Washington Supreme Court Decisions 2013

In Re Marriage of Buecking (Majority)  
Date: December 26, 2013
Docket Number: 87680-1

Justia Opinion Summary: Amy Westman (Buecking) filed for legal separation from Tim Buecking. Over a year later, she filed an amended petition for dissolution of marriage. The decree was entered 8 days too soon. Mr. Buecking appealed, raising fo...

Sargent v. Seattle Police Dep't (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: December 19, 2013
Docket Number: 87417-4

Justia Opinion Summary: At issue before the Supreme Court in this case was the proper scope of the effective law enforcement exemption of the Public Records Act (PRA), chapter 42.56 RCW. The Seattle Police Department (SPD) used this exemption t...

In re Parentage of C.M.F. (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: December 19, 2013
Docket Number: 88029-8

Justia Opinion Summary: The State brought a paternity action in 2008 to establish the parentage of C.M.F. Respondent Jonathan Fairfax was adjudicated C.M.F.'s father. Petitioner Amanda Simpson was designated custodian. Fairfax petitioned the fa...

Jones v. City of Seattle (Majority and Concurrence)  
Date: December 12, 2013
Docket Number: 87343-7

Justia Opinion Summary: The City of Seattle appealed an unpublished Court of Appeals decision that affirmed a $12.75 million verdict in favor of former Seattle fire fighter Mark Jones. Jones was injured when he fell fifteen feet through a stati...

Frizzell v. Murray (Majority and Concurrence)  
Date: December 5, 2013
Docket Number: 87927-3

Justia Opinion Summary: Respondent Tamara Frizzell borrowed $100,000 from petitioner Barbara Murray, secured by a deed of trust on Frizzell's home. Frizzell defaulted and a nonjudicial foreclosure sale was set. Before the sale, Frizzell sued B...

In re Custody of A.F.J. (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: November 27, 2013
Docket Number: 86188-9

Justia Opinion Summary: The issue before the Supreme Court in this case centered on whether de facto parent status "stands in legal parity with an otherwise legal parent" biological, adoptive or otherwise. The Court concluded that in most cases...

Washington v. Ruem (Majority, Concurrence and Concurrence/Dissent)  
Date: November 27, 2013
Docket Number: 86214-1

Justia Opinion Summary: The issue before the Supreme Court in this case was whether law enforcement officers must expressly advise a person of his or her right to refuse entry into a home (provide "Ferrier") warnings-when the officers seek to e...

In re Custody of B.M.H. (Majority, Concurrence and Dissent)  
Date: November 27, 2013
Docket Number: 86895-6

Justia Opinion Summary: B.M.H.'s natural father died six months before he was born. His mother's former boyfriend Michael Holt, was present at B.M.H.'s birth and, shortly afterward, married his mother. Mr. Holt petitioned for third party custod...

Int'l Marine Underwriters v. ABCD Marine, LLC (Majority, Concurrence and Dissent)  
Date: November 27, 2013
Docket Number: 87231-7

Justia Opinion Summary: Petitioner Albert Boogaard argued that the comprehensive marine liability insurance policy he purchased from International Marine Underwriters (IMU) for his general partnership, ABCD Marine, covered bodily injuries he su...

Washington v. Jorgenson (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: November 21, 2013
Docket Number: 87448-4

Justia Opinion Summary: Appellant Roy Jorgenson was released on bond after a trial court judge found probable cause to believe he had shot someone. He was arrested with a handgun and an AR-15 rifle. Appellant was not at home at the time, nor wa...

Donatelli v. D.R. Strong Consulting Eng'rs, Inc. (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: November 14, 2013
Docket Number: 86590-6

Justia Opinion Summary: Steve and Karen Donatelli hired D.R. Strong Consulting Engineers Inc. to help the Donatellis develop their real property. Before development could be completed, the Donatellis suffered substantial financial losses and lo...

In Re Pers. Restraint of Gronquist (Majority)
Date: November 14, 2013
Docket Number: 87666-5
Washington v. Monfort (Majority and Concurrence)  
Date: November 14, 2013
Docket Number: 88522-2

Justia Opinion Summary: Christopher Monfort was charged with one count of aggravated first degree murder for the death of a law enforcement officer. He filed a notice of special sentencing proceeding ("death penalty notice"). Monfort's defense...

In re Pers. Restraint of Lain (Majority and Concurrence)  
Date: November 7, 2013
Docket Number: 87109-4

Justia Opinion Summary: Petitioner Jerry Lain was sentenced to life under Washington's former indeterminate sentencing scheme. In 2010, the Indeterminate Sentencing Review Board found petitioner parolable, approved a release plan, and ordered p...

Washington v. Ollivier (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: October 31, 2013
Docket Number: 86633-3

Justia Opinion Summary: Petitioner Brandon Ollivier was convicted for possession of child pornography. On appeal, he contended his rights to a speedy trial under the United States and Washington State Constitution were violated by delay in brin...

Washington v. Dang (Majority)  
Date: October 31, 2013
Docket Number: 87726-2

Justia Opinion Summary: In November 2006, Petitioner Bao Dinh Dang walked up to a gas pump in Seattle, lit newspaper on fire, and attempted to pump gas in order to ignite the gas. A station employee successfully knocked the flaming newspaper ou...

Washington v. Wooten (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: October 31, 2013
Docket Number: 87855-2

Justia Opinion Summary: Petitioner David Wooten was convicted of first degree malicious mischief for damaging a home he was purchasing on a real estate contract. Petitioner claimed he did not damage "property of another" because he had exclusiv...

Cedar River Water & Sewer Dist. v. King County (Majority and Concurrence)  
Date: October 24, 2013
Docket Number: 86293-1

Justia Opinion Summary: After years of negotiation and lawsuits, Snohomish County agreed to let King County build a sewage treatment plant in south Snohomish County. As part of the settlement, King County agreed to provide a substantial mitigat...

In re Disciplinary Proceeding Against Wickersham (Majority and Dissent)
Date: October 17, 2013
Docket Number: 201,088-1
Freedom Foundation v. Gregoire (Majority, Concurrence and Dissent)  
Date: October 17, 2013
Docket Number: 86384-9

Justia Opinion Summary: The issue before the Supreme Court in this case centered on whether Washington's constitutional separation of powers creates a qualified gubernatorial communications privilege that functions as an exemption to the Public...

Washburn v. City of Federal Way (Majority)  
Date: October 17, 2013
Docket Number: 87906-1

Justia Opinion Summary: Paul Chan Kim murdered his partner, Baerbel K. Roznowski, after officer Andrew Rensing of the Federal Way Police Department served Kim with an antiharassment order forbidding him to contact or remain near Roznowski. Rozn...

Washington v. Byrd (Majority, Concurrence and Dissent)  
Date: October 10, 2013
Docket Number: 86399-7

Justia Opinion Summary: The issue on appeal to the Supreme Court in this case was whether the search of Lisa Byrd's purse was a search of her person. Because the purse was in her lap when she was arrested, it was an article of her person under...

Cost Mgmt. Servs. v. City of Lakewood (Majority)  
Date: October 10, 2013
Docket Number: 87964-8

Justia Opinion Summary: In late 2008, Cost Management Services Inc. (CMS) reviewed its years of tax payments made to the City of Lakewood. In examining the relevant regulations, CMS decided that it did not in fact owe the tax that it had been p...

Stewart Title Guar. Co. v. Sterling Sav. Bank (Majority)  
Date: October 3, 2013
Docket Number: 87087-0

Justia Opinion Summary: Stewart Title Guaranty Company hired the law firm Witherspoon, Kelley, Davenport & Toole, PS to defend its insured, Sterling Savings Bank, from a claim of lien priority on real property by a construction company. The cla...

Swinomish Indian Tribal Comm'y v. Dep't of Ecology (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: October 3, 2013
Docket Number: 87672-0

Justia Opinion Summary: The issue before the Supreme Court in this case involved the validity of an amended rule from the Department of Ecology that reserved water from the Skagit River system for future year-round out-of-stream uses, despite t...

In re Pers. Restraint of Cross (Majority)  
Date: September 26, 2013
Docket Number: 79761-7

Justia Opinion Summary: Dayva Cross pled guilty to killing his wife and two of her three daughters in 2001 for which he was sentenced to death. The Supreme Court affirmed the sentence after direct review. In his first personal restraint petitio...

In re Pers. Restraint of Brockie (Majority)  
Date: September 26, 2013
Docket Number: 86241-9

Justia Opinion Summary: Benjamin Brockie was convicted of 2 counts of first degree robbery, 15 counts of first degree kidnapping, and 2 counts of making bomb threats. Brockie asked the Supreme Court to vacate those convictions because the jury...

Washington v. Dye (Majority and Concurrence)  
Date: September 26, 2013
Docket Number: 87929-0

Justia Opinion Summary: The issue before the Supreme Court in this case centered on whether a trial court may allow a witness to be accompanied by a comfort animal, here a dog, when testifying during trial. Generally, wide discretion is given t...

Washington v. Kurtz (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: September 19, 2013
Docket Number: 87078-1

Justia Opinion Summary: William Kurtz challenged the Court of Appeals' decision to affirm his conviction for possession and manufacturing of marijuana. He argued on appeal that the trial court erred in denying his request to raise a common law...

Washington v. Lynch (Majority and Concurrence)  
Date: September 19, 2013
Docket Number: 87882-0

Justia Opinion Summary: The State charged defendant Jeffrey Lynch with indecent liberties and second-degree rape. At trial, defendant's argued the State failed to prove forcible compulsion because the alleged victim, T.S., consented to the sexu...

Freeman v. Washington (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: September 12, 2013
Docket Number: 87267-8

Justia Opinion Summary: The State Department of Transportation and the Central Puget Sound Regional Transit Authority entered into an agreement that would lease a portion of I-90 to Sound Transit for light rail. For this, Sound Transit agreed t...

In re Pers. Restraint of Adams (Majority, Concurrence and Dissent)  
Date: September 12, 2013
Docket Number: 87501-4

Justia Opinion Summary: The issue before the Supreme Court in this case involved a claim under RCW 10.73.090. Petitioner successfully argued that a 2000 judgment against him and subsequent sentence were based on an incorrectly-calculated offend...

In re Pers. Restraint of Haghighi (Majority, Concurrence and Dissent)  
Date: September 12, 2013
Docket Number: 87529-4

Justia Opinion Summary: The issue before the Supreme Court in this case centered on the Court's holding in "Washington v. Winterstein," (220 P.3d 1226 (2009)) and whether the inevitable discovery doctrine (which was found inconsistent with the...

Hill v. Garda CL Northwest. Inc. (Majority)  
Date: September 12, 2013
Docket Number: 87877-3

Justia Opinion Summary: Petitioners Lawrence Hill, Adam Wise, and Robert Miller represented a class of employees who worked for an armored car company Garda CL Northwest, Inc. They brought a wage and hour suit against the company, citing violat...

Weidert v. Producers Agric. Ins. Co. (Majority)
Date: September 12, 2013
Docket Number: 88293-2
Washington v. Chen (Majority and Concurrence)  
Date: September 5, 2013
Docket Number: 87350-0

Justia Opinion Summary: The issue before the Supreme Court in this case was the conflict between the statutory requirement that limits disclosure of competency evaluations prepared under RCW 10.77 and the constitutional requirement that "justic...

King County Pub. Hosp. #2 v. Dep't of Health (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: September 5, 2013
Docket Number: 87574-0

Justia Opinion Summary: Rival hospice operators challenged the State Department of Health's decision to grant a certificate of need to Odyssey Healthcare Operating B, LP and Odyssey Healthcare Inc. in connection with the settlement of a federal...

Washington v. McEnroe (Majority)  
Date: September 5, 2013
Docket Number: 88410-2

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court reviewed a trial court's dismissal of notice of special death penalty sentencing proceedings. The King County prosecuting attorney appealed to the Supreme Court to decide whether he violated Washington'...

Friends of Columbia Gorge, Inc. v. State Energy Facility Site Evaluation Council (Majority)  
Date: August 29, 2013
Docket Number: 88089-1

Justia Opinion Summary: At issue in this case was the siting of a wind powered energy facility under the energy facilities site locations act (EFSLA). The State Energy Facility Site Evaluation Council (EFSEC), after reducing the scope of the pr...

In re Disciplinary Proceeding Against McGrath (Majority)
Date: August 22, 2013
Docket Number: 201,115-2
In re Disciplinary Proceeding Against McGrath (Majority)
Date: August 22, 2013
Docket Number: 201,115-2
State v. Mau (Majority and Dissent)
Date: August 22, 2013
Docket Number: 87697-5
Washington v. Mau (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: August 22, 2013
Docket Number: 87697-5

Justia Opinion Summary: Petitioner Jennifer Mau was convicted of making false insurance claims. She challenged the sufficiency of the evidence presented against her at trial. Upon review, the Supreme Court found that the State failed to prove t...

Barton v. Dep't of Transp. (Majority, Concurrence and Dissent)
Date: August 15, 2013
Docket Number: 86924-3
Barton v. Dep't of Transp. (Majority, Concurrence and Dissent)  
Date: August 15, 2013
Docket Number: 86924-3

Justia Opinion Summary: Jared Barton sued Korrine Linvog, her parents Thomas and Madonna Linvog, and the State. Barton reached a settlement with the Linvogs through which the Linvogs agreed to advance Barton money in exchange for his promise no...

Lemire v. Dep't of Ecology (Majority and Dissent)
Date: August 15, 2013
Docket Number: 87703-3
Lemire v. Dep't of Ecology (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: August 15, 2013
Docket Number: 87703-3

Justia Opinion Summary: Respondent and rancher Joseph Lemire was directed by the state Department of Ecology to curb pollution of a creek that ran through his property. Respondent unsuccessfully challenged the order at the Pollution Control Hea...

Brown v. MHN Gov't Servs., Inc. (Majority and Concurrence)
Date: August 15, 2013
Docket Number: 87953-2
Brown v. MHN Gov't Servs., Inc. (Majority and Concurrence)  
Date: August 15, 2013
Docket Number: 87953-2

Justia Opinion Summary: At issue before the Supreme Court in this matter was the narrow question of whether an arbitration agreement signed by respondents was unconscionable and therefore unenforceable under California law. Upon review, the Was...

Lowman v. Wilbur (Majority, Concurrence and Dissent)  
Date: August 8, 2013
Docket Number: 86584-1

Justia Opinion Summary: In "Keller v. City of Spokane," (44 P.3d 845 (2002)), the Washington Supreme Court held that the duty to design and maintain reasonably safe roadways extended "to all persons, whether negligent or fault-free." This case...

Washington v. Meredith (Majority, Concurrence and Dissent)  
Date: August 8, 2013
Docket Number: 86825-5

Justia Opinion Summary: In 2010, the Washington Supreme Court addressed that first step of the Batson test in "Washington v. Rhone," (229 P.3d 752 (2010)). Chief Justice Madsen wrote a concurrence to that case stating, "I agree with the lead op...

Washington v. Saintcalle (Majority, Concurrence and Dissent)  
Date: August 1, 2013
Docket Number: 86257-5

Justia Opinion Summary: Kirk Saintcalle was convicted of one count of first degree felony murder and three counts of second degree assault, all with firearm enhancements for which he was sentenced to 579 months in prison. During jury selection...

Chi. Title Ins. Co. v. Office of Ins. Comm'r (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: August 1, 2013
Docket Number: 87215-5

Justia Opinion Summary: Chicago Title Insurance Company (CTIC) appointed Land Title Insurance Company as its agent for the purpose of soliciting and effectuating CTIC's insurance policies. Land Title violated the anti-inducement laws. The Supre...

Washington v. Zillyette (Majority)  
Date: August 1, 2013
Docket Number: 87614-2

Justia Opinion Summary: The State charged Brenda J. Zillyette with controlled substances homicide for the death of Austin Burrows. The information charging Zillyette with controlled substances homicide did not identify the controlled substance...

Washington v. Vasquez (Majority)  
Date: July 25, 2013
Docket Number: 87282-1

Justia Opinion Summary: Petitioner Vianney Vasquez had fake social security and fake permanent resident cards in his possession when a grocery store security guard found them in a search related to shoplifting. The guard called police; petition...

Washington v. Clark (Majority)  
Date: July 25, 2013
Docket Number: 87376-3

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed Petitioner Michael Clark's conviction for theft on tribal trust land over which the State had jurisdiction. The Court noted that while the State lacked explicit statutory authorization to issue...

In re Disciplinary Proceeding Against Kamb (Majority)
Date: July 18, 2013
Docket Number: 200,926-3
In re Disciplinary Proceeding Against Starczewski (Majority)
Date: July 18, 2013
Docket Number: 201,073-3
In re Pers. Restraint of Netherton (Majority)  
Date: July 18, 2013
Docket Number: 83925-5

Justia Opinion Summary: Petitioner Lorraine Netherton was convicted of second degree murder. Upon review of her appeal, the Supreme Court concluded that the trial court erroneously imposed a sentence enhancement based on the jury's "deadly weap...

Raven v. Dep't of Soc. & Health Servs. (Majority)  
Date: July 18, 2013
Docket Number: 87483-2

Justia Opinion Summary: The state Department of Social and Health Services found Petitioner Resa Raven neglected an elderly incapacitated person in her care. Petitioner challenged that finding, arguing that the evidence used against her could n...

Washington v. Sanchez (Majority)  
Date: July 18, 2013
Docket Number: 87740-8

Justia Opinion Summary: Petitioner Josh Sanchez was adjudicated a juvenile sex offender. He petitioned against the superior court's release of his offender information to the King County Sheriff's Office when he was released back into the commu...

Skagit County Pub. Hosp. Dist. No. 304 v. Skagit County Pub. Hosp. Dist. No. 1 (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: July 11, 2013
Docket Number: 86796-8

Justia Opinion Summary: At issue in this case was a dispute regarding one rural public hospital district's ability to provide services once it acquired a medical group that operated outside its boundaries (and within the boundaries of another's...

Piel v. City of Federal Way (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: June 27, 2013
Docket Number: 83882-8

Justia Opinion Summary: The trial court dismissed Appellant Richard Piel's suit against the City of Federal Way, finding that the existence of statutory remedies authorized under state law prevented him from establishing the "jeopardy prong" of...

King County Dep't of Dev. & Envtl. Servs. v. King County (Majority)  
Date: June 27, 2013
Docket Number: 87514-6

Justia Opinion Summary: Applicants challenged a Department of Development and Environmental Services order declaring the use of the property at issue here was not compliant with King County zoning ordinances. The assertion was that the use was...

Columbia Cmty. Bank v. Newman Park, LLC (Majority)
Date: June 20, 2013
Docket Number: 87174-4
Columbia Cmty. Bank v. Newman Park, LLC (Majority)  
Date: June 20, 2013
Docket Number: 87174-4

Justia Opinion Summary: Newman Park, LLC was formed for the sole purpose of developing a piece of property. In 2004, it took out a loan to purchase the property at issue in this suit. In 2008, without knowledge of the other owners in Newman Par...

Kofmehl v. Baseline Lake, LLC (Majority)
Date: June 20, 2013
Docket Number: 87395-0
Kofmehl v. Baseline Lake, LLC (Majority)  
Date: June 20, 2013
Docket Number: 87395-0

Justia Opinion Summary: Petitioner Patrick Kofmehl bought a piece of land from Baseline Lake, LLC. By closing, the parties disputed the amount of land to be covered by their sales contract. Petitioner was willing to close only if the disputed p...

State v. Contreras-Rebollar (Majority)
Date: June 13, 2013
Docket Number: 87650-9
State v. Contreras-Rebollar (Majority)
Date: June 13, 2013
Docket Number: 87650-9
In re Disciplinary Proceeding Against Sanai (Majority)
Date: June 6, 2013
Docket Number: 201,049-1
Washington v. Smith (Majority, Concurrence and Dissent)  
Date: June 6, 2013
Docket Number: 86951-1

Justia Opinion Summary: Petitioner Christopher Smith was apprehended by police on the doorstep of his motel room and charged with rape, assault, harassment, kidnapping and child rape. Prior to trial, the Supreme Court invalidated the practice o...

Washington v. Tyler (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: May 30, 2013
Docket Number: 87104-3

Justia Opinion Summary: An officer stopped the defendant for a traffic violation. When it turned out that the driver and his passenger both had suspended drivers' licenses and alternate arrangements could not be made, the officer arranged for a...

In re Pers. Restraint of Finstad (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: May 23, 2013
Docket Number: 86018-1

Justia Opinion Summary: In 2009, Petitioner Lowell Finstad faced at least seven felony charges. After he was convicted by jury on two, he and the State negotiated a global plea agreement on the remaining charges. The agreement resulted in less...

Jafar v. Webb (Majority)  
Date: May 23, 2013
Docket Number: 87009-8

Justia Opinion Summary: Abeda Jafar filed an action in superior court to obtain a parenting plan involving her 19-month old son. She also filed a motion under GR 34 to waive all mandatory fees and surcharges on the basis of indigency. The trial...

Washington v. Richardson (Majority and Concurrence)  
Date: May 9, 2013
Docket Number: 85665-6

Justia Opinion Summary: In 2010, Mike Siegel moved to intervene and to unseal the court file in the criminal case of "Washington v. Richardson,"(King County Superior Court No. 93-1-02331-2). The court file was originally sealed in 2002. The tri...

Tan v. Le (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: May 9, 2013
Docket Number: 86021-1

Justia Opinion Summary: In 2003, members of the Committee Against the VietCong Flag disseminated an e-mail message throughout the Olympia Vietnamese community accusing Duc Tan and the Vietnamese Community of Thurston County (VCTC), a nonprofit...

Washington v. Coristine (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: May 9, 2013
Docket Number: 86145-5

Justia Opinion Summary: The issue before the Supreme Court in this case was whether the trial court violated petitioner Brandon Coristine's constitutional rights by offering an affirmative defense instruction over his objection. Petitioner argu...

Dean v. Fishing Co. of Alaska (Majority)  
Date: May 9, 2013
Docket Number: 87407-7

Justia Opinion Summary: Petitioner Ian Dean worked aboard a fishing vessel owned by The Fishing Company of Alaska (FCA). While aboard the vessel, Dean experienced pain in his hands and neck. After Dean left the vessel, he sought medical treatme...

Resident Action Council v. Seattle Hous. Auth. (Majority and Concurrence)  
Date: May 9, 2013
Docket Number: 87656-8

Justia Opinion Summary: The issue before the Supreme Court in this case concerned the public disclosure of Seattle Housing Authority (SHA) grievance hearing decisions pursuant to the Public Records Act (PRA), chapter 42.56 RCW. SHA hearing deci...

Ameriquest Mortg. Co. v. Office of Att'y Gen. (Majority)  
Date: May 9, 2013
Docket Number: 87661-4

Justia Opinion Summary: During its investigation of Ameriquest Mortgage Company's lending practices, the Washington State Office of the Attorney General (AGO) obtained a number of e-mail messages from Ameriquest that Ameriquest employees had cr...

City of Seattle v. Fuller (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: May 2, 2013
Docket Number: 86148-0

Justia Opinion Summary: Petitioner Donald Fuller was charged in Seattle Municipal Court with one count of obstructing a law enforcement officer under RCW 9A.76.020 and one count of assault under SMC 12A. 16.010. Following a jury trial, petition...

Washington v. Duncalf (Majority)  
Date: May 2, 2013
Docket Number: 86853-1

Justia Opinion Summary: The issue before the Supreme Court in this case involved an exceptional sentence, imposed for a second degree assault conviction, where the jury found that the victim's injuries "substantially exceeded" the harm necessar...

In re Recall of Sun (Majority)  
Date: April 25, 2013
Docket Number: 88005-1

Justia Opinion Summary: Less than one year after Mayor Cy Sun took office, Donald Thomson started a recall petition alleging numerous acts of misfeasance and malfeasance, and violation of the oath of office. The superior court found two charges...

Washington v. Evans (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: April 11, 2013
Docket Number: 86772-1

Justia Opinion Summary: Petitioner Derrick Robert Evans stole a business check from the small business where he worked, made the check to himself for $500, then forged a signature on the check and cashed it. Evans was charged with identity thef...

Cornu-Labat v. Hosp. Dist. No. 2 of Grant County (Majority)  
Date: April 11, 2013
Docket Number: 86842-5

Justia Opinion Summary: While employed as a physician at Quincy Valley Medical Center (QVMC), Gaston Cornu-Labat was the subject of several complaints that raised doubts as to his competency to practice medicine. QVMC conducted two investigatio...

In re Estate of Becker (Majority)  
Date: April 11, 2013
Docket Number: 87544-8

Justia Opinion Summary: When Dr. Virgil Becker, Jr. died, his will left everything to his youngest daughter. His three older daughters contested the will, and the issue before the Supreme Court on appeal was whether his surviving spouse, Dr. Na...

In re Recall of Bolt (Majority)  
Date: March 28, 2013
Docket Number: 88227-4

Justia Opinion Summary: he issue before the Supreme Court in this case concerned a recall petition against Mayor Terecia Bolt and Councilman Dennis Jenson of the town of Marcus. The petition included ten charges against the mayor, and six again...

Washington v. Ortega (Majority and Concurrence)  
Date: March 21, 2013
Docket Number: 85788-1

Justia Opinion Summary: A police officer positioned on a second floor observed Defendant Gregorio Ortega commit acts that gave the officer probable cause to believe Defendant was engaged in drug traffic loitering, a gross misdemeanor. The offic...

Clark County v. W. Wash. Growth Mgmt. Hearings Review Bd. (Majority and Concurrence)  
Date: March 21, 2013
Docket Number: 85989-2

Justia Opinion Summary: In 2007, Respondents John Karpinski, Clark County Natural Resources Council and Futurewise (challengers) filed a petition with the Growth Management Hearings Board alleging Clark County was not in compliance with the Gro...

Condon v. Condon (Majority)  
Date: March 21, 2013
Docket Number: 86130-7

Justia Opinion Summary: In open court, Appellant Vanessa Condon and Respondent Fely Condon entered into a stipulated settlement and dismissal with prejudice of Vanessa's claims against Fely, stemming from an automobile accident. Before payment,...

In re Pers. Restraint of Yates (Majority and Concurrence)  
Date: March 14, 2013
Docket Number: 82101-1

Justia Opinion Summary: Petitioner Robert Yates, Jr. filed a personal restraint petition following the Supreme Court's decision to affirm his death sentence. Petitioner was sentenced in 2000 to 408 years in prison for thirteen counts of aggrava...

In re Estate of Haviland (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: March 14, 2013
Docket Number: 86412-8

Justia Opinion Summary: Dr. James Haviland was a medical doctor who practiced in the Seattle area. Several years after the death of his first wife, the 85-year-old Dr. Haviland met 35-year-old Mary Burden who worked at the hospital where he was...

Washington v. Flaherty (Majority)  
Date: March 14, 2013
Docket Number: 87751-3

Justia Opinion Summary: Petitioner Daniel Flaherty attempted to file a motion to vacate his 2005 conviction for conspiracy to deliver a controlled substance with the Spokane Superior Court. In 2009, Petitioner was considered a "career offender"...

Washington v. Veliz (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: March 7, 2013
Docket Number: 85860-8

Justia Opinion Summary: The issue before the Supreme Court in this case centered on whether a domestic violence protection order that included a child visitation provision qualified as a "court-ordered parenting plan" under Washington's first d...

In re Rights to Waters of Yakima River Drainage Basin (Acquavella) (Majority)  
Date: March 7, 2013
Docket Number: 86211-7

Justia Opinion Summary: The issue before the Supreme Court in this case concerned the adjudication of water rights in the Yakima River Basin. The parties brought various challenges to the conditional final order of the trial court determining t...

Nat'l Sur. Corp. v. Immunex Corp. (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: March 7, 2013
Docket Number: 86535-3

Justia Opinion Summary: In Washington, a liability insurer unclear of its obligation to defend an insured may invoke a "reservation of rights" defense while it seeks a declaration regarding coverage. The issue before the Supreme Court in this c...

Lakey v. Puget Sound Energy (Majority)  
Date: March 7, 2013
Docket Number: 87679-7

Justia Opinion Summary: Appellant Catherine Lakey and twelve other homeowners owned property that bordered a parcel owned by Puget Sound Energy, Inc. (PSE) on which there was an electrical substation. The homeowners sued PSE and the City of Kir...

Schroeder v. Excelsior Mgmt. Grp., LLC (Majority)  
Date: February 28, 2013
Docket Number: 86433-1

Justia Opinion Summary: In 2009, Philip Haberthur nonjudicially foreclosed on Petitioner Steven Schreoder's property. Petitioner attempted to restrain the sale on grounds that his land was agricultural and not subject to nonjudicial foreclosure...

Klem v. Wash. Mut. Bank (Majority and Concurrence)  
Date: February 28, 2013
Docket Number: 87105-1

Justia Opinion Summary: Dorothy Halstein suffered from dementia. She owned a home worth between $235,000 and $320,000. While suffering demential, she owed approximately $75,000 to Washington Mutual Bank (WaMu), secured by a deed of trust on her...

League of Educ. Voters v. Washington (Majority and Dissent)  
Date: February 28, 2013
Docket Number: 87425-5

Justia Opinion Summary: The issue before the Supreme Court in this case was a challenge to two provisions of the voter-enacted RCW 43.135.034 (2011) (Initiative 1053). The first provision required that any bill containing tax increases be passe...

Cedell v. Farmers Ins. Co. of Wash.  
Date: February 21, 2013
Docket Number: 85366-5

Justia Opinion Summary: Petitioner Bruce Cedell lost his home in a fire. After hearing nothing from his insurer for several months, the company threatened to deny coverage and issued an ultimatum to Petitioner to accept one quarter of what the...

Cedell v. Farmers Ins. Co. of Wash. (Dissent)
Date: February 21, 2013
Docket Number: 85366-5
In re Pers. Restraint of Toledo-Sotelo  
Date: February 21, 2013
Docket Number: 85377-1

Justia Opinion Summary: Petitioner Jose Toledo-Sotelo filed an untimely personal restraint petition but argued that his judgment and sentence recited an incorrect offender score and offense seriousness level. Upon review, the Supreme Court conc...

Int'l Union of Operating Eng'rs, Local 286 v. Port of Seattle  
Date: February 21, 2013
Docket Number: 86739-9

Justia Opinion Summary: The issue before the Supreme Court in this case concerned an arbitration award arising out of a collective bargaining agreement. The arbitration award in this case reinstated Port of Seattle (Port) employee Mark Cann wit...

Chaney v. Providence Health Care  
Date: February 21, 2013
Docket Number: 87056-0

Justia Opinion Summary: Respondent Robert Chaney was fired from his position and argued his termination violated the federal Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993 (FMLA). The employer, Providence Health Care d/b/a Sacred Heart Medical Center & C...

Chaney v. Providence Health Care (Dissent)
Date: February 21, 2013
Docket Number: 87056-0
In re Dependency of K.D.S.  
Date: February 14, 2013
Docket Number: 86124-2

Justia Opinion Summary: The issue before the Supreme Court in this case centered on what the State must prove when seeking to terminate parental rights. The Court of Appeals interpreted language from the Court's decision in "In re Dependency of...

In re Dependency of K.D.S. (Dissent)
Date: February 14, 2013
Docket Number: 86124-2
Humphrey Indus., Ltd. v. Clay St. Assocs.  
Date: February 14, 2013
Docket Number: 86643-1

Justia Opinion Summary: This case concerned attorney fees under the dissenters' rights provisions of the Washington Limited Liability Company Act (LLC Act). The issue was first considered two years ago when the Supreme Court reversed the award...

Washington v. Cooper  
Date: February 14, 2013
Docket Number: 86733-0

Justia Opinion Summary: John George Cooper was arrested in Washington State in 2009 for attempting to obtain pain-killers with a fake prescription. In October while his case was pending, Cooper jumped bail. According to Cooper, he was summoned...

Washington v. Chambers  
Date: February 7, 2013
Docket Number: 86474-8

Justia Opinion Summary: Petitioner James John Chambers Jr. was charged with several crimes arising from three incidents that occurred in 1999. Before committing the November crimes, Petitioner plead guilty to charges resulting from the February...

State v. Chambers (Dissent)
Date: February 7, 2013
Docket Number: 86474-8
Gandee v. LDL Freedom Enters., Inc.  
Date: February 7, 2013
Docket Number: 87674-6

Justia Opinion Summary: The issue before the Supreme Court in this case involved the enforceability of a binding arbitration clause included within a debt adjustment contract. The trial court denied the defendant's motion to compel arbitration,...

Robb v. City of Seattle  
Date: January 31, 2013
Docket Number: 85658-3

Justia Opinion Summary: The City of Seattle and Officers Kevin McDaniel and Pohna Lim challenged an appellate court's decision affirming the trial court’s denial of its motion for summary judgment. Respondent Elsa Robb, on behalf of her decease...

State v. Beskurt (Concurrence)
Date: January 31, 2013
Docket Number: 85737-7
Washington v. Beskurt  
Date: January 31, 2013
Docket Number: 85737-7

Justia Opinion Summary: The issue before the Supreme Court in this case was whether the sealing of juror questionnaires amounted to a trial closure, implicating a defendant’s federal and state constitutional rights to a public trial. Questionna...

State v. Beskurt (Concurrence)
Date: January 31, 2013
Docket Number: 85737-7
Afoa v. Port of Seattle  
Date: January 31, 2013
Docket Number: 85784-9

Justia Opinion Summary: Brandon Afoa was paralyzed in an accident while he was working at Sea-Tac Airport and sought to recover from the Port of Seattle on three theories the Supreme Court applied in other multiemployer workplace cases: as a bu...

Afoa v. Port of Seattle (Concurrence/Dissent)
Date: January 31, 2013
Docket Number: 85784-9
Wash. State Major League Baseball Stadium v. Huber, Hunt & Nichols-Kiewit Constr. Co.  
Date: January 31, 2013
Docket Number: 86210-9

Justia Opinion Summary: This action stemmed from a contract for construction of a baseball stadium and home field for the Seattle Mariners baseball team. In its first trip to the Supreme Court, "Washington State Major League Baseball Stadium Pu...

State v. Aldana Graciano (Dissent)
Date: January 31, 2013
Docket Number: 86530-2
Washington v. Aldana Graciano  
Date: January 31, 2013
Docket Number: 86530-2

Justia Opinion Summary: The issue before the Supreme Court in this case concerned the conflicting authority on which the standard of review applies to a sentencing court's determination of "same criminal conduct" under RCW 9.94A.589(1)(a). Defe...

State v. Aldana Graciano (Dissent)
Date: January 31, 2013
Docket Number: 86530-2
Bylsma v. Burger King Corp.  
Date: January 31, 2013
Docket Number: 86912-0

Justia Opinion Summary: The Ninth Circuit Federal Court of Appeals certified a question to the Washington Supreme Court in this case. A Clark County deputy sheriff sought to proceed to trial and recover damages from Burger King Corporation unde...

Bylsma v. Burger King Corp. (Dissent)
Date: January 31, 2013
Docket Number: 86912-0
Washington v. Strine  
Date: January 31, 2013
Docket Number: 87618-5

Justia Opinion Summary: Defendant Jon Strine was charged with and tried for vehicular homicide and vehicular assault after he crashed his vehicle into a motorcycle carrying a married couple. After a two-day deliberation, the jury returned verdi...

State v. Allen (Concurrence)
Date: January 24, 2013
Docket Number: 86119-6
State v. Allen (Dissent)
Date: January 24, 2013
Docket Number: 86119-6
Washington v. Allen  
Date: January 24, 2013
Docket Number: 86119-6

Justia Opinion Summary: Petitioner Bryan Allen challenged his felony harassment conviction, raising three issues: (1) whether the trial court erred by not instructing the jury on the potential fallibility of cross-racial eyewitness identificati...

State v. Allen (Concurrence)
Date: January 24, 2013
Docket Number: 86119-6
Staples v. Allstate Ins. Co.  
Date: January 24, 2013
Docket Number: 86413-6

Justia Opinion Summary: The issue before the Supreme Court in this case centered on an insured's duty to cooperate with an insurer's claim investigation. Petitioner John Staples' claim was denied for failing to cooperate, namely failing to subm...

Staples v. Allstate Ins. Co. (Dissent)
Date: January 24, 2013
Docket Number: 86413-6
Washington v. Velasquez  
Date: January 17, 2013
Docket Number: 85938-8

Justia Opinion Summary: Under chapter 10.05 RCW, a defendant charged with a misdemeanor or gross misdemeanor in a Washington court of limited jurisdiction may petition the court for deferred prosecution if the crime was the result of substance...

Manary v. Anderson  
Date: January 17, 2013
Docket Number: 86776-3

Justia Opinion Summary: In this case, the issue before the Supreme Court was whether Jeffrey Manary or Edwin Anderson were entitled to a decedent's interest in real property that had been deeded to a trust. Manary claimed the interest as a succ...

Manary v. Anderson (Dissent)
Date: January 17, 2013
Docket Number: 86776-3
Saleemi v. Doctor's Assocs., Inc.  
Date: January 17, 2013
Docket Number: 87062-4

Justia Opinion Summary: Doctor's Associates Inc. (DAI) franchises Subway sandwich shops across the country. Waqas Saleemi and Farooq Sharyar operated three Subway franchises in Washington State. Their franchise agreements provided that any disp...

Saleemi v. Doctor's Assocs., Inc. (Concurrence)
Date: January 17, 2013
Docket Number: 87062-4
Dep't of Transp. v. James River Ins. Co.  
Date: January 17, 2013
Docket Number: 87644-4

Justia Opinion Summary: The issue in this case concerned a challenge to a trial court's order denying a motion to compel arbitration of an insurance coverage dispute. James River Insurance Company issued two "surplus line" insurance policies un...

Bennett v. Smith Bundy Berman Britton, PS (Dissent)
Date: January 10, 2013
Docket Number: 84903-0
Bennett v. Smith Bundy Berman Britton, PS  
Date: January 10, 2013
Docket Number: 84903-0

Justia Opinion Summary: The issue before the Supreme Court in this case centered on whether records "sealed for good cause" submitted in support of a motion that was never decided became public information. The issue stemmed from a petition for...

Bennett v. Smith Bundy Berman Britton, PS (Concurrence)
Date: January 10, 2013
Docket Number: 84903-0
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