Court Opinions

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Recent opinions released by Georgia's Appellate courts
Morris v. State, S15A0488
Supreme Court of Georgia, Criminal Case (6/29/2015, 7/1/2015)
CRIMINAL PRACTICE: Murder, Aggravated Assault, Aggravated Battery, Firearms Offense, Recidivist
The trial court did not abuse its discretion in refusing to allow trial counsel to stipulate to the defendant's status as a convicted felon, since the defendant's prior convictions for aggravated assault and interference with government property were not of a "nature likely to inflame the passions of the jury," and the only evidence presented about the prior convictions was certified copies of the final dispositions.
Johnson v. Rogers, S15A0395
Supreme Court of Georgia, Civil Case (6/29/2015, 7/1/2015)
TRUSTS AND ESTATES: Virtual Adoption
The doctrine of "virtual adoption" did not apply with regard to the decedent's grandniece, whom the decedent raised, because the decedent disposed of her entire estate by will and the intestacy of the adoptive parent is one of the elements required to prove virtual adoption.
Sims v. State, S15A0182
Supreme Court of Georgia, Criminal Case (6/29/2015, 7/1/2015)
CRIMINAL PRACTICE: Murder, Effective Assistance of Counsel, Statement
The evidence supported the defendant's convictions in connection with the death of his girlfriend's nearly 3-year-old son.
O'Connell v. State, S15A0344
Supreme Court of Georgia, Criminal Case (6/29/2015, 7/1/2015)
CRIMINAL PRACTICE: Murder, Aggravated Assault, Jury Charges, Involuntary Manslaughter
The evidence supported the defendant's convictions for malice murder, felony murder and aggravated assault after she and her adoptive sister strangled their adoptive mother to death.
Whatley v. State, S15A0032
Supreme Court of Georgia, Criminal Case (6/29/2015, 7/1/2015)
CONSTITUTIONAL LAW: Vagueness
The trial court properly denied the defendant's general demurrer, since she challenged O.C.G.A. § 16-13-43 subsection (a) (6) on its face and a facial challenge was not warranted.
Padilla v. Medrano, A15A0380
Georgia Court of Appeals, Civil Case (5/21/2015, 6/30/2015)
CIVIL PRACTICE: Summary Judgment, Substitution of Parties
The trial court erred in failing to address the plaintiff's motion to substitute another party as a defendant before granting the only defendant's motion for summary judgment.
Galloway v. State, A15A0603
Georgia Court of Appeals, Criminal Case (5/20/2015, 6/30/2015)
CRIMINAL PRACTICE: Informant, Search & Seizure, Probable Cause Hearing
The information relayed to the magistrate, which was based on information a confidential informant told police, provided a substantial basis for the magistrate's finding of probable cause to issue a search warrant for the defendant's residence, given the totality of the circumstances.
Bowman v. State, A15A0257
Georgia Court of Appeals, Criminal Case (5/27/2015, 6/30/2015)
CRIMINAL PRACTICE: Search & Seizure
There was no evidence in the record demonstrating probable cause for the issuance of a search warrant for the defendant's residence.
Zarate-Martinez v. Echemendia, A15A0501
Georgia Court of Appeals, Civil Case (5/20/2015, 6/30/2015)
TORTS: Medical Malpractice
The trial court properly dismissed the plaintiff's medical malpractice lawsuit based on its finding that the plaintiff's expert's affidavit did not meet the requirement for expert testimony and that her complaint thus failed to comply with the expert affidavit requirement in O.C.G.A. § 9-11-9.1 subsection (a).
In the Matter of Michael F. Greene, S13Y1788
Supreme Court of Georgia, Civil Case (6/22/2015, 6/29/2015)
LEGAL PROFESSION: Reinstatement
The Supreme Court reinstated an attorney to the practice of law after he complied with all of the conditions for reinstatement following his suspension.
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