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GROVES v. COMMONWEALTH

Trial judge did not err in rejecting appellant?s claim-of-right defense; appellant?s conviction for larceny by false pretenses is affirmed

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ANGELA L. YOUNG v. COMMONWEALTH

Trial court did not err in considering all of the evidence and finding appellant knew the nature and character of the drug in her possession; appellant?s conviction for possession of morphine is affirmed

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WILLIAM DOUGLAS MEIEROTTO v. COMMONWEALTH

Appellant?s conviction for driving without a Virginia operator?s license is reversed and the charge is dismissed as a holder of a valid, out-of-state commercial driver?s license, who resides in the Commonwealth but maintains a domicile in the state that issued his CDL, is entitled to drive non-commercial vehicles in the Commonwealth without obtaining a Virginia operator?s license

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MEIEROTTO v. COMMONWEALTH

Appellant?s conviction for driving without a Virginia operator?s license is reversed and the charge is dismissed as a holder of a valid, out-of-state commercial driver?s license, who resides in the Commonwealth but maintains a domicile in the state that issued his CDL, is entitled to drive non-commercial vehicles in the Commonwealth without obtaining a Virginia operator?s license

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ROULHAC v. COMMONWEALTH

Trial court erred in denying appellant?s motion to suppress as the police did not have reasonable suspicion to detain or pat him down; judgment reversed and case remanded

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COMMONWEALTH v. O?NEAL

This Court holds the evidence supports the trial court?s ruling that the emergency aid doctrine did not apply; trial court?s ruling granting the motion to suppress is affirmed

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MARTIN-BROWER COMPANY v. JARRETT

No error in commission?s finding that the deputy commissioner did not abuse his discretion in refusing to hold the record open after the hearing for a de bene esse deposition, that claimant proved he sustained an injury by accident arising out of and in the course of his employment, and that claimant proved he adequately marketed his residual work capacity

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YOUNG v. COMMONWEALTH

Trial court did not err in considering all of the evidence and finding appellant knew the nature and character of the drug in her possession; appellant?s conviction for possession of morphine is affirmed

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RILEY v. RILEY

Summary affirmance ? trial court did not abuse its discretion in awarding joint custody and in declining to award mother primary custody

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MUHAMMAD v. WARDEN (ORDER)

Upon consideration of a petition for a writ of habeas corpus, respondent's motion to dismiss the petition is granted. Petitioner's various claims alleging ineffective assistance of counsel are rejected as not satisfying the two-pronged test enunciated in Strickland v. Washington, 466 U.S. 668 (1984), and his remaining claims are rejected as lacking merit or as being either procedurally barred or improperly raised.

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MARTIN-BROWER COMPANY AND ACE AMERICAN INSURANCE COMPANY v. DARREN L. JARRETT

No error in commission?s finding that the deputy commissioner did not abuse his discretion in refusing to hold the record open after the hearing for a de bene esse deposition, that claimant proved he sustained an injury by accident arising out of and in the course of his employment, and that claimant proved he adequately marketed his residual work capacity

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ADAMS OUTDOOR ADVERTISING v. BOARD OF ZONING APPEALS

In a dispute regarding zoning ordinance provisions applicable to a lawful nonconforming billboard, the circuit court correctly upheld a board of zoning appeals (BZA) determination that the billboard's owner had structurally altered and enlarged it by installing an electronic message board component and that, as a result, the ordinance required removal of the entire billboard. The modification increased the depth and weight of the billboard, and the BZA's determination did not involve application of erroneous principles of law and was not plainly wrong or in violation of the intent and purpose of the ordinance. The circuit court's judgment is affirmed.

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MANASSAS AUTOCARS v. COUCH

In a suit concerning the advertisement and sale of a new automobile, the trial court correctly ruled that a statute governing the permissible means of advertising the sale of new automobiles, Code § 46.2-1581(12)(a), prevails over a conflicting administrative regulation, and also did not err in submitting the purchasers' claims under the Virginia Consumer Protection Act, Code § 59.1-196 et seq., and the revocation of acceptance statute, Code § 8.2-608, to the jury. The trial court's judgment is affirmed.

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PEERLESS INSURANCE CO. v. COUNTY OF FAIRFAX

In a suit seeking to allocate financial responsibility between insurance companies and a county concerning a personal injury involving a storm water detention easement, the trial court did not err in sustaining the county's demurrers and plea in bar. Code § 15.2-970 applies to the easement, and there was no written contract between the county and the insurers as required by this statute. In addition, judicial estoppel did not apply regarding the county's factual positions as to the nature, ownership, and maintenance of the easement, and the breach of implied contract and breach of express contract claims were time-barred. The judgment is affirmed.

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BRIZZOLARA v. SHERWOOD MEMORIAL PARK

In a corporate governance dispute presented on motions for summary judgment, the trial court erred in ruling that a majority of the directors of a Virginia nonstock corporation could not retire its debt by authorizing payment of outstanding debentures, but correctly ruled under Code § 13.1-842(D) and the language of a special meeting notice, that the members of record on the day before the effective date of the notice could vote at that meeting to remove all of the directors and elect an entirely new board. Aspects of summary judgment availability are also discussed. The judgment is reversed in part, affirmed in part, and remanded with directions.

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GRANDISON v. COMMONWEALTH

In a cocaine possession prosecution, the trial court erred in refusing to suppress evidence obtained in an unlawful seizure when ? in the absence of other circumstances indicating criminal activity ? the officer removed a folded one-dollar bill from the defendant's pocket and opened it to reveal drugs. The Court of Appeals' judgment affirming the trial court disposition is reversed, and this case is remanded to the Court of Appeals with directions to remand the case to the trial court for a new trial if the Commonwealth be so advised.

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JACKSON v. HARTIG

In an action for defamation brought by an unsuccessful candidate for election to the Virginia House of Delegates against the author and publisher of a newspaper editorial endorsing the candidate?s opponent, there are no material facts genuinely in dispute and the evidence in the record would not permit a reasonable fact finder to conclude, by clear and convincing evidence, that the defendants acted with actual malice. The judgment of the circuit court granting summary judgment for the defendants and dismissing the defamation action with prejudice is affirmed.

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MILES v. COMMONWEALTH (ORDER)

Upon considering the Commonwealth's petition for rehearing regarding the prior decision of this appeal reported in Miles v. Commonwealth, 272 Va. 302, 634 S.E.2d 330 (2007), the Court is of the opinion that its judgment reversing the judgment of the circuit court should not be set aside and should stand as issued. Accordingly, the Commonwealth's petition requesting that the defendant be classified as a sexually violent predator and subjected to civil commitment under the Sexually Violent Predators Act is dismissed with prejudice. (<a href="http://www.courts.state.va.us:80/opinions/opnscvwp/1052568.pdf">See the Opinion, Miles v. Commonwealth, dated September 15, 2006</a>)

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MARK FIVE CONSTRUCTION v. CASTLE CONTRACTORS

In an indemnity action for the benefit of a contractor's insurer against an "intermediate contractor" arising from payments made to an injured worker, the circuit court did not err in sustaining the defendants' demurrer because a party can only seek indemnification under Code § 65.2-304 from persons who would have been liable to pay compensation under the Act and thus are subject to jurisdiction under the Act. Plaintiff did not allege that the defendant contracting company was such a person and, as a matter of law, cannot make that showing. The judgment of the circuit court is affirmed.

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TORLONI v. COMMONWEALTH

In a personal injury suit against the Commonwealth, the trial court erred in reducing the ad damnum against the Commonwealth to the $100,000 recovery cap provided in the Virginia Tort Claims Act prior to verdict, and also erred in dismissing the plaintiff's claim against the Commonwealth pursuant to Code § 8.01-35.1 on the ground that she had previously recovered $100,000 against another tortfeasor. The judgment of the trial court is reversed and the case is remanded for further proceedings consistent with this opinion.

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SHELTON v. COMMONWEALTH

In a proceeding under the Civil Commitment of Sexually Violent Predators Act, an inmate properly preserved the argument that his score on a test designed to predict sex offender recidivism fell below the minimum qualifying an inmate for further evaluation under the Act, and the circuit court erred in denying his motion to dismiss under then-applicable Code provisions. Undisputed evidence showed that the correctly computed score on the risk assessment instrument was lower than the minimum required by the statute. The circuit court?s judgment is reversed and the Commonwealth's petition is dismissed with prejudice.

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BBF, INC. v. ALSTOM POWER, INC.

The claim that an arbitration award of liquidated damages violated the public policy of Virginia did not state a ground for vacating an arbitration award under the governing provisions of Code § 8.01-581.010. Therefore, the trial court did not err in refusing to vacate the arbitration award, and its judgment is affirmed.

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DALY v. SHEPHERD

Where certain residential real property was capable of co-occupation, in the absence of exclusion or ouster by an occupying co-tenant, the non-occupying co-tenant is not entitled to a ratable share of fair rental value in an action for partition. The judgment of the trial court is affirmed.

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HAUGEN v. SHENANDOAH VALLEY DEPT. OF SOCIAL SERVICES

The Court of Appeals of Virginia did not err in ruling that a transcript or statement of facts was necessary in an appeal asserting that the circuit court erred by refusing to require an incarcerated parent's presence during a hearing to terminate her parental rights. However, the present record is sufficient to show that the circuit court abused its discretion by failing to grant a continuance to that parent, who participated by telephone, when federal prison officials terminated her participation before the evidence was completed. The judgment is reversed and the case is remanded.

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COMMITTEE OF PETITIONERS v. CITY OF NORFOLK

In proceedings relating to a referendum petition seeking a repeal of four city ordinances, the circuit court did not err in allowing a city and a redevelopment authority to intervene, but erred in concluding that the petition did not comply with the requirements of the referendum process. The petition was not invalid because it listed more than one challenged ordinance and separate petitions for each challenged ordinance were not required. That portion of the judgment holding that the petition was invalid is reversed and the case is remanded for further proceedings.

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ROBINSON v. COMMONWEALTH

Applying the rule of strict construction of penal laws, the driver of a vehicle is "involved" in an accident triggering an obligation to remain at the scene and provide information under Code § 46.2-894 only if there is physical contact between the driver's vehicle and another vehicle, person, or object, or if the defendant driver was a proximate cause of an accident. Since the present defendant's vehicle had no physical contact with that of the accident victim, and defendant was not a cause of the accident, the judgment of the Court of Appeals is reversed and the conviction for violation of Code § 46.2-894 is dismissed.

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JONES v. BRANDT

The circuit court correctly found that an attorney-in-fact had the authority, by virtue of a durable power of attorney under which he acted, to change the beneficiary payable upon death of a certificate of deposit belonging to the decedent, his principal. Specific and general authorizations made in the power of attorney, when considered in concert, sufficiently expressed the decedent's intent to confer authority to make a certificate of deposit beneficiary change upon the attorney-in-fact. The judgment is affirmed.

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AUGUSTA MUTUAL INSURANCE CO. v. MASON

In an insurance company's third-party action for damages arising out of an insurance agent?s allegedly fraudulent misrepresentations regarding the condition of a dwelling that the insurance company agreed to insure, because the only duties allegedly violated by the agent emanate exclusively from the parties? preexisting contractual relationship, the insurer failed to properly state claims for either fraud in the inducement or breach of fiduciary duty. The circuit court?s judgment sustaining demurrers and dismissing the insurer?s third-party claim with prejudice is affirmed.

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CLIFFORD v. COMMONWEALTH (ORDER)

In a sex crimes case, the Court of Appeals erred in ruling that the trial court should have granted a defense motion to permit cross-examination of the victim regarding a prior alleged false accusation of sexual molestation she had made against another. The defendant abandoned his argument supporting such cross examination by failing to assert it on appeal and also failed to object to the specific basis of the trial court's denial of his motion; thus, the theory presented in the argument which formed the basis of the Court of Appeals' ruling was not properly before that Court. The Court of Appeals' judgment is reversed and the case remanded to that court with directions.

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OGUNDE v. PRISON HEALTH SERVICES

In a prisoner's action relating to medical treatment, a health services company selected via competitive bidding and certain of its personnel were independent contractors; thus the trial court erred in dismissing medical malpractice and gross negligence claims against them on sovereign immunity grounds. The court also erred in dismissing the inmate's claims for breach of contract and violation of Article I, § 9 of the Constitution of Virginia, and abused its discretion by denying leave to amend the complaint. However, there was no error in sustaining a demurrer to the inmate's claim for intentional infliction of emotional distress. The judgment is affirmed in part and reversed in part, and the case is remanded.

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KOPALCHICK v. CATHOLIC DIOCESE OF RICHMOND

Because a church diocese is not a ?natural person,? the statute of limitations accrual provisions relating to sexual abuse in Code § 8.01-249(6) have no effect upon the constitutionally protected right of the diocese to rely on the bar of the statute of limitations. The judgment of the circuit court dismissing a case involving alleged childhood sexual abuse decades before the suit was filed is affirmed.

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GRAY v. COMMONWEALTH

In an appeal of defendant's multiple capital murder convictions and two death sentences arising from the stabbing, beating and arson killings of a couple and their two minor children in the course of a robbery, no reversible error is found in the judgment of the circuit court, and no reason is found to commute or set aside the sentences of death. The judgment of the circuit court, including the sentences of death, is affirmed.

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