS and TLPB v. STATE OF TENNESSEE DEPARTMENT OF CHILDREN'S SERVICES, In Re: ETB, a Juvenile

Court: TCA

Attorneys:

Margaret Jane Powers, Crossville, Tennessee, for appellant, RJS.

C. Douglas Fields, Crossville, Tennessee, for appellant, TLPB.

Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter and Amy T. Master, Assistant Attorney General, Nashville, Tennessee, for Appellee.

Judge: FRANKS

The Trial Court terminated the parental rights of the child's mother and father. Both parents appealed. We affirm.

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCA/2006/rjs062106.pdf


BILL YOUNG and wife, MARY YOUNG v. RAC EXPRESS, INC., WILLIAM HAMBLIN & TOMMY HEATWOLE (a/k/a TOMMY HEATWOLD, JR.)

Court: TCA

Attorneys:

Stanley F. Roden, Knoxville, Tennessee, for appellant.

Johnny V. Dunaway, Lafollette, Tennessee, for appellees.

Judge: FRANKS

In this declaratory judgment action, the Trial Court invalidated a judgment lien on plaintiffs' property. On appeal, we affirm.

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCA/2006/youngb062106.pdf


TODAY'S NEWS

Legal News
Election 2006

Legal News
Former DA staffer sentenced to year in prison
A former Hamilton County District Attorney's Office staff member and graduate of the Nashville School of Law was sentenced to a year in federal prison last week for diverting checks at her current workplace and fraudulently obtaining more than $91,000 from her employer.
Get the story on Chattanoogan.com
Video system allows teleconferencing for mental health hearings
The Hamilton County General Sessions Court conducted the first video teleconference of its mental health docket at the courthouse last week thanks to a local hospital installing video and camera equipment there. Previously, judges had to travel to mental health facilities for the approximately 4,000 mental health case hearings it held last year.
Read more about the technology on Chattanoogan.com
Claiborne County to transfer prisoners
Claiborne County prisoners will soon be housed in a new 200-bed facility in the Claiborne County Justice Center after the county commission approved the move and final payment to the project contractor.
Read more in the Morristown Citizen Tribune
Cobb wins race
Nashville lawyer Steve Cobb won the Tennessee Bar Association Young Lawyers Division 5-K Race Gestae on Saturday, during the TBA convention in Memphis. You can see pictures from the race and other convention wrap up on
TBALink
New leadership at Nashville LAW announced
The Lawyers Association for Women, Marion Griffin Chapter, has named its officers for the coming bar year: president is N. Sue Van Sant Palmer with Stites & Harbison PLLC; president-elect is Patricia Head Moskal with Boult, Cummings, Conners & Berry PLC; secretary is M. Bernadette Welch with the Tennessee Department of Revenue; and treasurer is Clisby Hall Barrow with Walker, Bryant, Tipps & Malone. For more information about the Nashville chapter and a complete list of board members
go to www.law-nashville.org
TTLA names new officers
The Tennessee Trial Lawyers Association has named its executive committee for the 2006-2007 bar year. President is Stephen T. Greer of Dunlap; President-Elect is R. Sadler Bailey of Memphis; Vice President (East) is Wayne Ritchie of Knoxville; Vice President (Middle) is Daniel Clayton of Nashville; Vice President (West) is Christopher Taylor of Memphis; Secretary is Leslie A. Muse of Morristown; Treasurer is John Wood of Brentwood; and Parliamentarian is Annie B. Williams of Nashville.

Election 2006
County asks for stay of charter ruling
Knox County has asked Chancellor John Weaver to place a 180-day stay on his decision voiding the county's charter saying that if a stay is not issued, "significant and substantial problems will arise" with regard to pension plans, personnel policies, purchasing procedures and certain emergency services.
The Knoxville News Sentinel has the story
Federal judge vows quick charter decision
Senior U.S. District Court Judge James H. Jarvis said today that he would cut through the confusion surrounding the Knox County charter by asking the Tennessee Supreme Court to rule on the charter's validity as soon as possible. He wants the matter resolved so he can hear an unrelated case challenging the county's adult business ordinance.
Read about this latest development in the Knoxville News Sentinel
Judicial candidate defends charitable campaign promise
Mary Sullivan Moore, a candidate for Hamilton County General Sessions Court Division 2, has promised that she will give $20,000 - an amount equivalent to the recent judicial pay raise - to three specific charities each year she is in office if elected. Some question whether the promise violates Canon 5 of the judicial code, which prohibits pledges of conduct other than promising to impartially perform one's duties.
Read about it in this Chattanooga Times Free Press story

 
 
UNSUBSCRIBE TO TBAToday? ... SURELY NOT!
But if you must, visit the TBALink web site at: http://www.tba2.org/tbatoday/unsub_tbatoday.php

TBALink HomeContact UsPageFinderWhat's NewHelp
 
 
© Copyright 2006 Tennessee Bar Association