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Author Archives: Deborah Elkins

Civil Procedure – Wrongful Death Suit Venue (access required)

In this wrongful death suit arising from a multi-vehicle accident on I-81 in Shenandoah County, Va., resulting in the death of a Tennessee resident, a Richmond U.S. District Court transfers venue to the Western District of Virginia. Plaintiff’s only relation ...

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Cell-phone photos are not private, federal judge says (access required)

Sexy cell-phone photos may get into the wrong hands, as illustrated by the latest cautionary tale to come through federal court. A woman who sued Culpeper police officers for their unauthorized viewing and dissemination of her nude pictures on a ...

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Tort – Defamation – Lodge Administrator – Audit Report (access required)

A former administrator for a Loyal Order of Moose Lodge cannot sue lodge officials for defamation based on statements in letters, e-mail, and at a board and staff meeting that discussed the administrator’s dismissal as administrator and as a lodge ...

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Real Estate – Vested Rights – Governmental Act (access required)

A developer did not acquire vested rights to proceed with a project at the intersection of Jonesboro Road and I-81, as presented in a final site plan to the Abingdon planning commission; a Washington County Circuit Court says that acceptance ...

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Search & Seizure – Traffic Stop – Point Of Seizure (access required)

Police had reasonable suspicion to stop defendant after initially observing him parked at 2:00 a.m. in the parking lot of a shopping center that center that had been burglarized six times in the past year, and the Court of Appeals ...

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Criminal – Malicious Wounding – Hearsay – Arrest Warrant (access required)

A defendant accused of stabbing his wife cannot challenge admission of hearsay statements in an arrest warrant and criminal complaint, as he admitted these documents without limitation, and the Court of Appeals affirms his conviction of malicious wounding, despite wife’s ...

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Traffic Offenses – Speeding – Officer ‘Pacing’ (access required)

The Court of Appeals upholds a reckless driving conviction based on defendant’s speed of 70 mph in a 45-mph zone; contrary to defendant’s claim, Va. Code § 46.2-882, which governs use of speed determination devices, does not prevent the commonwealth ...

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Criminal – Forging Public Document – Public Record (access required)

A defendant who gave a false name when questioned by police about eating a peach at a Kroger store without paying for it can be convicted of multiple counts of forging a public document, despite his claim that the various ...

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Criminal – Grand Larceny – Jury Instruction – Petit Larceny (access required)

Although defendant’s long-time boyfriend testified at trial that she was not involved in the theft of tools from a Home Depot store that the parties later attempted to pawn, and defendant testified that she had nothing to do with the ...

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Criminal – Guilty Plea Withdrawal – Sentencing Guidelines (access required)

The Court of Appeals says a trial court did not abuse its discretion in denying defendant’s motion to withdraw his guilty plea to drug distribution, based on his contention that the sentencing guidelines came out “much higher than expected.” The ...

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