Need for legal services draws strong media coverage

Newspapers and television stations across the state are telling about the need for legal services following Friday's news conference called by Chief Justice Janice Holder. "It is no exaggeration to say that low-income Tennesseans have little hope of legal assistance when they encounter civil legal problems," Holder told the gathering. Retired Chief Justice William Barker also spoke at the event, saying that "Equal justice under the law, if it means anything, means that we, as lawyers, ought to step up to the plate. Even if you're a corporate lawyer and have never set foot in a courtroom, we can find something for you to do."

Read more about the press conference at the AOC web site.

Read the AP account in the Tennessean

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
00 - TN Court of Appeals
02 - 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: TCCA


Ronald R. Reagan, Newport, Tennessee, for the Appellant, Lee Stanley Albright.

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; Michael E. Moore, Solicitor General; Leslie E. Price, Assistant Attorney General; James Dunn, District Attorney General; and Johnnie D. Sellars, Assistant District Attorney General, for the Appellee, State of Tennessee.


A Sevier County jury acquitted the Defendant, Lee Stanley Albright, of driving under the influence, second offense, but it found that the Defendant violated the implied consent law. The trial court revoked the Defendant's driver's license for two years. In this appeal, the Defendant contends: (1) the use of a criminal indictment to initiate proceedings against the Defendant for a violation of the implied consent law was improper; (2) the trial by jury of the violation of implied consent charge was improper; and (3) the evidence was insufficient to support the jury's finding of a violation of the implied consent law. After a thorough review of the record and the applicable law, we affirm the trial court's judgment.


Court: TCCA


David A. Stuart, Clinton, Tennessee, for the appellant, Keaton M. Guy.

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; Jennifer L. Bledsoe, Assistant Attorney General; David S. Clark, District Attorney General; and Sandra N. C. Donaghy, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.


The defendant, Keaton M. Guy, appeals the sentencing decision of the Anderson County Criminal Court. The defendant entered an open guilty plea to one count of reckless vehicular homicide, a Class C felony, and one count of aggravated assault, a Class D felony. Following a sentencing hearing, the trial court denied his application for judicial diversion and imposed concurrent sentences of four years and two years for the respective convictions. The court also denied the defendant's request for alternative sentencing and ordered that the effective four-year sentence be served in confinement. On appeal, the defendant raises three issues for our review: (1) whether the court abused its discretion in denying the application for judicial diversion; (2) whether the court imposed an excessive sentence based upon the erroneous application of enhancement and mitigating factors; and (3) whether the court erred by denying alternative sentencing, specifically probation. Following review of the record, we affirm the judgments of the trial court.


Legislative News
Legal News
TennBarU CLE
Disciplinary Actions

Legislative News
Constitutional candidates to be interviewed Dec. 15
Lieutenant Governor Ron Ramsey said today that applicants for the positions of State Treasurer, State Comptroller, and Secretary of State will be interviewed by select members of the Republican House and Senate caucuses on Dec. 15, 1 p.m., in the Legislative Plaza of the State Capitol. reports
Legal News
Accused 9/11 attackers plead guilty
All five of the Guantanamo detainees charged with planning and coordinating the Sept. 11 attacks have asked a military judge to accept their confessions in full. When asked by Judge Steven Henley whether he was prepared to enter pleas to the charges against him, Khalid Shaikh Mohammed -- who has described himself as the mastermind of the 2001 attacks -- replied, "Yes. We don't want to waste our time with motions. All of you are paid by the U.S. government. I'm not trusting any American."
Read about it in The New York Times
Martindale appointed to selection commission
Edward L. Martindale Jr. of Jackson was recently appointed to the Judicial Selection Commission. A Tennessee Association for Justice -- formerly the Tennessee Trial Lawyers Association -- nominee representing West Tennessee, he replaces Jim Emison of Alamo. His term ends Nov. 18, 2014.
Down the complete list
MALS helps woman with eviction crisis, news story generates aid
A woman and her terminally ill husband owe just $4,000 on the principal of their home of 30 years but will face foreclosure in less than a month because they cannot pay the mortgage anymore. At least that is how it was when Ida Morris contacted Memphis Area Legal Services (MALS) for help. She says she is putting her faith in God to help her. That, MALS and the publicity that is causing a rush of good will, may just keep her and her husband off the streets.
WMC-TV has the story
Shinseki chosen VA secretary
President-elect Barack Obama has chosen retired Gen. Eric K. Shinseki to be the next Veterans Affairs secretary, turning to a former Army chief of staff once vilified by the Bush administration for questioning its Iraq war strategy. Obama announced the selection of Shinseki, the first Army four-star general of Japanese-American ancestry, at a news conference Sunday in Chicago. He will be the first Asian-American to hold the post of Veterans Affairs secretary.
The Leaf-Chronicle reported this AP story
Greene County will ask for smaller cell restrictions
Greene County Mayor Alan Broyles told the County Commission's Budget and Finance Committee last week that county officials will ask the local legislative delegation for help in easing state square-footage restrictions at the detention center. The committee also learned that a county jail now under construction in Florida appears to have smaller cell-spaces than Tennessee's standards allow, a fact which may help an effort to reduce inmate space reqirements here.
Read about it in the Greeneville Sun
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
Ohio lawyer reinstated
Robert Natole Farinacci of Concord, Ohio, has been reinstated to the practice of law in Tennessee after complying with requirements for continuing legal education. He previously resided in Chattanooga.
View all attorneys suspended and reinstated for 2008 CLE violations

Discontinue your TBA Today subscription? ... Surely not!
But if you must, visit the TBALink web site at:

Questions, comments: Email us at

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.

© Copyright 2008 Tennessee Bar Association