Judicial Branch, State of New Hampshire

New Hampshire Supreme Court
Cases Accepted December 2001


99-604 State of NH v. Clark,* Jacob, Aaron Murray
Attorney General Pro se

Unregistered vehicle - admission of hearsay
00-748 In re Megan T.; In re Craig T.
Brian P. McEvoy, for the mother*
Attorney General
Termination of parental rights - sufficiency of evidence; use of wrong legal standard; admission of hearsay (social study)
01-438 State Farm Mutual Insurance Co. v. Pitman,* Kenneth
Gordon A. Rehnborg, Jr.
Mary Ann Dempsey
Blake E. Sutton
Uninsured motorist coverage – whether question of whether automobile accident is a covered "accident" under policy must be viewed from point of view of the tortfeasor or the point of view of the injured insured
01-446 In the Matter of Lurvey, Jean and James D. Lurvey*
Jennifer A. Lemire
Karen L. Heller
Elizabeth Cazden
Post-divorce modification – alimony; whether alimony can be increased absent any unforeseen substantial change in financial circumstances and absent any findings as to the parties' needs and ability to pay; whether petitioner carried burden of proving substantial and unexpected change in financial circumstances; whether court erred in ordering permanent alimony in light of likely pension benefits recipient will receive
01-557 State of NH v. McLellan,* Ronald
Attorney General Appellate Defender
Timothy M. Landry
Aggravated felonious sexual assault – double jeopardy; collateral estoppel; whether court should have limited evidentiary hearing on sentencing to a review of evidence offered at a prior trial regarding prior convictions
01-579 State of NH v. Retzke,* Ruth
Attorney General Mark Sisti
Second degree assault – double jeopardy; whether court erred by denying motion for mistrial with prejudice; failure to remedy prosecution generated error by barring testimony of State's expert; whether retrial would violate double jeopardy
01-594 Sintros, Michael M., Thomas M. Sintros* v. Hamon, Thomas, Horace Mann Insurance Companies
Roger B. Phillips Mark L. Mallory
Negligence – whether insurance agent has duty to recommend adequate liability and uninsured motorist coverage; must plaintiff prove a special relationship with insurance agent in order to impose duty; whether on facts of this case plaintiffs could prove special relationship
01-604 Littleton Stamp and Coin Company, Inc.,* Appeal of
Jeffrey H. Karlin
Donna M. Daneke
Sylvia Wright
Attorney General
Workers' compensation – successive carrier dispute; whether board incorrectly applied standard set forth in Appeal of Commercial Ins. Co., 145 N.H. 356 (2000)
01-605 State of NH v. Melvin,* David F.
Attorney General Appellate Defender
Landya B. McCafferty
Aggravated felonious sexual assault, felony indecent exposure – whether court erred by applying mandatory life sentence provision in RSA 632-A:10-a, III
01-607 State of NH* v. Rollins-Ercolino, Tracie
Attorney General James H. Moir
Vehicular assault – whether court erred by dismissing complaint on grounds that RSA 265:79-a violates the mens rea requirement of RSA 626:2, I, and because the statute shifts the burden of proof by providing that evidence of a motor vehicle violation is prima facie evidence of an element of the offense
01-612 MDR Corporation

Henry Torromeo

Town of Fremont*

Town of Fremont*
Sumner Kalman John J. Ryan
Inverse condemnation – whether plaintiffs were required to prove that 1999 growth ordinance was unconstitutional to recover damages for temporary loss of economic use of property; whether plaintiffs were entitled to damages solely on basis of holding that ordinance was invalid by reason of a procedural defect
01-616 State of NH v. Tassinari, Michael*
Attorney General R. Peter Decato
Violation of protective order – whether defendant effectively waived his right to de novo appeal and jury trial when waiver was made before district court jury trial project was terminated; whether defendant was entitled to de novo appeal to superior court; sufficiency of evidence
01-617 State of NH v. Gardner,* Linda
Attorney General Christopher J. Seufert
Driving while intoxicated, conduct after an accident – admission of unavailable declarant's inculpatory statement; hearsay; confrontation clause; failure to suppress defendant's statement to police absent Miranda warnings; permitting officer to give opinion as to truthfulness of unavailable declarant's statements
01-619 Appeal of Donald Collyns*
Stephen C. Brown for Mr. Collyns
Eric Falkenham for Defern Contracting
Attorney General
Workers' compensation – whether board erred by terminating weekly benefits because petition for reinstatement was filed more than four years after last payment of benefits; whether board applied wrong standard in classifying cause of claimant's present total disability; whether board erred in finding that claimant's 1997 re-injury of his back was only a temporary aggravation of his underlying back condition
01-621 In re Matthew H.*
Laura J. Brevitz for Matthew H.
Appellate Defender
Attorney General
Lou Goslinski
Juvenile delinquency – violation of speedy trial and due process rights; whether court erred by sua sponte continuing dispositional hearing without juvenile's express consent
01-625 M.S.E.A. Realty Corp.* v. Astro Waste Services, Inc., Waste Management, Inc. and Republic Services, Inc.
John G. Cronin
John F. Bisson
James M. Cassidy
Breach of real estate lease – default; whether court erred by refusing to schedule trial on remaining claim of defendant's liability for default judgment entered against its wholly owned subsidiary; denial of jury trial
01-629 Reed,* Louise v. City of Manchester and County of Hillsborough
Mark H. Campbell John A. Curran
Negligence – whether plaintiff was required to present expert medical testimony
01-635 Town of Hooksett* v. Baines, Sidney
Barton L. Mayer pro se
David W. Hess
for intervenor Hooksett Sewer Commission
Municipal government – sewer commission; whether court erred in ruling that term limit provision of town charter is invalid; whether sewer commission is subject to municipal charter or votes of the legislative body of the town; whether sewer commission can only be abolished by a vote of citizens of town
01-638 State of NH v. Decato,* Nicholas
Attorney General George H. Ostler
Aggravated felonious sexual assault – exclusion of evidence of sex discussion that occurred immediately prior to assault; sufficiency of evidence
01-639 Ford Motor Company* v. Meredith Motors d/b/a Meredith Ford
James E. Higgins
Robert R. Lucic
Nicholas T. Christakos
Gregory A. Holmes
Stephanie A. Bray
Motor vehicle industry board appeal – numerous issues including whether RSA chapter 357-C applies retrospectively; whether Ford dealer's protest was barred by the limitations period for market area realignments; application of same standards to market area realignments and dealer relocations
01-641 Ward,* Jay M., and Celeste Ward v. Berky, Timothy J., d/b/a T.J. Berky Builders and Park Avenue Builders, Inc.
Robert M. Derosier
Philip L. Pettis
Charles A. Griffin
Keri Marshall
Construction contract – arbitration; failure to correct arbitrator's use of erroneous method of calculating damages and misuse of doctrine of quantum meruit
01-643 State of NH v. Andreson,* Keith
Attorney General Appellate Defender
James F. Laura
Criminal restraint, obstructing report of a crime, simple assault, criminal mischief, criminal threatening – imposition of extended sentence; failure of State to produce victim at trial; admission of victim's statement; admission of photographs without proper foundation or chain of custody; sufficiency of evidence
01-647 Elverson, Richard and Bridget Elverson v. J J Ludwig, Inc. and The Ludwig Company, Inc.*
Marc A. Pinard Andrew A. Prolman
Breach of contract – home construction; where buyer authorizes seller to assign contract, and seller assigns contract to builder, can seller be jointly liable for builder's faulty work; whether damages for faulty workmanship include profit to plaintiff's estimator and overhead costs when writ failed to plead these additional damages; whether court must apportion damages between defendants
01-665 State of NH v. Pelletier,* Steven
Attorney General Appellate Defender
Paul J. Garrity
Richard Monteith
Aggravated felonious sexual assault, felonious sexual assault – admission of testimony from defendant's wife regarding defendant's sexual habits; marital privilege; allowing physician to testify to opinion of a regenerating hymen without conducting a hearing as to the reliability of this opinion; admission of opinions of population studies and mixing of DNA samples without conducting a hearing as to reliability of opinion; admission of opinions not disclosed to defense counsel or contained in expert reports; denial of mistrial after prosecutor made attacks on defense counsel and rendered personal opinions as to reliability of certain pieces of evidence
01-681 Premo, Rita v. Martineau,* Angela
pro se Wendy E. Roberts
Disorderly conduct – private prosecution; whether class A misdemeanor complaint may be prosecuted by private citizen without authorization from a prosecuting authority; interlocutory transfer
01-718 Guglielmo, Michael, Sr., Lisa Ballas, Joseph Conroy, Christine Morris and Thomas Coronna on behalf of themselves and all others similarly situated v. WorldCom a/k/a MCI WorldCom Communications, Inc.*, ILD Telecommunications, Inc. a/k/a Intellicall Operator Services, Inc., and ILD Teleservices, Inc.
Kenneth G. Bouchard
Thomas G. Ferrini
James P. Bassett and Adam H. Charnes for WorldCom, Inc.
Garry R. Lane and Gregory F. Harley for ILD Teleservices, Inc. and ILD Telecommunications, Inc.
Unlawful restraint of trade, Consumer Protection Act – overbilling on interstate collect telephone calls from State Prison; whether "Filed Tariff Doctrine" preempts state-law complaint
01-729 In re Baby Girl P.
Joshua L. Gordon for adoptive parents*
Colton Letcher, pro se
Kerry B. Moore
for biological mother
Adoption – whether NH or Arizona law applies; whether court erred by waiving requirement that biological father claim paternity before mother consents to adoption; failure to recognize father's failure to file his existence with Arizona Putative Fathers Registry; failure to order home-study of biological father's residence before placing child there