E-Blast Archive Issue

Welcome to the South Carolina Bar's E-Blast!
March 3, 2011
E-Blast highlights upcoming activities, legal information and links to the Bar's website at

The So
uth Carolina Bar is dedicated to advancing justice, professionalism and understanding of the law. 

Chief Justice Toal delivers address
Chief Justice Jean H. Toal delivered her State of the Judiciary address to the General Assembly on March 2. To view the address by video or text,
click here.

What every lawyer should know about domestic violence
The Voices Against Violence Committee of the Bar's Young Lawyers Division will host a CLE program on March 4 at the Bar Conference Center on what every attorney should know about domestic violence. Attendance is FREE; however, all attendees must commit to representing two pro bono clients in order of protection actions. The seminar is available for 5.17 MCLE credit hours. View the brochure for this seminar by
clicking here. Contact Carrie Raines at (803) 758-6000 for more information.

View the 2011 Convention photos

Check out the photos from the 2011 Bar Convention at Hilton Head! If you want to join the festivities, make plans to attend the 2012 Bar Convention in Columbia. Hotel room reservations are available here.

Pro Bono Award winners to be honored at Foundation Gala tonight!
Alex Paterra of The Paterra Law Firm, LLC in Greenville and Christopher Genovese of Nelson Mullins in Columbia have been named the S.C. Bar 2011 Pro Bono Award winners for their contributions to meeting the civil legal needs of citizens who cannot afford the services of an attorney. The recipients will be recognized at the Bar Foundation Gala tonight at the Columbia Metropolitan Convention Center. For more information,
click here.

Special Olympics in Charleston this Saturday!
The Mid-Winter Games will be held in Charleston on Saturday, March 5. YLD will assist with a basketball skills competition in the morning and a bowling competition in the afternoon.
Click here to volunteer and list your group/organization as S.C. Bar YLD. YLD volunteers will be invited to a happy hour on Saturday afternoon following the games (venue and details to be provided to registrants). For more information, please contact Cooper Wilson at (843) 577-1205.

Scam alert

The Bar continues to receive word from lawyers about scam attempts. Please visit the
Scam Alert page on the Bar's website for the most recent alert. We will continue to notify members through E-Blast as we receive reports.

S.C. Supreme Court Historical Society's 2011 Colloquium: May 19-20
Chief Justice Jean Hoefer Toal and U.S. District Court Judge Richard M. Gergel are pleased to invite Bar members to Charleston for the S.C. Supreme Court Historical Society's 2011 Colloquium May 19-20, 2011. The Colloquium, "J. Waites Waring and the Dissent that Changed America," commemorates the 60th Anniversary of the landmark school desegregation decision, Briggs v. Elliot. The program begins on Thursday evening, May 19, with a cocktail reception and dinner at Charleston Place. Renowned Harvard Law Professor Charles J. Ogletree Jr. will deliver a keynote address at the dinner. On Friday, May 20, a CLE seminar will be held at the Charleston Federal Courthouse in the same courtroom where Briggs was tried. Seminar faculty includes Professor Ogletree, Chief Justice Jean Hoefer Toal, Senior U.S. District Court Judge Matthew J. Perry and U.S. District Court Judges Richard M. Gergel and J. Michelle Childs. 
Click here for registration information.

By order of March 1 the Court reinstated Samuel O. Thompson as an Active Member of the Bar.

Advance Sheet update
March 2, 2011

The court affirmed the Appellant's conviction of two counts of first-degree criminal sexual conduct with a minor and two counts of lewd act upon a child.  Whether evidence of attempted suicide was probative of the accused's consciousness of guilt was an issue of first impression in South Carolina. The court held that the trial judge did not err in admitting testimony regarding Appellant's suicide attempt because any guilty act or conduct on the part of the accused is admissible as some evidence of consciousness of guilt. The trial court did not err in charging the jury that testimony of a child witness need not be corroborated.
State v. Orozco, No. 4798, is available

The court found that the statutes at issue, Sections 16-17-600, 17-7-10, 17-7-80, 17-5-570(B) and 17-5-590, do not give rise to private rights of action because South Carolina does not recognize the tort of third party spoliation of evidence.  Also the Appellants' claims on the statutory duties are barred by the public duty rule. Since the Appellants failed to state a claim for intentional infliction of emotional distress, the circuit court was correct in granting summary judgment.
Trask v. Beaufort County, No. 4799, is available

The court found that the trial judge was correct in ruling that the arresting officer had reasonable suspicion to detain the Appellant long enough to walk the drug dog around his car. Appellant's argument regarding his statement claiming ownership of the bag was not preserved for review. The trial judge acted within his discretion in denying Appellant's motion for a mistrial.
State v. Wallace, No. 4800, is available

The court affirmed the probate court's determination that Appellant was not entitled to an elective share of the estate because Appellant failed to establish a common law marriage by clear and convincing evidence. The probate court, as the fact-finder, had the discretion to weigh the evidence presented, and there was sufficient evidence in the record to support its finding.
The Estate of Helen Duffy, No. 4801, is available online.

This is an appeal from a negligence action pursuant to the Federal Employer's Liability Act (FELA) for personal injuries suffered by Appellant while working for South Carolina Central Railroad Company, Inc. (SCCR). A FELA case does not always have to be submitted to a jury when an employee challenges the validity of a release. While not the general trend in federal case law, upholding a grant of summary judgment in a FELA case was appropriate under the facts of this case.  Appellant failed to present more than a scintilla of evidence as to the allegation that the railroad made deliberately false statements intended to deceive him as to the contents of the release. Appellant also failed to show that a mutual mistake of fact was in existence at the time the release was signed. The issues not preserved for appeal were whether the amount was a nominal sum for consideration, whether Appellant was afforded a reasonable opportunity to complete discovery and whether summary judgment was inappropriate because there was a genuine issue of material fact in dispute as to whether SCCR was negligent in causing or contributing to Appellant's injury.
Bean v. S.C. Central Railroad, No. 4802, is available

The court affirmed the Appellant's conviction of driving under the influence, first offense. The Appellant's sole issue on appeal was whether the State failed to comply with any statutory duty to produce the breath test site video pursuant to Section 56-5-2953. When analyzing the word "produce," the court found that the legislature intended that a video of the breath test site be created. The court did not find that the State may only satisfy any statutory obligation by physically handing or turning over the videotape to the defendant or counsel; the state may produce the video online and provide a password to the defendant for access.
State v. Branham, No. 4803, is available

This appeal arose from Appellant's guilty pleas to burglary in the first degree and attempted armed robbery.  The court found that Appellant's motion to reconsider her sentence, like the motion to withdraw a guilty plea, was subject to the 10-day time period prescribed in Rule 29. Because the motion was filed more than three years after imposition of the sentence, Appellant's motion was not timely.  Therefore, the court affirmed the circuit court's ruling that it was without the authority to consider Appellant's untimely motion to reconsider her sentence. 
State v. Warren, No. 4804, is available

Firm announcements
Gaffney, Lewis & Edwards
announces that Mary D. LaFave has joined the firm located at 3710 Landmark Dr., Ste. 109, Columbia 29204. (803) 790-8838.

Samuel C. Weldon
and Jonathan D. Hammond announce the opening of Weldon Hammond Law Firm, LLC located at 204 Lavinia Ave., Greenville 29601. (864) 232-2260.

March 4

S.C. Bar Foundation Board Meeting, Bar Conference Center
South Carolina Lawyer Editorial Board Meeting, Bar Building
Unauthorized Practice of Law Committee Meeting, Bar Building

March 9
Collaborative Law Committee Meeting, Teleconference

March 11
Elder Law Committee CLE & Luncheon, Bar Building
Practice and Procedure Committee Meeting, Bar Building

March 15
Employment and Labor Law Section Council Meeting, Conference Call

March 17
Board of Governors Meeting, Conference Call
Conventions Committee Meeting, Bar Conference Center
Family Law Section Council Meeting, Bar Building

March 18
ADR Commission Meeting, Mike Kelly Law Group, Columbia
Children's Law Committee Meeting, Bar Building
Ethics Advisory Committee Meeting, Nelson Mullins, Columbia
Probate, Estate Planning & Trust Section Council Meeting, Conference Call

March 25
Consumer Law Section CLE & Luncheon, Bar Building
Dispute Resolution Section Council Meeting, Bar Building

To be added or deleted from the E-Blast mailing list, please contact Latoya Jackson in Membership Services at or (803) 799-6653, ext. 137.

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