Kentucky Court of Justice
Kentucky Court of Appeals to hear oral arguments Sept. 20-21 in Shelbyville
FRANKFORT, Ky. -- The Kentucky Court of Appeals will hear oral arguments in five civil cases and one criminal case when it convenes Monday and Tuesday, Sept. 20 and 21, at the Shelby County Courthouse in Shelbyville. The civil cases are on appeal from Jefferson County and the criminal case is on appeal from Daviess County. Proceedings will begin at 1:15 p.m. EDT Sept. 20 and 10 a.m. EDT Sept. 21 on the second floor of the courthouse at 501 Main St. Proceedings will be open to the public.
A three-judge panel comprised of Court of Appeals Judges Michelle M. Keller, Joy A. Moore and Janet L. Stumbo will hear oral arguments in the civil cases. Court of Appeals Judges Denise G. Clayton, Keller and Moore will hear oral arguments in the criminal case.
A docket containing summaries of the cases is below.
Monday, Sept. 20, 2010
1:15 PM 2009CA001412 and 2009CA001588
MICHELE MORGAN v. J. DANIEL LANHAM
Summary: Civil. The appeal is from directed verdicts involving issues of multiple limited liability corporations regarding claims for recovery of unpaid loans and rent. Other issues are fraud/misrepresentation and various evidentiary rulings made by the trial court. The cross-appeal focuses on a directed verdict regarding breach of fiduciary duty.
Jefferson County judge who ruled in the case – Judge Martin F. McDonald
Appellant’s attorneys: Simon Berry and Scott Zoppoth
Appellee’s attorney: Michael O’Connell
2:15 PM 2009CA001427 and 2009CA001436
BRANCH BANKING & TRUST COMPANY v. LARRY E. THOMPSON ET AL.
Summary: Civil. The appeal and cross-appeal originate from a foreclosure case. The appellant argues that it was entitled to judgment based on the statute of frauds. The appellant also argues that punitive damages were inappropriate and that the trial court erred in failing to grant a new trial. The cross-appeal focuses on whether the appellant should have been awarded attorney fees.
Jefferson County judge who ruled in the case – Judge James M. Shake
Appellant’s attorneys: Daniel Albers Jr., Jean Bird, Mark Robinson and Virginia Snell
Appellees’ attorneys: David Hise et al.
3 PM 2007CA002426
TORI LYNN VAN BERG v. COMMONWEALTH OF KENTUCKY
Summary: Criminal. The appellant claims a double jeopardy error due to a discovery violation by the prosecution. The appellant also claims there was a failure to instruct the jury on entrapment and that there was prosecutorial misconduct.
Daviess County judge who ruled in the case – Judge Henry M. Griffin
Appellant’s attorney: Joseph Aprile II
Appellee’s attorney: Jeffrey Cross
Tuesday, Sept. 21, 2010
10:30 AM 2009CA001352 and 2009CA001389
SUSIE PERRY v. DR. GERALD M. LARSON
Summary: Civil. In this medical negligence and wrongful death case, appellant Susie Perry appeals a jury verdict for the defense. Appellee Dr. Gerald M. Larson cross-appeals. Perry argues that the trial court erred by admitting into evidence expert opinion testimony that had not previously been disclosed. She also argues that the trial court erred by excluding testimony related to the decedent’s post-operative physical condition and by dismissing Perry’s loss-of-consortium claim. Larson argues on cross-appeal that the court erred by denying his motions for a directed verdict.
Jefferson County judge who ruled in the case – Judge James M. Shake
Appellant’s attorneys: William Garmer and Jerome Prather
Appellee’s attorney: Donald Brown Jr.
11:30 AM 2009CA001533
EARLENE F. GREENE v. KENTUCKY BOARD OF DENTISTRY
Summary: Civil. Appellant Earlene F. Greene appeals the Kentucky Board of Dentistry’s order placing her on probation for a period of five years. She argues that the board’s action was not supported by sufficient evidence and amounted to an abuse of discretion. She also challenges the constitutionality of KRS 13B.150(2)(c), arguing that it does not permit adequate review by a court of the board’s decision.
Jefferson County judge who ruled in the case – Judge Geoffrey P. Morris
Appellant’s attorney: J. Demoisey
Appellee’s attorneys: William Bausch and Mark Brengelman
1:30 PM 2009CA001178
SHAWN M. SMITH v.
LOUISVILLE AND JEFFERSON COUNTY METROPOLITAN SEWER DISTRICT
Summary: Civil. This is a matter-of-right appeal from a grant of summary judgment. At issue is whether there is a genuine issue of material fact regarding whether the appellant’s deceased was a trespasser and was therefore owed no legal duty by the appellee.
Jefferson County judge who ruled in the case – Judge Irv Maze
Appellant’s attorney: Mat Slechter
Appellee’s attorneys: Gregory Gowen, David Hise, Nancy Schook and Laurence Zielke
Judge Denise G. Clayton
Judge Denise G. Clayton became the first black woman appointed to the Kentucky Court of Appeals in October 2007. She represents Division 2 of the 4th Appellate District, which consists of Jefferson County.
Prior to her appointment to the Court of Appeals, Judge Clayton was chief circuit judge for Jefferson County, where she had been a circuit judge for nearly seven years. She was the first black woman to be a Kentucky Circuit Court judge. She was also chief regional circuit judge for the Metro Region for several months before she was appointed to the Court of Appeals. Judge Clayton also previously served in Jefferson County as a judge for District Court, Family Court and Drug Court.
Judge Clayton began her legal career as an attorney with the Internal Revenue Service. She spent nine years in private practice and was the Legal Aid Society of Louisville’s associate director before becoming a Jefferson County District Court judge in 1996.
Judge Clayton graduated cum laude with a bachelor’s degree from Defiance College in Defiance, Ohio. She earned her juris doctor degree from the University of Louisville Brandeis School of Law.
She is the chairwoman for the Commission on Racial Fairness for Jefferson County’s courts and is a member of the Louisville Bar Association, Louisville Black Lawyers Association, Women Lawyers Association and Focus Louisville. She is also on the board of directors for the Coalition for the Homeless, Plymouth Community Renewal Center, Summerbridge, and Norton Hospital Foundation.
Among her awards, Judge Clayton has received the Public Advocate Award from the state’s Department of Public Advocacy, the Distinguished Alumna Award from the Brandeis School of Law, the Alumni Achievement Award from Defiance College, the Community Service Award from the Optimist Club of Louisville, and the Champion for Children Award from Shawnee High School in Louisville.
Judge Clayton is married to Ronald Clayton and has two children.
Judge Michelle M. Keller
Judge Michelle M. Keller was elected to the Kentucky Court of Appeals in November 2006 to serve as judge for Division 1 of the 6th Appellate District. She also serves as the Court of Appeals representative on the Judicial Conduct Commission.
The 6th Appellate District is comprised of Bath, Boone, Bracken, Campbell, Carroll, Fleming, Gallatin, Grant, Harrison, Henry, Kenton, Lewis, Mason, Nicholas, Oldham, Owen, Pendleton, Robertson, Shelby, Spencer and Trimble counties.
Prior to her election, Judge Keller practiced with Arnzen, Wentz, Molloy, Laber & Storm PSC in Covington. Her extensive legal experience includes representing clients in the area of criminal defense and serving as an assistant county prosecutor. Her work in litigation includes family law, personal injury and medical-negligence defense. She is experienced in administrative law and served the Kentucky Personnel Board as a hearing officer. She now serves as a board chairwoman emeritus. She is a member of the National Association of Administrative Law Judges and has represented numerous clients before state regulatory and licensure boards. She is also an adjunct professor at Xavier University, where she teaches medical/legal research, writing and forensics.
Judge Keller has been a licensed registered nurse in Kentucky since 1982. While working as an RN in critical care, Judge Keller earned her bachelor’s degree in psychology in 1985 from Northern Kentucky University, where she received the Charlotte Schmidlapp Scholarship. Judge Keller attended the evening division of Northern Kentucky University Salmon P. Chase College of Law while working full time. She was an Interest on Lawyers’ Trust Accounts scholar during law school and received her juris doctor in 1990.
Judge Keller has served the Northern Kentucky Bar Association as chairwoman of the Women Lawyers Section and as a member of numerous committees. She represented the 16th Judicial Circuit on the Kentucky Bar Association’s former House of Delegates.
In addition to her professional service, Judge Keller has a strong commitment to public service. She is a former chairwoman and board member for the Diocesan Catholic Children’s Home. She is a founding and current member of the Northern Kentucky Children’s Advocacy Center Advisory Council and has served the interests of children in court as a guardian ad litem. Judge Keller also volunteers with the Women’s Crisis Center and her local church and is an academic team coach at her daughters’ school.
Judge Keller is a lifelong Kentuckian and the oldest of five children. She and her husband, Dr. James Keller, have two daughters, Brenna and Olivia.
Judge Joy A. Moore
Judge Joy A. Moore was elected judge for the Kentucky Court of Appeals in November 2006 to serve Division 2 of the 6th Appellate District. The 6th Appellate District is comprised of Bath, Boone, Bracken, Campbell, Carroll, Fleming, Gallatin, Grant, Harrison, Henry, Kenton, Lewis, Mason, Nicholas, Oldham, Owen, Pendleton, Robertson, Shelby, Spencer and Trimble counties.
Judge Moore served six years as chief law clerk for William O. Bertelsman, senior judge of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Kentucky. She also served as staff attorney to Kentucky Court of Appeals Judges Daniel T. Guidugli and Robert W. Dyche III. As a practitioner, Judge Moore specialized in civil rights defense work in the litigation department of Adams, Stepner, Woltermann & Dusing PLLC in Covington and practiced general litigation law with Hoffman, Hoffman & Grubbs in Elsmere.
Judge Moore graduated magna cum laude from Morehead State University, where she also earned a master’s degree and a Rank I teaching certificate. After teaching special education for seven years in Grant and Pendleton county schools, Judge Moore earned her juris doctor from the Northern Kentucky University Salmon P. Chase College of Law. She ranked No. 1 in her law school class, graduated magna cum laude and was a member of the Northern Kentucky Law Review. She received numerous scholarships and awards for academic achievement, including the Chase Excellence Scholarship.
Judge Moore is a member of the Kentucky Bar Association, the Northern Kentucky Bar Association and the Salmon P. Chase Inn of Court. She serves on the St. Elizabeth Hospice Committee and the Executive Committee of Every Child Succeeds. She is a 2006 graduate of Leadership Northern Kentucky and serves on its Government Committee. She is a former member of Vision 2015, a 10-year strategic plan developed by Northern Kentucky citizens for economic growth, as well as the Kentucky Personnel Board, the Governor’s Postsecondary Education Nominating Commission and the board of the Boone County Court Appointed Special Advocates. She is a member of Florence Baptist Church, where she previously served on the Women’s Council.
Judge Moore grew up in Menifee County and resides in Boone County with her husband, Gary W. Moore. They have two children, Brandi Moore List and Scott Moore.
Judge Janet L. Stumbo
In 1989, Janet L. Stumbo became the first woman from the 7th Judicial District to be elected to the Kentucky Court of Appeals. At that time, she was only the second woman to serve on the Court of Appeals and the first woman to be elected without having first been appointed.
Judge Stumbo served four years with the Court of Appeals before being the first woman elected (again without having first been appointed) to the Supreme Court of Kentucky in November 1993. She was re-elected to a full eight-year term on the Supreme Court in 1996. While a Supreme Court justice she served as chair of both the Civil Rules Committee and the Family Court Consortium, a statewide committee appointed by then-Chief Justice Robert F. Stephens to implement a pilot project for Family Court. The consortium’s work resulted in the enactment of an amendment to the Kentucky Constitution and legislation establishing Family Court in jurisdictions across the commonwealth.
In November 2006, two years after completing her Supreme Court tenure, Judge Stumbo was elected to the Court of Appeals for a second time to represent the 7th Appellate District. The 7th Appellate District is comprised of Boyd, Breathitt, Carter, Elliott, Floyd, Greenup, Harlan, Johnson, Knott, Lawrence, Letcher, Magoffin, Martin, Menifee, Montgomery, Morgan, Owsley, Perry, Pike, Powell, Rowan and Wolfe counties.
Judge Stumbo earned her bachelor’s degree from Morehead State University and her juris doctor from the University of Kentucky College of Law. She began her legal career as a staff attorney to the late Judge Harris S. Howard of the Kentucky Court of Appeals. She entered private practice in 1982 with Turner, Hall & Stumbo PSC, where she focused on cases involving workers’ compensation, federal black lung claims, dissolution of marriage and personal injury.
She also served as assistant Floyd County attorney for three years and sat on the board of directors of the Appalachian Research and Defense Fund of Kentucky from 1983 to 1989, serving as board chair from 1984 to 1989. Judge Stumbo became a partner in Stumbo, DeRossett & Pillersdorf in 1989, just before being elected to the Court of Appeals for the first time.
During her break from the bench from 2004 to 2006, she taught at the Appalachian School of Law and the University of Kentucky College of Law. She also taught a mock trial course for high schools students at Verbally and Mathematically Precocious Youth, a summer camp hosted by Western Kentucky University.
Judge Stumbo was inducted into the UK College of Law Alumni Hall of Fame in 1999 and into the Morehead State University Alumni Association Hall of Fame in 1990. In 1996 the Kentucky Bar Association for Women gave her its first Women Lawyers of Achievement Award, which recognizes professional excellence in the practice of law and efforts to open the field for other women. In 1995 the Women in State Government Network presented her with its Bull’s Eye Award. The Kentucky Women Advocates gave her its 1995 Outstanding Justice Award for her support of adopting gender fairness into state judicial language. In 1991 the Kentucky Women Advocates gave her its Justice Award for her use of spousal abuse evidence as grounds for setting aside a settlement in dissolution of marriage cases and for her support in creating a shelter for abused women in Floyd County.
Judge Stumbo is a native of Floyd County. She and her husband, attorney Ned Pillersdorf, have three daughters, Sarah, Nancee and Samantha.
Kentucky Court of Appeals
Nearly all cases heard by the Kentucky Court of Appeals come to it on appeal from a lower court. If a case is tried in Circuit Court or District Court and the losing parties involved are not satisfied with the outcome, they may ask for a higher court to review the correctness of the trial court’s decision. Some cases, such as criminal case acquittals and divorces, may not be appealed. In a divorce case, however, child custody and property rights decisions may be appealed. Cases are not retried in the Court of Appeals. Only the record of the original court trial is reviewed, with attorneys presenting the legal issues to the court for a decision.
Fourteen judges, two elected from seven appellate court districts, serve on the Court of Appeals. The judges are divided into panels of three to review and decide cases, with the majority determining the decision. The panels do not sit permanently in one location, but travel throughout the state to hear cases.
Administrative Office of the Courts
The Administrative Office of the Courts in Frankfort supports the activities of approximately 3,400 court system employees and 403 elected justices, judges and circuit court clerks. As the fiscal agent for the state court system, the AOC prepares a biennial budget draft and executes the Judicial Branch budget.