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Topeka Kansas 66612-1507

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Kansas Supreme Court Selected Opinion Summaries - April 20, 2001

Summaries and press releases are prepared by Ron Keefover, Office of Judicial Administration, Kansas Judicial Center, 301 West 10th, Topeka, KS 66612-1507 (785-296-2256), e-mail: keefoverr@kscourts.org.

The Supreme Court today filed 34 opinions. The full text of these decisions may be found at www.kscourts.org. Today's filings include:

Appeal No. 83,647: State v. Jeffrey L. Scott

The court, in a unanimous decision authored by Justice Bob Abbott, affirms the defendant's Sedgwick County first-degree murder conviction, which arose from the death of his former girlfriend, Sheryl Chappell. The court rejects his claims of insufficient evidence, faulty jury instructions, responding to a question by the jury without his presence, improper closing arguments by the state, and an incorrect jury instruction on self-defense. The court also rejects defendant's three pro se claims of error.

Appeal No. 84,522: State v. Reynaldo Alvidrez

The court, in a unanimous decision authored by Justice Edward Larson, affirms the defendant's Ford County convictions of first-degree murder, aggravated burglary of a dwelling, and criminal damage to property. The convictions arose from the February 1999 death of Ralph Rodriquez, which resulted from an argument over a woman with whom Alvidrez previously had a relationship. The court rejected his challenges of the trial court's denial of his motion to suppress, of admission of evidence that he "always carried a gun," and the sufficiency of the evidence to establish premeditation.

Appeal No. 84,810: State v. Russell J. Jones

The court, in a unanimous decision authored by Justice Donald L. Allegrucci, affirms the defendant's Sedgwick County conviction of attempted indecent liberties with a child, which arose from an Internet contact he made with a police officer who was posting as a 13-year-old girl.

Appeal No. 84,007: State v. Adrian Angel Lopez

The court, in a unanimous decision authored by Justice Donald L. Allegrucci, affirms the defendant's Shawnee County conviction of first-degree murder and ensuing hard 40 prison sentence, rejecting each of his 10 contentions of trial error (four preliminary matters, three dealing with instructions, two with sentencing, and one with the admission of evidence.)

Appeal No. 82,686: State v. Terry L. Hooker Jr.

The court, in a unanimous decision authored by Justice Fred N. Six, affirms the defendant's Wyandotte County convictions of felony murder, aggravated burglary, and criminal possession of a firearm, affirming the district court's rulings in failing to instruct the jury regarding unanimous verdicts, denying a defense motion for arrest of judgment and in excluding evidence that two other people had threatened to harm the victim. Hooker's claim of prosecutorial misconduct in closing arguments also is reviewed.

Appeal No. 83,361: State v. James Crume Jr.

The court, in a unanimous decision authored by Justice Tyler C. Lockett, affirms the defendant's Wyandotte County first-degree murder conviction, denying his claims of denial of due process by a pre-indictment delay of 17 years, failing to instruct the jury as to the testimony of an accomplice, finding that his statements were knowingly and voluntarily made and in not granting a mistrial for the prosecutor's violation of a pretrial order.

Docket No. 86,255: In Re: George F. Farrell Jr.

The court disbars a long-time Topeka attorney based upon multilple counts involving dishonesty, fraud, deceit, or misrepresentation arising from cashing checks made out to others.

Docket No. 86,308: In Re: Gary L. Conwell

The court imposes censure against a Topeka attorney based upon his entering into a diversionary program for possession of small quantities of cocaine, marijuana, and drug paraphernalia, which were found during a search of his residence in April 1999.

Docket No. 86,221: In Re: Henry O. Boaten

The court imposes censure and orders additional continuing legal education hours for a Topeka attorney based upon his handling of a child custody-support matter.

Docket No. 86,220: In Re: Terri Stroh Tweedly

The court orders indefinite suspension of an Overland Park attorney's law license based upon 11 complaints alleging violations of the Model Rules of Professional Conduct.

Being held over decision later are:

Appeal No. 84,338: Connelly v. State of Kansas et al.
Appeal No. 82,430: State v. Zabrinas
Appeal No. 83,872: State v. Thompkins
Appeal No. 83,691: State v. Smith
Appeal No. 84,054: State v. Saenz
Appeal No. 84,573: State v. Meneley
Appeal No. 82,641: State v. Gould
Appeal No. 79,948: State v. Garcia
Appeal No. 80,920: State v. Kleypas
Appeal No. 82,678: State v. Robbins
Appeal No. 83,168: Bigs v. City of Wichita
Appeal No. 83,302: Moore v. Bird Engineering
Appeal No. 84,076: Smith v. Amoco
Appeal No. 83,692: GT v. Riley Co.
Appeal No. 85,352: Ward v. Ward