Decisions – COA – Aug. 1, 2017 – part 1

Akeem Rasheed  v. State of Mississippiself defense – Rasheed had been in a relationship with Reneee Childs.  One night he broke down Child’s door and stabbed Michael Randle  (Randle was the father of Childs’s daughter) in the back.  On appeal he argues that the trial court erred in refusing his self defense instructions.  Here Rasheed denied stabbing Randle and, thus, was not entitled to a self defense instruction.   He also argues that he was entitled to a mistrial for statements made by the prosecution.  Rahseed did not object at trial though.  Nor was it ineffective assistance for his attorney to fail to object.

Leesa Crim McCharen v. Judson Moore Allred, IIIdismissal for want of prosecution – McCharen filed a claim against her ex for child support arrearages.  After two years with little activity on the file, the clerk filed a motion to dismiss for want of prosecution.  McCharen filed a motion to reinstate the case, and a hearing was held without Allred or his attorney present. The court reinstated the case.  Allred filed a 60(b) motion which the court granted dismissing McCharen’s lawsuit. She appeals.  “After careful review of the record, we find the chancellor acted within his discretion in finding that Leesa failed to show any compelling reason for her delay in prosecution. Accordingly, we affirm the chancellor’s order setting aside the order reinstating the case.”

Travon McCall v. Sanderson Farms, Inc. and New Hampshire Insurance Company –  workers comp/breathalyzer  test– McCall worked as a cook-line operator for Sanderson Farms. In May of  2014, he bent down to pick up a small tub of waste flour and injured his lower back.  It is Sanderson Farms’ policy to perform both a drug test and an alcohol test when an employee is injured on the premises.  The company nurse  testified that McCall initially provided an untestable urine sample (under forty-five milliliters according to company policy), so she requested that he take another one.  McCall drank forty ounces of water but failed to produce a sample. He testified that due to his pain, he lost his temper and walked out and heading to the hospital. Once he got a shot for the pain, he was able to provide a urine sample which was negative for drugs.   He was never offered a breathalyzer.  He was fired from Sanderson Farms for  refusal to take a drug/alcohol test and the Workers Comp Commission denied benefits finding that he refused to take a breathalyzer.  The COA reverses finding that McCall remained on the premises of Sanderson Farms for an hour and half and was never offered a breathalyzer test.

Kelly R. Burge v. Craig A. Burge and Chadwick A. Sharff –  custody/natural parent presumption –  Kelly Burge had two children by her first husband, Chad Sharff, and two by her second, Craig Burge.  When Craig divorced Kelly, he sought custody of all four children.  Chad joined in Craig’s request.  The court granted a divorce on the grounds of adultery to Craig and gave Craig legal and physical custody of all four children.  Kelly appeals. The COA affirms.

Candi Clark v. James Derek Earpcustody – Candi and Derek  had two children,  Carly, born in 2007, and Chris, born in 2008 In 2012, an agreed order was entered awarding Candi and Derek joint legal custody of the minor children with Candi having physical custody. That same year Candi and the children moved in with Candi’s boyfriend, BobbyJoe Chilcutt.  In December  2013, Bobby severely beat Candi and held her hostage in the home for approximately sixteen hours. Candi and the children moved out for four months but returned.  Derek filed complaint for emergency relief and modification of custody.  They then agreed not to allow overnight guests of the opposite sex.  Candi ignored the order.  In August  2015, Bobby severely beat Candi again and choked her until she became unconscious. Eventually there was a trial and the court held that there was a substantial chance in circumstances and awarded physical custody to Derek.  Candi appeals and loses.

Ralph Edward Lloyd  v. State of Mississippi –  accomplice testimony instruction – Arthur  Luckett owned a lawn-maintenance company and was working in Canton in October 2015 when he was robbed at gunpoint by four men wearing Halloween masks.  Lloyd was eventually convicted of being one of those men. On appeal he argues that his attorney was ineffective for failing to request  a cautionary jury instruction with regard to the the testimony of an accomplice. The COA affirms.

Amanda Pellegrin v. Kirk John Pellegrin –  custody – Kirk and Amanda were married in 2004,  had two children, and separated in  2009.   Kirk field for divorce claiming
habitual cruel and inhuman treatment. Eventually the judge entered an order giving them joint legal custody but primary physical custody to Kirk. The order contained no reasoning.  The court remands for the chancellor to make specific findings with respect to the Albright factors.


Pro se PCR appeals affirmed:

Marlon K. Jackson  v. State of Mississippi

Sam Bradford v. State of Mississippi



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