Court Opinions

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Recent opinions released by Georgia's Appellate courts
Coleman v. State, A16A0517
Georgia Court of Appeals, Criminal Case (6/7/2016, 7/28/2016)
CRIMINAL PRACTICE: Cocaine Possession, Manufacturing Marijuana, Marijuana Possession with Intent to Distribute, Effective Assistance of Counsel
The defendant failed to demonstrate that his trial counsel performed deficiently in failing to pursue a motion to suppress drug evidence officers found in the defendant's apartment during a warrant search, because the defendant did not show that the evidence would have been suppressed had counsel pursued the motion.
Daniel v. State, A16A0587
Georgia Court of Appeals, Criminal Case (6/7/2016, 7/28/2016)
CRIMINAL PRACTICE: Burglary, Intent, Effective Assistance of Counsel, Jury Charges
The evidence sufficiently supported the defendant's conviction for burglary, as he failed to point to any evidence that would support an inference that he broke into the home to seek shelter from the cold and the presence of valuables inside the home supported an inference of intent to steal.
State v. Bowman, A16A0555
Georgia Court of Appeals, Criminal Case (6/7/2016, 7/28/2016)
CRIMINAL PRACTICE: DUI, Implied Consent Rights
The evidence supported the trial court's findings, under the totality of the circumstances, that the defendant did not voluntarily consent to a State-administered blood test following his arrest in connection with a single-car accident, and the Court, therefore, affirmed the grant of the defendant's motion to suppress the results of that blood test.
Covault v. Harris, A16A0139
Georgia Court of Appeals, Civil Case (6/7/2016, 7/28/2016)
CIVIL PRACTICE: Nonresident Motorist Act, Service of Process, Jurisdiction
The plaintiff failed to strictly comply with the requirements for perfecting service under the Georgia Nonresident Motorist Act and the trial court, therefore, did not obtain jurisdiction over the nonresident motorist in the plaintiff's suit to recover damages arising from a motor vehicle accident.
Smith v. Georgia Farm Bureau Mut. Ins. Co., A14A1824; A14A1825
Georgia Court of Appeals, Civil Case (6/7/2016, 7/28/2016)
INSURANCE LAW: Declaratory Judgment, Coverage, Exclusion, Duty to Defend
The Court of Appeals erred in holding, as a matter of first impression, that personal injury claims arising from lead poisoning due to lead-based paint ingestion were not excluded from coverage pursuant to an absolute pollution exclusion in a commercial general liability insurance policy covering residential rental property.
Schumacher v. City of Roswell, A16A0582
Georgia Court of Appeals, Civil Case (6/1/2016, 7/27/2016)
APPEALS: Dismissal, Discretionary Appeal, Direct Appeal, Jurisdiction
The plaintiffs' appeal was from the superior court's review of a local government zoning decision, and they were therefore required to appeal by discretionary application under O.C.G.A. § 5-6-35 subsection (a) (1), rather than the direct appeal they filed.
Henry Cnty. Bd. of Educ. v. S. G., A16A0201
Georgia Court of Appeals, Civil Case (5/31/2016, 7/27/2016)
ADMINISTRATIVE LAW: Administrative Review
The local board of education abused its discretion in failing to properly apply self-defense standards when it expelled a student for fighting on school grounds.
Adewumi v. Amelia Grove/Ashland Park Homeowners Ass'n Inc., A16A0138
Georgia Court of Appeals, Civil Case (6/2/2016, 7/27/2016)
CIVIL PRACTICE: Summary Judgment, Admissions
The defendant failed to respond to the plaintiff's requests for admissions and did not request that the admissions be withdrawn or respond to the plaintiff's motion for summary judgment; accordingly, the defendant admitted that she was indebted to the plaintiff in the amount alleged in the complaint, and the plaintiff was entitled to summary judgment.
Houghton v. Sacor Fin. Inc., A16A0009
Georgia Court of Appeals, Civil Case (5/31/2016, 7/27/2016)
CONTRACTS: Breach of Contract, Statute of Limitation
The trial court erred in granting the plaintiff's motion for summary judgment in its breach of contract action, because there was evidence that the plaintiff did not file its suit within six years of the alleged breach.
Loveless v. State of GA, A16A0479
Georgia Court of Appeals, Criminal Case (5/27/2016, 7/26/2016)
CRIMINAL PRACTICE: Forfeiture
The trial court did not err in striking the defendant's answer as legally insufficient and entering a default judgment of forfeiture in the State's civil in rem complaint to condemn two amounts of cash law enforcement officers had allegedly found in close proximity to methamphetamine and marijuana during a search of the defendant, his vehicle and a room in an extended stay hotel.
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