Barker portrait unveiled today

The Chattanooga legal community gathered at the Hamilton County Courthouse this afternoon for a portrait unveiling of former Tennessee Supreme Court Chief Justice William M. "Mickey" Barker. Barker, a Chattanooga native, served 10 years on the state's highest court, three of which were spent as chief justice. Following retirement from the court in 2008, Barker began a dispute resolution practice with Chambliss, Bahner & Stophel, where he continues to work. An editorial today in the Chattanooga Times Free Press called Barker "one of the most distinguished and respected members of Tennessee's legal profession."

Read more of the paper's tribute

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.

00 - TN Supreme Court
00 - TN Worker's Comp Appeals
00 - TN Supreme Court - Rules
02 - 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.

CHARLOTTE BRANSON v. JOYCE FITZGERALD, d/b/a REALTY EXECUTIVES OF KINGSTON
CORRECTION is on page 2, line 5 the word principle is changed to principal.


Court: TCA

Attorneys:

Heather G. Anderson, Knoxville, Tennessee for the Appellant, Joyce Fitzgerald, d/b/a Realty Executives of Kingston.

Jack H. McPherson, Jr., Kingston, Tennessee for the Appellee, Charlotte Branson.

Judge: SWINEY

Charlotte Branson ("Plaintiff") sued Joyce Fitzgerald, d/b/a Realty Executives of Kingston with regard to real estate commissions for several specific transactions. After a trial, the Trial Court entered an order finding and holding, inter alia, that Plaintiff was entitled to a judgment against Ms. Fitzgerald for the commissions on three of the transactions. Ms. Fitzgerald appeals to this Court. We affirm.

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCA/2010/bransonc_CORR_010610.pdf


IN RE: THE ADOPTION OF GRACIE M.M.

Court: TCA

Attorneys:

Gary D. Beasley, Murfreesboro, Tennessee, for the appellant, David M.

David L. Scott, Murfreesboro, Tennessee, for the appellees, Adam Z. and Jennifer Z.

Judge: STAFFORD

This is an appeal from a termination of parental rights. Finding that the termination was contested and that the trial court failed to appoint a guardian ad litem, we vacate the order of the trial court and remand.

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCA/2010/gracie_010610.pdf


STATE OF TENNESSEE v. DARREN BROWN

Court: TCCA

Attorneys:

Lance R. Chism (on appeal); Juni Ganguli and James Thomas (at trial), Memphis, Tennessee, for the appellant, Darren Brown.

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; Clarence E. Lutz, Assistant Attorney General; William L. Gibbons, District Attorney General; and Alanda Dwyer and Colin Campbell, Assistant District Attorneys General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge: GLENN

The defendant, Darren Brown, was convicted by a Shelby County Criminal Court jury of first degree premeditated murder and sentenced to life imprisonment. On appeal, he argues that (1) the evidence was insufficient to sustain his conviction; (2) the trial court erred in denying his motion for mistrial in light of the prosecutor's improper closing argument; and (3) the State's comment on the defendant's post-arrest silence constitutes plain error. Following our review, we affirm the judgment of the trial court.

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCCA/2010/brownd_010610.pdf


STATE OF TENNESSEE v. RAMONE PIERRE GHOLSTON

Court: TCCA

Attorneys:

Jeffry S. Grimes, Clarksville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Ramone Pierre Gholston.

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; Renee W. Turner, Senior Counsel; John Wesley Carney, Jr., District Attorney General; and John E. Finklea, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge: TIPTON

The Defendant, Ramone Pierre Gholston, was convicted by a Montgomery County jury of facilitation of first degree murder, a Class A felony, and facilitation of especially aggravated robbery, a Class B felony. The trial court sentenced the Defendant as a Range I, standard offender to twenty-one years for the facilitation of first degree murder and to ten years for the facilitation of especially aggravated robbery, to be served concurrently. On appeal, the Defendant contends that his sentence for the facilitation of first degree murder is excessive. Because no written waiver of ex post factor rights signed by the Defendant is in the record, the Defendant was improperly sentenced under the 2005 amendments to the Sentencing Act of 1989. We reverse the judgment of the trial court, and we remand the case for resentencing.

http://www.tba2.org/tba_files/TCCA/2010/gholstonr_010610.pdf


TODAY'S NEWS

Legal News
Politics
Upcoming
TBA Member Services

Legal News
New MJP admission instructions available
The Tennessee Board of Law Examiners now has information available on how in-house counsel can register to comply with the new aspects of Rule 7. The new rules for multi-jurisdictional practice/in-house counsel admission went into effect Jan. 1.
Access new MJP admission rules
Trial date set for Dumas
A trial date of April 5-7 has been set in the case of Davidson County General Sessions Judge Gloria Dumas, who is facing misconduct charges. Dumas is accused of tardiness, nepotism and misuse of appointment power. In response, Dumas has claimed she is being singled out for practices that are common in general sessions courts. The Knoxville News Sentinel reported the news.
Download the order setting the trial date
Peoples' replacement expected in March
According to the Administrative Office of the Courts, appointment of a new Hamilton County chancellor to replace Howell Peoples should come by the end of March. Peoples tendered his resignation Monday, triggering a 60-day window for the Judicial Selection Commission to recommend three possible replacements to the governor. The replacement will serve until August and then face election to finish out the term. Among those mentioned as possible candidates is Chattanooga attorney Leah Gerbitz, daughter of former district attorney and criminal court judge Gary Gerbitz. Read more from Chattanoogan.com or read a tribute to Peoples from the Times Free Press.

Bartlett judicial hopefuls make pitch
The seven candidates seeking interim appointment as Bartlett city judge were interviewed by the Board of Mayor and Aldermen this week. The candidate selected will replace Judge George McCrary, who died in October.
Read about the candidates in the Memphis Commercial Appeal
Chattanooga to hire Atlanta attorney
The Chattanooga city council voted yesterday to hire an Atlanta attorney to help deal with possible legal action from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) over water quality. City attorney Mike McMahan said former EPA employee and current King & Spalding lawyer Adam Sowatzka was hired for the job because of his knowledge of the issues as well as the inner workings of the agency.
Learn more about Sowatzka at Chattanoogan.com
Memphis attorneys open public interest firm
Former Memphis Area Legal Services director of advocacy Webb Brewer and attorney Steve Barlow have formed Brewer & Barlow PLC, which will focus on public interest law including tenants rights and predatory lending relief. Barlow formerly served as executive director of the University Neighborhood Development Corp., a community group that promotes revitalization of areas around the University of Memphis. The new firm's first project will be to serve as local counsel in a predatory lending suit against Wells Fargo.
The Daily News has the story
Politics
Ford reportedly eyeing run as NY senator
After losing a race for the U.S. Senate in Tennessee, Harold Ford Jr. is now eyeing a similar race in New York according to the New York Times. Ford, who moved to New York three years ago, reportedly has told friends he will decide in the next 45 days whether to run. He would be taking on freshman Senator Kirsten Gillibrand in the Democratic primary.
The Commercial Appeal has the story
Fincher won't run for U.S. House
State Rep. Henry Fincher, D-Cookeville, announced today he will not run to succeed Bart Gordon in the U.S. House of Representatives. Fincher, an attorney, told The Associated Press that he would have to take 10 months off and raise at least $2 million to mount a successful bid. He joins fellow Democratic Rep. Mike McDonald of Portland in deciding against a run.
Read more in the News Sentinel
Upcoming
Victor Ashe to speak at Baker Center
Former Knoxville mayor Victor Ashe, who recently completed five years as U.S. ambassador to Poland, will speak at two events this month sponsored by the Howard H. Baker Jr. Center for Public Policy at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. The events will take place Jan. 14 and 26.
Find out more
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

 
 
Discontinue your TBA Today subscription? ... Surely not!
But if you must, visit the TBALink web site at:
http://www.tba2.org/tbatoday/unsub_tbatoday.php

Questions, comments: Email us at TBAToday@tnbar.org

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 2010 Tennessee Bar Association