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South Carolina
Judicial Department
Supreme Court Published Opinions - March 2009

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.

3-2-2009 - Opinions

26606 - Laffitte v. Bridgestone Corporation

The Court reverses the trial court’s order and holds that Bridgestone’s tire skim stock formula is not a discoverable trade secret.

26607 - Aaron v. Mahl

In this direct appeal, the Court reversed the trial court’s dismissal of appellant's action to enforce California and Indiana judgments against respondent.

3-9-2009 - Opinions

26608 - Davie v. State

In this post-conviction relief action, we hold counsel was ineffective for failing to convey a plea offer made by the State to Petitioner.

26609 - Holman v. State

In this PCR case, we hold counsel was deficient for failing to object to the admission of an unrelated gun into evidence. We further hold this deficient performance resulted in prejudice. Therefore, we reverse the PCR court’s denial of PCR relief and remand for a new trial.

26610 - Temple v. Tec-Fab

The issue on certiorari is whether the Court of Appeals erred in reversing an award of treble damages for a violation of the Payment of Wages Act.

26611 - Jordan v. Kelly Company

The Court affirmed the court of appeals decision and held substantial evidence in the record existed to support the full commission’s decision that the claimant’s heart attack was not a compensable injury.

26612 - RRR, Inc. v. Toggas

In this opinion, the Court affirmed the decision of the Court of Appeals upholding a punitive damages award.

26613 - Spence v. Wingate

The Court reversed the Court of Appeals’ holding that the issue was not preserved for review and remanded the case to the Court of Appeals.

26614 - In the Matter of Michael T. Jordan

This is an opinion disbarring a lawyer.

3-16-2009 - Opinions

26615 - Hiott v. State

We granted certiorari in this case to determine whether Rule 11 of the South Carolina Rules of Civil Procedure is applicable in post-conviction relief proceedings.

26616 - Tennant v. Beaufort County School District

The Court affirms the court of appeals’ decision, upholding the workers’ compensation commission’s order finding Tennant’s mental-mental injury not compensable.

3-23-2009 - Opinions

26617 - In the Matter of James W. Fayssoux

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

26618 - Berry v. State

As a drug paraphernalia conviction does not qualify as a prior offense for enhancement purposes under South Carolina’s statutory scheme and plea counsel neither informed Berry of this fact nor made an objection in the plea court, we reverse the denial of PCR, vacate the guilty plea, and remand to the general sessions court.

26619 - Rydde v. Morris

This is a legal malpractice case involving the drafting of a will.

3-30-2009 - Opinions

26620 - Brownlee v. SCDHEC

We granted the petition of the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) for certiorari to review the decision in Brownlee v. South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control, 372 S.C. 119, 641 S.E.2d 45 (Ct. App. 2007).

26621 - Kiriakides v. School District of Greenville County

Alex Kiriakides, Jr. and the School District of Greenville County cross appeal from an order that found (1) Kiriakides was not entitled to damages for inverse condemnation and (2) Kiriakides was entitled to statutory attorneys' fees for the School District's abandonment of condemnation proceedings.

26622 - State v. Mitchell

Petitioner was convicted of armed robbery and sentenced to twenty years imprisonment. The court of appeals affirmed the conviction and sentence. State v. Mitchell, Op. No. 2006-UP-403 (S.C. Ct. App. filed December 11, 2006). On appeal to this Court, Petitioner submits that he should have instead been charged with separate offenses for petit larceny and assault with intent to kill or assault of a high and aggravated nature. The Court finds that because Petitioner’s use of force was necessary to retain possession of the stolen property immediately after the theft, the trial court did not err in denying Petitioner’s motion for directed verdict on the charge of armed robbery. The court of appeals’ decision upholding Petitioner’s conviction and sentence is affirmed.

26623 - State v. Woods

This is a capital case. The issues on appeal are whether the trial court erred utilizing a jury pool from Clarendon County, rather than Marion County and whether the court erred in excusing a black female potential juror for cause.

26624 - State v. Odom

In this case, the Court reversed the circuit court's suppression of certain evidence obtained through the use of criminal discovery orders authorized by provisions of the federal PATRIOT Act.