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South Carolina
Judicial Branch
Supreme Court - Roster of Cases for Hearing

   
The summary below each case is prepared to offer lawyers and the public a general overview of what issues are included in a case which will be argued. The summary is not a limit on what issues a party to a case may present at oral argument.
Tuesday, April 21, 2020
Furman University
 09:30 a.m. (Time Limits: 15-15-5)  
2019-000535   Madel C. Rivero, as Personal Representative for the Estate of Lilia Lorena Blandin, Respondent, v. Sheriff Steve Loftis, in his capacity as Sheriff of Greenville County, Petitioner.

Andrew F. Lindemann, of Lindemann, Davis & Hughes, P. A., of Columbia, Russell W. Harter, Jr. and Carly H. Davis, both of Chapman Harter & Harter, P.A., of Greenville, for Petitioner. Blake A. Hewitt, of Bluestein Thompson Sullivan, L.L.C., of Columbia, Daniel J. Farnsworth, Jr., of FArnsworth Law Offices, of Greenville, J Christopher Wilson, of Wilson Law Group, of Bamberg, Daniel W. Luginbill, of McGowan, Hood & Felder, of Mt. Pleasant and Kathleen C. Barnes, of Barnes Law Firm, LLC, of Hampton, for Respondent.

The Court granted Sheriff Steve Loftis's petition for a writ of certiorari to review the court of appeals' decision affirming the trial court's denial of Loftis's motion for a new trial and for a judgment notwithstanding the verdict (JNOV). This action arises out of the murder of Lilia Blandin by her husband, Avery Blandin, in Greenville, South Carolina, and was brought by Madel Rivero, as the Personal Representative for Lilia's Estate, pursuant to the South Carolina Tort Claims Act for an alleged failure to arrest. Rivero's complaint alleged Sheriff Loftis failed to follow department protocols and was grossly negligent in failing to place Avery Blandin under arrest following a 911 call and police dispatch to the couple's residence. We will consider whether the court of appeals (1) reversed an allegedly unappealed ruling that the voir dire question was unambiguous, (2) erred in determining an evidentiary hearing concerning juror concealment was not required, and (3) erred in finding there was more than one reasonable inference to be drawn by the jury as to causation in fact.

 10:30 a.m. (Time Limits: 15-15-5)  
2019-000705   Georgetown County, Petitioner, v. Davis & Floyd, Inc., Republic Contracting Corporation, S&ME, Inc., The South Carolina Department of Transportation and The City of Georgetown, Defendants, Of whom The South Carolina Department of Transportation and the City of Georgetown are the Respondents.

Louis H. Lang of Tighe & Robinson, LLC of Columbia, for Petitioner. David L. Morrison, of Morrison Law Firm, LLC of Columbia and Lisa A. Reynolds of Anderson & Reynolds, LLC of Charleston, for Respondent

The Court considers whether a county may sue another political subdivision and the South Carolina Department of Transportation (SCDOT) for inverse condemnation pursuant to the Takings Clause of the South Carolina Constitution.

 11:30 a.m. (Time Limits: 15-15-5)  
2019-000693   Bradley Sanders, Petitioner, v. South Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles and Columbia Police Department, Respondents below, Of whom South Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles is the Respondent.

Heath Preston Taylor, of Taylor Law Firm, LLC, of West Columbia, for Petitioner. Frank L. Valenta, Jr., Philip S. Porter and Brandy Anne Duncan, all of the South Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles, of Blythewood, for Respondent.

We granted a petition for a writ of certiorari to review the decision of the court of appeals in Sanders v. South Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles, 426 S.C. 21, 824 S.E.2d 454 (Ct. App. 2019), which upheld the suspension of Petitioner's driver's license for refusing to take a blood-alcohol test following his arrest for driving under the influence. The issues on appeal concern the procedures set forth in the state's implied consent statute, section 56-5-2950(A) of the South Carolina Code.

Wednesday, April 22, 2020
Furman University
 09:30 a.m. (Time Limits: 15-15-5)  
2019-001345   The State, Petitioner, v. Billy Lemurces Taylor, Respondent.

Attorney General Alan Wilson, Deputy Attorney General Donald J. Zelenka, Senior Assistant Deputy Attorney General Melody J. Brown, all of Columbia and Solicitor W. Walter Wilkins, III, of Greenville, for Petitioner. Appellate Defender David Alexander, of Columbia, for Respondent.

The Court granted a writ of certiorari to review the court of appeals' decision in State v. Taylor, 427 S.C. 208, 829 S.E.2d 723 (2019).

 10:30 a.m. (Time Limits: 15-15-5)  
2019-001019   The State, Respondent, v. Rhajon Akeem Reshae Sanders, Petitioner.

Deputy Chief Appellate Defender Wanda H. Carter, of Columbia, for Petitioner. Attorney General Alan Wilson, Senior Assistant Deputy Attorney General William M. Blitch, Jr., both of Columbia and Solicitor Scarlett A. Wilson, of Charleston, for Respondent.

Rhajon Sanders was convicted of attempted murder and possession of a weapon during the commission of a violent crime. The State alleged Sanders fired gun shots at another man from the front porch of his home in Charleston, South Carolina, and Sanders claimed that he acted in self-defense. The trial court sentenced Sanders to fifteen years' imprisonment, and the court of appeals affirmed. This Court granted Sanders's petition for a writ of certiorari to review the court of appeals' decision. We will consider whether the court of appeals erred in upholding the trial court's decision to (1) deny his request for an "act on appearances" charge to the jury, (2) exclude evidence that Sanders lived in a high crime neighborhood, (3) refuse to allow Sanders to refer to the dangerous, "high crime" nature of his neighborhood during his closing argument, and (4) deny his request for a "no duty to retreat" jury instruction.

 11:30 a.m. (Time Limits: 15-15-5)  
2019-000816   Angela D. Keene, Individually and as Personal Representative of the Estate of Dennis Seay, Deceased, and Linda Seay, Respondents, v. CNA Holdings, LLC, Petitioner.

C. Mitchell Brown, Allen Mattison Bogan and Blake Terence Williams, of Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough, LLP of Columbia, and Richard C. Godfrey, of Kirkland & Ellis, LLP of Chicago, IL for Petitioner. John D. Kassel and Theile Branham McVey of Kassel McVey of Columbia, Bert G. Utsey, III of Peters, Murdaugh, Parker, Eltzroth & Detrick, PA of Charleston, and Chris Panatier and Kevin W. Paul of Simon Greenstone Panatier, PC of Dallas, TX for Respondents.

Angela Keene, individually and as personal representative of the Estate of Dennis Seay, filed a wrongful death action against CNA Holdings, LLC, the successor in interest of the Hoechst Celanese Corporation. CNA Holdings argues Seay was a statutory employee of Celanese, as defined by ยง 42-1-400 of the South Carolina Code (2015), so the exclusive remedy was the Workers' Compensation Act, not a wrongful death action. We granted a writ of certiorari to review the court of appeals decision that Seay was not a statutory employee. Keene v. CNA Holdings, LLC, 426 S.C. 357, 827 S.E.2d 183 (Ct. App. 2019).

 

Cases to be Submitted Without Oral Argument

Lance Austin Williams, Respondent, v. State of South Carolina, Petitioner.

Attorney General Alan Wilson, Chief Deputy Attorney General Donald J. Zelenka, Senior Assistant Deputy Attorney General Melody J. Brown and Assistant Attorney General Michael D. Ross, all of Columbia, for Petitioner. Richard A. Harpootlian and Christopher P. Kenney, both of Richard A. Harpootlian, P.A., of Columbia, for Respondent.