Court sets new date for Alley execution
The Tennessee Supreme Court has reset the execution date of convicted murderer Sedley Alley for June 28. The execution had been set for May 17, but Gov. Phil Bredesen granted a brief reprieve on the event of the execution.
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Howard H. Vogel
STATE OF TENNESSEE V. SEDLEY ALLEY
ORDER SETTING EXECUTION DATE
STATE OF TENNESSEE v. JONATHAN WESLEY STEPHENSON
John E. Herbison, Nashville, Tennessee; Carl R. Ogle, Jefferson City, Tennessee; and Tim S. Moore,
Newport, Tennessee, for the Appellant-Defendant, Jonathan Stephenson.
Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; Michael E. Moore, Solicitor General; Angele
Michele Gregory and Michelle Chapman McIntire, Assistant Attorneys General; Al Schmutzer, Jr.,
District Attorney General; and James B. Dunn, Assistant District Attorney General, for the Appellee-
Plaintiff, State of Tennessee.
The appeal in this capital case arises from the resentencing of Jonathan Wesley Stephenson, who was
convicted in 1990 of first degree murder and conspiracy to commit first degree murder for his role in the contract killing of his wife. Following the resentencing hearing, the jury imposed a sentence of death, and the Court of Criminal Appeals affirmed. Upon automatic appeal under Tennessee Code Annotated Section 39-13-206(a)(1), we designated the following issues for oral argument: 1) Do dual sentences of incarceration for conspiracy and death for first degree murder in this case violate double jeopardy; 2) Did the trial court err in admitting the prior testimony of two witnesses,
Glen Brewer and Michael Litz; 3) Did the trial court err in not considering the defendant's motion to suppress his statement to the police; 4) Did the trial court lack jurisdiction to resentence the defendant; and 5) Is the defendant's death sentence comparatively proportionate and is the sentence valid under the mandatory review of Tennessee Code Annotated Section 39-13-206(c)(1). Having
carefully reviewed the record and relevant legal authority, we conclude that none of the errors alleged
by the defendant warrants relief. With respect to issues not herein specifically addressed, we affirm
the decision of the Court of Criminal Appeals. Relevant portions of that opinion are published hereafter as an appendix. Accordingly, the judgment of the Court of Criminal Appeals is affirmed.
BIRCH CONCURRING AND DISSENTING
JEFFREY L. BARNETT v. CITY OF MURFREESBORO
Richard W. Rucker, Murfreesboro, Tennessee, for appellant, City of Murfreesboro.
Lawrence H. Hart, Nashville, Tennessee, for appellee, Jeffrey L. Barnett.
This workers' compensation appeal has been referred to the Special Workers' Compensation Appeals Panel in accordance with Tennessee Code Annotated Section 50-6-225(e)(3) for hearing and reporting to the Supreme Court our findings of fact and conclusions of law. In this appeal, the Employer asserts that the trial court erred in finding a heart attack suffered by the Employee arose
out of his employment with the City of Murfreesboro and in awarding medical benefits for the implantation of intra-coronary stints that the employer alleges is treatment for a pre-existing condition and not a work-related injury. We agree with the findings of the trial judge and, in accordance with Tennessee Code Annotated Section 50-6-225(e)(2), affirm the judgment of the trial court.
ESTATE OF DENNIS MCFERREN v. INFINITY TRANSPORT, LLC
Keith M. Alexander, Southhaven, Mississippi, for the Plaintiff-Appellant, Estate of Dennis McFerren.
Lori Dale Parish, Memphis, Tennessee, for the Defendant-Appellee, Infinity Transport, LLC.
This workers' compensation appeal has been referred to and heard by the Special Workers' Compensation Appeals Panel of the Supreme Court in accordance with Tennessee Code Annotated Section 50-6-225(e)(3) for hearing and reporting to the Supreme Court of findings of fact and conclusions of law. We find that the trial court did
not have jurisdiction over the defendant in the first lawsuit due to insufficient service of process pursuant to Tennessee Rule of Civil Procedure 4.03. The doctrine of prior suit pending does not apply, and the second lawsuit was not barred. The trial court erred in setting aside the default judgment against the defendant and dismissing the plaintiff's complaint. Accordingly, we reverse the judgment of the trial court and remand the case
to the trial court for reinstatement of the default judgment against the defendant.
JUDITH GAIL SAIN SHETTLEWORTH v. DOYLE EDWARD SHETTLEWORTH
Jeffrey D. Ridner, Tullahoma, Tennessee, for the appellant, Doyle Edward Shettleworth.
Vanessa A. Jackson, Tullahoma, Tennessee, for the appellee, Judith Gail Sain Shettleworth.
Husband appeals the award of alimony in futuro and the amount of alimony awarded to Wife.
Finding the parties were married for thirty years, that Wife is economically disadvantaged, and that
Wife's needs and Husband's ability to pay are supported by the record, we affirm.
FAITH ELIZABETH WARD, ET AL. v. GREGORY L. GLOVER, M.D., ET AL.
Michael J. King, Luis C. Bustamante, and J. Ford Little, Knoxville, Tennessee, for the appellants,
Jessie Ward and Regina Marie Ward, individually and as parents of Faith Elizabeth Ward.
Stephen C. Daves, Knoxville, Tennessee, for the appellee, Gregory L. Glover, M.D.
Edward G. White, II, Wayne A. Kline, Joshua J. Bond, and E. Michael Brezina, III, Knoxville,
Tennessee, for the appellees, Michael Bullen, M.D., and Women's Health Partners of East Tennessee, P.C.
Robert H. Watson, Jr., Knoxivlle, Tennessee, for the appellee, Anesthesia Consultants of Knoxville, P.C.
In this medical malpractice case, Jessie Ward and Regina Marie Ward, individually and on behalf of their minor daughter, Faith Elizabeth Ward (Faith), sued a number of defendants, including Gregory L. Glover, M.D., Michael Bullen, M.D., Women's Health Partners of East Tennessee, P.C. (WHP), Anesthesia Consultants of Knoxville, P.C. (ACK), Baptist Hospital of East Tennessee, Inc., and Baptist Health System of East Tennessee, Inc. (these two latter defendants collectively will be referred to herein as "the Baptist defendants"), seeking damages for catastrophic and permanent injuries to Faith arising out of her birth at Baptist Hospital in Knoxville. The trial court granted
summary judgment to ACK. It also granted partial summary judgment to Dr. Glover with respect to the plaintiffs' claims arising out of his role as medical director of the obstetrics (sometimes referred to as "OB") unit at Baptist. All of the plaintiffs' claims against the Baptist defendants were settled. The claims against Dr. Glover arising out of his role as treating physician in Faith's birth
and the claims against Dr. Bullen and WHP proceeded to trial. The jury returned a verdict in favor of the remaining defendants. The plaintiffs appeal the grant of summary judgment to ACK and the grant of partial summary judgment to Dr. Glover; the trial court's decision to allow the jury to consider the fault of the Baptist defendants; the trial court's denial of the plaintiffs' motion to waive
the locality rule; the court's ruling precluding the introduction of certain of the plaintiffs' medical
expenses; and the trial court's instructions to the jury regarding "errors in judgment." In addition,
the plaintiffs contend that certain statements made during closing argument by counsel for Dr. Bullen and WHP constitute reversible error. We affirm.
STATE OF TENNESSEE v. ROBERT L. MITCHELL
Jay Norman, Nashville, Tennessee (on appeal); Katie Weiss and Graham Prichard, Assistant Public
Defenders (at trial), for the appellant, Robert L. Mitchell.
Paul G. Summers, Attorney General & Reporter; Brent C. Cherry, Assistant Attorney General;
Victor S. Johnson, III, District Attorney General; and Dumaka Shabazz and Rachel Sobrero,
Assistant District Attorneys General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.
The defendant, Robert L. Mitchell, was convicted of especially aggravated kidnapping, two counts
of aggravated kidnapping, and assault. Later, the two aggravated kidnapping convictions were
merged. The trial court sentenced the defendant as a violent offender to twenty-five years for the
especially aggravated kidnapping, twelve years for the aggravated kidnapping, and eleven months
and twenty-nine days for the assault. Because the kidnapping sentences are to be served
consecutively, the effective sentence is thirty-seven years. In this appeal of right, the defendant
claims that (1) the evidence is insufficient to support his kidnapping convictions; (2) the trial court
erred by admitting evidence of prior bad acts; and (3) his sentence is excessive. The judgments of
the trial court are affirmed.
STATE OF TENNESSEE v. LARRY PAYNE
Garland Erguden and Robert Wilson Jones (on appeal) and Jennifer Johnson and Trent Hall (at
trial), Memphis, Tennessee, for the appellant, Larry Payne.
Paul G. Summers, Attorney General and Reporter; Leslie Price, Assistant Attorney General;
William L. Gibbons, District Attorney General; and Greg Gilbert, Assistant District Attorney
General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.
A Shelby County Criminal Court jury convicted the appellant of four counts of aggravated
robbery against two victims, and the appellant received an effective thirty-six-year sentence. In
this appeal, the appellant claims (1) that the evidence is insufficient to support the convictions;
(2) that the trial court erred by requiring Detention Response Team personnel to sit next to him
in the courtroom and while he testified; and (3) that his sentences are excessive. After a
thorough review of the record, we conclude that the four convictions should be merged into two
convictions and that the case should be remanded for entry of corrected judgments consistent
with this opinion. In all other respects, the judgments of the trial court are affirmed.
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