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Author Archives: Deborah Elkins

Criminal – Post-Conviction Motion – Ineffective Assistance (access required)

An Abingdon U.S. District Court dismisses a federal inmate’s motion for post-conviction relief under 28 U.S.C. § 2255 based on alleged constitutionally ineffective assistance of counsel. Defendant first asserts that counsel should have done more investigation before advising him to ...

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Bond claim survives CRESPA (access required)

Virginia’s statutory scheme for regulating real estate settlement agents – the CRESPA statute adopted in 1997 – does not prevent a suit to recover under the surety bond that settlement agents have to carry. In the current economic climate, with ...

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Domestic Relations – Spousal Support – Separation Agreement (access required)

A couple’s marital separation agreement that provided for wife to draw a salary from a family business but to receive payments if the business failed or became insolvent, provided that wife’s salary was to be calculated annually based on husband’s ...

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Domestic Relations – Child Support – Private School Tuition (access required)

Where a final divorce decree provided that a sum would be withheld from each party’s share of the net proceeds from sale of the marital home, to fund private school tuition and included therapeutic expenses for one of the parties’ ...

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Domestic Relations – Custody – Passport Surrender – Sanctions (access required)

A father did not preserve for appeal his challenge to the trial court’s order requiring both parents to surrender their and their children’s passports to their lawyers, but the Court of Appeals reverses the sanctions order that precluded husband from ...

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Criminal – Traffic Stop – Cocaine – Intent To Distribute – Quantity (access required)

Because the 0.733 gram of cocaine – including a 0.442 gram single rock – was not inconsistent with personal use, the Court of Appeals reverses defendant’s conviction of possession of cocaine with intent to distribute, and remands the case. The ...

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Criminal – Malicious Wounding – Exculpatory Evidence – New Trial (access required)

Although the police officer reported that defendant smelled of alcohol and was confused when the officer arrested defendant for stabbing another man at his boarding house, subsequent discovery of a police booking report showing defendant’s blood alcohol content at the ...

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Search & Seizure – Auto Search – Exigent Circumstances (access required)

The Court of Appeals says a trial court erred in suppressing cocaine and firearm evidence found in defendant’s vehicle; the proper test was whether the van was apparently rather than actually mobile and the evidence, viewed in the light most ...

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