Former state senator, judge-elect Trail dies Sunday

Less than three weeks after winning election to a Circuit Court judgeship, former state Sen. Larry Trail died Sunday night of complications to the liver. Visitation is Tuesday from 3 to 8 p.m. at Woodbury Funeral Home in Woodbury; and Wednesday from 3 to 8 p.m. at the World Outreach Church in Murfreesboro. The funeral will be Thursday at 1 p.m. at the World Outreach Church, with burial at 3 p.m. in the Midway Cemetery in Woodbury. Memorial Contributions may be made to the Linebaugh Public Library, 105 West Vine St., 37130, or to the MTSU Foundation for the Larry G. Trial Memorial Scholarship, MTSU, Murfreesboro, TN 37132.

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


Court: TWCA


George E. Koontz and Robert Jeffrey Wolford, Chattanooga, Tennessee, for Appellants, Sherilyn A. Bialecke, Lindsey E. Bialecke, Keagan A. Bialecke, and Aubrey McKenna Bialecke.

J. Bartlett Quinn and Charles D. Lawson, Chattanooga, Tennessee, for Appellees, Chattanooga Publishing Company and American Zurich Insurance Company.


This workers' compensation appeal has been referred to the Special Workers' Compensation Appeals Panel of the Supreme Court in accordance with Tenn. Code Ann. 50-6-225(e)(3) for hearing and reporting to the Supreme Court findings of fact and conclusions of law. Kenneth Bialecke was killed in a car wreck while going to work early one morning. His widow and minor children sued his employer and its insurance carrier seeking workers' compensation death benefits. After hearing the proof presented at trial, the Chancellor dismissed the cause of action, finding that Mr. Bialecke's death did not arise out of and did not occur in the course of his employment, because the fatal accident occurred as the employee was on his way to his place of employment and, therefore, he had not yet begun his work day. After carefully reviewing the record and applicable authorities, we conclude that the Chancellor's judgment should be affirmed.


Court: TWCA


Gregory D. Jordan and W. Paul Whitt, Rainey, Kizer, Reviere & Bell, Jackson, Tennessee, for the appellants, Humboldt Utilities and The Tennessee Municipal League Risk Management Pool

Stephen C. Brooks, Jackson, Tennessee, for the appellee, Carl D. Pirtle

Judge: JOE C. LOSER, JR.

This workers' compensation appeal has been referred to the Special Workers' Compensation Appeals Panel of the Tennessee Supreme Court in accordance with 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. In this appeal, the employer insists the evidence preponderates against the trial court's findings that the employee's back and arm injuries were causally related to his work The employer also insists the trial court erred in making a single award for separate accidental injuries occurring at different times. As discussed below, the Panel has concluded the judgment should be affirmed in part and remanded to the trial court for separate awards for the back and hand injuries.


Court: TWCA


Paul G. Summers, Richard M. Murrell (on briefs), Diane Stamey Dycus (oral argument) and Ronald W. McNutt (at trial), Office of the Attorney General and Reporter, Nashville, Tennessee, for the Appellant, Second Injury Fund.

Debbie Holliman (at trial), E. Guy Holliman (on appeal), Farrar & Holliman, Carthage, Tennessee, for the Appellee, Roger Shoulders.

Stacey Choate, Wimberly, Lawson, Seale, Wright & Daves, Cookeville, Tennessee, for the Appellee, Pasminco Zinc., Inc.


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 Defendant Second Injury Fund has appealed the findings of the trial court, which determined that the Employee is entitled to recover permanent total disability until age sixty-six. We find that Employee is not permanently and totally disabled, and we therefore modify the decision of the trial court.


Court: TCA


David D. Wolfe, Dickson, Tennessee, for the appellant, Christopher Stanley Lashlee.

Timothy V. Potter, Dickson, Tennessee, for the appellee, Misty Dawn (Lashlee) Rose.


This appeal involves the custody and visitation arrangements concerning two adolescent girls. Less than one year after the parents' divorce, the mother filed a petition in the Chancery Court for Dickson County seeking to modify the permanent parenting plan. The father responded by seeking other modifications in the visitation provisions in the parenting plan. Following a bench trial, the trial court found that a material change in circumstances had occurred and increased the mother's visitation with the children. The father asserts for the first time on this appeal that no change of circumstances had occurred that was significant enough to warrant a modification of the parenting plan. We have determined that the father cannot take issue with the lack of evidence regarding a material change in circumstances because he failed to raise the issue in the trial court.


Court: TCCA


Andre Lamont Mayfield, Mountain City, Tennessee, Pro Se.

Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; Renee W. Turner, Assistant Attorney General; Victor S. Johnson, III, District Attorney General; and Lisa Naylor, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge: GLENN

The petitioner pled guilty in 1993 to three counts of aggravated rape and one count of aggravated robbery and was sentenced to twenty years for each aggravated rape conviction and ten years for the aggravated robbery conviction, with all sentences to be served concurrently. Later, the Department of Correction determined that he should have been sentenced as a multiple rapist rather than a Range I, standard offender, as had occurred, and he was allowed to withdraw his pleas of guilty. In 1999, he was tried and convicted of two counts of aggravated kidnapping and single counts of aggravated rape, aggravated robbery, and rape and received an effective sentence of fifty years. These convictions and sentences were affirmed on direct appeal. See State v. Andre L. Mayfield, No. M1999-02415-CCA-R3-CD, 2001 WL 637700, at *1 (Tenn. Crim. App. June 11, 2001), perm. to appeal denied (Tenn. Oct. 29, 2001). Subsequently, he filed a number of legal actions, including two petitions for post-conviction relief, the denial of which is the basis for this present appeal. We affirm the dismissals.

Matching Funds for Federal Grant

TN Attorney General Opinions

Date: 2006-08-18

Opinion Number: 06-133


Legal News
Election 2006

Legal News
TBA says keep courses in Rule 31 program
The TBA today commented on changes in the court-annexed dispute resolution program, which had been proposed by the Alternative Dispute Resolution Commission earlier this year. The comments support clarification of the rule to restrict neutrals from presiding over procedures other than mediation and to require that generall dispute resolution directives be accomplished by local rules rather than standing orders of reference. The TBA opposes a change removing the requirement that Rule 31 family law mediators must take courses in family law every two years to continue to be listed.
See the entire comment.
6th Circuit more conservative, hard to predict
The Bush administration's warrantless wiretapping program is heading toward a federal appellate court loaded with the president's own appointees. However, veterans of cases before the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals caution that the court's mixed record in a broad range of rulings covering elections, death penalty cases, religious displays and other civil liberties issues make it difficult to predict how its judges will view the surveillance the administration says is crucial to stopping terrorists.
Read it in the Knoxville News Sentinel.
March trial was a victory for cameras in courtroom
A decade ago, many lawyers thought that allowing gavel-to-gavel television coverage of high profile trials would lead to showboating, lack of privacy for jurors and grandstanding witnesses. In the March trial, those fears were proved unfounded.
Read Gail Kerr's column in the Tennessean.
12 jurors drew close during trial's 9 days
Jurors in the recent Perry March trial spent nine days together "100 percent of the time," one juror says, including a trip to a Titans' game. One of the 12, juror Richard Reinoehl, had high praise for court officials and how they were treated.
Read about the jurors' stay in the Tennessean.
Guilty pleas coming in Waltz case
Former Shelby County commissioner Michael Hooks pleaded guilty this morning to accepting $24,200 in bribes in the FBI's Tennessee Waltz public corruption investigation. Later today, attorneys indicated that state Sen. Kathryn Bowers may be ready to plead guilty to bribery charges stemming from the same investigation.
Read the Commercial Appeal story
Young execution set, counsel seeks to withdraw
The Tennessee Supreme Court filed an order today setting the execution date for Leornard J. Young for Nov. 2. The court affirmed Young's conviction of first degree murder and sentence of death. Young's counsel of record, Assistant Shelby County Public Defender Tony N. Brayton, filed a motion seeking a stay of Young's scheduled execution and seeking to withdraw from further representation of Young.
Read the court's order.
Governor walks fine line on justice pick
Veteran Tennessean columnist Larry Daughtrey considers the circumstances surrounding the nomination to the open seat on the Tennessee Supreme Court, with the Judicial Selection Commission set to meet again this week. Would politics in the process cause opponents of the Tennessee Plan to work for its repeal?
Read the column.
UT law welcomes class of 2009
The University of Tennessee College of Law today welcomed members of the Class of '09. During the Introductory Period that runs through Friday, the students will hear from recent graduates and others with suggestions for maximizing their law school experience. Keynote speaker today was 1996 UT law graduate Bruce McMullen, a partner in the Memphis firm of Thomason, Hendrix, Harvey, Johnson & Mitchell .

Election 2006
Second candidate files suit
A second unsuccessful candidate for Knox County political office his filed a lawsuit seeking a ruling that term limits were in effect before the election. The latest lawsuit has been filed by Scott Emge, who was an unsuccessful Democratic candidate for register of deeds. Republican Steve Hall was re-elected register of deeds. "A sore loser is still a loser," Hall said. "This lawsuit will not amount to a hill of beans."
Read more in the News Sentinel.
City judge gives up cases to campaign
Clarksville City Judge Charles Smith, who qualified this week to run for city mayor in November, recused himself from the bench Friday, citing the Tennessee Code of Judicial Conduct's regulations on the participation of judges in elections. Alan Glenn, a Court of Criminal Appeals judge who chairs the Judicial Ethics Committee, said a recusal is not the same as a resignation. However, because Smith is a part-time judge, the campaign rules "become a little more complicated," he said.
Read more in The Leaf-Chronicle.

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