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Monthly Archives: April 2004

Jones v. COMMONWEALTH

The evidence proved the Department sent appellant a letter informing him of the 1996 habitual offender adjudication. Thus the evidence was sufficient to sustain appellant's conviction of feloniously operating a motor vehicle on May 24, 1999 after being declared a habitual offender.

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Webb v. Webb

The trial court erred in determining the marital share of husband's retirement account at a date other than the date of the parties' separation.

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WILLIAMS v. COMMONWEALTH

A conviction under the statute required proof only that appellant made a willfully false material statement on the registration form and did not require proof that the form apprised him such a statement would constitute election fraud.

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JONES v. DAVIS

The trial court erred in allowing credit for non-conforming payments in this case where no agreement as to child support existed between the parties and no petition for modification of support was pending during the period for which credits were awarded. Case is reversed and remanded with direction that a judgment be entered against father for arrearages.

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Jackson (Jerald) v. Commonwealth

An anonymous tip lacked sufficient indicia of reliability to justify an investigatory stop of a vehicle in which defendant was a passenger. Thus, the stop and subsequent search of the defendant were illegal, and the trial court erred in refusing to grant pre-trial suppression of the firearm and narcotics evidence seized. The judgment of the Court of Appeals is reversed, and the indictments are dismissed.

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O'Neill v. Windshire-Copeland Associates

In responding to a certified question of law, it is held that a personal injury plaintiff's contributory negligence in connection with a fall from an apartment balcony may be relied upon by the defendant apartment owner even where the protective railing of the balcony does not comply with municipal building code height requirements.

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Bd. of Zoning of the City of Virginia Beach v. Pennington

Under Code § 15.2-2309(2) a board of zoning appeals has no authority to grant a variance from the applicable zoning ordinance provisions unless the ordinance, as applied to the property under consideration, would, in the absence of a variance, interfere with all reasonable beneficial uses of the property, taken as a whole. Three judgments involving variance resolutions are reversed and final judgments are entered.

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MacNeal v. Town of Pulaski Bd. of Zoning Appeals

Under Code § 15.2-2309(2) a board of zoning appeals has no authority to grant a variance from the applicable zoning ordinance provisions unless the ordinance, as applied to the property under consideration, would, in the absence of a variance, interfere with all reasonable beneficial uses of the property, taken as a whole. Three judgments involving variance resolutions are reversed and final judgments are entered.

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Schwartz v. Commonwealth

The circuit court did not err in finding defendant guilty of three counts of arson where the facts showed that two vehicles and a home were destroyed by fire ignited on one of the vehicles. The judgment of the Court of Appeals confirming these convictions is affirmed.

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Milteer v. Commonwealth

The evidence was sufficient to sustain defendant's conviction under Code § 59.1-41.3 for knowing possession of illegally reproduced videocassettes for sale, and that conviction is affirmed. A charge for possessing compact discs that did not disclose their true manufacturer (a counterfeiter) is dismissed because Code § 59.1-41.4 does not independently criminalize failure to abide by its labeling requirements. A related probation revocation disposition is reversed and remanded for further proceedings.

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Dyer v. Dairyland Insurance Co.

A personal injury plaintiff's recovery for the negligence of one tortfeasor under the liability provision of a motor vehicle insurance policy did not preclude her recovery under the underinsured motorist provision of the same policy for the negligence of a joint tortfeasor. The trial court erred in ruling to the contrary on summary judgment. The judgment is reversed and final judgment is entered for the plaintiff.

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Bullard v. Alfonso

In a personal injury case, the trial court erred in excluding evidence of lost income allegedly suffered by the plaintiff, whose employer continued to pay him his regular salary during the period of his disability. The judgment is reversed and the case is remanded for a new trial limited to the issue of damages.

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Fireman's Fund Insurance Co. v. Sleigh

In a declaratory judgment proceeding, the trial court correctly concluded that an uninsured motorist's use of a car door to injure the insured was a use of the uninsured vehicle "as a vehicle" such that uninsured motorist coverage was applicable under Code § 38.2-2206 and the terms of the injured insured's own motor vehicle insurance policy. The judgment is affirmed.

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Jones v. Hill

The trial court correctly ruled that a lien may attach to the vested interest of a remainderman who takes from a life tenant having full power to dispose of the entire corpus of the estate, and that a creditor of a remainderman may enforce the lien after the death of the life tenant, when the remainderman predeceases the life tenant. The judgment is affirmed.

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Video Zone, Inc. v. KF&F Properties

The circuit court did not err in holding that the terms of a commercial lease required a tenant to replace certain heating, ventilation, and air conditioning equipment located primarily on the roof of the leased premises. The judgment is affirmed.

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Dandridge v. Marshall

In a personal injury action, the trial court erred in excluding certain testimony proffered by the plaintiff and allowing other testimony over objection. The judgment is reversed and the case is remanded for a new trial on the issue of damages.

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Filak v. George

In an action alleging breach of contract and constructive fraud based on an insurance agent's alleged failure to procure a fire insurance policy with certain provisions, the circuit court did not err in sustaining the defendant's demurrer to a constructive fraud claim and in striking the plaintiff's evidence on a breach of contract claim. The judgment is affirmed.

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Lifestar Response of Maryland v. Vegosen

Plaintiff?s failure to serve the required notice along with the motion for judgment in a personal injury suit meant that defendant never received "process." The trial court thus lacked jurisdiction over defendant and erred in entering a default judgment. Since the process was defective, rather than the manner of service, the savings provision of Code § 8.01-288 does not apply. The default is vacated and the judgment is reversed. The case is remanded.

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Perel v. Brannan

The judgment in a suit involving restrictive covenants for building set-backs and buffer areas in a residential subdivision is affirmed in part and reversed in part, and the case is remanded. Issues are addressed with respect to specific enforcement of covenants, approvals by an architectural review committee under a recorded declaration, failure to plead claims for particular equitable relief, various equitable defenses, and the award of attorneys' fees.

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Commissary Concepts Mgmt. Corp. v. Mziguir

The evidence in an action for malicious prosecution was insufficient as a matter of law to support a finding that a prosecution against the plaintiff was instituted without probable cause. Thus, the trial court erred in denying the defendant's motion to strike the evidence and motion to set aside the jury verdict. The judgment is reversed, and final judgment is entered for the defendant.

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Maitland v. Allen

The trial court correctly held that partition could not be compelled by a life tenant of certain properties as against holders of the remainder interests in the properties. Denial of summary judgment on the life tenant's partition claim against another life tenant was not an appealable order. The judgment is affirmed in part and remanded.

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Food Lion, Inc. v. Max-Yeboah

In a personal injury action against a grocery store, the issue of contributory negligence was properly submitted to the jury, but the court erred in instructing the jury that the store could be liable for the negligence of an independent contractor working on the floors. The store did not have a duty to supervise the work and did not have actual or constructive knowledge of the condition causing plaintiff's injury. Final judgment is entered affirming in part and reversing in part.

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Southern Floors and Acoustics v. Max-Yeboah

In a personal injury action against a grocery store, the issue of contributory negligence was properly submitted to the jury, but the court erred in instructing the jury that the store could be liable for the negligence of an independent contractor working on the floors. The store did not have a duty to supervise the work and did not have actual or constructive knowledge of the condition causing plaintiff's injury. Final judgment is entered affirming in part and reversing in part.

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Maddox v. Commonwealth

In a personal injury claim arising out of a bicycle accident, the trial court did not err in dismissing the action on grounds of sovereign immunity. The nuisance claims in this case are precluded by the legislative function exception to the Commonwealth?s waiver of sovereign immunity in the Virginia Tort Claims Act. The judgment is affirmed.

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Slagle v. Hartford Insurance Company

The trial court erred in denying summary judgment for an injured plaintiff, who was "using" a tractor-trailer in a manner contemplated by Code § 38.2-2206(B) when he was injured and, thus, was entitled to underinsured motorist coverage despite the fact that he had neither previously occupied nor immediately intended to occupy the tractor-trailer at the time of his injury. The judgment is reversed and final judgment is entered for plaintiff.

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Cochran v. Fairfax Cty. Bd. of Zoning Appeals

Under Code § 15.2-2309(2) a board of zoning appeals has no authority to grant a variance from the applicable zoning ordinance provisions unless the ordinance, as applied to the property under consideration, would, in the absence of a variance, interfere with all reasonable beneficial uses of the property, taken as a whole. Three judgments involving variance resolutions are reversed and final judgments are entered.

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Virginia Tech. v. Interactive Return Service

The circuit court did not err in admitting evidence of consequential damages in a breach of contract action concerning assignment of intellectual property rights arising out of a privately sponsored research program at a public university, because a reasonably prudent person in the position of the contracting parties would have considered these damages to be the natural consequences of a breach of the agreement. The judgment of the circuit court is affirmed.

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Commonwealth v. Hicks

In a proceeding remanded from the United States Supreme Court, it is held that a redevelopment and housing authority's trespass policy is not void for vagueness under the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution and that the authority's policy does not violate a defendant's right of intimate association guaranteed by the Fourteenth Amendment. The judgment of the Court of Appeals is reversed and final judgment is entered affirming the defendant's trespass conviction.

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BUDNICK v. BUDNICK

The trial court did not err in adopting the commissioner's report; in its equitable distribution award, including a separate monetary award to wife; in its refusal to impute income to wife; or in its award of attorney's fee to wife.

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