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South Carolina
Judicial Branch
Court of Appeals - Roster of Cases for Hearing

   

The summary below each case is prepared to offer lawyers and the public a general overview of what issues are included in a case which will be argued. The summary is not a limit on what issues a party to a case may present at oral argument.

Monday, May 6, 2024
Courtroom I
 10:40 a.m. (Time Limits: 10-10-5)  
2021-001342    Jessica Bennett and Thuy N. Gasser, individually and on behalf of those similarly situated, Respondents, v. ACS Primary Care Physicians-Southeast P.C., Appellant.

A. Victor Rawl, Jr., of Gordon & Rees LLP, of Charleston, for Appellant. William Camden Lewis, of Richardson, Thomas, Haltiwanger, Moore & Lewis, of Columbia; and Christopher James Moore, of Richardson Thomas, LLC, of Florence, both for Respondent Jessica Bennett. Ian Andrew Taylor, of Morris Law Firm, of Surfside; Robert Morris Hadden, of Hadden Law Firm, LLC, of Mount Pleasant; Joseph Clay Hopkins, of Charleston; and Jeffrey D. Morris, of Myrtle Beach, all for Respondent Thuy N. Gasser.

In these two consolidated appeals, Appellant ACS Primary Care Physicians-Southeast P.C. (Provider) seeks review of the circuit court's orders denying Provider's respective motions to compel arbitration. Provider argues that Respondents, Jessica Bennett and Thuy N. Gasser (collectively, Insureds), are estopped to avoid the application of the arbitration provisions in Provider's respective contracts with Insureds' health insurer because Insureds seek to enforce the contracts based on their status as third-party beneficiaries. Provider also argues that the arbitration of Insureds' claims must be on a bilateral basis because Provider's contracts with Insureds' insurer do not authorize class arbitration.

 11:20 a.m. (Time Limits: 10-10-5-5)  
2021-001177    Julia Sibley-Jones, as Personal Representative of the Estate of William A.L. Sibley, Jr., Respondent-Appellant, v. Decide4Action, Inc., Appellant-Respondent.

Kimberly Truluck Thomason, Devon Marc Puriefoy, and Howard Walton Anderson, III, all of Truluck Thomason, LLC, of Greenville, for Appellant-Respondent. Gregory Jacobs English and James Edward Cox, Jr., both of Wyche, PA, of Greenville, for Respondent-Appellant.

This cross-appeal involves several directed verdicts in a case about the sale of a business. The primary appellant disputes the directed verdicts extinguishing its counterclaims; arguing a reasonable jury could have found in its favor and that the circuit court erred in limiting evidence of damages. The cross-appellant argues the circuit court erred in denying pre-judgment interest and costs.

 12:00 p.m. (Time Limits: 10-10-5)  
2021-001395    Snee Farm Lakes Homeowner's Association, Inc., Individually and on Behalf of those similarly situated, Appellant, v. The Commission of Public Works for the Town of Mount Pleasant d/b/a Mount Pleasant Waterworks, Respondent.

Clayton B. McCullough and Ross A. Appel, of McCullough Khan, LLC; James L. Ward, Jr., of McGowan Hood Felder & Phillips; and Susan Ranee Saunders, of Motley Rice, LLC, all of Mount Pleasant, all for Appellant. Gray Thomas Culbreath and Eleanor Lasseigne Jones, both of Gallivan, White & Boyd, PA; and James Atkinson Bruorton, IV, Timothy James Wood Muller, and David G. Jennings, all of Rosen Hagood, LLC, of Charleston, all for Respondent. Bryan Eric Shytle, of Columbia, for Amicus Curiae Municipal Association of South Carolina.

Snee Farm Lakes Homeowner's Association, Inc., appeals the circuit court's order granting summary judgment in favor of the Commission of Public Works for the Town of Mount Pleasant, arguing the circuit court erred by (1) applying the incorrect legal framework in evaluating the lawfulness of municipal utility rates and (2) applying the incorrect standard in ruling on a motion for summary judgment.

Tuesday, May 7, 2024
Courtroom I
 10:40 a.m. (Time Limits: 10-10-5)  
2022-000729    Thomas Rodriquis Nelson, Respondent, v. Florence Concrete Products, Inc., Appellant.

Anthony W. Livoti, Wesley Brian Sawyer, and Cordes Baxter Kennedy, all of Murphy & Grantland, PA, of Columbia; John R. Owen and James R. Jebo, both of Richmond, VA, all for Appellant. Ashley Bruce Nance, of Parker Law Group, LLP, of Hampton; Linward Curtis Edwards, II, of Law Office of Linward C. Edwards II, of Florence; and Kathleen Chewning Barnes, of Barnes Law Firm, LLC, of Hampton, all for Respondent.

Florence Concrete Products, Inc. appeals a circuit court order granting Thomas Rodriquis Nelson's motion for summary judgment, arguing the circuit court erred in finding: (1) the transportation of oversize or overweight (OSOW) loads by a federally authorized motor carrier is so inherently dangerous that anyone who hires the independent contractor motor carrier is directly liable for the motor carrier's subsequent negligence; (2) an independent contractor's unilateral decision to operate an OSOW load before daylight, in violation of an OSOW permit and South Carolina law, is a risk inherent in the movement of an OSOW; (3) Florence Concrete had notice of an inherent risk where there is no evidence that Nesbitt Transportation previously operated OSOW loads outside of legally permissible times.

 11:20 a.m. (Time Limits: 10-10-5)  
2022-000160    The State, Respondent, v. Johnathan Olin Batchelor, Appellant.

E. Charles Grose, Jr., of Grose Law Firm, of Greenwood, for Appellant. Attorney General Alan McCrory Wilson and Senior Assistant Attorney General Mark Reynolds Farthing, both of Columbia, for Respondent.

 12:00 p.m. (Time Limits: 10-10-5)  
2021-000822    The State, Respondent, v. Nathaniel David Rowland, Appellant.

Appellate Defender Lara Mary Caudy, of Columbia, for Appellant. Attorney General Alan McCrory Wilson, Deputy Attorney General Donald J. Zelenka, Senior Assistant Deputy Attorney General Melody Jane Brown, and Senior Assistant Attorney General W. Edgar Salter, III, all of Columbia, for Respondent.

Nathaniel D. Rowland (Appellant) appeals his convictions and sentences for murder, kidnapping, and possession of a weapon during the commission of a violent crime. Appellant argues the trial court erred by: (1) denying Appellant's motion to suppress evidence obtained as a product of the traffic stop because law enforcement did not have probable cause that a traffic violation had occurred or reasonable suspicion that the occupants of the car were engaged in criminal activity; (2) admitting expert testimony from the State's questioned document examiner that it was "probable" the person who wrote the inscription on the back of an envelope found in Appellant's car was the same person whose handwriting appears on Appellant's personnel records obtained from previous employers; and (3) admitting testimony from the State's expert DNA analyst concerning Appellant's inclusion in a mixture of DNA found on a multitool, cuttings from a roll of paper towels, and a sample from a pair of pants.

Wednesday, May 8, 2024
Courtroom I
 10:40 a.m. (Time Limits: 10-10-5)  
2020-000882    Francisco Roberto Rodriguez, Petitioner, v. State of South Carolina, Respondent.

Appellate Defender Kathrine Haggard Hudgins, of Columbia, for Petitioner. Senior Assistant Attorney General Mark Reynolds Farthing, of Columbia, for Respondent.

In this action for post-conviction relief (PCR), Francisco R. Rodriguez argues the PCR court erred in finding he suffered no prejudice from plea counsel's failure to advise him that entering an Alford plea would result in mandatory deportation and a permanent ban on reentry into the United States.

 11:20 a.m. (Time Limits: 15-15-5)  
2022-000282    Michael K. Crowley, Employee, Appellant, v. Darlington County, Employer, and South Carolina Association of Counties SIF, Carrier, Respondents.

Gerald Malloy, of Malloy Law Firm, of Hartsville; and Preston F. McDaniel, of McDaniel Law Firm, of Columbia, for Appellant. Johnnie W. Baxley, III, of Willson Jones Carter & Baxley, P.A., of North Charleston; and John Gabriel Coggiola, of Marc Brown Law Firm, LLC, of Columbia, both for Respondents.

In this workers' compensation action against Darlington County, Employer, and the South Carolina Association of Counties, Carrier, Michael K. Crowley appeals the order of the South Carolina Workers' Compensation Commission (the Commission), arguing the Commission erred in (1) failing to award total and permanent disability based on loss of use of his back, (2) failing to award total and permanent disability based on loss of earning capacity; (3) admitting a medical opinion and evaluation report, and (4) in making certain findings of fact that were legal conclusions rather than factual findings.

 12:00 p.m. (Time Limits: 10-10-5)  
2021-000976    The State, Respondent, v. Michael Christian Barclay, Appellant.

Appellate Defender Joanna Katherine Delany, of Columbia, for Appellant. Attorney General Alan McCrory Wilson and William Joseph Maye, both of Columbia, for Respondent.

Michael Christian Barclay appeals his conviction for murder and sentence of life imprisonment without the possibility of parole. Barclay argues the trial court erred in (1) failing to dismiss his charge based on a due process violation, (2) instructing the jury on accomplice liability, (3) refusing to instruct the jury on voluntary manslaughter, and (4) failing to instruct the jury that it could draw an adverse inference against the State based on the destruction of certain evidence.

Thursday, May 9, 2024
Courtroom I
 12:30 p.m. (Time Limits: 10-10-5)  
2022-000897    Crescent Homes SC, LLC, Appellant, v. CJN, LLC, Respondent.

Ellis Reed-Hill Lesemann and Benjamin Houston Joyce, both of Lesemann & Associates LLC, of Charleston, for Appellant. John T. Crawford, Jr. and Francis James Warmoth, both of Kenison Dudley & Crawford, LLC, of Greenville, for Respondent.

Crescent Homes SC, LLC appeals the master-in-equity's determination that a right of first refusal was unenforceable. Crescent Homes asserts there is no pending bona fide offer to purchase the property and thus, the master erred in finding a justiciable controversy. It also contends the master improperly refused to consider evidence of the conduct of the parties. It further maintains the master erred in finding the right of first refusal created an unreasonable restraint on alienation of interest in land based on finding it lacked specific terms. Additionally, it argues the master should have addressed whether the right of first refusal violates the rule against perpetuities and if it determined it did violate it, reformed the provision.

Wednesday, May 15, 2024
Courtroom I
 12:00 p.m. (Time Limits: 10-10-5)  
2022-000813    Spring Valley Interests, LLC, Appellant, v. The Best for Last, LLC, Respondent.

Kenneth Ray Raynor, of Raynor Law Firm, PLLC, of Charlotte, NC, for Appellant. Kirby Darr Shealy, III, of Adams and Reese LLP; and Luke M. Allen, both of Columbia, for Respondent.

Spring Valley Interests, LLC (Spring Valley) appeals the circuit court's order finding void a contractual purchase option for a portion of property owned by The Best for Last, LLC. The circuit court found the purchase option was void pursuant to the common law Rule Against Perpetuities (CLRAP). Spring Valley argues this was error because CLRAP has been abolished with respect to commercial transactions by the South Carolina Uniform Rule Against Perpetuities.

Tuesday, May 7, 2024
Courtroom II
 10:00 a.m. (Time Limits: 10-10-5-5)  
2020-001135    Wendy Brawley, Respondent/Appellant, v. Richland County, South Carolina, Appellant/Respondent.

Andrew F. Lindemann, of Lindemann Law Firm, P.A., of Columbia, for Appellant-Respondent. Jenkins McMillan Mann and Shaun C. Blake, both of Rogers Lewis Jackson & Mann, LLC, of Columbia, for Respondent-Appellant.

This is a cross-appeal involving the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). Richland County appeals the circuit court's finding that it violated FOIA and the decision awarding Wendy Brawley attorney's fees and costs. Brawley appeals the circuit court's decision that her request for an injunction was barred by a prior order dismissing the injunctive claim from her complaint.

 
 10:40 a.m. (Time Limits: 10-10-5)  
2022-001175    Hunsten B. Ragin as Personal Representative for the Estate of Samel Ragin, Appellant, v. Pilgrim's Pride Corporation, Mary McBride, and Susan Jones, Respondents.

Dwight Christopher Moore, of Moore Law Firm, LLC, of Sumter; Neil Edward Alger, of Parker Law Group, LLP, of Ridgeland; and John Elliott Parker, Jr., of Parker Law Group, LLP, of Hampton, all for Appellant. Thomas Bacot Pritchard, of Vernis & Bowling of Columbia, LLC, of Charleston, for Respondent.

In this appeal, the estate of a deceased worker argues the circuit court erred in ruling that a tort action related to the worker's death could not proceed. The Estate argues the case involves the principle sometimes known as "dual persona doctrine," by which the employer may be liable in tort for an employee's injuries.

 
Cases to be Submitted Without Oral Argument
2021-000664    The State, Respondent, v. Jarvis Deshun Lucas, Appellant.

2022-000831    The State, Respondent, v. Andre Junior Covington, Appellant.

2021-001341    The State, Respondent, v. Brandy Vernon Harris, Appellant.

2022-000513    Kevin Penland, Appellant, v. Key Largo Mobile Home Park, Respondent.

2022-001486    James L. Arthur, Petitioner, v. State of South Carolina, Respondent.

2022-001041    Elizabeth A. Farmer, Respondent, v. James Timothy Short, Appellant.

2022-001741    Michael Qualls, Appellant, v. Town of McBee, Respondent.

2019-000749    The State, Respondent, v. Tashonby Pedrick Wilson, Appellant.

2022-000447    Christopher Shimeld, Appellant, v. Richland County Sheriff's Office, Respondent.

2022-001395    DeAngelo Brown, Petitioner, v. State of South Carolina, Respondent.

2022-001470    Alicia Pearson, Respondent, v. Richland County, Appellant.

2022-000721    In the Matter of Edith Cox Soles, Deceased, Marcia Soles Anderson and Michael W. Soles, Individually and as Interested Parties, Appellants, v. Jimmy R. Soles, Respondent.

2022-001784    Gator Northridge Partners, LLC, Appellant, v. Ocean Woods Landscaping Company, Inc., Respondent.

2022-000415    The State, Respondent, v. Joseph Dandre Cooper, Appellant.

2021-000800    The State, Respondent, v. Orlando Reames, Appellant.

2021-000805    The State, Respondent, v. Dionte J'Chon Habersham, Appellant.

2021-000939    The State, Respondent, v. Brandal Smith, Appellant.

2022-001506    Justin Paris, Petitioner, v. State of South Carolina, Respondent.

2021-001185    Ronald Edwin Barfield, Plaintiff, v. The Corner Store, Inc., and all persons claiming any right, title, estate interest in or lien upon the real estate described; any unknown adults and those persons who may be in the military service of the United States of America, all of them being a class designated as John Doe, whose true name is unknown; any unborn infants or persons under disability being a class designated as Richard Roe, whose true name is unknown, United States of America, and Paige Holsapple as Florence County Delinquent Tax Collector, Defendants, Of Whom Ronald Edwin Barfield, The Corner Store, Inc., and all persons claiming any right, title, estate interest in or lien upon the real estate described; any unknown adults and those persons who may be in the military service of the United States of America, all of them being a class designated as John Doe, whose true name is unknown; any unborn infants or persons under disability being a class designated as Richard Roe, whose true name is unknown, United States of America, and Paige Holsapple as Florence County Delinquent Tax Collector are the Respondents, And Nilesh Patel, as Trustee of Anjay R. Patel Irrevocable Trust Agreement Dated December 18, 2000 is the Appellant.