Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court Decisions 2024

Gibney v. Hossack  
Date: April 10, 2024
Docket Number: SJC-13436

Justia Opinion Summary: The case revolves around the interpretation of a will and the application of the anti-lapse statute. Heather W. Hossack, the testator, had devised certain assets to her mother, Ethel Wyman, "if she survives me." However,…

Commonwealth v. Smith
Date: April 9, 2024
Docket Number: SJC-13403
Commonwealth v. Tyler  
Date: April 8, 2024
Docket Number: SJC-12836

Justia Opinion Summary: The case involves Terrence Tyler, who was convicted of felony-murder in the first degree with the predicate felony of attempted unarmed robbery and assault with intent to rob. The incident occurred during a planned…

Commonwealth v. Zucchino  
Date: April 1, 2024
Docket Number: SJC-13384

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts heard an appeal involving Bradley Zucchino, who was charged with operating a motor vehicle under the influence of alcohol, causing serious bodily injury and death. Zucchino…

Commonwealth v. Cappellucci
Date: April 1, 2024
Docket Number: SJC-13458
Jackson v. Commonwealth
Date: March 29, 2024
Docket Number: SJC-13311
Daley v. Commonwealth
Date: March 29, 2024
Docket Number: SJC-13519
Sutton v. Jordan's Furniture, Inc.  
Date: March 28, 2024
Docket Number: SJC-13382

Justia Opinion Summary: In this case, the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts affirmed the lower court's summary judgment ruling against Jordan's Furniture, Inc. The company had implemented a commissions-based compensation scheme for its…

Commonwealth v. Robinson  
Date: March 22, 2024
Docket Number: SJC-08464

Justia Opinion Summary: Charles Robinson, the defendant, was convicted of first-degree murder in connection with the shooting death of Edward Figueroa. Following his conviction, Robinson appealed and also filed a motion for a new trial citing…

Commonwealth v. Escobar  
Date: March 20, 2024
Docket Number: SJC-13321

Justia Opinion Summary: In this case, the defendant, Rigoberto Escobar, was found guilty of first-degree murder for the shooting death of Magno Sosa after a heated argument that escalated into a fistfight. The defendant appealed, arguing that…

Commonwealth v. Corey  
Date: March 18, 2024
Docket Number: SJC-12100

Justia Opinion Summary: This case involved defendant Julie A. Corey who was convicted of first-degree murder on the grounds of deliberate premeditation, extreme atrocity or cruelty, and felony-murder with the underlying felony of aggravated…

Wortis v. Trustees of Tufts College  
Date: March 14, 2024
Docket Number: SJC-13472

Justia Opinion Summary: In a dispute between tenured faculty members and Tufts University, the faculty members alleged that the university's policies requiring them to cover half of their salary with external research funding and reducing their…

Commonwealth v. Kalila  
Date: March 13, 2024
Docket Number: SJC-13428

Justia Opinion Summary: The case revolves around a defendant convicted of severe, racially motivated violence, who sought to stay the execution of his sentence pending appeal. The defendant, a dual citizen of the U.S. and Morocco, with frequent…

Six Brothers, Inc. v. Town of Brookline  
Date: March 8, 2024
Docket Number: SJC-13434

Justia Opinion Summary: In 2018, the Massachusetts Legislature enacted the "Tobacco Act," which prohibited the sale of tobacco products to anyone under 21 years old. The town of Brookline later passed an ordinance that divided potential tobacco…

Openshaw v. Openshaw  
Date: March 7, 2024
Docket Number: SJC-13473

Justia Opinion Summary: The court examined a case involving a divorcing couple, Amy Sue Openshaw and Glen Romney Openshaw, who had a custom of regularly saving a portion of their income throughout their marriage. The husband contested the…

Fallon Community Health Plan, Inc. v. Acting Director of the Department of Unemployment Assistance  
Date: March 4, 2024
Docket Number: SJC-13440

Justia Opinion Summary: In this case, the plaintiff, Fallon Community Health Plan, Inc., adopted a policy requiring its employees to be vaccinated against COVID-19. The defendant, Shanika Jefferson, a home health aide employed by Fallon, sought…

Columbia Plaza Associates v. Northeastern University  
Date: February 29, 2024
Docket Number: SJC-13405

Justia Opinion Summary: The dispute arose from an agreement between Columbia Plaza Associates (CPA) and Northeastern University regarding the development of a parcel of land in Boston. The contract stipulated that the developer for each phase…

Bristol Asphalt, Co., Inc. v. Rochester Bituminous Products, Inc.  
Date: February 29, 2024
Docket Number: SJC-13460

Justia Opinion Summary: In a complex commercial dispute with a series of administrative and legal challenges, the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts found that the defendants did not meet the criteria to dismiss the case under the…

Trahan v. Pelczar
Date: February 26, 2024
Docket Number: SJC-13483
Cole v. Citibank, N.A.
Date: February 26, 2024
Docket Number: SJC-13517
Kim v. Newton Housing Authority
Date: February 23, 2024
Docket Number: SJC-13498
Riddick v. Commonwealth
Date: February 23, 2024
Docket Number: SJC-13508
Commonwealth v. Shepherd  
Date: February 22, 2024
Docket Number: SJC-12405

Justia Opinion Summary: In the case of Commonwealth v. Rashad Shepherd, the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts affirmed the defendant’s conviction of murder in the first degree on the theory of felony-murder, with attempted unarmed robbery…

Commonwealth v. Camuti  
Date: February 21, 2024
Docket Number: SJC-13422

Justia Opinion Summary: In the case before the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts, the defendant, William J. Camuti, was convicted of murder in the first degree for poisoning his friend and business associate, Stephen Rakes, with potassium…

Commonwealth v. Arrington  
Date: February 20, 2024
Docket Number: SJC-13499

Justia Opinion Summary: The case involves the Commonwealth's appeal against the trial judge's denial of its motion to admit expert testimony on Frequent Location History (FLH) data retrieved from the defendant's cell phone in a murder case. The…

In the Matter of an Impounded Case  
Date: February 14, 2024
Docket Number: SJC-13465

Justia Opinion Summary: In this case, the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts was called upon to determine which law applied to the sealing of records from youthful offender proceedings - G. L. c. 276, § 100A, the adult criminal record…

Babaletos v. Demoulas Super Markets, Inc.  
Date: February 2, 2024
Docket Number: SJC-13469

Justia Opinion Summary: The case involves an appeal from a wrongful death action brought by Joni Babaletos, the personal representative of her late husband Thomas Babaletos, against Demoulas Super Markets, Inc., Philip Morris USA Inc., and R.J.…

Commonwealth v. Honsch  
Date: January 30, 2024
Docket Number: SJC-12420

Justia Opinion Summary: In 1995, the bodies of a woman and her daughter were found in separate locations in Massachusetts and Connecticut. More than two decades later, the woman's husband was convicted for her murder. On appeal, he asserted…

Saade v. Efron
Date: January 26, 2024
Docket Number: SJC-13501
Commonwealth v. McDermott  
Date: January 25, 2024
Docket Number: SJC-13394

Justia Opinion Summary: In 1982, William F. McDermott was convicted of first-degree murder. On direct review, the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts found that the trial judge had erred in failing to instruct the jury that evidence of…

Commonwealth v. A.Z.  
Date: January 25, 2024
Docket Number: SJC-13455

Justia Opinion Summary: The case concerns the constitutional rights of a criminal defendant, A.Z., who was involuntarily hospitalized for a competency determination under Massachusetts law, G. L. c. 123, § 15 (b). The Supreme Judicial Court of…

Graham v. District Attorney for the Hampden District  
Date: January 23, 2024
Docket Number: SJC-13386

Justia Opinion Summary: In this case, six plaintiffs -- two criminal defense organizations, two defense attorneys, and two former criminal defendants -- filed a petition against the District Attorney's Office for the Hampden District in…

Commonwealth v. Mcfarlane  
Date: January 23, 2024
Docket Number: SJC-13430

Justia Opinion Summary: In a case before the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts, the defendant, Denzel McFarlane, convicted of unlawful possession of a firearm and other related charges, appealed for a new trial. He based his appeal on the…

Linardon v. Gomes
Date: January 19, 2024
Docket Number: SJC-13349
Commonwealth v. Scanlon  
Date: January 18, 2024
Docket Number: SJC-13375

Justia Opinion Summary: The case involves the Commonwealth's appeal of a judgment by a single justice of the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts, which upheld a lower court judge's decision to disqualify a prosecutor, Matthew Green, from a…

Commonwealth v. Padilla  
Date: January 18, 2024
Docket Number: SJC-13411

Justia Opinion Summary: In this case, a Superior Court judge in Massachusetts sought guidance from the Supreme Judicial Court on three questions involving the pretrial confinement of a juvenile charged with murder. The juvenile, who was sixteen…

Commonwealth v. Marrero  
Date: January 12, 2024
Docket Number: SJC-13399

Justia Opinion Summary: In a case before the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts, the defendant, Elvio Marrero, was convicted of the murder of Pernell Kimplin based on evidence that included bloodstains on Marrero's leather jacket. The…

Commonwealth v. Robinson  
Date: January 11, 2024
Docket Number: SJC-09265

Justia Opinion Summary: In this case, the defendant, Jason Robinson, was convicted of first-degree murder on a joint venture theory of felony-murder, with armed robbery as the predicate offence, in connection with the shooting death of Inaam…

Commonwealth v. Mattis  
Date: January 11, 2024
Docket Number: SJC-11693

Justia Opinion Summary: In the case before the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts, the defendant, Sheldon Mattis, was convicted of first degree murder among other charges, and was sentenced to a mandatory term of life in prison without the…

Commonwealth v. Watt  
Date: January 11, 2024
Docket Number: SJC-13279

Justia Opinion Summary: In this Massachusetts case, the defendant, Nyasani Watt, was convicted of first-degree murder and related offenses. After his conviction was affirmed by the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts, he filed a motion for…

Commonwealth v. Barlow-Tucker
Date: January 8, 2024
Docket Number: SJC-13408 & 13409
Carroll v. Select Board of Norwell  
Date: January 5, 2024
Docket Number: SJC-13410

Justia Opinion Summary: In this case, several residents of the town of Norwell, Massachusetts filed a lawsuit to compel the town's select board to transfer municipal land to the town's conservation commission. The select board had previously…

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