Obama nominates Donald to appeals court

President Obama late Wednesday nominated Judge Bernice Donald for a seat on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit. Donald currently serves as U.S. District Judge for the Western District of Tennessee. "Judge Donald has shown an outstanding commitment to public service throughout her career and as a District Judge in Tennessee," Obama said in a statement released by the White House. Originally from DeSoto County, Miss., Donald has served on the federal bench in Memphis for 15 years. She graduated from Memphis State University and in 1979 received her law degree from the Cecil C. Humphreys School of Law.

The Commercial Appeal reports

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Court: TCA


Jola Moore, Esq., Nashville, Tennessee, Pro Se.

Wondimu Kabtihyimer Borena, Nashville, Tennessee, Pro Se.

Richard Hedgepath, Erik O. Thorngren, and Wendy L. Longmire, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellees, Yellow Cab Metro, Inc.; Tony and Rima Seman; and Muhammad Shaikh.


The former attorney for the plaintiff, who is seeking to recover a contingency fee pursuant to an attorney's lien she filed after her services were terminated, filed this appeal challenging the trial court's finding that the parties did not enter into a binding settlement agreement and the involuntary dismissal of the underlying personal injury action. The action was dismissed because the pro se plaintiff did not comply with orders of the court. The plaintiff's former attorney claims she has the independent right to enforce a settlement she negotiated, but which her client rejected, in order to recover a fee. The pro se plaintiff also seeks to set aside the involuntary dismissal of his case. Finding no merit to the arguments asserted on appeal, we affirm the trial court in all respects.


CORRECTION to add the attorney general to the front page of the opinion

Court: TCA


Eric D. Miller, Johnson City, Tennessee, for the appellant, Albert J. Hale.

John M. Russell and Lauren A. Wong, Memphis, Tennessee, for the appellee, Wal-Mart Associates, Inc.

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter, Michael E. Moore, Solicitor General, and Lindsey O. Appiah, Assistant Attorney General, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellee, James Neeley, Commissioner, Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development.


Claimant, an employee of Wal-Mart, was charged with possession of cocaine and pled guilty to a misdemeanor possession, and was then discharged for violating company policy. Claimant was not at work nor on Wal-Mart's property when the offense occurred. The agency found that claimant was discharged under disqualifying conditions and denied unemployment benefits. Throughout the appeals process, denial of benefits was upheld. On appeal to this Court, we hold that claimant violated Wal-Mart's policies by failing to report his conviction under a criminal drug statute to his employer within three days as required under the employer's policy. We affirm the denial of unemployment benefits to claimant.



Court: TCA


Luther Smith, Jr., Memphis, Tennessee, Defendant/Appellant, Pro Se.

Ellen Fite, Memphis, Tennessee, for the Plaintiff/Appellee, Donald M. Merriweather.

Judge: KIRBY

This is a personal injury action based on intentional assault. The plaintiff threw a beer bottle at the defendant, but missed him. As the plaintiff was walking away, the defendant hit the plaintiff on the back of the head with a beer bottle, causing a head injury. The plaintiff then sued the defendant. After a bench trial, the trial court held in favor of the plaintiff. The defendant now appeals. We affirm.



Court: TCCA


Bobby Ervin, Whiteville, Tennessee, Pro Se.

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; Benjamin A. Ball, Assistant Attorney General; Lawrence A. Whitley, District Attorney General; and Byrna Grant, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.


The Petitioner, Bobby Ervin, appeals from the order of the trial court dismissing his petition for post-conviction relief as time-barred. The State has filed a motion requesting that this Court affirm the judgment of the trial court pursuant to Rule 20 of the Rules of the Court of Criminal Appeals. We grant the State's motion and affirm the judgment of the trial court.



Court: TCCA


Edward L. Boring, Pikeville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Kenneth Meyer.

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; Sophia S. Lee, Assistant Attorney General and Reporter; James Michael Taylor, District Attorney General; and James William Pope, III, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.


The Defendant, Kenneth Meyer, was found guilty by a Bledsoe County Circuit Court jury of voluntary manslaughter, a Class C felony. See T.C.A. section 39-13-211 (2010). He was sentenced as a Range II, multiple offender to ten years' confinement. On appeal, he contends that (1) the evidence was insufficient to support his conviction, (2) the trial court erred by admitting only part of a 9-1-1 tape into evidence, (3) the trial court erred by admitting hearsay into evidence, (4) the state improperly withheld exculpatory evidence, (5) the trial court erred by refusing to issue a self-defense instruction requested by the Defendant, (6) the trial court erred by considering prior criminal convictions that were not proven by certified copies of conviction and were not disclosed to the Defendant before the sentencing hearing, and (7) the trial court imposed an excessive sentence. We affirm the judgment of the trial court.


Timeliness of Notification of Conflicts of Interest by Persons Taking Depositions

TN Attorney General Opinions

Date: 2010-12-02

Opinion Number: 10-114



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