May 21, 2014 South Carolina Court of Appeals published opinions

Centennial Casualty Co., Inc. v Western Surety Company

Centennial sued western for reimbursement pursuant to South Carolina Code 56-15-320(B) arguing that it paid for losses sustained by an auto wholesaler bonded by western and should therefore be reimbursed. The circuit court granted summary judgment to Centennial. The panel reversed. It held that the wholesaler was not the legal representative of the seller of the cars in question as it only provided processing services. Further, auction houses like the wholesaler here obtain no ownership interest in the cars they handle as made clear in South Carolina Code 56-15-520.

State v Jenkins

Jenkins appealed his murder and kidnapping convictions arguing the trial court erred in refusing to give his requested circumstantial evidence charge, in allowing a fingerprint expert to testify and failing to give Jenkins a continuance to obtain his own fingerprint expert. The panel affirmed. It held that refusing to give the requested charge was not reversible error as the charge contained language rejected by the South Carolina supreme Court and, while a new circumstantial evidence jury charge has been approved by the Supreme Court and that new charge was not given here, the trial court accurately stated the law on reasonable doubt and circumstantial evidence thus any error was harmless beyond a reasonable doubt. The panel affirmed as to the other issues holding Jenkins’ attorneys knew about the fingerprint evidence for four years prior to trial and there was no dispute a to the identity of the victim.

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