by
The Supreme Court affirmed the district court’s denial of Defendant’s motion to vacate and the subsequent reinstatement of the sentences originally ordered, holding that the district court did not err by not addressing Defendant’s constitutional challenge. In this procedurally complex case, Defendant’s original sentences were reinstated by the district court, and Defendant’s motion to vacate his conviction for discharge of a firearm in certain cities, villages, and counties under Neb. Rev. Stat. 28-1212.04 on the grounds that the statute was unconstitutional on its face was denied. Defendant appealed the denial of his motion to vacate. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding that the district court did not err in failing to consider the merits of Defendant’s federal equal protection challenge on the basis of state procedural grounds. View "State v. Washington" on Justia Law

by
The Supreme Court dismissed the appeal brought from an order of the district court extending a harassment protection order for one year as moot but applied the public interest exception to mootness to address whether a respondent against whom a harassment protection order is sought must appear in person rather than through counsel. During a show cause hearing, the district court concluded that because Respondent appeared through counsel rather than appearing in person, the ex parte harassment protection order against him would automatically be extended for one year. The court allowed Petitioner to testify and allowed Respondent’s counsel to cross-examine Petitioner. The court then found that Petitioner had presented evidence sufficient to extend the harassment protection order for one year to expire on October 5, 2018. The Supreme Court held (1) Respondent’s appeal from the harassment protection order was moot; and (2) through a plain reading of Neb. Rev. Stat. 28-311.09(8)(b), a respondent is entitled to appear by and through his or her counsel. View "Weatherly v. Cochran" on Justia Law

by
The Supreme Court affirmed the decision of the district court granting summary judgment in favor of Defendants, a tax attorney and the accounting firm for which he worked, in this malpractice action, holding that Plaintiffs’ claims claims were barred by the statute of limitations. Plaintiffs, a dentist and his professional corporation, brought this suit alleging six acts of legal and accounting malpractice. The district court granted summary judgment on Plaintiffs’ claims, concluding that the claims were barred by the statute of limitations set forth in Neb. Rev. Stat. 25-222. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding that the district court did not err in finding that Plaintiffs’ action was barred by section 25-222. View "Colwell v. Mullen" on Justia Law

by
The Supreme Court affirmed the judgment of the district court affirming the order of the county court finding Thomas Anderson individually liable to Grady Photography under two oral contracts, holding that there was no plain error in the determination that the contracts had been breached by Anderson and in holding him liable. Thomas Grady Photography, Inc. sued Amazing Vapor, Ltd., MCJC Companies, Inc., Manuel Calderon, and Thomas Anderson for breach of contract for failing to pay on two oral contracts for photography services. The county court entered a default judgment in favor of Grady Photography against Amazing Vapor, MCJC, and Calderon. Thereafter, after a trial, the county court found that Anderson, who appeared in his individual capacity as a director of Amazing Vapor, owed Grady Photography $2,400 under two oral contracts. The district court affirmed. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding that the proper result was result, although this Court’s reasoning was somewhat different from the lower courts. View "Thomas Grady Photography v. Amazing Vapor, Ltd." on Justia Law

Posted in: Contracts

by
The Supreme Court reversed the decision of the district court granting summary judgment in favor of the insurer in this insurance dispute, holding that the district court abused its discretion in issuing declaratory relief on this record. Plaintiff, a limited liability company, presented a theft claim to Defendant insurer under the physical damage coverage of an aircraft policy. After denying coverage, Insurer sought a determination that Plaintiff’s theft claim was not covered under the policy. The district court granted summary judgment in favor of Plaintiff on the coverage question, concluding that Plaintiff’s claim was not covered under the physical damage coverage of the applicable policy. The Supreme Court reversed, holding (1) the district court’s order decided the legal effect of a state of facts which are future, contingent, or uncertain and resulted in a declaratory judgment adjudicating hypothetical or speculative situations which may never come to pass; and (2) therefore, the district court abused its discretion in entering declaratory relief. View "U.S. Specialty Insurance Co. v. D S Avionics Unlimited LLC" on Justia Law

Posted in: Insurance Law

by
The Supreme Court affirmed the decision of the district court denying, without an evidentiary hearing, Appellant’s petition for postconviction relief, holding that Appellant was not entitled to an evidentiary hearing on his claims of prosecutorial misconduct and ineffective assistance of counsel and that the district court did not err in dismissing Appellant’s motion for postconviction relief. In his petition, Appellant argued that the prosecutor committed several instances of misconduct and that he received ineffective assistance of trial and appellate counsel. The district court denied the motion without an evidentiary hearing. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding that the district court did not err in finding that an evidentiary hearing was not warranted and in dismissing his claims of prosecutorial misconduct and ineffective assistance of counsel. View "State v. Tyler" on Justia Law

by
The Supreme Court affirmed the decision of the Court of Appeals affirming Defendant’s convictions and sentences for three counts of first degree sexual assault of a child, one count of first degree sexual abuse, and one count of intentional child abuse, holding that the Court of Appeals did not err in concluding that there was sufficient evidence to support Defendant’s conviction for first degree sexual assault. The Court further held that there was no error in the Court of Appeals’ disposition of Defendant’s assignments of error relating to (1) the admission of expert testimony concerning the behaviors and testimonial partners of child sexual assault victims, (2) a claim of prosecutorial misconduct, and (3) the admission of DNA evidence. View "State v. McCurdy" on Justia Law

by
The Supreme Court affirmed the award of the Nebraska Workers’ Compensation Court, holding that none of Employee’s contentions on appeal warranted modification of the award. In his petition, Employee sought temporary total disability benefits, vocational rehabilitation, payment of past and future medical bills, and waiting-time penalties and attorney fees. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding that the Workers’ Compensation Court did not err by failing to (1) award permanent disability based on a loss of earning capacity rather than a member impairment rating; (2) award permanent disability based on a twelve-percent member impairment rating rather than a fifteen-percent member impairment rating; (3) award a waiting-time penalty from the date of the injury rather than the date of payment of benefits in August 2016; (4) award Employee out-of-pocket medical expenses; and (5) award reimbursement of vacation time and short-term disability. View "Bower v. Eaton Corp." on Justia Law

by
The Supreme Court affirmed the judgment of the district court overruling Defendant’s motion to suppress evidence obtained from a traffic stop, holding that this was an investigatory traffic stop supported by reasonable suspicion. Defendant moved to suppress the evidence obtained from the search of his car, arguing that the law enforcement officer did not have probable cause or reasonable suspicion to initiate the traffic stop. The district court found that the traffic stop was supported by probable cause and overruled the motion to suppress. The Supreme Court affirmed, although its reasoning differed from that of the district court, holding that the investigatory stop of Defendant’s car was supported by reasonable suspicion and was therefore constitutional. View "State v. Barbeau" on Justia Law

by
In this dispute in which an owner of one property sought to bind the purchaser of another property to the terms of a fifty-year lease agreement entered into between different parties, the Supreme Court affirmed the judgment of the district court granting summary judgment in favor of the purchaser, holding that there was no error in the proceedings below. Specifically, the Court held (1) the statute of frauds barred the owner’s claim for breach of contract because there was no privity of contract and the purchaser did not expressly assume the lease; (2) equitable estoppel did not prevent the purchaser from raising the statute of frauds as a defense; and (3) there was no genuine issue of material fact, and therefore, the district court did not err in granting summary judgment in favor of the purchaser. View "Brick Development v. CNBT II" on Justia Law