Supreme Court ruling affirms prosecutors' powers

The state Supreme Court found in a ruling released yesterday that now-retired Anderson County Judge James "Buddy" Scott overstepped his bounds in denying plea agreements negotiated between prosecutors and defendants in two separate murder cases. The court wrote that absent an extraordinary showing of betrayal of the public interest, judges have no authority to overrule prosecutors who seek to dismiss a case. The opinion also addressed the issue of a victim's right to be heard regarding plea agreements and motions to dismiss. Read the majority's opinion. Read Justice Wade's dissent. The News Sentinel has more on the story:,1406,KNS_347_5314620,00.html

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


Court: TWCA


Kyle C. Atkins, Humboldt, Tennessee, for the Appellant, Auto-Owners Insurance Company

T. J. Emison, Alamo, Tennessee, for the Appellee, Sonya Blake


This workers' compensation appeal has been referred to the Special Workers' Compensation Appeals Panel in accordance with Tennessee Code Annotated section 50-6-225(e)(3) for hearing and reporting of findings of fact and conclusions of law. The only issue presented in this case is whether the trial court erred in finding Terry Blake was an employee of Southside Baptist Church within the meaning of the Tennessee Workers' Compensation Act at the time of his fatal injury on April 29, 2004. In our view, the evidence does not preponderate against the trial court's finding that Blake was an employee, and we affirm the judgment of the trial court.


Court: TCA


Jeffrey D. Germany, Memphis, Tennessee, for the appellant, Charles W. Darnell

R. Porter Feild, Memphis, Tennessee, for the appellees, Johnny W. Brown and Marsha Brown, individually and d/b/a Hardscapes and J & B Company


Plaintiff appeals the trial court's dismissal of Plaintiff's action immediately following a hearing on Plaintiff's motion for temporary injunction. We affirm in part, vacate in part, and remand for further proceedings.


Court: TCA


Brandy Slaybaugh, Knoxville, Tennessee, for the Appellant, B.R.P.

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter, and Amy T. McConnell, Assistant Attorney General, Nashville, Tennessee, for the Appellee, State of Tennessee, Department of Children's Services

Judge: LEE

B.R.P. (Father) was sentenced to serve eighteen years in prison when his daughter was six years old. The trial court terminated his parental rights based on Tenn. Code Ann. Section 36-1-116(g)(6), which provides for the termination of parental rights of a person who is incarcerated under a sentence of ten years or more if that person's child is under the age of eight at the time of sentencing. In this appeal, Father argues that Tenn. Code Ann. Section 36-1-116(g)(6) is inapplicable because Father might not have to serve his entire sentence if he obtains postconviction relief. He also maintains that termination of his parental rights is not in the best interest of his daughter. After careful review of the evidence and applicable authorities, we hold that the possibility of postconviction relief is irrelevant to a trial court's determination of whether the requirements of Tenn. Code Ann. Section 36-1-116(g)(6) have been met. We further hold that the evidence does not preponderate against the trial court's finding by clear and convincing evidence that termination of Father's parental rights was in the best interest of his daughter. Therefore, we affirm.

With Dissenting Opinion

Court: TCA


James B. M. Hooper, Chattanooga, Tennessee, for the appellant, C & W Asset Acquisition, LLC, as assignee of Chrysler First Financial Services Corporation

Donald H. Oggs, Sweetwater, Tennessee, pro se appellee

Judge: LEE

In this suit for breach of contract, the assignee of a loan agreement alleged that the defendant was in default of the agreement and requested judgment for monies advanced, plus interest and attorney's fees. The defendant denied owing the debt. The trial court found the plaintiff had failed to carry its burden of proof and dismissed the case. Upon our determination that the evidence does not preponderate against the finding of the trial court, judgment in favor of the defendant is affirmed.

Swiney Dissenting


Court: TCA


Kenyale Pirtle, pro se

Michael E. Moore, Acting Attorney General and Reporter, and Bradley W. Flippin, Assistant Attorney General, for the appellee, Tennessee Department of Correction


Upon review under common-law writ of certiorari, the trial court affirmed disciplinary actions against Petitioner/Appellant by the Tennessee Department of Correction. We affirm in part and remand.


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