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Turner v. Caplan

In a case concerning whether the pasturing of a horse within a residential subdivision either violated certain restrictive covenants and exceptions thereto set out in a recorded declaration, or constituted an enjoinable nuisance, the trial court erred in its interpretation of the legal effect of the covenants and exceptions. While it did not err in finding that a nuisance existed, the court erred in the scope of the remedy it prescribed on that basis. The case reversed in part and affirmed in part, and remanded to the trial court.

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Barrett v. Commonwealth

The evidence was sufficient to sustain the defendant's conviction under Code § 18.2-371.1(A) of a Class 4 felony for criminal neglect of her ten-month-old son, resulting in his death, and her conviction pursuant to Code § 18.2-371.1(B) of a Class 6 felony for criminal neglect of her daughter, aged two years and ten months. Changes in the charges after a prior reversal of her convictions were not shown to be vindictive, and the trial court correctly refused to quash the additional indictment. The convictions are affirmed.

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Schlimmer v. Poverty Hunt Club

In a personal injury suit arising from an accidental shooting at a hunt club, the trial court erred in failing to instruct the jury on the doctrine of negligence per se. The judgment is reversed and the case is remanded for a new trial.

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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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Orbe v. Johnson

The trial court did not err in refusing injunctive relief staying appellant's execution because it lacked power to grant such relief and because a declaratory judgment action could not serve as the vehicle for obtaining such relief, due to the removal of appellant's claimed constitutional issues from actual controversy by operation of a statute under which he was deemed to have selected the method of his execution. Appellant's appeal and his request for a stay of execution are denied.

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Orbe v. Warden

A petition for writ of habeas corpus attempting to challenge the constitutionality of Virginia's lethal injection protocol is dismissed for lack of jurisdiction where the petition failed to challenge petitioner's death sentence and either the fact or the duration of petitioner's imprisonment, and did not seek a determination that petitioner was entitled to an immediate or speedier release.

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Orbe v. Johnson

The trial court correctly dismissed appellant's declaratory judgment action seeking an adjudication that Virginia's lethal injection protocol violates the Constitution of Virginia and a permanent injunction preventing the use of such protocol in carrying out his execution where appellant was deemed, by operation of statute, to have selected lethal injection rather than electrocution as the method of his execution. Appellant's petition for appeal and motions attendant thereto are denied.

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King George Serv. Authority v. Presidential Servic

The circuit court was correct in specifically enforcing an agreement for the purchase of a private water company's existing water system by a county service authority under an agreement ratified by the authority's board, but erred in directing the authority to purchase other water and sewer system facilities because there was no resolution of the authority's board authorizing or ratifying a further agreement. The decree is affirmed in part and reversed in part.

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Russ v. Destival

A jury instruction stating that a bicyclist has a duty to refrain from entering or crossing an intersection in disregard of "close or approaching" traffic is an inaccurate statement of law in light of the plain terms of Code &#167 46.2-924(B), and thus the circuit court erred in granting the instruction. The judgment is reversed and the case is remanded.

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Harrison-Wyatt LLC v. Ratliff

The trial court correctly ruled that where a surface owner of a tract of land, or his predecessor-in-title, has conveyed all the coal in and under his land, title to the coal bed methane gas in the tract has not passed to the coal owner along with the coal. The trial court's judgment is affirmed. (Revised 4/1/04)

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Lenz v. Warden of the Sussex I State Prison

In a rehearing of the petitioner's application for a writ of habeas corpus, it is concluded that trial counsel were not ineffective in failing to object to a verdict form in the sentencing phase of petitioner's capital murder trial. The petition is denied.

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Commonwealth v. Jones

The Court of Appeals erred in holding that the doctrine of inevitable discovery was inapplicable to support the trial court's refusal to suppress evidence seized in a search purportedly lacking in probable cause. The judgment is reversed and final judgment is entered.

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Bates v. Commonwealth

In a wrongful death action against the Commonwealth under the Virginia Tort Claims Act, a notice of claim naming a university medical center was sufficient to comply with the requirements of Code &#167 8.01-195.6 for identification of the "place" where the injury was alleged to have occurred. The trial court erred in sustaining a plea of sovereign immunity and dismissing the claim with prejudice. The judgment is reversed and the case is remanded for further proceedings.

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Washington v. United Parcel Service

In a workers' compensation appeal, the Court of Appeals erred in addressing an issue of causal connection that was not properly before that court and not properly before the Commission. As a result, there was no basis for concluding that the claimant would be unjustly enriched by receiving benefits to which he was not entitled. A prior award of benefits remains valid, and the refusal to assess a 20% penalty was error. The judgment is reversed and the case is remanded for further proceedings. (Revised 3/8/04)

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Elliott (Richard) v. Commonwealth

In a proceeding remanded by the U.S. Supreme Court involving the constitutionality of Virginia's cross-burning statute, Code &#167 18.2-423, it is held that the prima facie evidence provision of the statute is unconstitutionally overbroad under the First Amendment and Article I, &#167 12 of the Constitution of Virginia. The statute is severable and the core provisions of the statute that remain are constitutional. The convictions of two defendants for cross burning are affirmed. (Revised 3/9/04)

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The Dunbar Group LLC v. Tignor

In litigation involving the requested expulsion of a member of a limited liability company and an application for judicial dissolution of that entity, the trial court's judgment is affirmed in part, reversed in part, and final judgment is entered.

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