Oral arg. – COA – June 3, 2015

The COA will hear two cases on Wednesday June 3, 2015

10:00 a.m. Michael Molleston, M.D. v. River Oaks

This case  has to do with the denial of hospital privileges to a neurosurgeon, Dr. Michael Molleston.  He argues that River Oaks violated his due process rights in doing so.  Dr. Molleston practiced neurosurgery in Hattiesburg from 1995 until he moved to Jackson in 2011. He was granted privileges at CMMC but River Oaks denied him.  When his application was denied, he was entitled to a hearing pursuant to the hospital bylaws.  The members of the committee were to be doctors not in direct competition with Dr. Molleston.  Dr. Molleston argues that the case against him was presented by Dr. John Davis, a direct competitor and that on the Committee was Dr. Walter Shelton  who “was or would soon be in direct economic competition to Dr. Molleston as a result of his group’s hiring of Dr. Graham C. Calvert, a fellowship trained spinal surgeon.”

Dr. Molleston’s brief

River Oaks’ brief

Dr. Molleston’s rebuttal brief

Watch it here

At 1:30 the Court will hear Debra Thames v. Christopher Thames  which asks whether the court abused its discretion in awarding joint custody when one parent lives in Mississippi and the other in Texas.  Christopher and Debra  were married in May of  2008, and had a daughter, Sofia, born in January 2012.  In  January  2013, they separated and Debra moved to San Antonio, Texas. Christopher remained in Brandon, Mississippi.  In the final order, the Court  granted the parties joint physical and legal custody of Sofia with  the parties  alternating custody of the child on a monthly basis between  San Antonioand  Brandon.  The “parties will alternate this visitation schedule until further Order of the Court. This schedule will remain in effect until such time as either the State of Mississippi or the State of Texas, whichever is earlier, requires mandatory attendance in five (5) year old kindergarten when the child turns five (5) before the month of September.”

Debra’s brief

Christopher’s brief

Watch it here

This was interesting.  Justice Roberts was concerned about the scope of review (apparently he’s inclined to affirm).  The other justices were Chief Justice Lee and Justice Carlton.  Carlton was able to ask questions getting to the difficulty of parenting a three year old and maintaining consistency for things like pacifier weaning and toilet training where the kid is shuttled back and forth 800 miles every month. She also indicated that the trial court judge, the recently deceased Fairley, went on a rant about not liking the traditional visitation schedules.  He also seemed unduly upset that the mother moved to Texas before the divorce was even filed.   There was also some disbelief that the trial court’s order rather arbitrarily provided that the child would start kindergarten in whichever state the school year started first.

2 thoughts on “Oral arg. – COA – June 3, 2015

  1. During the argument, it was said that the hospital’s objection to him was that he performs too many surgeries. The incident covered by JJ was not alluded to in any way.

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