Massachusetts Appeals Court

By - 7/16/12 - 11:08 am

The Massachusetts Appeals Court ruled today that heroin found in a car after the driver was pulled over for a traffic infraction can't be used as evidence against him or his passenger, because the only reason state troopers ordered the two men out was the aroma of burned pot, which by itself is no longer an indication of criminal activity in Massachusetts.

The two men... Read more

By - 6/8/12 - 10:53 am

The Massachusetts Appeals Court told a convicted burglar today he's guilty of "entering a residence during the daytime with the intent to commit a felony and with the resulting infliction of fear upon a lawful occupant" even if he didn't want to scare the homeowner who heard him trying to get into her house.

Obdulio Santana argued the court should dismiss his conviction because prosecutors... Read more

By - 6/6/12 - 11:12 am

The Massachusetts Appeals Court ruled today a Boston police officer did nothing wrong when he searched under the mattress on which a teen was sitting as he awaited arrest and found a gun.

Police officers had arrived at Paris Quiltner's home on Moody Street in Dorchester in May, 2010 to arrest him on a warrant for trespassing, but added a charge of illegal weapons... Read more

By - 5/2/12 - 2:23 pm

The Massachusetts Court of Appeals today upheld a jury's conviction of a bookkeeper at Bridgewater State College for embezzling more than $355,000 in a year.

Clare Werner argued the conviction should be appealed because her lawyer discovered two of the jurors had posted complaints about being selected for the jury on Facebook and because the trial judge dismissed her complaint about that online activity even... Read more

By - 4/18/12 - 11:52 am

A man who snuck back into the US after being deported for a cocaine-trafficking plea will get a new trial because his original lawyer blew it by telling him he probably wouldn't be deported if he pleaded guilty.

Wagner Martinez is current in federal custody, awaiting another deportation to his native Dominican Republic. In a ruling today, the Massachusetts Appeals Court said Martinez's lawyer made... Read more

By - 3/30/12 - 11:38 am

When a Boston Police detective found Michael Holloway trespassing at a BHA project in Roxbury in 2010, he testified, Holloway couldn't identify the brand of one of the two mountain bikes he had with him. Holloway was arrested for trespassing and, when the bikes turned out be have been reported stolen, receiving stolen property.

The Massachusetts Appeals Court, however, ruled today that the bikes cannot... Read more

By - 3/19/12 - 11:07 am

Ed. note: Post updated to clarify that the ruling was only on the poles between 2005 and 2009.

The Massachusetts Appeals Court ruled today that Verizon does not owe Boston $5.3 million in back taxes on its poles and wires over a four-year period.

The court said 150 years of telephone-related legislation in Massachusetts has consistently excluded overhead wiring along public ways from the personal-property... Read more

By - 3/6/12 - 12:11 pm

The Massachusetts Appeals Court ruled today a Nigerian immigrant will have to pay child support for two children conceived with donor sperm and eggs even though his then separated wife had signed an agreement not to go after him for support payments.

The court said state law, which focuses on "intent to create a child," trumps Chukwudera B. Okoli's contention he never gave "consent to... Read more

By - 2/16/12 - 11:50 am

The Massachusetts Appeals Court ruled today a loaded gun found in the glove compartment of a car pulled over for a traffic stop in Dorchester in 2009 can be used as evidence against the two people in the car.

A Boston Municipal Court judge had ruled the gun inadmissible evidence against Clint Daniel and Alyson Tayetto because a Boston police officer ordered them out of... Read more

By - 2/7/12 - 12:26 pm

The Massachusetts Appeals Court today reversed a Falmouth man's conviction for breaking and entering, saying the fact that a taped up ID card in his name was found at the scene was not enough to find him guilty.

The court said prosecutors failed to provide any other real evidence beyond the presence of the card that Ronald Renaud was responsible for the theft of four... Read more

By - 1/17/12 - 6:17 pm

The Massachusetts Appeals Court today overturned a lower-court judge who had ordered a woman with severe mental problems to be sterilized as part of an abortion the judge had agreed with her family to make her have over her objections.

The family of the woman, identified only as Mary Moe, had sought an abortion when they learned she was pregnant in October because otherwise she... Read more

By - 1/6/12 - 11:47 am

The Massachusetts Appeals Court ruled today a gun owner was not liable for the death of a man who stole one of his guns then died when the gun went off as he was putting it back at his sister's insistence.

After Charles Milot died in 2002, his ex-wife, acing as executor of his estate, sued both the gun owner - a family friend who... Read more

By - 11/15/11 - 6:18 pm

The Massachusetts Appeals Court today reinstated a man's conviction of cruelty to animals for squashing a mother duck leading her ducklings across a mall parking lot in Dartmouth in June, 2009.

A jury found Joshua Linares guilty, but the judge then entered a finding of not guilty, arguing that even if Linares had accelerated right into the duck, the duck had stepped under the car,... Read more

By - 11/9/11 - 12:56 pm

A divided Massachusetts Appeals Court ruled today a man who bought a Norwell house in part because the broker told him it was zoned for use as the hair salon he wanted to open should get a trial to try to persuade a jury he deserves damages because it turns out the house wasn't zoned for that use.

Daniel DeWolfe bought a two-family house on... Read more

By - 11/3/11 - 11:01 am

The Massachusetts Court of Appeals today rejected former state Rep. Marie Parente's bid to have her pension increased based on the estimated value of her state-provided parking space on Beacon Hill and her per-diem payments for traveling to and from her home in Milford.

Parente claimed the $1,560 annual value of her parking space and the $7,200 a year she got for travel expenses were... Read more

By - 10/3/11 - 10:52 am

The Massachusetts Appeals Court ruled today Chelsea Police acted properly when they went into an apartment and seized a loaded gun after getting a call its owner had shown off his gun and announced he'd been hired to kill somebody with it.

A Chelsea District Court judge had tossed the gun as evidence against Vladimir Samuel, ruling that while police had permission from an occupant... Read more

By - 9/29/11 - 11:57 am

The Massachusetts Court of Appeals today upheld a judge's sentence against a man convicted of repeatedly punching and kicking a pregnant supermarket worker who tried to stop him from shoplifting - a longer sentence that was imposed after he refused to accept probation as a condition of his original, shorter term behind bars.

Gene A. Jackson was convicted for a 2009 incident at the Porter... Read more

By - 9/26/11 - 11:32 am

The Massachusetts Appeals Court today began a ruling on an insurance issue involved in a 2005 collision off Quincy between a Boston Harbor Cruises ferry and two disabled boats like this:

Sometimes ships do not pass in the night.

By - 9/26/11 - 11:15 am

The Massachusetts Appeals Court ruled today that Housing Court is the wrong place to consider a complaint by two Roxbury tenants that their landlord reacted to a rent dispute by badmouthing them to congregants at the church where they work as custodians - and by trying to get them fired by strewing trash on the church floors to make it seem like they weren't doing... Read more

By - 9/19/11 - 8:57 pm

The Massachusetts Appeals Court today ordered a new hearing for a college student seeking an extension of a restraining order against a classmate after a lower-court judge said it's a matter for college officials, not the judicial system.

The unidentified woman wanted to continue to have her equally unnamed classmate to stay away from her and her classes on campus after their romance soured and,... Read more