Free seminars will help improve online research skills

The Tennessee Bar Association and Fastcase will be offering three online webinars in November to help you boost your online legal research skills. All are free and are accredited for one-hour of E&P CLE credit. The webinars will give you an overview of how Fastcase works and how you can use it more effectively in your practice. All TBA members have free access to Fastcase and can use it to research court opinions from all 50 states, the U.S. Supreme Court and all Federal Courts of Appeal, as well as statutes, regulations, constitutions, and court rules from all 50 states and from federal sources. Both courses begin at noon central/1 p.m. eastern.

Register for the Nov. 13 seminar

Register for the Nov. 20 seminar

Register for the Nov. 27 seminar
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 or to obtain a text version of each opinion, 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 the TBA's Membership Central.

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

You can obtain full-text versions of the opinions two ways. We recommend that you download the Opinions to your computer and then open them from there. 1) 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. 2) 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.


Court: TSC


Court: TCA


Kathryn R. Leiderman, Jasper, Tennessee, for appellant, Jerry Bonner.

Scott A. Rhodes, Brentwood, Tennessee, for appellee, Andrew Billen.

Jeffrey L. Cleary, Chattanooga, Tennessee, for appellee, Risk Enterprise Management Limited, Inc.


In this action for damages for personal injuries sustained in an automobile accident, plaintiff obtained a Judgment against defendant driver, an underinsured motorist, and the intervener who had paid plaintiff's workers compensation benefits, was awarded a lien against the Judgment entered on behalf of the plaintiff. On appeal, we affirm the Judgment of the Trial Court.


Court: TCA


C. Michael Cardwell, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellant, E. S.

M. Allen Ehmling, Gallatin, Tennessee, for the appellee, the Association For Guidance, Aid, Placement and Empathy, Inc.

Linda M. Anderson, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellee, Guardian Ad Litem.


The trial court terminated the parental rights of the father of a six-year old girl on multiple grounds, including abandonment, failure to substantially comply with the permanency plan, and failure to remedy persistent conditions that diminish the child's chances for early integration into a safe, stable and permanent home. The father argues that the agency failed to make reasonable efforts to reunify him with his child and that since he was incarcerated when he first learned for certain that he was the child's father, and has been in prison ever since, none of his parental failures can be held against him. We affirm the trial court's finding that the ground of substantial noncompliance with the permanency plan was proved by clear and convincing evidence. We also affirm the trial court's finding that termination of the father's parental rights is in the child's best interests.


Court: TCCA


Nicholas Coleman, Pikeville, Tennessee, Pro Se.

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; and Jennifer L. Bledsoe, Assistant Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge: OGLE

The pro se petitioner, Nicholas Coleman, appeals the dismissal of his petition for writ of habeas corpus. The state has filed a motion requesting that this court affirm the trial court's judgment pursuant to Rule 20, Rules of the Court of Criminal Appeals. The petition fails to establish the petitioner's claim of an expired sentence. Accordingly, the state's motion is granted and the judgment of the trial court is affirmed.


Court: TCCA


James L. Flanary, Knoxville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Timothy Wade Davis.

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; J. Ross Dyer, Assistant Attorney General; Randall E. Nichols, District Attorney General; and Jason Haynes, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge: OGLE

A Knox County Criminal Court jury convicted the petitioner, Timothy Wade Davis, of four counts of rape of a child and one count of especially aggravated sexual exploitation of a minor, and the trial court sentenced him to an effective seventy-six years in confinement. This court affirmed the petitioner's convictions and sentences. See State v. Timothy Wade Davis, No. E2003-02162-CCA-R3-CD, 2004 Tenn. Crim. App. LEXIS 941 (Knoxville, Oct. 25, 2004), aff’d, State v. Davis, 185 S.W.3d 338 (Tenn. 2006). Subsequently, the petitioner filed a petition for post-conviction relief, and the post-conviction court denied the petition after an evidentiary hearing. On appeal, the petitioner contends that he received the ineffective assistance of counsel because his trial attorneys failed to object to the State's use of four photographs to establish four incidents of child rape when there was no accurate way to determine when the photographs were taken. Based upon the record and the parties' briefs, we affirm the judgment of the post-conviction court.


Court: TCCA


Brian S. Finlay, Chattanooga, Tennessee, (on appeal); Ardena J. Garth, District Public Defender; and Hilary Stuart, Assistant Public Defender, and Myrlene Marsa, Chattanooga, Tennessee, (at trial), for the appellant, Terrell Lee Davis.

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; Jennifer L. Bledsoe, Assistant Attorney General; William H. Cox, III, District Attorney General; and Neal Pinkston, Assistant District Attorney, for the appellee, the State of Tennessee.


Defendant, Terrell Lee Davis, was indicted for first degree premeditated murder, first degree felony murder, and especially aggravated kidnapping. Following a jury trial, Defendant was found guilty of the lesser included offense of second degree murder, and not guilty of felony murder and especially aggravated kidnapping. Following a sentencing hearing, the trial court sentenced Defendant as a Range I, standard offender, to twenty-two years. On appeal, Defendant argues that (1) the trial court erred in its jury instructions; (2) the trial court erred in limiting Defendant's cross-examination of State witnesses Eva Evans and Dr. Stanton Kessler; and (3) the trial court erred in denying Defendant's motion to suppress his statement to the police. After a thorough review, we affirm the judgment of the trial court.


Court: TCCA


Leonard Lebron Ross, Mountain City, Tennessee, Pro se.

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; Benjamin A. Ball, Assistant Attorney General; and William H. Cox, III , District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge: OGLE

The petitioner, Leonard Lebron Ross, filed a petition for a writ of error coram nobis in the Hamilton County Criminal Court. The trial court dismissed the petition for failure to state a proper claim for a writ of error coram nobis, which dismissal the petitioner appeals. The State filed a motion requesting that this Court affirm the trial court's denial of relief pursuant to Rule 20, Rules of the Court of Criminal Appeals. Upon review of the record and the parties' briefs, we conclude that the petition was properly dismissed. Accordingly, the State's motion is granted and the judgment of the trial court is affirmed.


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