Opinion Flash

April 1, 2003
Volume 9 — Number 058

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.

This Issue (IN THIS ORDER):
00 New Opinion(s) from the Tennessee Supreme Court
00 New Opinion(s) from the Tennessee Supreme Court Workers' Compensation Panel
00 New Document(s) or Proposed Rule(s) from the Tennessee Supreme Court
04 New Opinion(s) from the Tennessee Court of Appeals
07 New Opinion(s) from the Tennessee Court of Criminal Appeals
01 New Opinion(s) from the Tennessee Attorney General (PDF format)
00 New Judicial Ethics Opinion(s)
00 New Formal Ethics Opinion(s) from the Board of Professional Responsibility

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Howard H. Vogel
Knoxville, Tennessee
Editor-in-Chief, TBALink


SUSAN ELIZABETH CARROLL v. DAVID WILLIAM CARROLL

Court:TCA

Attorneys:

Vivian E. Warner and Allison M. Barker, Crossville, Tennessee, for the
appellant, Susan Elizabeth Carroll.

S. Roger York, Crossville, Tennessee, for the appellee, David William
Carroll.                        

Judge: SUSANO

First Paragraph:

This is a divorce case.  The only issues raised on appeal pertain to
the trial court's award of alimony.  That court awarded David William
Carroll ("Husband") alimony of $2,000 per month "until the death of
either party or his remarriage."  Susan Elizabeth Carroll ("Wife")
appeals, contending that Husband should be awarded rehabilitative
alimony rather than alimony in futuro, and that, in any event, $2,000
per month "is excessive."  We modify the trial court's award of
alimony.  As modified, the trial court's judgment is affirmed.

http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCA/carroll.wpd

RONNIE R. COX v. AMY R. COX

Court:TCA

Attorneys:

Brett A. York and Kevin R. Bryant, Crossville, Tennessee, for the
Appellant, Ronnie R. Cox.

Tom Beesley, Crossville, Tennessee, for the Appellee, Amy R. Cox.                        

Judge: SWINEY

First Paragraph:

Ronnie R. Cox ("Husband") and Amy R. Cox ("Wife") were divorced in
1993.  At that time, the parties had two minor children.  They
subsequently had another child.  In 1998, the parties entered into an
agreed order that provided for joint physical and legal custody with
each parent having equal time with the children.  The agreed order
also required Husband to pay $200 per month to Wife for child-care
expenses.  In 2002, Husband filed a Petition for Modification seeking
to be relieved of the $200 per month obligation because Wife's income
had increased substantially and was equal to, or greater than,
Husband's.  The Trial Court found, inter alia, the $200 payments were
contractual in nature and denied the Petition for Modification. 
Husband appeals.  We reverse.

http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCA/coxr.wpd

MARC D. EMMERICK v. MOUNTAIN VALLEY CHAPEL BUSINESS TRUST, et al.

Court:TCA

Attorneys:   

Marc D. Emmerick, Sevierville, Tennessee, Pro Se.

Brian T. Mansfield, Sevierville, Tennessee, for the appellees,
Mountain Valley Chapel Business Trust, Mountain Valley Chapel, and
Gerald H. Lucas.                        

Judge: SUSANO

First Paragraph:

The trial court dismissed the complaint of Marc D. Emmerick ("the
plaintiff") and awarded one of the defendants, Mountain Valley Chapel
Business Trust, a judgment on its counterclaim against the plaintiff
for $1,416.  The plaintiff appeals.  We affirm.

http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCA/emmerick.wpd

CHARLES GRADY WOODS v. ANGELIKA MAZUR WOODS

Court:TCA

Attorneys:  

Charles Grady Woods, Pro Se

John S. Taylor, Johnson City, for the Appellee, Angelika Mazur Woods                        

Judge: GODDARD

First Paragraph:

In this post-divorce case, Charles Grady Woods, acting pro se, appeals
the Trial Court's orders finding him in contempt of court and awarding
his former wife, Angelika Mazur Woods, certain sums which the Court
found due and owing under the final decree of divorce.  We affirm the
judgment of the Trial Court.

http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCA/woodsc.wpd

JAMES R. BLUE v. STATE OF TENNESSEE

Court:TCCA

Attorneys:

Bruce Poag, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellant, James R. Blue.

Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; Thomas E. Williams,
III, Assistant Attorney General; Victor S. (Torry) Johnson, III,
District Attorney General; Pamela Anderson and Kathy Morante, District
Attorneys General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.                        

Judge: WEDEMEYER

First Paragraph:

The Petitioner pled guilty to three Class B felony drug offenses. 
Pursuant to the plea agreement, the trial court orally sentenced the
Petitioner to ten years for each conviction with the sentences to be
served concurrently to each other and to a prior four-year sentence,
resulting in an effective sentence of ten years.  After the sentence
was imposed, the Petitioner asked that he be allowed to begin serving
his sentence the following day.  The trial court granted the
Petitioner's request, with the condition that if he did not report as
ordered, two of the sentences would run consecutively.  The next day,
the Petitioner failed to report, and the trial court entered judgments
in which two of the Petitioner's sentences were consecutive, resulting
in an effective sentence of twenty years.  The Petitioner filed a
petition for post-conviction relief, contending that his plea was
unlawfully induced, that he received ineffective assistance of
counsel, and that his sentences were illegal.  Following a hearing,
the post-conviction court denied relief.  The Petitioner now appeals,
arguing that the post- conviction court erred by denying his petition
for post-conviction relief.  Concluding that the trial court violated
Tennessee Rule of Criminal Procedure 11 and the Petitioner's due
process rights, we reverse the judgment of the post-conviction court.

http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCCA/bluejr.wpd

STATE OF TENNESSEE v. BARBI MICHELLE BROWN

Court:TCCA

Attorneys:

Gregory D. Smith, Clarksville, Tennessee (on appeal); Michael R.
Jones, District Public Defender, and Roger Nell, Assistant Public
Defender (at trial and on appeal), for the appellant, Barbi Michelle
Brown.

Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; David H. Findley,
Assistant Attorney General; John Wesley Carney, Jr., District Attorney
General; and C. Daniel Brollier, Jr., Assistant District Attorney
General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge: WILLIAMS

First Paragraph:

The defendant pled guilty to one count of especially aggravated
robbery and one count of aggravated burglary. The trial court
sentenced the defendant to twenty years incarceration pursuant to a
negotiated plea agreement setting the maximum amount of time to be
served at twenty years.  The defendant contends her sentence is
excessive and the trial court misapplied enhancement factors (4), (5),
(6), and (10).  We agree the trial court misapplied two enhancement
factors, but the record supports the imposition of a twenty-year
sentence, which is the maximum allowed by her plea agreement and the
"presumptive sentence" provided by statute.  We affirm the judgments
from the trial court.

http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCCA/brownbm.wpd

STATE OF TENNESSEE v. ANTHONY D. FORSTER

Court:TCCA

Attorneys:

Anthony D. Forster, Tiptonville, Tennessee, Pro Se (on appeal), and
John G. Oliva, Nashville, Tennessee (at trial).

Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; Helena Walton
Yarbrough, Assistant Attorney General; Victor S. (Torry) Johnson, III,
District Attorney General; Pamela Anderson and Jason Lawless,
Assistant District Attorneys General, for the appellee, State of
Tennessee.

Judge: WILLIAMS

First Paragraph:

The defendant, after being allowed to represent himself at the
sentencing hearing, proceeds pro se in appealing his especially
aggravated robbery conviction and sentence of twenty-two years
imprisonment.  The defendant argues his right to a speedy trial was
violated and argues he was subject to an unreasonable delay in
sentencing.  The defendant argues the trial court improperly denied
the defendant's motion to sever the offenses.  The defendant argues
the trial judge abused his discretion in failing to recuse himself and
contends the trial court erroneously allowed a witness to testify to
injuries she sustained as a result of the robbery.  The defendant
argues the trial court improperly ruled the defendant was not entitled
to be present during jury deliberations.  The defendant argues the
trial court frustrated his right to appeal by relieving his trial
counsel prior to sentencing.  The defendant argues he is the victim of
a malicious prosecution.  We conclude the trial court did not err and
evidence supports the defendant's conviction of especially aggravated
robbery.  Therefore, we affirm the judgments of the trial court.

http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCCA/forsterad.wpd

STATE OF TENNESSEE v. TIFFANY GOODMAN

Court:TCCA

Attorneys:

Philip A. Condra, District Public Defender, and David O. McGovern,
Assistant Public Defender, for the appellant, Tiffany Goodman.

Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; David H. Findley,
Assistant Attorney General; James Michael Taylor, District Attorney
General; and Steven H. Strain and Sherry D. Gouger, Assistant District
Attorneys General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.                        

Judge: WILLIAMS

First Paragraph:

The Defendant was convicted, along with her co-defendant husband, of
child abuse and neglect, a Class D felony, and sentenced to four years
probation.  She appeals, claiming that the evidence was insufficient
to support her conviction and that any neglect that did occur was the
result of mistakes in parenting skills, such mistake vitiating any
knowing abuse.  We affirm the judgment of the trial court.

http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCCA/goodmant.wpd

SHAWNDA JAMES v. STATE OF TENNESSEE

Court:TCCA

Attorneys:

Claudia S. Jack, District Public Defender; and Robert H. Stovall, Jr.,
Assistant District Public Defender, for the appellant, Shawnda James.

Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; Kim R. Helper,
Assistant Attorney General; and Mike Bottoms, District Attorney
General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge: RILEY

First Paragraph:

Petitioner appeals the dismissal of her petition for post-conviction
relief by the Giles County Circuit Court.  She was originally
convicted of premeditated first degree murder and especially
aggravated robbery.  In this appeal, she contends the post-conviction
court erred by finding she received the effective assistance of
counsel and argues trial counsel was deficient in not filing a motion
to suppress her confession.  We affirm the judgment of the
post-conviction court.

http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCCA/jamesshawnda.wpd

TERON MCKENLEY v. STATE OF TENNESSEE

Court:TCCA

Attorneys:

John H. Baker, III, Murfreesboro, Tennessee, for the appellant, Teron
McKenley.

Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; Christine M. Lapps,
Assistant Attorney General; William C. Whitesell, Jr., District
Attorney General; and John W. Price, Assistant District Attorney
General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.                         

Judge: RILEY

First Paragraph:

The petitioner, Teron McKenley, appeals the denial of his petition for
post-conviction relief.  He originally pled guilty to especially
aggravated robbery, aggravated burglary, and theft over $1,000 and
received an effective sentence of fifteen years.  He contends the
post-conviction court erred in disallowing the introduction of the
victim's medical records at his post-conviction hearing and in failing
to find that ineffective assistance of counsel led to an involuntary
guilty plea.  We affirm the judgment of the post-conviction court.

http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCCA/mckenleyteron.wpd

STATE OF TENNESSEE v. BRUCE MARVIN VANN

Court:TCCA

Attorneys:

Didi Christie, Brownsville, Tennessee (on appeal), and Vanessa D.
King, Assistant District Public Defender (at trial), for the
appellant, Bruce Marvin Vann.

Paul G. Summers, Attorney General & Reporter; P. Robin Dixon, Jr.,
Assistant Attorney General; and Shaun A. Brown, Assistant District
Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge: WADE

First Paragraph:

The defendant, Bruce Marvin Vann, was convicted of aggravated assault.
 The trial court imposed a six-year sentence.  In this appeal of
right, the defendant presents five issues for review: (1) whether the
indictment sufficiently described the offense of aggravated assault;
(2) whether the evidence was sufficient; (3) whether the trial court
erred by failing to act as thirteenth juror; (4) whether the trial
court erred by allowing prior convictions as impeachment evidence; and
(5) whether the trial court erred by refusing to apply a mitigating
circumstance.  The judgment is affirmed.

http://www.tba.org/tba_files/TCCA/vann.wpd

Action by the Four Lake Regional Industrial Development Authority

Date: March 25, 2003

Opinion Number: 03-032                         

http://www.tba.org/tba_files/AG/2003/OP32.pdf

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