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Court of Appeals Published Opinions - May 2010

Note: Beginning in June 2012, opinions will be posted as Adobe PDFs. You can download a free copy of Adobe Reader here.

The summary following each opinion is prepared to offer lawyers and the public a general overview of what a particular opinion decides. The summary is not necessarily a full description of the issues discussed in an opinion.

5-3-2010 - Opinions

4681 - Bazen v. Badger R. Bazen Company, Inc.

In this workers' compensation action, Badger R. Bazen Company, Inc. and Legion Insurance Company (Carrier) appeal the circuit court's decision affirming the decision of the Appellate Panel of the Workers' Compensation Commission (Appellate Panel) to award Glenn Bazen (Claimant) certain workers' compensation benefits. We affirm.

4682 - Farmer v. Farmer

Thomas Michael Farmer (Husband) appeals from an order of the family court granting him and Donna Yeargin Farmer (Wife) a divorce on grounds of one year's continuous separation. On appeal, Husband argues the family court erred in finding certain payments he received from his employer to be marital property and subject to equitable division. Additionally, Husband maintains the family court erred in ordering he pay Wife attorney's fees and costs. We affirm.

5-5-2010 - Opinions

4683 - Hale v. Finn

This is a cross-appeal of an award for intentional interference with contractual relations arising from a dispute between attorneys over the division of fees in a civil litigation. The primary appellant, attorney Thomas Finn, alleges eror in the award of actual and punitive damages to attorney James O. Hale. Cross-appellant Hale argues the special referee should have based actual damages on partnership law rather than on quantum meruit.

4684 - State Accident Fund v. S.C. Second Injury Fund

The State Accident Fund (Carrier) sought reimbursement from the South Carolina Second Injury Fund (the Fund) for monies Carrier paid to Clinton Gaskins for a stroke he suffered during surgery for a work-related back injury. The Fund and the single commissioner denied Carrier's claim as it related to monies paid for the stroke. Both the Appellate Panel of the Workers' Compensation Commission and the circuit court affirmed. We affirm.

5-6-2010 - Opinions

4685 - Wachovia Bank, N.A. v. Coffey

Appellant Wachovia Bank, N.A. (Wachovia), brought this mortgage foreclosure action against Respondents Ann T. Coffey (Mrs. Coffey) and Bank of America, N.A., seeking relief from Mrs. Coffey's default on a home equity loan made to her late husband for the purchase of a sailboat. Wachovia challenges the grant of summary judgment to Mrs. Coffey on its unjust enrichment, equitable lien, and prejudgment interest causes of action on the ground that it proved the required elements of these causes of action. Wachovia also challenges the grant of summary judgment to Mrs. Coffey on its ratification and foreclosure causes of action on the ground that there were material factual issues preventing summary judgment. We affirm.

4686 - In The Interest of Richard D., A Juvenile Under The Age Of Seventeen

In this criminal matter, Appellant contends the trial court erred in admitting two witness's hearsay statements through the investigating police officer, on the basis the statements explained the course of the investigation. Appellant further argues the trial court erred in denying his directed verdict motion in reliance on another witness's prior inconsistent statement when the statement was admitted for the limited purpose of impeaching the witness's trial testimony. Appellant also maintains photographs from a video surveillance camera were admitted in violation of the best evidence rule, and a witness's handwritten statement was admitted in violation of the Brady rule. We affirm.

5-13-2010 - Opinions

4687 - State v. Taylor

Syllester D. Taylor appeals his conviction and thirty-year sentence for possession with intent to distribute (PWID) cocaine base, arguing the trial court erred in admitting the drug evidence because the officers lacked reasonable suspicion to stop him or probable cause to search his tennis ball.

5-24-2010 - Opinions

4688 - State v. Carmack

Charles Carmack (Carmack) was indicted and tried on four counts of assault and battery with intent to kill and one charge of possession of a firearm during the commission of a violent crime. A jury found him guilty on four counts of the lesser included offense of assault and battery of a high an aggravated nature (ABHAN) and acquitted him on the firearm charge. On appeal, Carmack argues the trial court erred: (1) in failing to sequester all the witnesses; (2) in failing to remove the jury foreperson; (3) in admitting Carmack's allegedly involuntary statement; (4) in admitting extrinsic evidence of prior statements made by a witness; and (5) in excluding a school-related document.

5-27-2010 - Opinions

4689 - Bodkin v. Bodkin

Both Lester Hobart Bodkin, III (Husband) and Jan Ford Bodkin (Wife) appeal from the grant of a divorce on the ground of one year's continuous separation. Husband argues the family court erred in (1) failing to grant him a divorce on the grounds of Wife's habitual drunkenness, (2) awarding Wife alimony, (3) apportioning the marital estate, and (4) awarding Wife attorney's fees. Wife contends the family court erred in its determination of marital property. We affirm as modified.