Court Opinions

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Recent opinions released by Georgia's Appellate courts
Worthen v. The State, A17A0949
Georgia Court of Appeals, Criminal Case (8/3/2017, 8/21/2017)
CRIMINAL PRACTICE:
The trial court did not err in dismissing defendant's motion for new trial based on the fact it was filed while defendant was a fugitive after he absconded in the middle of his trial for insurance fraud, two counts of theft by deception, making a false statement and false report of a crime.
In The Interest Of C. W., A Child, A17A0732
Georgia Court of Appeals, Criminal Case (8/3/2017, 8/21/2017)
APPEALS:
The juvenile court did not err in dismissing notices of appeal from a contempt order issued against a mother and her minor son in connection with the son's delinquency case based on their failure to timely file court transcripts.
Leone v. Griffin, A17A1255
Georgia Court of Appeals, Civil Case (8/2/2017, 8/18/2017)
CIVIL PRACTICE:
The trial court erred in denying father's motion for new trial in a custody dispute without first holding a hearing or excepting the motion from the procedural requirement; accordingly, the Court reversed the denial of the motion for new trial. 
The State v. Jacobs, A17A1288
Georgia Court of Appeals, Criminal Case (8/2/2017, 8/18/2017)
CRIMINAL PRACTICE:
State satisfied its burden of establishing that DUI-defendant's consent to a breath test was voluntary and the trial court, therefore, erred in granting defendant's motion to suppress the breath-test evidence.
Williams v. City Of Atlanta, A17A1099
Georgia Court of Appeals, Civil Case (8/2/2017, 8/17/2017)
GOVERNMENT:
The trial court did not err in granting city's motion for summary judgment in plaintiff's personal injury lawsuit arising after he allegedly tripped and fell on an uncovered manhole because the ante-litem notice plaintiff provided was deficient under O.C.G.A. § 36-33-5 in that it identified the wrong address for the manhole.
Gunn v. The State, A17A1128
Georgia Court of Appeals, Criminal Case (8/2/2017, 8/17/2017)
CRIMINAL PRACTICE:
The Court affirmed defendant's convictions for trafficking cocaine, possessing cocaine with the intent to distribute and possessing a firearm as a convicted felon, finding that the trial court did not err in admitting other acts evidence under Rule 404 (b) and that the trial court did not err in denying defendant's motion to suppress his statement to law enforcement when he had allegedly used cocaine prior to the interview.
Holloway v. The State, A17A0950
Georgia Court of Appeals, Criminal Case (8/2/2017, 8/16/2017)
CRIMINAL PRACTICE:
The evidence was sufficient to support defendant's convictions for burglary and hijacking a motor vehicle and because he failed to raise his ineffective assistance of trial counsel claim at the earliest practicable moment, the Court did not consider that claim on appeal. 
Reed v. The State, A17A0975
Georgia Court of Appeals, Criminal Case (8/2/2017, 8/16/2017)
CRIMINAL PRACTICE:
The trial court did not abuse its discretion in declining to sentence defendant below the mandatory minimum sentence pursuant to O.C.G.A. § 16-13-31 subsection (g) (2) (A) following his convictions for trafficking in methamphetamine, possession of marijuana with intent to distribute and possession of more than an ounce of marijuana and the record showed the trial court was aware that it had the discretion to deviate from the mandatory minimum sentence. 
LA Fontaine et al. v. Signature Research, Inc., A17A0835
Georgia Court of Appeals, Civil Case (8/2/2017, 8/15/2017)
CIVIL PRACTICE:
The trial court did not abuse its discretion in dismissing plaintiffs' suit under the doctrine of forum non conveniens after weighing each of the seven factors set forth in O.C.G.A. § 9-10-31.1. 
Daniel v. The State, A17A0746
Georgia Court of Appeals, Criminal Case (8/2/2017, 8/15/2017)
CRIMINAL PRACTICE:
Defendant was entitled to a new trial based on ineffective assistance of trial counsel, because counsel performed deficiently in failing to correctly advise him during plea negotiations that if he rejected State's plea offer and was convicted at trial, the judge would be required to sentence him as a recidivist who would be ineligible for parole and defendant demonstrated that, had he properly understood sentencing, he would have accepted State's plea offer.
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