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Recent opinions released by Georgia's Appellate courts
Milledgeville Manor Partners LLC v. Lewis, A14A1497
Georgia Court of Appeals, Civil Case (7/22/2014, 9/3/2014)
TORTS: Trip & Fall, Premises Liability
The defendant property owner was entitled to summary judgment on the plaintiff's premises liability claim, as the plaintiff's knowledge of the presence of a hole in the ground was equal to or greater than that of the defendant before she stepped into it and injured herself.
Sampson v. Georgia Dep't of Juvenile Justice, A14A0474
Georgia Court of Appeals, Civil Case (7/11/2014, 9/3/2014)
CIVIL PRACTICE: Res Judicata, Service of Process
The trial court erred in dismissing the plaintiff's complaint against the Georgia Department of Juvenile Justice for alleged violations of the Georgia Open Records Act on res judicata grounds.
State v. Allen, A14A0297
Georgia Court of Appeals, Criminal Case (7/16/2014, 9/3/2014)
CRIMINAL PRACTICE: Search & Seizure
The officer impermissibly prolonged the duration of a traffic stop when he initiated a computer check of the defendants' license and identification card after completing his written warning.
Lucas v. State, A14A0539
Georgia Court of Appeals, Criminal Case (7/16/2014, 9/3/2014)
CRIMINAL PRACTICE: Burglary, Criminal Damage to Property, Theft by Taking, Possession of Crime Tools, Merger, Effective Assistance of Counsel, Statement
The defendant's two burglary convictions merged as a matter of fact because they were committed at the same time and place, were part of a continuous criminal act, and were inspired by the same criminal intent.
Holcomb v. State, A14A0791
Georgia Court of Appeals, Criminal Case (7/25/2014, 9/2/2014)
CRIMINAL PRACTICE: Child Molestation, Aggravated Sexual Battery
The victim's testimony alone was sufficient to establish the elements of child molestation and aggravated sexual battery, and whether she gave a credible account of the defendant's actions was for the jury to decide.
Oliver v. McDade, A14A0147
Georgia Court of Appeals, Civil Case (7/16/2014, 9/2/2014)
TORTS: Emotional Distress, Negligence
A question of fact remained as to whether the pecuniary loss rule applied to the plaintiff's negligence claim, as neither the complaint nor the plaintiff's deposition testimony set out any facts showing that a portion of his emotional distress arose solely from witnessing the injuries to his friend or could be apportioned to his non-physical injuries as opposed to his physical injuries.
Laster v. National Collegiate Student Loan Trust, A14A1057; A14A1059
Georgia Court of Appeals, Civil Case (7/24/2014, 9/2/2014)
CIVIL PRACTICE: Jurisdiction, Dismissal
The superior court should have transferred the defendants' appeal from a state court summary judgment order to the Court of Appeals for review, instead of dismissing it for lack of jurisdiction.
Womack v. Johnson, A14A1083
Georgia Court of Appeals, Civil Case (7/24/2014, 9/2/2014)
CIVIL PRACTICE: Opening Statement, Mistrial
The plaintiffs waived any error in defense counsel's use of certain photographs during his opening statement, as they did not object until the following morning.
Emory Healthcare Inc. v. Pardue, A14A0112
Georgia Court of Appeals, Civil Case (7/15/2014, 8/29/2014)
TORTS: Slip & Fall, Premises Liability
The plaintiff's claim seeking to recover for injuries sustained when she slipped and fell on urine on the floor of her hospital room sounded in ordinary negligence rather than medical malpractice.
CGL Facility Mgmt. LLC v. Wiley, A14A0455
Georgia Court of Appeals, Civil Case (7/16/2014, 8/29/2014)
TORTS: Respondeat Superior, Vicarious Liability, Negligent Hiring and Retention, Negligent Entrustment,
Although the defendant's employee was driving a company truck when he caused a head-on collision, he was not acting within the scope of his employment because he was commuting to work.
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