Opinion FlashMay 22, 2002
Volume 8 Number 90
Following this index are summaries of each case, including its name, first paragraph, author's name, and the names of attorneys for the parties of each opinion.
TBA members can get the full-text versions of these opinions three ways detailed below. All methods require a TBA username and password. If you have forgotten your password, you can look it up on-line at http://www.tba.org/getpassword.mgi . If you are a TBA member, but do not have a username and password, you can receive one online at http://www.tba.org/signup.mgi. Here's how you can obtain full-text version.
Howard H. Vogel
ROBERT LEEGRAND v. TRINITY UNIVERSAL INSURANCE Court:TSC - Workers Comp Panel Attorneys: J. Mark Patey, Jackson, Tennessee, for the appellant, Robert LeeGrand. William F. Kendall, III, B. Duane Willis, Jackson, Tennessee, and J. Michael Morgan, Nashville, Tennessee, for appellee, Trinity Universal Insurance. Judge: CHILDERS First Paragraph: This workers' compensation appeal has been referred to the Special Workers' Compensation Panel of the Supreme Court in accordance with Tennessee Code Annotated S 50-6-225(e)(1999) for a hearing and reporting to the Supreme Court of findings of fact and conclusions of law. The appellant presents the following issues for review: (1) Whether the trial court erred in ruling that the plaintiff did not sustain an injury that arose out of his employment; (2) whether the trial court erred in ruling that the plaintiff received no permanent disability from his injuries; (3) whether the trial court erred in failing to make a specific finding as to the benefit rate, and (4) whether the trial court erred in failing to award plaintiff discretionary costs. Although we hold that the plaintiff's injury arose out of the plaintiff's employment, we affirm the trial court's conclusion that the plaintiff received no permanent disability from his injury. http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TSC_WCP/leegrandr.wpd
VULCAN MATERIALS COMPANY v. KITSMILLER AND COMPANY, et al. Court:TCA Attorneys: K. Stephen Powers and Stephen G. Kabalka, Chattanooga, Tennessee, for the appellants, Seaboard Farms of Chattanooga, Inc., and ConAgra Poultry Company. Gary E. Lester and Robert S. Grot, Chattanooga, Tennessee, for the appellee, Vulcan Materials Company. Judge: SUSANO First Paragraph: Vulcan Materials Company ("Vulcan") brought this action seeking to enforce a materialman's lien against a piece of property at 1300 Market Street, Chattanooga ("the subject property"). Vulcan's complaint originally named as defendants, Seaboard Farms of Chattanooga ("Seaboard") - the owner of the subject property when Vulcan first delivered materials to a construction site on the property - and another entity that the plaintiff simply identified as "Conagra." It is alleged in the complaint that "Conagra" owned the subject property at the time the lawsuit was filed. The trial court allowed Vulcan to amend its complaint to identify "Conagra" by its correct name, i.e., ConAgra Poultry Company ("ConAgra Poultry"), and held that the amended complaint related back to the date of filing of the original complaint. Presented with cross motions for summary judgment, the trial court initially ruled that Vulcan violated the statutory scheme pertaining to real property liens because it failed to mail a notice of lien to ConAgra Poultry. Upon Vulcan's motion to alter or amend the judgment, the trial court reversed itself, ruling that Vulcan had perfected its lien as to ConAgra Poultry by filing a notice of lien in the Register of Deeds' office within 90 days of the date of the last delivery of materials. The trial court then granted Vulcan summary judgment. Seaboard and ConAgra Poultry appeal. We affirm. http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCA/vulcan.wpd
STATE OF TENNESSEE v. FELICIA JOANN CANNON Court:TCCA Attorneys: Donna Leigh Hargrove, District Public Defender, and Andrew Jackson Dearing III, Assistant Public Defender, for the appellant, Felicia Joann Cannon. Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; Renee W. Turner, Assistant Attorney General; William Michael McCown, District Attorney General; and Michael David Randles, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee. Judge: WILLIAMS First Paragraph: After convictions for sale and delivery of a Schedule II controlled substance, the trial court sentenced defendant to nine years and ten months incarceration. Defendant appeals asserting she is entitled to Community Corrections Program. We disagree and affirm. http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCCA/cannonfj.wpd
STATE OF TENNESSEE v. STEVEN DALTON Court:TCCA Attorneys: E. Covington Johnston, Franklin, Tennessee, and Mark C. Scruggs, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Steven Dalton. Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; Elizabeth T. Ryan, Assistant Attorney General; Ronald L. Davis, District Attorney General; Kenneth K. Crites, Assistant District Attorney General; and Jeffrey L. Long, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee. Judge: GLENN First Paragraph: A Hickman County Criminal Court jury found the defendant, Steven Dalton, guilty of voluntary manslaughter for the killing of a fellow inmate. The trial court imposed a six-year sentence to be served consecutively to the defendant's existing life sentence. The defendant appeals his conviction, claiming: (1) the trial court erred in allowing the State to impeach him with his prior felony murder conviction and (2) the evidence was insufficient to support his conviction for voluntary manslaughter. We affirm the judgment of the trial court. http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCCA/daltonsteven.wpd
STATE OF TENNESSEE v. GARY DWAYNE HARTON, MICHAEL TERRELL THOMAS, and SHAWN LAVELL FORE Court:TCCA Attorneys: Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; David H. Findley, Assistant Attorney General; William Michael McCown, District Attorney General; and Weakley E. Barnard, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellant, State of Tennessee. John H. Norton, III, Shelbyville, Tennessee, and Cynthia C. Chappell, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellees, Gary Dwayne Harton, Michael Terrell Thomas and Shawn Lavell Fore. Judge: RILEY First Paragraph: This is a consolidated state appeal from the trial court's order suppressing evidence in two separate drug cases involving three defendants. The defendants were stopped on Interstate 65 in Marshall County when officers observed traffic violations; their vehicles were searched after a trained canine "alerted;" and, as a result of the search of their vehicles, they were charged with possession of a substantial quantity of drugs with intent to sell. The state contends the trial court erred (1) in declaring Tenn. Code Ann. S 55-8-124, the "following too closely" statute, unconstitutionally vague; and (2) by finding an equal protection violation based upon selective prosecution due to the officers' use of various "indicators" in determining whether to stop the vehicles for traffic violations. We conclude Tenn. Code Ann. S 55-8-124 is not unconstitutionally vague, and the stops did not deprive the defendants of equal protection; therefore, we reverse the judgments of the trial court. http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCCA/hartongd.wpd
STATE OF TENNESSEE v. RICKY T. HUGHES Court:TCCA Attorneys: Bruce Poag (on appeal) and Lionel Barrett and Daniel McMurtry (at trial), Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Ricky T. Hughes. Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; Elizabeth B. Marney, Assistant Attorney General; Victor S. Johnson, III, District Attorney General; and Sharon L. Brox and Roger D. Moore, Assistant District Attorneys General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee. Judge: TIPTON First Paragraph: A Davidson County Criminal Court jury convicted the defendant, Ricky T. Hughes, of facilitation of first degree felony murder, a Class A felony, and especially aggravated robbery, a Class A felony. The trial court sentenced him to concurrent sentences of twenty-five years as a standard offender for the facilitation conviction and twenty-five years as a violent offender for the aggravated robbery conviction. The defendant appeals, claiming that (1) the evidence is insufficient to support his convictions, (2) the trial court erred by denying his motion to suppress his confession, and (3) the trial court erred by not allowing him to testify about a prior consistent statement. We affirm the judgment of the trial court. http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCCA/hughesrt.wpd
STATE OF TENNESSEE v. STEVEN JAMES MCCAIN Court:TCCA Attorneys: Dwight E. Scott, Karl F. Dean, Wendy S. Tucker, and Jodie A. Bell, for the appellant, Steven James McCain. Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; Patricia C. Kussmann, Assistant Attorney General; Victor S. (Torry) Johnson, District Attorney General; and Katrin Novak Miller and Bret T. Gunn, Assistant District Attorneys General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee. Judge: MCGEE OGLE First Paragraph: The appellant, Steven James McCain, was convicted by a jury in the Criminal Court of Davidson County of two counts of first degree premeditated murder. He received two consecutive sentences of life imprisonment with the possibility of parole. On appeal, the appellant raises the following issues for our review: (1) whether the trial court erred in denying the appellant's "Motion to Suppress Identifications Made During an Unconstitutional Photographic Line-Up Procedure"; (2) whether the trial court erred in denying the appellant's "Motion to Suppress Defendant's Statements"; (3) whether the trial court erred in admitting the audio-tape-recorded statement of Chad Collins; (4) whether the trial court erred in overruling the defense request for a mistrial when the prosecution improperly argued that the jury should consider Chad Collins' statement as substantive evidence at trial; and (5) whether the evidence was sufficient to support his convictions. Upon review of the record and the parties' briefs, we affirm the judgments of the trial court. http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCCA/mccains.wpd
STATE OF TENNESSEE v. WILLIE J. MILLER, JR. Court:TCCA Attorneys: John H. Henderson, District Public Defender; and Gene Honea, Assistant District Public Defender, for the appellant, Willie J. Miller, Jr. Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; Elizabeth T. Ryan, Assistant Attorney General; Ronald L. Davis, District Attorney General; and Derek K. Smith, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee. Judge: RILEY First Paragraph: The defendant appeals from his conviction for child rape rendered after a jury trial. On appeal, the defendant claims: (1) the trial court erred in denying the defendant's request for an appointed DNA expert; (2) the victim, who was five years old at the time of trial, was not competent to testify; and (3) the evidence was insufficient to support his conviction because the victim's testimony should not have been presented. We affirm the judgment of the trial court. http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCCA/millerwj.wpd
STATE OF TENNESSEE v. NATHAN SCOTT RAMAGOS Court:TCCA Attorneys: J. Todd Faulkner, Nashville, Tennessee (on appeal); Ross E. Alderman, District Public Defender (at trial), and Ralph W. Newman, Assistant Public Defender (at trial), for the appellant, Nathan Scott Ramagos. Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; Christine M. Lapps, Assistant Attorney General; Victor S. Johnson, III, District Attorney General; and Jason W. Lawless, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee. Judge: GLENN First Paragraph: The defendant pled guilty to one count of sexual battery, a Class E felony; one count of indecent exposure, a Class A misdemeanor; and one count of reckless aggravated assault, a Class D felony. Denying his request for probation, the trial court sentenced him as a Range I, standard offender to the maximum sentence for each offense, for an effective sentence of four years. In a timely appeal to this court, the defendant challenges his sentences, arguing that the trial court erred in its application of enhancement factors, and in failing to find any factors in mitigation. Based upon our review, we conclude that two of the three enhancement factors found applicable by the trial court are unsupported by the record, but that the remaining enhancement factor, the defendant's prior history of criminal conduct, is entitled to great weight. We further conclude that mitigating factor (1), the defendant's actions did not cause or threaten serious bodily injury, applies to the defendant's convictions for sexual battery and indecent exposure, but that it carries very little, if any, weight in mitigation. Accordingly, we affirm the trial court's denial of the defendant's request for probation, and the sentences imposed in this case. http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCCA/ramagosnathans.wpd
PLEASE FORWARD THIS E-MAIL!
GET A FULL-TEXT COPY OF AN OPINION!
JOIN THE TENNESSEE BAR ASSOCIATION!
SUBSCRIBE TO OPINION FLASH!
UNSUBSCRIBE TO OPINION FLASH? ... SURELY NOT!
But if you must, visit the TBALink web site at: http://www.tba.org/op-flash.mgi
© Copyright 2002 Tennessee Bar Association