Court reporter bill on hold; trust legislation moves to floor

Consideration of legislation requiring licensure of court reporting (SB 2925/HB2905) was deferred for one week in the House Family and Children's Affairs committee this morning. Representatives of the Tennessee Court Reporters Association, proponents of the bill, have indicated that additional amendments will be offered.

The Tennessee General Assembly would study unsolved civil rights crimes under Resolution HJR836, recommended for adoption by the House Judiciary Committee today.

The TBA backed legislation (SB3882/HB 2888) to subject trusts created under the Tennessee Investment Services Trust Act to certain child support, alimony and property division orders also moved out of the House Judiciary Committee this morning.

The House Judiciary Committee also cleared the administration's bill (HB4213/SB4196) to allow administrative driver's license revocation when an officer makes a DUI stop.
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 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
01 - TN Worker's Comp Appeals
00 - TN Supreme Court - Rules
01 - TN Court of Appeals
06 - TN Court of Criminal Appeals
10 - 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.

SUPREME COURT DISCRETIONARY APPEALS Grants & Denials List
There were no Supreme Court grants or denials filed this week


Court: TSC

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TSC/2008/certlist033108.pdf


RONALD L. STIEF V. MADARIS EXTERIORS, INC. ET AL.

Court: TWCA

Attorneys:

Keith S. Smartt, McMinnville, Tennessee, for the Appellant, Ronald L. Stief.

John T. Rice, Chattanooga, Tennessee, for the Appellees, Madaris Exteriors, Inc. and Builders Mutual Insurance Company.

Judge: HARRIS SR.

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 to the Supreme Court of findings of fact and conclusions of law. This is an action for workers' compensation benefits brought by the Appellant, Ronald L. Stief. The trial court granted summary judgment to Appellees, Madaris Exteriors, Inc. and Builders Mutual Insurance Company, on the ground Mr. Stief was an independent contractor, and dismissed the case. Mr. Stief has appealed. We find that the trial court erred in granting summary judgment and, therefore, reverse the judgment of the trial court and remand this matter for further proceedings.

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TSC_WCP/2008/stiefr_040208.pdf


MIKE PARSONS, ET AL. v. JAMES WELLS, ET AL.

Court: TCA

Attorneys:

Mike Parsons and Pat Parsons, Pro se.

T.D. Forrester, Covington, Tennessee, for the appellees, James Wells and Sara Wells.

Judge: FARMER

Following a hearing, the trial court granted Defendants' motion for summary judgment where Plaintiffs failed to respond to Defendants' motion prior to the hearing. Plaintiffs filed a motion to alter or amend, asserting that they had received notice of the hearing but did not receive a copy of Defendants' motion itself. The trial court found the motion had been mailed with the notice of hearing, and that Plaintiffs failed to respond timely. Plaintiffs appeal; we affirm.

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCA/2008/parsonsm_040208.pdf


FRANK A. ARMSTRONG, JR. v. STATE OF TENNESSEE

Court: TCCA

Attorneys:

Kyle E. Dodd, Pulaski, Tennessee, for the appellant, Frank A. Armstrong, Jr.

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; Lacy Wilber, Assistant Attorney General; T. Michel Bottoms, District Attorney General; and Larry Nickell, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge: WITT

The petitioner, Frank A. Armstrong, Jr., appeals from the Maury County Circuit Court's denial of his petition for post-conviction relief from his 2003 jury conviction of second degree murder, for which he was sentenced to a 20-year term in the Department of Correction. The record supports the post-conviction court's determination that the petitioner failed to establish infirmity of the conviction by reason of ineffective assistance of counsel, and we affirm the post-conviction court's order.

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCCA/2008/armstrongf_040208.pdf


KIMBERLY RUTH BROWN v. STATE OF TENNESSEE

Court: TCCA

Attorneys:

Donna Orr Hargrove, District Public Defender, and Andrew Jackson Dearing, III, Assistant Public Defender, for the appellant, Kimberly Ruth Brown.

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; Lacy Wilber, Assistant Attorney General; Charles Frank Crawford, Jr., District Attorney General; and Michael David Randles and Ann L. Filer, Assistant District Attorneys General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge: TIPTON

The petitioner, Kimberly Ruth Brown, appeals from the Bedford County Circuit Court's dismissal of her petition for post-conviction relief from felony drug convictions and an effective sentence of eighteen years. The petitioner argues on appeal that the trial court erred in dismissing her petition as untimely because due process requires consideration of the petition notwithstanding the fact it was filed almost seventeen months after her judgment of conviction was final. Because the trial court properly dismissed the claim, we affirm its judgment.

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCCA/2008/brownk_040208.pdf


STATE OF TENNESSEE v. MILTON LEBRON BYRD

Court: TCCA

Attorneys:

Jerry H. Summers and Marya L. Wegenka, Chattanooga, Tennessee (on appeal), and Kelli L. Black, Chattanooga, Tennessee (at trial), for the appellant, Milton Lebron Byrd.

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; Renee W. Turner, Assistant Attorney General; William H. Cox, III, District Attorney General; and Bates W. Bryan, Jr., Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.

The defendant, Milton Lebron Byrd, was convicted of attempted first degree premeditated murder, a Class A felony, and aggravated assault, a Class C felony. The trial court merged the offenses and sentenced the defendant to life without the possibility of parole as a repeat violent offender. On appeal, he contends that the evidence is not sufficient to support his conviction and that the repeat violent offenders statute is unconstitutional in violation of the prohibition against cruel and unusual punishment and of his due process and equal protection rights. We affirm the judgment of the trial court.

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCCA/2008/byrdmi_040208.pdf


CEDRIC DOSS v. STATE OF TENNESSEE

Court: TCCA

Attorneys:

R. Andrew Hutchinson, Memphis, Tennessee, for the appellant, Cedric Doss.

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; Sophia S. Lee, Assistant Attorney General; William L. Gibbons, District Attorney General; and Alanda Dwyer, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge: WELLES

The Petitioner, Cedric Doss, appeals from the order of the Shelby County Criminal Court denying post-conviction relief. On appeal, he asserts that the post-conviction court erred by denying his petition because the evidence presented below demonstrated that he did not receive the effective assistance of counsel prior to pleading guilty to especially aggravated robbery. Following our review of the record and the parties' briefs, we affirm the post-conviction court's order denying relief.

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCCA/2008/dossc_040208.pdf


STATE OF TENNESSEE v. TERRELL ANTRON GREER

Court: TCCA

Attorneys:

Gregory D. Gookin, Assistant Public Defender, Jackson, Tennessee, for the Appellant, Terrell Antron Greer.

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; Preston Shipp, Assistant Attorney General; Jerry Woodall, District Attorney General; and Al Earls, Assistant District Attorney General, for the Appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge: WELLES

The Defendant, Terrell Antron Greer, was convicted upon a jury verdict of one count of the sale or delivery of less than .5 grams of cocaine, a Class C felony, and he was sentenced to five years for that conviction. He was likewise convicted of two counts of the sale or delivery of more than .5 grams of cocaine, Class B felonies, and he was sentenced to eleven years for each of those convictions. All of his sentences were ordered to be served concurrently in the Department of Correction as a Range I, standard offender. In this appeal, he asserts that the evidence was not sufficient to support his convictions and that his sentences are excessive. Following our review of the appellate record, the parties' briefs, and applicable law, we affirm the judgments of the trial court.

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCCA/2008/greert_040208.pdf


STATE OF TENNESSEE v. CHARLES EDWARD STANLEY

Court: TCCA

Attorneys:

David Neal Brady, District Public Defender, and Joe L. Finley, Jr., Assistant Public Defender, for the appellant, Charles Edward Stanley.

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; David H. Findley, Assistant Attorney General; William Edward Gibson, District Attorney General; and Gary McKenzie, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge: TIPTON

The defendant, Charles Edward Stanley, was convicted by a Cumberland County criminal court jury of rape, a Class B felony, and was sentenced as a Range I, standard offender to nine years in the Department of Correction. On appeal, the defendant contends that the evidence is not sufficient to support his conviction and that the trial court erred in sentencing him. We affirm the judgment of the trial court.

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCCA/2008/stanleyc_040208.pdf


"General County Election" for purposes of Tenn. Code Ann. Section 2-5-151

TN Attorney General Opinions

Date: 2008-03-31

Opinion Number: 08-68

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/AG/2008/ag_08_68.pdf

County Authority to Issue Burning Bans

TN Attorney General Opinions

Date: 2008-03-31

Opinion Number: 08-69

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/AG/2008/ag_08_69.pdf

Constitutionality of House Bill 2778 (2008)

TN Attorney General Opinions

Date: 2008-03-31

Opinion Number: 08-70

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/AG/2008/ag_08_70.pdf

Probable Cause to Arrest for the Offense of Violating an Order of Protection or Restraining Order

TN Attorney General Opinions

Date: 2008-03-31

Opinion Number: 08-71

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/AG/2008/ag_08_71.pdf

Teacher Eligibility for Election to City Council

TN Attorney General Opinions

Date: 2008-03-31

Opinion Number: 08-72

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/AG/2008/ag_08_72.pdf

City Funds for Non-Profit Organization

TN Attorney General Opinions

Date: 2008-03-31

Opinion Number: 08-73

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/AG/2008/ag_08_73.pdf

Constitutionality of Senate Bill 4104/House Bill 4089

TN Attorney General Opinions

Date: 2008-04-01

Opinion Number: 08-74

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/AG/2008/ag_08_74.pdf

Constitutionality of the General Assembly's Adoption of the American Medical Association Guides to the Evaluation of Permanent Impairment

TN Attorney General Opinions

Date: 2008-04-01

Opinion Number: 08-75

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/AG/2008/ag_08_75.pdf

Extent of Home Health Care an LPN May Provide to Patient with Ventilator

TN Attorney General Opinions

Date: 2008-04-01

Opinion Number: 08-76

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/AG/2008/ag_08_76.pdf

Constitutionality of HB 3137 Relating to Confidentiality of Handgun Permit Records

TN Attorney General Opinions

Date: 2008-04-02

Opinion Number: 08-77

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/AG/2008/ag_08_77.pdf

TODAY'S NEWS

Legal News
Upcoming
Passages
TennBarU CLE
Disciplinary Actions
TBA Member Services

Legal News
Deadline set for next step in desegregation case
U.S. District Court Judge Bernice Donald has given all sides in the 45-year-old Shelby County Schools System desegregation case until April 26 to agree on a special master to oversee restart of desegregation in the schools. The move comes after Donald ruled in July that the school system had not achieved unitary status and required more vigorous court supervision. Most observers agree that the ruling will lead to the renewal of widespread court-ordered busing throughout the city.
The Memphis Daily News has more
Most FedEx cases to continue
A federal judge has ruled that many of the state cases against FedEx Ground's independent contractor model may go forward as class action suits. Judge Robert Miller of the U.S. District Court in northern Indiana ruled that 18 of 27 cases may continue, creating a case that could include 12,000 or more past and current drivers, according to one plaintiff lawyer's estimate. The issue is whether the contractors are employees who are due benefits such as insurance and disability. Disaffected drivers say the operating agreements they signed did not adequately portray their working conditions or pay.
The Commercial Appeal reports
UT law offers loan assistance to public interest grads
The University of Tennessee College of Law has created a Loan Repayment Assistance Program to provide financial assistance to graduates who obtain employment in the field of public interest law and need assistance in repaying law school loans. For its inaugural year, the college will offer two $3,600 awards to graduating 3Ls. Applications must be submitted to the Student Records Office no later than noon April 14. Recipients will be announced April 21.

Adams and Reese recognized for pro bono work
Adams and Reese won first place in the community relations category at the National Legal Marketing Association's recent conference. In January 2007, the firm launched an innovative pro bono program in cooperation with National Appleseed. Now with a year under its belt, the firm reports that the partnership, coupled with a mandatory pro bono requirement for attorneys, has increased its pro bono hours 500 percent.
Read more in the Memphis Business Journal
Family appeals dismissal of MySpace suit
The family of a teenage girl who says she was sexually assaulted by a 19-year-old man she met on MySpace.com asked a federal appeals court to revive their lawsuit against the social networking web site. A U.S. district judge dismissed the $30 million suit in February 2007 saying interactive computer services like MySpace are immune from such lawsuits under the Communications Decency Act of 1996.
WTVC News has this AP story
Upcoming
UT Law to honor the late Judge Matherne
The University of Tennessee College of Law will dedicate the L. Kirby Matherne Moot Court Classroom with a ceremony April 18 beginning at 4 p.m. in the second floor rotunda of the law school. Matherne was a 1948 graduate of the college whose distinguished career included serving as a judge of the Tennessee Court of Appeals. He died in 2000 at age 80.
Read more about Matherne and the event on the school's web site
Passages
Knoxville prosecutor dies
David Dake, a veteran prosecutor with the U.S. Attorney's Office, died Tuesday morning at St. Mary's Medical Center. He was 56 and had been ill with cancer for several months. Dake served as a prosecutor for 21 years and handled a number of major organized crime and other high-profile cases during his career. He graduated from the University of Tennessee College of Law in 1976, worked in private practice and served as a prosecutor in the Knox County District Attorney General's office for nine years. Funeral details were incomplete at press time.
Read about his life in the News Sentinel
TennBarU CLE
Getting paid a problem? TennBarU online ethics course can help
Collecting fees is not directly addressed in the Rules of Professional Conduct, however both the rules and malpractice carriers have something to say on the issue. This online course from TennBarU explores practice management strategies to help reduce the number of non-paying clients and discusses ethical obligations for collecting fees from such clients.
Register or learn more
Disciplinary Actions
Two Nashville lawyers censured
David H. Hornik was censured Feb. 19 for failing to respond to requests for information from the Board of Professional Responsibility and a client regarding a complaint. Gary D. Copas was censured on March 27 for neglecting a client's case and failing to keep the client informed about the case. He also was ordered to refund $2,500 to a client.
Read the BPR release for Hornick
Read the release for Copas
TBA Member Services
Discounts from Office Depot
Are you saving yet? Sign up for the TBA-Office Depot Program and begin saving. TBA Members receive significant discounts on office supplies from Office Depot.
Find out more

 
 
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About this publication: Today's News is a compilation of digests of news reports of interest to Tennessee lawyers compiled by TBA staff, links to digested press releases, and occasional stories about the TBA and other activities written by the TBA staff or members. Statements or opinions herein are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect those of the Tennessee Bar Association, its officers, board or staff.

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