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Case Summary for November 3, 2015

THE FOLLOWING DOCKET SUMMARIES ARE PREPARED BY THE COURT'S STAFF FOR THE INTEREST AND CONVENIENCE OF THE READER. THE SUMMARIES MAY NOT INCLUDE ALL ISSUES PENDING BEFORE THE COURT AND DO NOT REFLECT ANY OPINION OF THE COURT ON THE MERITS OF A CASE. COPIES OF ALL BRIEFS FILED WITH THE COURT ARE AVAILABLE AT THE SUPREME COURT BUILDING, COURT EN BANC DIVISION. SUMMARIES ARE UNOFFICIAL AND SHOULD NOT BE QUOTED OR CITED.


Attached to the following docketed cases are electronic copies of briefs filed by the parties. These electronic briefs have been converted to PDF to accommodate various word processors. If you do not already have Acrobat reader, which is necessary to open the PDFs, you may obtain it free at the Adobe website. (A set of free tools that allow visually disabled users to read documents in Adobe PDF format is available from access.adobe.com.) These briefs do not reflect any opinion of the Court about the appropriateness of the format of the briefs or the merits of the case, nor are they official court records. Copies of all briefs filed with the Court are available at the Supreme Court Building in the court en banc division.

The attachments below may not reflect all briefs filed with the Court, the complete filing or the format of the original filing. Appendices and other attachments generally will not be posted here. To see what documents have been filed in a particular case, visit Case.net.



DOCKET SUMMARIES
SUPREME COURT OF MISSOURI

9:30 a.m. Tuesday, November 3, 2015
____________________________________________________________________________________________________

SC95088
William David Hill v. Oliver "Glenn" Boyer, Sheriff of Jefferson County, Missouri
Jefferson County
Constitutional challenge to law prohibiting felons from obtaining concealed-carry permit
Listen to the oral argument: SC95088.mp3SC95088.mp3
Hill was represented during arguments by Kevin M. Whitely of Shepherd, Taylor, Korum & Curtis LLP in St. Louis; the sheriff was represented by Victor J. Melenbrink of the Jefferson County counselorís office in Hillsboro.

In 1973, William David Hill pleaded guilty to felony forgery. The circuit court sentenced him to two years in prison, suspended execution of the sentence and placed Hill on probation for two years. In 1975, Hill successfully completed probation; the circuit court recorded Hillís discharge pursuant to section 549.111, RSMo, (which since has been repealed) and issued a certificate restoring to Hill ďall the rights and privileges of citizenship.Ē In March 2013, Hill applied to the local sheriff for a permit to carry a concealed firearm. Because a background check revealed that Hill had a felony conviction, the sheriff denied the application in April 2013 pursuant to section 571.101, RSMo, which precludes issuance of such a permit to a person who been convicted of a felony punishable by more than one year in prison. Hill ultimately sought relief in the circuit court, which in April 2014 entered its judgment in the sheriffís favor. Hill appeals.

This appeal presents several questions for the Court, many of which involve the constitutional validity of section 571.101 in light of the August 2014 amendment to the right to bear arms contained in article I, section 23 of the state constitution Ė although the parties dispute the extent to which this Court may review Hillís arguments. One issue is whether this Court should send the case back to the trial court for further development of the constitutional issues given the constitutionís amendment after the trial court issued its decision. Another is whether the statuteís disqualification of all felons from obtaining a concealed carry permit Ė with no exception for individuals whose rights of citizenship have been restored Ė is narrowly tailored to serve a compelling state governmental interest. A third is whether section 571.101 may be applied retrospectively to impose a new disability on Hill for a prior conviction from which his rights and privileges of citizenship have been restored. An additional question is whether Hillís discharge from probation pursuant to section 549.111 has the same legal effect as a governorís pardon so as to obliterate the existence of the conviction.

SC95088_Hill_brief_filed_in_ED.pdfSC95088_Hill_brief_filed_in_ED.pdfSC95088_sheriff_brief_filed_in_ED.pdfSC95088_sheriff_brief_filed_in_ED.pdf



SC95094
State of Missouri v. Claude Chambers
Crawford County
Challenges to sufficiency of evidence to support a sodomy conviction; denials of change of venue and continuance
Listen to the oral argument: SC95094.mp3SC95094.mp3
Chambers was represented during arguments by Margaret M. Johnston of the public defenderís office in Columbia; the state was represented by Dora A. Fichter of the attorney generalís office in Jefferson City.

The state in March 2013 charged Claude Chambers with one count of first-degree statutory sodomy, alleging that Chambers had deviate sexual intercourse in 2010 with his stepson, who was younger than 12 years. He waived a formal arraignment, pleaded not guilty and timely moved for an automatic change of venue. Before trial, Chambers also sought a continuance. During a hearing held the morning of trial, the court determined Chambers had waived his right to an automatic change of venue by not raising it to the courtís attention sooner and also declined to continue the case. Chambers waived his right to the assistance of counsel and to be present at trial and left the courtroom. The court proceeded with a jury trial in his absence. The stepson, his mother, his elementary school teacher and a case worker testified, and the jury found Chambers guilty as charged. Chambers filed a timely motion for judgment of acquittal or for a new trial, alleging the trial court should have granted his motions for a change of venue and for continuance. The trial court overruled Chambersí motion and sentenced him, as a prior and persistent offender, to 30 years in prison. Chambers appeals.

This appeal raises several questions for the Court. One is whether the state proved beyond a reasonable doubt that Chambers is guilty of the specific act of deviate sexual intercourse the state alleged in the charge it brought against him. Another is whether Chambers timely brought to the trial courtís attention his application for a change of venue or whether he waived his right to a change of venue. A third question is whether the court violated Chambersí constitutional rights in overruling his motion for a continuance and whether the courtís ruling prejudiced Chambers.

SC95094_Chambers_brief.pdfSC95094_Chambers_brief.pdf SC95094_State_Brief.pdfSC95094_State_Brief.pdfSC95094_Chambers_reply_brief.pdfSC95094_Chambers_reply_brief.pdf



SC94942
State ex rel. Heart of America Council, Boy Scouts of America and Boy Scouts of America v. The Honorable Charles H. McKenzie
Jackson County

By order dated October 1, this case was continued from the November 3 docket for rescheduling at a later date. The case subsequently was rescheduled for argument December 10.



SC95067
Virginia Payne v. Ashley L. Markeson
Jackson County
Availability of a statutory reduction of damages due to settlement
Listen to the oral argument: SC95067.mp3SC95067.mp3
Markeson was represented during arguments by Susan Ford Robertson of The Robertson Law Group LLC in Kansas City; Payne was represented by Christopher P. Sweeny of Turner & Sweeny in Kansas City.

Virginia Payne sued Ashley Markeson for injuries Payne sustained in an automobile accident she alleges Markeson caused. Payne alleged Markeson was driving drunk when she crossed the center line of the road and collided with Payne. Payne later added as a defendant MM Investments (which was doing business as a bar and grill), alleging the bar negligently served alcohol to Markeson, causing Markeson to be intoxicated. Before trial, Payne settled her claim against the bar for $475,000. Before trial, Payne filed a motion to reduce any verdict against her by the amount of the settlement pursuant to section 537.060, RSMo. Following trial, a jury returned its verdict against Markeson, awarding Payne $350,000 in actual damages and $700,000 in punitive damages. Markeson sought to reduce the juryís award pursuant to section 537.060. The trial court determined it had lost jurisdiction to rule on Markesonís motion and entered judgment against her for the full amount of the juryís verdict. The court of appeals subsequently reversed the judgment and remanded the case (sent it back to the trial court). On remand, the trial court in May 2014 entered its judgment overruling Markesonís motion to reduce the jury verdict on three grounds. It determined that: the barís liability was based on statutory dram-shop liability and was not a settlement with a person liable in tort; as the intoxicated person, Markeson was not entitled to a reduction under section 537.060; and allowing an intoxicated driver to reduce a verdict would be contrary to the public policy expressed in section 537.053, RSMo. The trial court also found that, even if it had reduced the actual damages award, Markeson was not entitled to a reduction of the punitive damages award. Markeson appeals.

This appeal raises several questions for the Court. One is whether the bar was a joint tortfeasor (liable along with Markeson for Payneís injuries) such that section 537.060 might apply, or whether it was a dram shop, such that section 537.053 would apply. A related question is whether the language of section 537.030 permits a dram shopís furnishing of alcohol to be the considered the proximate cause of injuries inflicted by intoxicated persons. Another issue is whether there is a public policy limitation in either statutory section that prevents Markeson from obtaining a reduction of the jury verdict either because the bar was a dram shop that provided her alcohol or because she was intoxicated at the time of the accident. Also at issue is whether it was premature for the trial court to opine that Markeson was not entitled to a reduction of the punitive damages award given that the court did not reduce the actual damages award to zero.

SC95067_Markeson_brief.pdfSC95067_Markeson_brief.pdfSC95067_Payne_brief.pdfSC95067_Payne_brief.pdfSC95067_Markeson_reply_brief.pdfSC95067_Markeson_reply_brief.pdf


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