U.S. Sixth Circuit: December 2010 Archives
U.S. Sixth Circuit - The FindLaw 6th Circuit Court of Appeals Opinion Summaries Blog

December 2010 Archives

Charvat v. EchoStar Satellite, LLC., 09-4525

Action for violations of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act referred to the FCC

Charvat v. EchoStar Satellite, LLC., 09-4525, concerned a plaintiff's suit against EchoStar Satellite (EchoStar) for 307 violations of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (Act) and its accompanying regulations, and raising claims under the Ohio consumer protection statute and Ohio common law, wherein the district court dismissed several of the claims under the Act and granted summary judgment on the remaining claims.


Gray v. Bush, 09-2166

Dismissal of plaintiff's suit involing a dispute over trust funds of certain cemeteries on Burford abstention grounds reversed

Gray v. Bush, 09-2166, concerned a challenge to the district court's dismissal of plaintiff's suit on Burford abstention grounds, in a dispute over the trust funds for several cemeteries located in the Midwest. 

 

Hill v. Lappin, 09-5575

Pro se inmate's civil rights action

Hill v. Lappin, 09-5575, concerned a challenge to the  district court's dismissal of an inmate's suit as frivolous, in the inmate's pro se civil rights action against the director of the Bureau of Prisons and four prison staff members, seeking damages, a temporary restraining order, and a preliminary injunction to prevent his transfer to a lock-down unit to another prison facility.


US v. McCarty, 09-3398

Conviction and sentence of defendant for knowingly stealing cultural heritage objected affirmed

US v. McCarty, 09-3398, concerned a challenge to a conviction of defendant for knowingly stealing two cultural heritage objects and a within-Guidelines sentence of forty-six months' imprisonment.


Fabian v. Fulmer Helmets, Inc., 10-5009

Suit against a helmet manufacturer under the Safety Act

Fabian v. Fulmer Helmets, Inc., 10-5009, concerned a challenge to the district court's grant of defendant's motion to dismiss the suit on the ground that plaintiff's complaint fails to state a cognizable claim, in plaintiff's suit against the defendant, helmet manufacturer, for misrepresenting the safety of its helmets.


Ferguson v. Comm'r of Soc. Sec., 09-4387

Denial of applications for disability benefits and supplemental income

Ferguson v. Comm'r of Soc. Sec., 09-4387, concerned a challenge to the district court's affirmance of the Commission of Social Security's denial of plaintiff's applications for disability benefits and supplemental security income.


US v. Ruvalcaba, 09-3782

Career offender enhancement affirmed in drug conviction

US v. Ruvalcaba, 09-3782, concerned a challenge to the district court's reliance on a prior state conviction to apply the career offender enhancement in calculating defendant's advisory Guidelines sentencing range, in defendant's conviction for conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute cocaine.

 

Miles Christi Religious Order v. Township of Northville, 09-1618

Ripeness issue in an action under the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act

Miles Christi Religious Order v. Township of Northville, 09-1618, concerned an action brought by a religious order and two of its members under the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act and the Federal and State Constitutions against a town and its officials over a dispute involving the application of several zoning ordinances to a residence that the order owns in the town.



Sanborn v. Parker, 07-5309

Petition for habeas relief from capital murder conviction

Sanborn v. Parker, 07-5309
, concerned a challenge to the district court's denial of defendant's petition for habeas relief from his capital murder conviction for the most part but grant in part on the grounds that the admission of certain testimony at the penalty phase constituted unconstitutional governmental interference with the right to counsel in violation of the Sixth Amendment.


Eckerman v. Tennesee Dep't of Safety, 09-6181

Patrolman's civil rights suit against the Department of Safety

Eckerman v. Tennesee Dep't of Safety, 09-6181, concerned a patrolman's civil rights suit claiming that he was demoted from lieutenant to sergeant and suffered other minor employment actions and retaliation due to his political support for Republican candidates and because he had filed a separate federal lawsuit against the Department of Safety in 2006 alleging discrimination based on political affiliation.


US v. Turnley, 09-5498

Motion for a sentence reduction in crack cocaine conviction

US v. Turnley, 09-5498, concerned a challenge to the district court's grant of defendant's motion, pursuant to 18 U.S.C. section 3582(c)(2), to have his sentence reduced, in lowering defendant's life sentence to 264 months, a term that was below the minimum amended Guidelines range, in a conviction of defendant for crack and powder cocaine related offenses.


In re: Settlement Facility Dow Corning Trust, 09-1827

Challenge to interpretation of bankruptcy orders involving settlement of lawsuits for breast implants

In re: Settlement Facility Dow Corning Trust, 09-1827 , concerned a challenge to a district court's interpretation of two orders entered by a bankruptcy court of Dow Corning's Amended Joint Plan of Reorganization (Plan), arising from Chapter 11 proceedings to facilitate settlement of thousands of lawsuits relating to breast implants it had manufactured.

 

John B. v. Goetz, 09-6145,

Challenge to a consent decree entered in a Tennessee Medicaid class action suit

John B. v. Goetz, 09-6145, concerned a challenge to a consent decree entered in a 1998 class action challenge to Tennessee's managed care program, TennCare, under the Medicaid Act.

 

Pucci v. Nineteenth Dist. Court, 08-2017

Civil rights suit against a district court and its chief judge

Pucci v. Nineteenth Dist. Court, 08-2017, concerned a plaintiff's suit against the Nineteenth District Court and the court's chief judge, claiming that she was terminated in retaliation for her complaints to state court official's about the judge's use of religious language from the bench.

 

State of Ohio v. Brunner, 09-4282

Request for attorney's fees for improper removal

State of Ohio v. Brunner, 09-4282, concerned a challenge to the district court's denial of relators' request for attorney's fees for improperly trying to remove the case, in a suit involving a ballot-counting dispute arising from 2008 county elections.  In affirming, the court held that the district court judge not only thought the removal was objectionably reasonable, but he also denied the motion to remand the case to state court.

 

US v. Johnson, 09-3264

Felon in possession of a firearm conviction affirmed

US v. Johnson, 09-3264, concerned a challenge to a conviction of defendant for being a felon in possession of a firearm.  In affirming the conviction, the court held that the district court's comments did not chill defendant's constitutional right to testify.  Further, the district court did not err in denying defendant's motion to suppress, nor in refraining from considering defendant's mid-trial ineffective assistance of counsel claim.  The court also held that the district court did not commit clear error in declining to award defendant a two-level reductions for accepting responsibility, and that the district court did not commit plain error when sentencing defendant.

Related Link:

Irick v. Ray, 10-6436

Death-row inmate's challenge to the Tennessee's lethal injection execution protocol

Irick v. Ray, 10-6436, concerned a death-row inmate's 42 U.S.C. section 1983 suit, claiming that the state of Tennessee's lethal injection execution protocol violates the Eighth Amendment's prohibition against cruel and unusual punishment.  In affirming the district court's dismissal of the suit as time-barred by statute of limitations, the court held that the district court properly applied Cooey II to determine that the statute of limitations began to run either in 1989 when the inmate's direct review process was final, or in 2000 when lethal injection became the presumptive method of execution in Tennessee.


Zions First Nat'l Bank v. Moto Diesel Mexicana, S.A. De C.V., 09-1704

Dismissal of plaintiff's suit on forum non coveniens grounds

Zions First Nat'l Bank v. Moto Diesel Mexicana, S.A. De C.V., 09-1704, concerned a challenge to the district court's denial of plaintiff's motion for reconsideration following a dismissal of the suit on grounds of forum non conveniens, in plaintiff's suit against defendant  for issuing eight checks to plaintiff totaling $2 million from insufficient funds.



Michigan Surgery Inv., LLC v. Arman, 10-1612

Notice and opportunity to withdraw motion before accepting a voluntary dismissal with prejudice

Michigan Surgery Inv., LLC v. Arman, 10-1612, concerned a challenge to the district court's dismissal of plaintiffs' suit with prejudice after the plaintiffs had moved for voluntary dismissal without prejudice under Rule 41(a)(2) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, in a dispute between doctors and investors for control of an outpatient surgery center.  In reversing the court remanded the case in concluding that, the district court did not give the plaintiffs notice of its intention to dismiss with prejudice, along with an opportunity to withdraw the request for voluntary dismissal.

US v. Taylor, 09-1086

Sufficiency of evidence conviction for carjacking, firearm use and robbery of United States property

US v. Taylor, 09-1086, concerned a challenge to a conviction of defendant for multiple counts of carjacking, brandishing a firearm during a crime of violence, and robbery of United States property.

US v. Warshak, 08-3997

Massive scam to defraud consumers of a male sexual performance enhancing herbal supplement

US v. Warshak, 08-3997, concerned defendants challenges to their convictions for a massive scheme to defraud their customers, in connection with the sales of their flagship product Enzyte, an herbal supplement purported to enhance male sexual performance.

Heartwood, Inc. v. Agpaoa, 09-5761

Standing issue in environmental nonprofit corporations suit against the Regional Forester and U.S. Forest Service

Heartwood, Inc. v. Agpaoa, 09-5761, concerned a challenge to the district court's judgment on the administrative record in favor of the Regional Forester and the Forest Service, in a nonprofit corporations' challenge to a forest plan and  a final environmental impact statements (EIS) adopted by the Regional Forester and the U.S. Forest Service.

US v. Coleman, 09-5052

Sentencing challenge in a conviction for being a felon in possession of ammunition

US v. Coleman, 09-5052, concerned a challenge to the district court's application of a four-level enhancement for possessing 23 rounds of live ammunition and the government's refusal to make a motion for a third-level of reduction for acceptance of responsibility during defendant's sentencing, in a prosecution of defendant for being a felon in possession of ammunition.

 

Dixon v. Houk, 08-4019

Issue of coerced confession in a death penalty case

Dixon v. Houk, 08-4019, concerned a defendant's petition for habeas relief from his murder conviction and a sentence of death, claiming that his confession was coerced in violation of Miranda.

DeLuca v. Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, 08-1085

Putative class action against Blue Cross Blue Shield for violation of fiduciary duties

DeLuca v. Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, 08-1085, concerned a putative class action suit against Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, claiming that defendant violated its duties as a fiduciary under two provisions of ERISA, 29 U.S.C. sections 1104 and 1106(b), by agreeing to increase its traditional and PPO plan rates in exchange for decreases in the HMO rates.

 

Harris v. J.B. Robinson Jewelers, 09-1490

Plaintiff's suit against a jeweler for stolen diamond

Harris v. J.B. Robinson Jewelers, 09-1490, concerned a plaintiff's suit against a jeweler arising from a claim that when she brought her diamond ring into defendant's store for resizing, her large, pink center diamond was replaced with a smaller, colorless stone.

 

Jakubowski v. Christ Hosp., Inc., 09-4097

Medical resident's wrongful termination suit under the ADA

Jakubowski v. Christ Hosp., Inc., 09-4097, concerned a challenge to the district court's grant of summary judgment in favor of the defendants, in plaintiff's suit against a hospital and a director of the family practice medical resident program, claiming that he was terminated from his position as a resident because of his Asperger's and that defendants failed to reasonably accommodate this disability.

 

Sanchez v. Holder, 09-3866

Mexican citizen's petition for review of BIA's dismissal of an appeal of of IJ's denial of motion to reopen

Sanchez v. Holder, 09-3866, concerned a Mexican citizen's petition for review of a BIA's dismissal of his appeal of an IJ's denial of a motion to reopen deportation proceedings based on an in absentia deportation order entered nearly 11 years ago.

US v. Stewart, 08-4268

Armed bank robbery conviction

US v. Stewart, 08-4268, concerned a challenge to the district court's conviction of defendant for armed bank robbery, imposition of a 60-month sentence followed by three years supervised release, and an order to pay $16,833 in restitution jointly and severally with his co-conspirators.

US v. Aguilar-Diaz, 10-3808

Collateral attack on defendant's state's conviction for drug related offense prohibited

US v. Aguilar-Diaz, 10-3808, concerned a challenge to the district court's imposition of a 11-month sentence after increasing defendant's offense level based on a prior felony conviction for forgery and tampering with records, in a prosecution of defendant for illegal reentry after deportation.  In affirming the sentence, the court held that it is not necessary to determine whether defendant's forgery conviction is void in Ohio or, if it is, whether it would still be valid for federal sentencing purposes because defendant's claim that his Ohio felony conviction was improperly used in calculating his applicable guidelines range is a prohibited collateral attack on a state conviction.

Related Link: