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Supreme Court Published Opinions - October 2005

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.

10-3-2005 - Opinions

26046 - Mims Amusement Company v. SLED

State law enforcement authorities seized a Safari Skill video game machine and a magistrate ordered the machine destroyed after determining it was an illegal gambling device pursuant to applicable statutes. The machine's owner requested a jury trial on the forfeiture of the machine. The magistrate denied the request, but the circuit court reversed and remanded the case to the magistrate for a jury trial when there is a factual dispute about the legality of a particular machine. The Supreme Court, reversing the circuit court, concluded a video game machine seized by authorities and alleged to be an illegal gambling device is an item of contraband per se. The Supreme Court held that the owner of such a machine does not have a constitutional right to demand a jury trial in a civil forfeiture proceeding to determine whether the machine is an illegal gambling device.

10-3-2005 - Orders

ORDER - In the Matter of James H. Dickey

This is an order placing an attorney on interim suspension.
10-10-2005 - Opinions

26047 - Stonhard, Inc. v. Carolina Flooring Specialists

The Court answered, in the negative, the following three questions: 1) May a non-compete agreement that contains a New Jersey choice-of-law provision but no geographical limitation be reformed (or “blue penciled”) in accordance with New Jersey law and then enforced in South Carolina?; 2) May a non-compete agreement that is reformed (or “blue penciled”) under New Jersey law apply to support an award of damages for breaches occurring prior to the time the agreement is reformed?; and 3) Does South Carolina law allow a court to grant equitable relief extending the term of a non-compete agreement beyond its stated expiration date?

10-17-2005 - Opinions

26048 - Hitachi Electronic Devices (USA), Inc. v. Platinum Technologies, Inc.

This is a breach-of-contract case involving a contract for the sale of goods. The Court granted a writ fo certiorari to review Hitachi Elec. Devices (USA), Inc. v. Platinum Tech., Inc., Op. No. 2003-UP-766 (S.C. Ct. App. filed December 31, 2003), in which the Court of Appeals held that a buyer's failure to give notice of breach, as required by article 2 of the Uniform Commercial Code, does not prevent the buyer from pursuing common-law or contractual remedies. The Court reversed.

26049 - Glaze v. State

The Court granted a writ of certiorari to review the denial of post-conviction relief (PCR) to Petitioner. The Court affirmed. The Court held that a "time served" sentence that results from an uncounseled misdemeanor conviction is not unconstitutional, so the conviction can constitutionally be used for sentence enhancement.

10-17-2005 - Orders

ORDER - In the Matter of Thomas Joseph Hummel

This is an order placing an attorney on incapacity inactive status.
10-24-2005 - Opinions

26050 - Simmons v. Mark Lift Industries, Inc.

This case has been certified from the U.S. District Court. The issues involve the liability of a successor corporation in a product liability case.

26051 - State v. Sapp

This is a death penalty case. The issues on appeal involve the trial court's removal of a juror for cause, and limitation of the defendant's cross-examination of a state's witness as to whether she wished to see the defendant sentenced to death.

26052 - In the Matter of Charleston County Magistrate James B. Gosnell, Jr.,

This is a judicial disciplinary opinioin in which the Court publicly reprimanded a magistrate.

26053 - In the Matter of Karl Bryant Allen

This is an attorney disciplinary opinion in which the Court issued a public reprimand.

26054 - In the Matter of Ernest Hamilton

This is an attorney disciplinary matter in which the Court imposed a public reprimand.

26055 - In the Matter of C. Craig Young

This is an attorney disciplinary opinion in which the Court imposed a public reprimand.

26056 - In the Matter of John J. Dodds, III

This is an attorney disciplinary opinion in which the Court imposed a definite suspension.

26057 - In the Matter of Walter W. Brooks

This is an opinion placing an attorney on indefinite suspension.

26058 - In the Matter of Charleston Municipal Court Judge Joseph S. Mendelsohn

This is a disciplinary opinion in which the Court publicly reprimands a judge.

10-24-2005 - Orders

ORDER - Amendment to Rule 402, SCACR

This is an order which changes the early filing deadline for the July Bar Examination.
ORDER - In the Matter of Robert Lee Newton, Jr.
This is an order granting a petition for reinstatement.
ORDER - Hair v. Roberson
This order dismisses the writ of certiorari in this case as improvidently granted.