Tennessee Administrative Office of the Courts

Appellate Court Opinions

Format: 10/05/2015
Format: 10/05/2015
Carter County Court of Criminal Appeals 02/12/97
Knox County Court of Criminal Appeals 02/12/97
Knox County Court of Criminal Appeals 02/12/97
Court of Appeals 02/12/97
Unicoi County Court of Criminal Appeals 02/11/97
Anderson County Court of Criminal Appeals 02/11/97
Rhea County Court of Criminal Appeals 02/11/97
Cumberland County Court of Criminal Appeals 02/11/97
State of Tennessee v. Thomas D. Smith
Robertson County Court of Criminal Appeals 02/10/97
Jessie James Jones, Jr. v. Cigna Insurance Companies
This workers' compensation app eal has been referred to the Special W ork ers ' C om pe ns atio n A pp ea ls P an el of the Su pre m e C ou rt in acc ord an ce with Te nn . Co de An n. _ 5 -6- 22 5(e )(3 ) fo r he arin g a nd rep orting of find ings of fa ct an d co nc lusio ns of law . The p lainti ff, Je ss e J am es Jo ne s J r., u nd erw en t co m pe ns ab le lumbar disc h ern iatio n a nd surgery for which he entered into a settlement agre em ent w ith his em ployer for p aym en t of permanent partial disa bility be ne fits of 4 % to the bo dy as a w ho le in September, 19, 1992. On May 18, 1992, Plaintiff was injured in a second industrial accident and suffered a second lumbar disc herniatio n for which he underwent a sec on d lam inec tom y. The plaintiff recovered a judgment for the second injury against Cigna Insurance Company in which he was aw ard ed fur the r w ork ers ' co m pe ns atio n b enefits based on the find ing that he suffered 55% perm ane nt partial disab ility to the bo dy as a whole. On Se pte m be r 2 , 19 95 , C ign a file d a m otio n fo r re du ctio n o f aw ard pursuant to Tenn. Code Ann. _ 56-6-231 seeking a reduction of the pe rm an en t disa bility aw ard for the sec on d inju ry. Th e T rial Co urt denied Cigna's motion for reduction of award and this appeal results. In its on ly issue, Cigna says that evidence preponderates against the Tr ial C ou rt's d en ial o f its m otio n to te rm ina te its ob liga tion for payment of p erm an en t disa bility be ne fits as of N ov em be r 7, 1 99 5. 2
Madison County Workers Compensation Panel 02/10/97
Carmella Mccadams v. Henry County Board of Education
This workers' compensation appeal has been referred to the Special Workers' Compensation Appeals Panel of the Supreme Court in accordance with Tenn. Code Ann. section 5-6-225(e)(3) for hearing and reporting of findings of fact and conclusions of law. The issue in this appeal is whether the evidence preponderates against the trial court's award of permanent disability benefits for a claimed back injury. This tribunal has concluded the judgment should be reversed for insufficient evidence of permanency. Because we do not reach a second issue, involving the method by which the employee's average weekly wage is determined, that issue is pretermitted. At the time of the trial, the employee or claimant, McCadams, was thirty-six years old, with a twelfth grade education and 8 hours of training in cosmetology. Her work history includes sewing shoes at Brown Shoe, sewing clothes at HIS, baby sitting at home, cleaning houses, working at a florist and working in the cafeteria at Henry County High School. She began working for the employer, Henry County Board of Education, in March of 1993, as a substitute cook. On November 18th of the same year, while standing on a ladder to reach vents she was cleaning, she lost then quickly regained her balance. When she did, she felt pain in her neck and back. She did not fall. She finished working that day and, except for the following day when she worked only three hours and twenty-five minutes, worked regularly until December 6th of the same year. She has voluntarily quit working. On December 3rd and 13th, she sought treatment from Dr. Walter Griffey for pain in her back and neck and a funny feeling in both feet. In January of 1994, she sought treatment from Dr. Carl W. Huff, who diagnosed neck pain without objective findings, back pain without objective findings and symptom magnification syndrome. Dr. Huff prescribed return to work without limitations and with no permanent impairment. She has been also seen by three neurosurgeons, none of whom found evidence of injury, other than preexisting degenerative disc disease. One of them described the claimant as a malingerer. Her husband called the doctor a quack. The claimant was finally referred to a Dr. Mark Crawford, whose specialty and qualifications are not in the record. Dr. Crawford wrote, " (B)ased on the AMA Guidelines to the Evaluation of Permanent Impairment, 4th Edition and based on moderate degenerative disc disease of L4 and L5 with residuals, she would have an impairment of 8% of the whole person. This degenerative disc disease was an asymptomatic pre-existing condition brought into disabling reality by her work related injury." None of the other medical experts assigned any permanent impairment. 2
Henry County Workers Compensation Panel 02/10/97
Alma J. Milam v. Mci Telecommunications Corp., et al
This case is before the Court upon the entire record, including the order of referral to the Special Workers' Compensation Appeals Panel, and the Panel's Memorandum Opinion setting forth its findings of fact and conclusions of law, which are incorporated herein by reference.
Shelby County Workers Compensation Panel 02/10/97
Joe Larry Turnbo vs. Brenda Jane (Thompson) Turnbo

The defendant/appellee has filed a respectful petition to rehear. It appears that a rehearing is appropriate, and same is hereby granted.

Court of Appeals 02/07/97
Tina R. Guffey vs. Wenco of Shelbyville, Inc., d/b/a Wendy's Restaurant - Concurring

This is a “slip and fall case” in which the jury awarded $173,250, and the defendant appealed.

Bedford County Court of Appeals 02/07/97
Jonthan Hyler v. Charles Traughber, Chairman Tennessee Board of Paroles, et al.

The captioned petitioner has appealed from the judgment of the Trial Court dismissing his petition for certiorari from the action of the Board of Paroles denying hisapplication for parole from the custody of the Department of Correction.

Davidson County Court of Appeals 02/07/97
Michael Kindall v. Jim H. Rose - Concurring

The captioned petitioner, an inmate of an institution operated by a private contractor for the Tennessee Department of Correction, has appealed from the summary dismissal of his petition for certiorari for review of disciplinary actions of the defendants.

Wayne County Court of Appeals 02/07/97
City Bank & Trust Company and B. Timothy Pirtle, v. Dave Allen Webb and Debbie Lynn Webb

This is an appeal by defendants Dave Allen Webb and wife Debbie Lynn Webb, from the trial court's judgment setting aside a foreclosure sale and, in effect, putting the parties in the same position they were in before the foreclosure.

Warren County Court of Appeals 02/05/97
Nathan Jack Toler, a minor child, B/N/F Shirley Lack and Shirley Lack next of kin and as Administratrix of the Estate of Nathan Jack Toler, Jr., v. City of Cookeville, D/B/A Cookeville General Hospital, et al.

Appellee, Dr. Mark Giese, is one of several defendants involved in a medical malpractice suit arising out of the alleged wrongful death of Nathan Jackson Toler, Jr. The trial court entered an interlocutory order granting summary judgment to Dr. Giese based upon the plaintiffs' failure to properly secure service of process on him. Pursuant to Tenn. R. App. P. 9, Plaintiffs have appealed. We have determined that the trial court was correct and therefore affirm the grant of summary judgment.

Putnam County Court of Appeals 02/05/97
James Fletcher and Ronald Lanier Fletcher v. Kenneth Sterlin Vasser

The holder of an easement across his neighbor’s property sought to replace two gates with cattle guards. The Chancery Court of Coffee County denied the request. We affirm.

Coffee County Court of Appeals 02/05/97
Vickie Elaine Spiegel, v. Jeremy Percy Julian Spiegel

The issues on appeal in this divorce case include the restrictions put on the father’s visits with his minor daughter and the award of attorneys fees to the mother. We affirm the judgment of the trial court.


Rutherford County Court of Appeals 02/05/97
Barbara Gatlin, v. State of Tennessee, Department of Human Services, In the Matter of Felicia Gatlin, a child under the age of 18

The Juvenile Court of Davidson County terminated Barbara Gatlin’s parental rights respecting her ten year old daughter, Felicia. Because we find that the record does not contain clear and convincing evidence of abandonment, we reverse.

Davidson County Court of Appeals 02/05/97
Mavis A. Combs, v. The Metropolitan Government of Nashville and Davidson County, and the Civil Service Commission

This is an appeal by petitioner/appellant, Mavis A. Combs, from the decision of the Davidson County Chancery Court upholding the decision of respondent/appellee, the Metropolitan Civil Service Commission (“the Commission”), to deny Ms. Combs in-line-of-duty injury leave. The facts out of which this matter arose are as follows.

Davidson County Court of Appeals 02/05/97
Mohammad Al-Haddad v. Walter Ritter and Wife, Helma Ritter

Pursuant to Rule 11, Tenn. R. Civ. P., the trial court sanctioned the appellants and their attorneys. The appellants argue on appeal that they cannot be sanctioned under Rule 11 because they did not sign the offending pleading and that the facts do not establish a violation of the rule. We hold that a party may be sanctioned under Rule 11 without actually signing the pleadings, but we find that the facts of this case do not justify a Rule 11 sanction and that the proof fails to show any expenses incurred as a result of the alleged violation. Therefore we reverse the judgment against the appellants for sanctions.

Williamson County Court of Appeals 02/05/97
Amanda Carol Croslin and Phyllis Croslin Baker, v. Danny Keith Croslin, wife Betty Jean Croslin and Stanley Gardner Haskins

This is an adoption case. Petitioners, Amanda Croslin and Phyllis Croslin Baker, the adoptive child’s mother and maternal grandmother respectively, filed a petition to set aside the adoption of the child, Danna Elisabeth Croslin, by the maternal grandfather, Danny Keith Croslin, and his wife, Betty Jean Croslin. Also named as a defendant in the petition is Stanley Gardner Haskins, the adoptive child’s natural father. From the order of the trial court nullifying and setting aside the adoption, Danny Keith Croslin has appealed. Mr. Haskins did not file any pleading in the trial court and is not a party to this appeal.

Smith County Court of Appeals 02/05/97
Erma Hardesty and Jim Hardesty v. Service Merchandise Company, Inc.

This appeal is taken from the trial court’s order of June 7, 1995, granting summary judgment in favor of Defendant Service Merchandise Company, Inc. (hereinafter, “Service Merchandise”). Specifically, the trial court found that there was no proof of a dangerous condition created by Service Merchandise and no proof that Service Merchandise had either actual or constructive notice that a dangerous condition existed. Upon consideration of the record before us, the trial court’s order is affirmed.

Shelby County Court of Appeals 02/05/97