Court Opinions

Recent opinions released by Georgia's Appellate courts
State v. Vickers, A16A0792
Georgia Court of Appeals, Criminal Case (11/1/2016, 12/9/2016)
CRIMINAL PRACTICE: Search & Seizure, Controlled Substance
The Court affirmed the grant of defendants' motion to suppress evidence seized from a vehicle in the driveway of a residence, as the record supported the trial court's conclusion that officers failed to obtain a warrant and showed no consent or exigent circumstances to support a search or arrest in the curtilage of the residence.
Extremity Healthcare Inc. v. Access to Care Am. LLC, A16A1990
Georgia Court of Appeals, Civil Case (10/28/2016, 12/9/2016)
CONTRACTS: Mutual Mistake, Arbitration Clause
The arbitration clause in a buyout agreement was valid and enforceable; consequently, the Court affirmed the order compelling arbitration and dismissing plaintiffs' suit related to a failed joint venture.
West v. State, A16A0952
Georgia Court of Appeals, Criminal Case (11/1/2016, 12/9/2016)
CRIMINAL PRACTICE: Speedy Trial, Sexual Battery
The trial court erred in its analysis of the Barker-Doggett factors when it considered defendant's motion for new trial based on an alleged violation of his constitutional right to a speedy trial.
Gaines v. State, A16A1150
Georgia Court of Appeals, Criminal Case (11/1/2016, 12/9/2016)
CRIMINAL PRACTICE: Child Molestation, Right to Remain Silent, Effective Assistance of Counsel
The evidence, including the victim's testimony and DNA evidence, supported defendant's conviction for child molestation.
Ellis v. State, S16A1246
Supreme Court of Georgia, Criminal Case (11/30/2016, 12/8/2016)
CRIMINAL PRACTICE: Perjury, Extortion, Juror as Witness
The Court reversed former DeKalb County CEO's convictions for perjury and attempt to commit theft by extortion due to certain evidentiary errors that occurred at trial.
Alexander v. Gibson, S16A1352
Supreme Court of Georgia, Civil Case (11/30/2016, 12/8/2016)
JUDGES: Mandamus
Clerk of the court had a clear duty to file appellee's motion to compel under the requested case number without making an independent determination about whether a new case number should have been assigned, and the trial court therefore properly granted appellee's petition for a writ of mandamus to force clerk to file the motion under the requested case number.
Yelverton v. State of GA, S16A1043
Supreme Court of Georgia, Criminal Case (11/30/2016, 12/8/2016)
CRIMINAL PRACTICE: Sex Offender Registry
The court below misconstrued the law concerning petitioner's eligibility for release from the sexual offender registration requirements; the Court, therefore, reversed the denial of his petition for release and remanded the case for further proceedings.
Parks v. State, S16A1001
Supreme Court of Georgia, Criminal Case (11/30/2016, 12/7/2016)
CRIMINAL PRACTICE: Murder, Aggravated Assault, Firearms Offense, Self-Defense, Effective Assistance of Counsel
Although the trial court erred in admitting defendant's prior conviction in his trial for murder and other offenses, any error was harmless in light of the substantial evidence of his guilt.
In Re: Judicial Qualifications Comm'n Formal Advisory Op. No. 239, S15Z1633
Supreme Court of Georgia, Civil Case (11/30/2016, 12/7/2016)
APPEALS: Supreme Court Review, Jurisdiction, Reconsideration
The Supreme Court directed Judicial Qualifications Commission to reconsider Formal Advisory Opinion No. 239, which concerns Canon 2 (A) of the former Code of Judicial Conduct and the obligation of judges to respect and comply with the constitutional guarantee of the right of public access to judicial proceedings, consistent with the Court's opinion.
State v. Hall, A16A1704
Georgia Court of Appeals, Criminal Case (10/28/2016, 12/6/2016)
CRIMINAL PRACTICE: Battery, Immunity
The trial court properly granted police officer's motion for immunity from prosecution under O.C.G.A. § 16-3-24.2 after he was indicted for simple battery based on his use of force during an encounter with a homeowner who he believed was a potential burglar.
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