Rhode Island Supreme Court Decisions 2014

Fabrizio v. City of Providence  
Date: December 19, 2014
Docket Number: 12-157

Justia Opinion Summary: Respondents, two firefighters, objected to orders from their superiors that they serve as part of the crew of a fire engine in the 2001 Pride Parade. Notwithstanding their objections, Respondents were ordered to cary out...

Emond Plumbing & Heating, Inc. v. BankNewport  
Date: November 28, 2014
Docket Number: 13-212

Justia Opinion Summary: AIDG Properties, LLC, a real-estate holding company managed by Anjan Dutta-Gupta, purchased property. AIDG obtained loans from BankNewport (Defendant) to finance the purchase and to perform improvements. Dutta-Gupta pers...

Maguire v. City of Providence  
Date: November 28, 2014
Docket Number: 13-304

Justia Opinion Summary: Plaintiff fell while walking on the sidewalk outside Provide Place Mall. Plaintiff filed a negligence complaint against the City of Providence, as well as Old Navy, LLC and Joe’s American Bar and Grill, which leased the...

Torrado Architects v. R.I. Dep’t of Human Servs.  
Date: November 25, 2014
Docket Number: 13-274

Justia Opinion Summary: Plaintiff, an architectural firm, signed an agreement with the Rhode Island Department of Human Services (DHS) to provide architectural and engineering services for renovations at a state-owned property. A Blanket Purcha...

Thornley v. Cmty. College of R.I.  
Date: November 24, 2014
Docket Number: 12-283

Justia Opinion Summary: Plaintiff allegedly suffered from chronic headaches, which she treated with the medication Percocet, while enrolled in the nursing program at the Community College of Rhode Island (CCRI). Plaintiff filed a disability dis...

State v. Storey  
Date: November 24, 2014
Docket Number: 12-327

Justia Opinion Summary: After a jury trial, Defendant was convicted of one count of assault with a dangerous weapon and one count of simple assault and battery. Defendant was sentenced to fifteen years imprisonment, with five years to serve and...

Wells v. Smith  
Date: November 24, 2014
Docket Number: 13-273

Justia Opinion Summary: R. Suzanne Smith hired Michael Ead to construct an addition onto her home. After receiving notice that the construction was in violation of the local zoning ordinance, Smith ceased construction and decided to sell the pr...

Pawtucket Redevelopment Agency v. Brown  
Date: November 21, 2014
Docket Numbers: 13-132, 14-164

Justia Opinion Summary: Pawtucket Redevelopment Agency (PRA) filed a complaint against Patricia Brown alleging that the PRA had entered into an agreement with Defendant to loan her $100,000 toward the purchase and maintenance of a classic diner...

Breggia v. Mortgage Elec. Registration Sys., Inc.  
Date: November 21, 2014
Docket Number: 13-79

Justia Opinion Summary: Plaintiffs executed a promissory note in order to purchase certain real property. To secure payment obligations under the note, Plaintiffs executed a mortgage on the property. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems, In...

State v. Verry  
Date: November 20, 2014
Docket Number: 11-353

Justia Opinion Summary: After a second jury trial, Defendant was convicted of one count of felony assault, one count of simple assault, and one count of first-degree child abuse. The Supreme Court affirmed the judgment of the superior court, ho...

Nye v. Brousseau  
Date: November 19, 2014
Docket Number: 13-302

Justia Opinion Summary: In Nye I, before final judgment entered awarding a judgment parcel to Plaintiff, Defendants transferred via quitclaim deed to their family trust a property that the judgment parcel was located within. In Nye II, the Cour...

D’Alessio v. State  
Date: November 18, 2014
Docket Number: 11-389

Justia Opinion Summary: In 2002, Applicant was convicted for the second-degree murder of his infant daughter. In 2007, Applicant filed an application for postconviction relief, alleging that newly discovered evidence required a new trial. At a...

DeMarco v. Travelers Ins. Co.  
Date: November 18, 2014
Docket Number: 12-309

Justia Opinion Summary: Plaintiff was seriously injured in a collision while he was a passenger in a motor vehicle owned by the insureds of Defendant. Defendant obtained a judgment for money damages but subsequently settled with the insureds in...

State v. Wray  
Date: November 12, 2014
Docket Number: 13-214

Justia Opinion Summary: In January 2006, Defendant was charged with two counts of first-degree robbery and presented as a probation violator. In April 2006, Defendant was adjudicated a probation violator and began serving his previously suspend...

State v. Miguel  
Date: November 10, 2014
Docket Number: 10-131

Justia Opinion Summary: Defendant pled guilty to second-degree murder and was sentenced to life imprisonment. This appeal concerned Defendant’s third attempt to challenge his plea and sentence with a motion to reduce or correct sentence pursuan...

Berman v. Sitrin  
Date: November 10, 2014
Docket Numbers: 11-266, 12-77, 12-116

Justia Opinion Summary: Simcha Berman fell and was severely injured while descending a path that abuts the paved portion of The Cliff Walk, a major Newport tourist attraction that runs along Newport’s shoreline. Berman and his then-wife (togeth...

State v. McKinnon-Conneally  
Date: November 10, 2014
Docket Number: 12-226

Justia Opinion Summary: Defendant pled nolo contendere to second degree robbery and was sentenced to a term of incarceration with eight and one-half years suspended, with probation. The state later filed a violation notice against Defendant for...

Raiche v. Scott  
Date: October 31, 2014
Docket Numbers: 12-189, 12-190

Justia Opinion Summary: Plaintiff-construction company filed suit asserting that Defendant-homeowners breached the parties’ contract in which Plaintiff agreed to complete construction work on Defendants’ home. Further, Plaintiff alleged that De...

Fed. Nat’l Mortgage Ass’n v. Malinou  
Date: October 20, 2014
Docket Number: 13-179

Justia Opinion Summary: In 2003, the Supreme Court held that Seattle Savings Bank had the right to foreclose on certain property that Defendant inherited from his mother. In 2007, the Bank executed a quitclaim deed conveying the property to the...

Leone v. Mortgage Elec. Registration Sys.  
Date: October 20, 2014
Docket Number: 13-59

Justia Opinion Summary: A mortgage deed designated Desmond Leone as the mortgagor of his home and Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) as the mortgagee, acting as nominee for the lender, Equity One, Inc. MERS later assigned its inter...

Hough v. McKiernan  
Date: October 17, 2014
Docket Number: 2013-90

Justia Opinion Summary: Following Defendant's assault on Plaintiff, Plaintiff sued Defendant for negligence, assault, and battery. After deliberation, the jury returned a verdict awarding Plaintiff $1.75 million in damages plus interest. The su...

In re Estate of Picillo  
Date: October 15, 2014
Docket Number: 11-262

Justia Opinion Summary: Decedent died less than two weeks after executing her last will and testament. The will bequeathed nothing to Decedent’s heirs-at-law. After a lengthy contest that challenged the validity of the will, the will was admitt...

State v. Nickerson  
Date: July 10, 2014
Docket Number: 12-342

Justia Opinion Summary: After a jury trial, Defendant was convicted of four counts of first-degree sexual assault and one count of felony assault and battery for his brutal attack of a sixteen-year-old girl. Two years after the attack, law enfo...

King v. Huntress, Inc.  
Date: July 2, 2014
Docket Number: 11-341

Justia Opinion Summary: Plaintiff, who was injured while working as a deckhand on a commercial vessel, sued Defendant, Huntress, Inc., for maintenance and cure, negligence under the federal Jones Act, and breach of the warranty of seaworthiness...

Ingram v. Mortg. Elec. Registration Sys., Inc  
Date: July 2, 2014
Docket Number: 12-269

Justia Opinion Summary: In 2006, Ingram executed a promissory note in favor of Loancity in the amount of $212,500 to finance the purchase of property in Providence and executed a mortgage on the property. The documents identified Mortgage Elect...

City of Pawtucket v. Laprade  
Date: July 2, 2014
Docket Number: 12-330

Justia Opinion Summary: Pawtucket police officer Laprade was convicted of disorderly conduct, stemming from a 2010 incident, during which two women observed the off-duty Laprade masturbating and exposing himself while driving his personal vehic...

Butterfly Realty v. James Romanella & Sons, Inc.  
Date: July 1, 2014
Docket Number: 13-15

Justia Opinion Summary: This case involved an ongoing dispute between two commercial landowners, Plaintiff and Defendant, over the existence of a prescriptive easement used by delivery trucks to access a loading dock owned by Plaintiff. After D...

Process Eng’rs & Constructors, Inc. v. DiGregorio, Inc.  
Date: July 1, 2014
Docket Number: 13-87

Justia Opinion Summary: Defendant agreed to furnish labor, materials, equipment, and services for a pipe-replacement project at Brown University. Defendant entered into a sub-contract with Plaintiff in which Plaintiff agreed to install the pipe...

State v. Whitfield  
Date: June 30, 2014
Docket Number: 12-244

Justia Opinion Summary: After a jury trial, Defendant was convicted of two counts of assault with a dangerous weapon and one count of simple assault. On appeal, Defendant argued, among other things, that the prosecutor improperly vouched for th...

Long v. Dell, Inc.  
Date: June 27, 2014
Docket Number: 12-248

Justia Opinion Summary: Plaintiffs, Nicholas Long and Julianne Ricci, purchased Dell computers in late 2000. In 2003, Plaintiffs filed this putative class action lawsuit alleging that Dell violated the Deceptive Trade Practices Act (DPTA) and w...

Phelps v. Hebert  
Date: June 27, 2014
Docket Number: 12-315

Justia Opinion Summary: At the college graduation party of Defendants’ son, a guest brought his all-terrain vehicle (ATV) to the party. Plaintiffs’ daughter, Ashley, requested a ride and voluntarily mounted the ATV. The guest crashed the ATV ou...

Lamoureux v. State  
Date: June 27, 2014
Docket Number: 12-358

Justia Opinion Summary: In 1990, Applicant was convicted of one count of first-degree sexual assault. In 2001, Applicant filed a pro se application for postconviction relief, alleging ineffective assistance of counsel and trial error. In 2005,...

State v. Hie  
Date: June 27, 2014
Docket Number: 12-83

Justia Opinion Summary: After a jury trial, Defendant was found guilty of two counts of second-degree child molestation sexual assault. The Supreme Court affirmed the superior court’s judgment of conviction and its denial of Defendant’s motion...

Quest Diagnostics, LLC v. Pinnacle Consortium of Higher Educ.  
Date: June 27, 2014
Docket Number: 13-108

Justia Opinion Summary: Quest Diagnostics, LLC was an independent contractor for Brown University under an agreement that obligated both parties to name the other party as an additional insured under their general liability policies. In 2006, P...

Barone v. State  
Date: June 27, 2014
Docket Number: 13-200

Justia Opinion Summary: After Plaintiff agreed to lease a motor vehicle he learned that he had been charged separately for property tax on the leased vehicle and an additional seven percent sales tax paid on that amount. Plaintiff filed a claim...

In re Steven D.  
Date: June 27, 2014
Docket Number: 13-291

Justia Opinion Summary: In 2007, the Department of Children, Youth and Families (DCYF) filed petitions to terminate Mother’s and Father’s parental rights to their two sons. The Family Court terminated the parents’ parental rights, but the Supre...

Merida v. State  
Date: June 24, 2014
Docket Number: 12-82

Justia Opinion Summary: After a jury trial, Appellant was convicted of two counts of first-degree child molestation and one count of second-degree child molestation. The Supreme Court affirmed the convictions on direct appeal. Appellant subsequ...

O’Connell v. Walmsley  
Date: June 23, 2014
Docket Number: 11-199

Justia Opinion Summary: Two young men, Brendan O’Connell Roberti and Jason Goffe, were killed in a tragic automobile collision. Plaintiffs, the co-administrators of the estate of Roberti, sued William Walmsley, who was driving the vehicle that...

State v. Michael Patino
Date: June 20, 2014
Docket Number: 12-263
LaBonte v. New England Dev. R.I., LLC  
Date: June 20, 2014
Docket Number: 12-328

Justia Opinion Summary: Lawrence LaBonte, the owner of New England Development RI, LLC (N.E. Development), filed a petition seeking the reorganization and/or the dissolution of N.E. Development. American Steel Coatings, LLC (American Steel) fil...

In re Application of Carlton Vose.
Date: June 20, 2014
Docket Number: 13-354
Coogan v. Nelson  
Date: June 16, 2014
Docket Number: 13-128

Justia Opinion Summary: Plaintiff, a UPS driver, was delivering a package to the home of Defendants when he was bitten on his arm and leg by one of Defendants’ dogs. Plaintiff filed an action against Defendants, alleging that he was injured as...

Cavanaugh v. Cavanaugh  
Date: June 16, 2014
Docket Number: 13-198

Justia Opinion Summary: Plaintiff, the former wife of Defendant, filed a complaint seeking protection from abuse from Defendant. A magistrate of the family court entered a temporary order restraining and enjoining Defendant from contacting Plai...

State v. Nabe  
Date: June 16, 2014
Docket Number: 13-4

Justia Opinion Summary: Defendant was charged with several crimes in connection with a drive-by shooting. After a jury trial, Defendant was convicted of carrying a firearm in a motor vehicle without a license and attempting to elude a police of...

State v. Watkins  
Date: June 13, 2014
Docket Number: 12-326

Justia Opinion Summary: After a jury trial, Defendant was found guilty of six counts of first-degree sexual assault and four counts of second-degree sexual assault stemming from his unlawful conduct with his girlfriend’s daughter. Defendant was...

R.I. Joint Reinsurance Ass’n v. Santana-Sosa  
Date: June 13, 2014
Docket Number: 13-106

Justia Opinion Summary: The Rhode Island Joint Reinsurance Association brought an interpleader action against multiple defendants for the purpose of determining the proper disposition of insurance proceeds. Bank of America, N.A. (BANA), one of...

State v. Acevedo  
Date: June 13, 2014
Docket Number: 13-245

Justia Opinion Summary: Defendant was charged with several counts of first-degree child molestation and second-degree child molestation stemming from Defendant's unlawful conduct with the niece of his girlfriend. The case proceeded to trial. Du...

Rose Nulman Park Found. v. Four Twenty Corp.  
Date: June 13, 2014
Docket Number: 13-68

Justia Opinion Summary: Plaintiff, Rose Nulman Park Foundation, owned real property that was used as a park. In 2011, Defendants, Robert Lamoureux and Four Twenty Corporation, completed construction on a $1.8 million home. A prospective buyer o...

In re J.S.  
Date: June 9, 2014
Docket Number: 12-159

Justia Opinion Summary: After J.S., a juvenile, injured an individual with a knife, the state police filed two petitions against J.S., including a petition alleging that J.S. was delinquent due to having committed an offense that, if committed...

McGovern v. Bank of Am., N.A.  
Date: June 9, 2014
Docket Number: 13-184

Justia Opinion Summary: Plaintiff signed an adjustable-rate note evidencing a loan from Bank of America and executed a mortgage on property that secured the loan. Bank of America was designated as the Lender and the mortgagee. After Plaintiff d...

Berkshire Wilton Partners, LLC v. Bilray Demolition Co.  
Date: June 9, 2014
Docket Number: 13-191

Justia Opinion Summary: Plaintiff-general contractor entered into an agreement with Defendant-subcontractor to perform work on a project. A dispute arose between the parties when Plaintiff issued Defendant a notice of termination. The issue was...

Coit v. Tillinghast  
Date: June 9, 2014
Docket Number: 13-197

Justia Opinion Summary: In 1998, the Department of Environmental Management (DEM) and John, Alfred, and Anna Tillinghast (Defendants) executed a consent agreement regarding the actions Defendants would take to remedy alleged violations of the F...

Bober v. Bober  
Date: June 6, 2014
Docket Number: 10-409

Justia Opinion Summary: After a trial, the family court dissolved the twenty-four year marriage of Husband and Wife. Both parties appealed the family court’s decision. The Supreme Court affirmed in part and reversed in part the decision pending...

Siemens Fin. Servs., Inc. v. Stonebridge Equip. Leasing, LLC  
Date: June 6, 2014
Docket Number: 13-152

Justia Opinion Summary: Plaintiffs agreed to lease medical diagnostic imaging equipments to Defendants for use in a medical imaging center. The center proved to be unsuccessful shortly after it opened, and Defendants defaulted on their payments...

R.I. Joint Reinsurance Ass’n v. O’Sullivan  
Date: June 6, 2014
Docket Number: 13-91

Justia Opinion Summary: At issue in this case was which party was entitled to insurance funds under an insurance policy on a parcel of property that sustained water damage. Stanley Gurnick and Phoenix-Gurnick, RIGP claimed they owned the proper...

Rosano v. Mortgage Elec. Registration Sys., Inc.  
Date: June 2, 2014
Docket Number: 12-343

Justia Opinion Summary: Plaintiff executed a promissory note in favor of EquiFirst, secured by a mortgage on real estate. The mortgage designated EquiFirst as the Lender and named Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems (MERS) as the mortgagee...

Woodruff v. Gitlow  
Date: June 2, 2014
Docket Number: 12-67

Justia Opinion Summary: The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) requires that all pilots obtain and maintain a valid medical certificate. After he was involved in motor-vehicle accident, Plaintiff, a commercial pilot, surrendered his medical...

Santos v. State  
Date: June 2, 2014
Docket Number: 13-131

Justia Opinion Summary: In 1998 after a plea hearing, the hearing justice accepted Amadeu Santos’s plea of nolo contendere to three counts of second-degree sexual assault. In 2012, Santos filed an application for postconviction relief, assertin...

Chariho Reg’l Sch. Dist. v. Gist  
Date: May 30, 2014
Docket Number: 11-85

Justia Opinion Summary: After unsuccessfully seeking reimbursement from the State Commissioner of Elementary and Secondary Education, Plaintiffs, a school district and school department, filed a complaint in the superior court alleging that the...

State v. Ferrer  
Date: May 30, 2014
Docket Number: 12-238

Justia Opinion Summary: After a jury trial, Defendant was convicted of carrying a pistol without a license and possession of a firearm by a person previously convicted of a crime of violence. The Supreme Court affirmed the judgment of convictio...

State v. Garrett  
Date: May 30, 2014
Docket Number: 12-3

Justia Opinion Summary: After a jury trial, Defendant was convicted of one count of voluntary manslaughter. Defendant appealed the trial justice’s denial of her motion for a new trial, arguing that the State failed to meet its burden of proving...

Joseph P. Notarianni Revocable Trust v. Notarianni  
Date: May 30, 2014
Docket Number: 13-22

Justia Opinion Summary: Decedent established a Trust that required, upon Decedent’s death, the trustee to distribute a parcel of land to the trustee and to distribute the remainder of the land to Decedent’s children. The Trust filed a complaint...

In re Proceedings to Establish a Contact Voltage Detection & Repair Program  
Date: May 30, 2014
Docket Number: 13-48

Justia Opinion Summary: Power Survey Company sought a writ of certiorari before the Supreme Court contending that the Public Utilities Commission improperly interpreted and applied the Contact Voltage Statute when it approved the portion of the...

State v. Marte  
Date: May 30, 2014
Docket Number: 13-98

Justia Opinion Summary: After a jury trial, Defendant was convicted of possession with intent to deliver cocaine. Defendant appealed, arguing that the trial court erred by not excluding evidence that he was carrying cash at the time of his arre...

State v. Ceppi  
Date: May 28, 2014
Docket Number: 11-190

Justia Opinion Summary: After a jury-waived trial, Defendant was convicted of one count of domestic felony assault and one count of domestic simple assault. On appeal, Defendant argued, among other things, that the trial justice erred in denyin...

State v. Morris  
Date: May 28, 2014
Docket Number: 12-105

Justia Opinion Summary: Defendant was charged with two counts of first-degree robbery in connection with two armed robberies. Defendant filed several motions to suppress evidence obtained by police detectives following his arrest. A hearing jus...

Carrozza v. Voccola  
Date: May 16, 2014
Docket Number: 11-132

Justia Opinion Summary: Frederick Carrozza, Sr. filed a petition seeking to impose a resulting trust on four properties and caused notices of lis pendens to be filed with respect to each of the properties at issue. Counterclaimants, in turn, fi...

Roscoe v. State  
Date: May 16, 2014
Docket Number: 11-328

Justia Opinion Summary: In 1990, Appellant was convicted of several criminal charges. Appellant was sentenced to thirty years’ imprisonment, with fifteen years to serve and fifteen years suspended. After Appellant was released from prison a jus...

State v. Lake  
Date: May 16, 2014
Docket Number: 12-254

Justia Opinion Summary: After a jury trial, Defendant was found guilty of two counts of first-degree child molestation sexual assault. Defendant subsequently moved for a new trial, asserting that the verdict failed to respond to the evidence an...

Alba v. Cranston Sch. Comm.  
Date: May 16, 2014
Docket Number: 12-66

Justia Opinion Summary: David Alba was appointed to serve as principal of an elementary school in Cranston, Rhode Island. Alba and the Cranston School Committee subsequently entered into an employment contract. Later, after a hearing, the Commi...

Moura v. Mortgage Elec. Registration Sys., Inc.  
Date: May 16, 2014
Docket Number: 13-107

Justia Opinion Summary: Plaintiffs purchased a home. To finance the transaction, Plaintiffs executed a note payable to Accredited Home Lenders. The note was secured by a mortgage on the property naming Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems,...

In re Lyric P.  
Date: May 16, 2014
Docket Number: 13-11

Justia Opinion Summary: Son was born to Mother, who was incarcerated at the time of the birth. Father was also incarcerated at that time. The Department of Children, Youth, and Families (DCYF) filed a petition to terminate the parental rights o...

Marble v. Faelle  
Date: May 9, 2014
Docket Number: 12-198

Justia Opinion Summary: Plaintiff was crossing a street when she was struck by a vehicle operated by John Faelle, owned by Hertz Corporation, and purportedly rented to Anthony Carroccio. Plaintiff filed an action against Faelle, Hertz, and Carr...

Ramirez v. State  
Date: May 9, 2014
Docket Number: 12-227

Justia Opinion Summary: After a jury trial, Appellant was found guilty of first-degree murder and sentenced to life imprisonment. Appellant filed a pro se application for postconviction relief alleging that he received ineffective assistance of...

State v. Gallop  
Date: May 2, 2014
Docket Number: 11-92

Justia Opinion Summary: After a jury trial, Defendant was convicted of murder, assault with a dangerous weapon, and other crimes arising out of a shooting outside of a nightclub. The Supreme Court affirmed the judgment of conviction, holding (1...

State v. Quaweay  
Date: May 2, 2014
Docket Number: 12-115

Justia Opinion Summary: After a jury trial, Defendant was convicted of assault with a dangerous weapon, using a firearm during a crime of violence, and carrying a firearm without a license. Defendants convictions arose out of a shooting inside...

Ho-Rath v. R.I. Hosp.  
Date: May 2, 2014
Docket Number: 12-208

Justia Opinion Summary: Plaintiffs filed suit, individually and per proxima amici, against numerous defendants, alleging, inter alia, negligence, lack of informed consent, and vicarious liability for injuries sustained by their minor daughter,...

State v. Mercurio  
Date: May 2, 2014
Docket Number: 12-219

Justia Opinion Summary: After a jury trial, Defendant was found guilty of resisting arrest. Defendant appealed, arguing that the trial justice (1) abused his discretion by permitting the state to admit into evidence Defendant’s prior conviction...

Woonsocket Sch. Comm. v. Chafee  
Date: May 2, 2014
Docket Number: 12-271

Justia Opinion Summary: Plaintiffs, school committees of Woonsocket and Pawtucket and unnamed students, parents, and the superintendents from both districts, brought suit against the legislative and executive branches of Rhode Island’s state go...

Carney v. Carney  
Date: April 25, 2014
Docket Number: 13-1

Justia Opinion Summary: In 2006, the family court entered final judgment on a divorce between Sandra Carney and Stephen Carney that incorporated by reference a marriage settlement agreement (MSA) entered into by the parties. In 2011, Stephen fi...

Nat’l Refrigeration, Inc. v. Capital Props., Inc.  
Date: April 17, 2014
Docket Number: 11-54

Justia Opinion Summary: Plaintiff, acting as subcontractor to Builder, performed work on a property in the City of Providence owned by Owner and leased by Lessee. A dispute subsequently arose regarding payment, and Plaintiff sought to enforce a...

State v. Barrios  
Date: April 17, 2014
Docket Number: 12-206

Justia Opinion Summary: After a jury trial, Defendant was convicted of two counts of second-degree sexual assault. Defendant subsequently filed a motion for a new trial, arguing that testimony given by certain witnesses was contradictory, that...

JPL Livery Servs., Inc. v. R.I. Dep’t of Admin.  
Date: April 17, 2014
Docket Number: 13-119

Justia Opinion Summary: In 2005, the Rhode Island Department of Administration and the Rhode Island Department of Health (collectively, the State), selected Plaintiff as its livery service provider through a bidding process. Plaintiff and the S...

Nunez v. Merrimack Mut. Fire Ins. Co.  
Date: April 17, 2014
Docket Number: 13-129

Justia Opinion Summary: Plaintiffs purchased a home that a pre-closing inspection revealed had corrosion on the oil heating system in the basement. Although the boiler and oil tank were replaced prior to the sale of the home, the oil feed line...

State v. Barrientos  
Date: April 17, 2014
Docket Number: 13-155

Justia Opinion Summary: In 2007, Defendant entered a plea of nolo contendere to one count of possession of a controlled substance, for which he was sentenced to five years probation. In 2011, the superior court entered a judgment of conviction...

Miller v. Metro. Prop. & Cas. Ins. Co.  
Date: April 17, 2014
Docket Number: 13-63

Justia Opinion Summary: Plaintiff filed a complaint against Metropolitan Property and Casualty Insurance Company and other defendants, alleging multiple counts. A jury found Defendants liable for abuse of process and awarded compensatory and pu...

State v. Brown  
Date: April 11, 2014
Docket Number: 11-257

Justia Opinion Summary: Defendant was charged with ten offenses in a single indictment. After five of the counts were dismissed, the jury returned guilty verdicts on the five remaining counts of first-degree murder, first-degree robbery, and re...

State v. Matthews  
Date: April 11, 2014
Docket Number: 11-398

Justia Opinion Summary: In 2009, three men attacked and robbed Complainant. Several days later, Complainant saw one of his attackers loitering on the street. After a foot chase, Complainant caught the attacker - Michael Long - and held him unti...

Panarello v. State, Dep’t of Corr.  
Date: April 7, 2014
Docket Number: 11-105

Justia Opinion Summary: Plaintiff, a member of the Rhode Island National Guard, was hired by the Department of Corrections (DOC) in 1988. In 2000, Plaintiff left his full-time employment at the DOC to report for active duty with the National Gu...

Commerce Park Assocs. 1, LLC v. Houle  
Date: March 31, 2014
Docket Number: 12-207

Justia Opinion Summary: Plaintiffs, limited liability entities that owned property in the Town of Coventry, filed suit seeking declaratory and injunctive relief challenging the legality of sewer assessments assessed by Coventry. A hearing justi...

Ellinwood v. Cohen  
Date: March 28, 2014
Docket Number: 13-125

Justia Opinion Summary: Scott Cohen’s vehicle collided with the rear of Antonio Soares’s stopped vehicle because Cohen's vision was temporarily impaired by the glare from the morning sun. Cohen waved to Kris Ellinwood, a police officer who was...

State ex rel. Town of Little Compton v. Simmons  
Date: March 25, 2014
Docket Number: 12-251

Justia Opinion Summary: In the town of Tiverton, two police officers from the Little Compton police department had a discussion with Defendant about a motor-vehicle accident that occurred in Little Compton. The officers then transported Defenda...

Russo v. State, Dep’t of Mental Health, Retardation and Hosps.  
Date: March 24, 2014
Docket Number: 11-360

Justia Opinion Summary: Plaintiff, a state employee, filed an action against the State Department of Mental Health, Retardation and Hospitals (MHRH) alleging that MRH violated the Rhode Island Whistleblowers’ Protection Act (WPA) when it placed...

State v. Gadson  
Date: March 13, 2014
Docket Number: 11-97

Justia Opinion Summary: After a jury trial, Defendant was convicted of second-degree robbery and sentenced to a total of thirty years imprisonment. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding (1) the trial justice did not err in denying Defendant’s mot...

Wilby v. Savoie  
Date: March 12, 2014
Docket Number: 2012-141

Justia Opinion Summary: In 1997, Defendants formed a Vermont corporation called Green Mountain Park, Inc. to reconstruct, revive, and operate a defunct horseracing facility in the Town of Pownal, Vermont. Plaintiff agreed to invest $350,000 in...

Burns v. Moorland Farm Condo. Ass’n  
Date: March 10, 2014
Docket Number: 11-107

Justia Opinion Summary: The Moorland Farm Condominium consisted of thirty-three units in ten buildings. When the Moorland Farm Condominium Association became aware that certain outdoor decks in the condominium development were in need of repair...

Bucci v. Hurd Buick Pontiac GMC Truck, LLC  
Date: March 4, 2014
Docket Number: 11-163

Justia Opinion Summary: Defendant hired Plaintiff twice when Plaintiff was sixty-seven years old for brief periods of employment. When Plaintiff was sixty-eight, Defendant rehired her as a titles and registrations clerk. When Plaintiff was seve...

Rose v. Cariello  
Date: March 4, 2014
Docket Number: 12-59

Justia Opinion Summary: After Plaintiff’s car was struck from behind by a car operated by Defendant, Plaintiff began experiencing pain in her back and legs, which led to two surgical procedures on her spine. Plaintiff filed a negligence suit ag...

Weeks v. 735 Putnam Pike Operations, LLC  
Date: February 28, 2014
Docket Number: 12-356

Justia Opinion Summary: Plaintiff, a member of a union, filed a complaint against Defendant, her former employer, alleging that during her employment she was subjected to a hostile work environment on account of her race and color and that she...

Rose v. State  
Date: February 24, 2014
Docket Number: 12-129

Justia Opinion Summary: In 1992, Appellant was incarcerated while awaiting the disposition of an allegation of first-degree child molestation. In 1994, Appellant pled nolo contendere to one count of first-degree child molestation. Appellant was...

Cayer v. Cox R.I. Telecom, LLC  
Date: February 21, 2014
Docket Number: 12-23

Justia Opinion Summary: A work van being driven by cable installer Nelson Ovalles collided with a car being driven by Barbara Cayer. Cayer filed a lawsuit against Ovalles and the company on whose behalf Ovalles apparently performed cable-instal...

State v. Rolle  
Date: February 18, 2014
Docket Number: 12-12

Justia Opinion Summary: Defendant was charged with one count of second-degree sexual assault. A jury trial commenced, but the trial justice granted Defendant’s motion for a mistrial due to a discovery violation. Thereafter, Defendant moved to d...

Brown v. Stanley  
Date: February 18, 2014
Docket Number: 12-169

Justia Opinion Summary: Mary Cummings, a participant in a charitable fundraising walk for the benefit of Defendants, was injured when she was struck by a vehicle operated by James Brown, an employee of Bluelinx Corporation. Cummings settled all...

NV One, LLC v. Potomac Realty Capital, LLC  
Date: February 18, 2014
Docket Number: 12-262

Justia Opinion Summary: Plaintiffs entered into a loan agreement with Potomac Realty Capital LLC (PRC) to rehabilitate and renovate certain property. As security for the loan, NV One granted a mortgage on the property. Plaintiffs later filed a...

Banville v. Brennan  
Date: February 7, 2014
Docket Number: 11-384

Justia Opinion Summary: Plaintiff and Defendants were owners of property with a common boundary. Plaintiff and Defendants disputed the location of the boundary line, and Plaintiff claimed Defendants encroached upon her property. When Defendants...

State v. Clements  
Date: February 3, 2014
Docket Number: 11-203

Justia Opinion Summary: After a jury trial, Defendant was convicted of two counts of murder, and one count each of conspiracy and arson. The trial justice sentenced Defendant to three consecutive life sentences. The Supreme Court affirmed, hold...

State v. Silva  
Date: February 3, 2014
Docket Number: 11-378

Justia Opinion Summary: After a jury trial, Defendant was convicted of six criminal counts relating to a shooting. Defendant appealed, arguing that, in denying his motion for a new trial, the trial justice overlooked and misconceived material e...

Chhun v. Mortgage Elec. Registration Sys., Inc.  
Date: February 3, 2014
Docket Number: 12-298

Justia Opinion Summary: Plaintiffs executed a mortgage identifying Domestic Bank as the lender and Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems, Inc. as a corporation “acting solely as nominee” for the lender and the lender’s assigns. Later, MERS p...

State v. Bojang  
Date: January 30, 2014
Docket Number: 10-361

Justia Opinion Summary: After a jury trial, Defendant was convicted of two counts of first-degree child molestation sexual assault. Defendant appealed, contending, among other things, that the trial justice erred when it denied his motion to su...

State v. Diamante  
Date: January 30, 2014
Docket Number: 10-50

Justia Opinion Summary: In 1994, Defendant was charged with felony assault with a dangerous weapon (Count One) and willful or malicious injury to property (Count Two). Count One was dismissed in consideration of Defendant pleading nolo contende...

State v. Fleck  
Date: January 15, 2014
Docket Number: 11-305

Justia Opinion Summary: Defendant and the complaining witness (Complainant) lived together while Defendant maintained his own apartment. Due to certain incidents between Defendant and Complainant, Defendant was convicted after a jury trial of o...

State v. Santiago  
Date: January 15, 2014
Docket Number: 12-173

Justia Opinion Summary: After a jury trial, Defendant was convicted of second-degree child molestation sexual assault. Defendant appealed, arguing that the trial justice erred when she allowed the State to elicit testimony from the complaining...

State v. Buchanan  
Date: January 14, 2014
Docket Number: 2012-230

Justia Opinion Summary: After a jury trial, Defendant was convicted of one count of first-degree child molestation and three counts of second-degree child molestation. On appeal, Defendant argued that the trial justice abused her discretion in...

Reynolds v. First NLC Fin. Servs., LLC  
Date: January 10, 2014
Docket Number: 12-113

Justia Opinion Summary: Plaintiff executed a promissory note secured by a mortgage on his property. After Plaintiff defaulted on the loan, foreclosure proceedings commenced. Plaintiff subsequently filed a Chapter 7 bankruptcy petition. Then the...

Narragansett Indian Tribe v. State  
Date: January 10, 2014
Docket Number: 12-323

Justia Opinion Summary: At issue in this case was the Casino Acts, two pieces of legislation providing for the establishment of state-authorized table games at gambling facilities at which Plaintiff, the Narragansett Indian Tribe, received a pe...

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