Articles Posted in In the News

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Between 2008 and 2012, 19,000 New Hampshirites were arrested for marijuana-related offenses. At the national level, the cost of marijuana prohibition is now $20 billion annually. We, at Tenn And Tenn, P.A., know that countless US citizens have seen their career prospects, livelihood and personal lives affected by marijuana-related arrests and charges. All the while, the same offense may be legal in a neighboring state, contributing to an unfavorable “patchwork” legal system, with minimal consistency or unifying logic. New Hampshire has joined the growing number of states who now actively consider the prospect of marijuana legalization. The state has established a dedicated panel to weigh the consequences and draft the provisions of the potential legislative shift.potr768-300x200

Marijuana Legalization and New Hampshire’s Rate of Opioid Use – Related?

It is a loaded question for the Granite State, which has contended with a burgeoning opioid problem for years. US News and World Report characterized New Hampshire as “Ground Zero for Opioids,” citing the state’s “lack of treatment funding, rural context and high prescription rates” as contributing factors.

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The attorney general’s office is investigating the fatal shooting of an unarmed New Hampshire man by a New Hampshire state trooper. The shooting took place on the evening before Christmas eve, at the junction of Route 4 and Switch Road in the town of Canaan. Victim Jesse Champney, 26, was accompanied by his fiancée Saeti Tobin, 23, who was unharmed but shaken by the experience. The pair have both “had run-ins with the police” in the past, according to local news reports.policelinedownload-1-300x168

Enfield Man Shot By State Trooper After Crashing Into Field

State Trooper Christopher O’Toole, accompanied by fellow trooper Samuel Provenza, was following Champney’s vehicle for unknown reasons; Champney allegedly tried to evade the officer for fear he would be arrested on an outstanding warrant. After an attempted turn, Champney’s vehicle crashed but neither him nor his fiancée were injured. While Tobin remained in the vehicle, Champney fled into a nearby field while the trooper continued his pursuit. The trooper proceeded to fire four gun shots in Champney’s direction, all of which struck him and he was killed. Provenza did not discharge his firearm during the incident. Tobin, who has since spoken with reporters about the incident, insists Champney was unarmed and had no drugs in his possession, lamenting that Champney “just wanted to be with his family for the holidays.”

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Arguably, the public perceives drunk driving charges as something that only happens to irresponsible individuals or alcoholics. In reality, the majority of people charged with DWI hardly correspond to a generally conceived ‘archetype’ of ‘the type of person that gets charged with drunk driving.’ This charge can befall anyone: hard working business professionals, loving parents, the elderly and more. The latter in part is why at Tenn And Tenn, P.A., we understand why so many clients find it difficult to reconcile the idea that they’ve become ‘the type’ of person to get a DWI. We also know that for most of our clients, this moniker does not correspond with their personal image. The same may be said for a New Hampshire county attorney, who was recently charged with driving while intoxicated.zero-1-300x143

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At Tenn And Tenn, P.A., we know that motorcyclists deal with legal issues that are far different from a car driver. At face value, the case of Ryan Austin Collins seemed simple. When a speeding, orange and black motorcycle evaded pursuit, Virginia police officer David Rhodes managed to log the plate number of the bike. Later, an informant led Officer Rhodes to a residential house, where he found the motorcycle in question beneath a tarp.Search-warrant-300x200-300x200-300x200

Blurring the Lines of Legality, Privacy and Citizen’s Rights

The incident that followed has merited the attention of the United States Supreme Court, to determine whether what transpired infringes on Collins’ Fourth Amendment rights.

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Recently a popular smartphone app has been making headlines all across the world. The app is called Pokémon Go, a smartphone game that bases itself off of Nintendo’s long running franchise Pokémon. The franchise itself involves both a television show and video game series where a “Pokémon Trainer” travels the world collecting cartoonish and cutesy monsters known as “Pokémon.” The smartphone app is game intended to simulate this experience through “augmented reality,” meaning that the creatures will appear on phone screen using the camera, though not in real life. The app has gained immense popularity and its worldwide release has been incredibly well-received. The game is played using the player’s GPS unit in their phone, which will then populate their surroundings with Pokémon. Players will follow their map towards the Pokémon and then engage in a brief timing based mini-game to catch the Pokémon. This, of course, demands a lot of time for players to be looking down at their screens, and not paying attention to the world around them.pokemon-go-logo-300x169 Continue reading →

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Last week, the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that General Motors (GM) cannot bar plaintiffs from suing the company because of GM’s bankruptcy filing. In 2014, GM was forced to recall 2.6 million vehicles over faulty ignition switches that caused over one-hundred deaths, close to three-hundred injuries, and thousands of claims of car devaluation resulting from the ignition switch defect. GM filed for bankruptcy in 2009 and transitioned from “Old GM” to “New GM” which was protected from, the debts and liabilities of the old company. The 2nd U.S. Court of Appeals ruled that barring plaintiffs from suing GM for defects that originated under “Old GM” would violate the plaintiff’s constitutional rights to due process.GM Continue reading →

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Imagine turning on your television and watching your significant other die before your eyes. This may seem like the plot of a TV show but it actually happened to Anita Chanko in 2012. Chanko was up late one night because she couldn’t sleep. She turned on her TV and put on the ABC program, “NY Med.” The show, which aired episodes in 2012 and 2014, stars Doctor Mehmet Oz. It follows the real life medical cases that occurred at New-York Presbyterian Hospital. While watching the program, a segment came on about a man who was hit by a vehicle. As the segment progressed she realized that she knew the man. It was her husband, Mark Chanko. He had passed away the previous year “after being struck by a sanitation truck while crossing a street near his home.” Anita watched as doctors tried and failed to save her husband’s life. She stated, “I saw my husband die before my eyes.”https://www.nhlegalblog.com/files/2016/07/film08122010_11crit.4-7679239-300x199.jpg

According to the New York Times, “no one in the Chanko family had given ‘NY Med’ permission to film Mr. Chanko’s treatment at the hospital or to broadcast the moments leading up to his death.” Under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, also known as HIPAA, patient information is only supposed to be shared with the patient and those the patients authorizes.

Mark Chanko’s son, Kenneth Chanko, filed several complaints after the airing of the show. He filed complaints with the “hospital, the New York State Department of Health, ABC, a hospital accrediting group and the United States Department of Health and Human Services’ civil rights office.” ABC was quick to remove the segment from the show and any future airings. In addition, the Chanko’s filed a lawsuit against ABC, as well as the hospital and the doctor who treated Chanko.

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Annually celebrated on November 11th in America, this U.S. Federal Holiday was started to honor men and women that have served loyally in the armed forces of the country. While originally celebrated as Armistice Day, the Holiday transformed into Veterans Day in 1954 to recognize the contribution of the armed forces.  Veterans Day

Celebrating Veterans Day in New Hampshire

Veterans Day parades are held throughout the country to commemorate the United States Armed Forces. In New Hampshire, the State Veterans Cemetery and the Department of New Hampshire Veterans of Foreign Wars are hosting a Veterans Day Ceremony from 11 am on November 11th (Wednesday) at the NH State Veterans Cemetery. The ceremony is expected to last for approximately an hour. The Manchester Veterans Day Parade starts at Elm Street in Manchester and ends at Veterans Park on Elm Street. Interested war veterans can get in touch with Parade Chairman, Ron Boisvert for participation.

On November 11th, the Manchester VA Medical Center will observe Veterans Day with a moment of silence at 11 am. The center will also host a Manchester VA Medical Center Veterans Day Program in the Granite State Room at 2 pm. The invitation is open to everyone and the program will be followed by a social. The program includes a color guard, a Pledge of Allegiance from the Community Living Center Residents, an acoustical prelude and a special wreath presentation to the Community Living Center veterans. The festive celebration will include visits from Ms. New Hampshire and Elvis Presley. If any person wants to get in touch with the team for their Veterans Day Celebrations, they can send an email to Kristin.Pressly@va.gov. Continue reading →

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Mary Elizabeth Tenn, a Manchester trial lawyer, takes office as president of the New Hampshire Bar Association on June 19, 2015 at the Bar Association’s Annual Meeting. As president of the Association, which represents all lawyers licensed to practice law in the state, Tenn said she intends to focus the culture of professionalism and civility that characterizes the practice of law in the state.

Mary Tenn takes office as President of the NH Bar Assoc.

Mary Tenn takes office as President of the NH Bar Assoc.

Tenn, a New Hampshire native, practices with the law firm of Tenn And Tenn, PA along with her three siblings James J. Tenn, Jr., John J. Tenn and Annmarie A. Tenn. Notably, Tenn is the second person in her family and in her firm to serve as president of the NH Bar Association, and follows her brother James J. Tenn, Jr. a past president of the New Hampshire Bar Association in 2009-2010. This year, Tenn And Tenn, PA, marks its 20th year of existence.

Tenn received her J.D. degree, cum laude, from Harvard Law School, where she served as an editor of the Harvard Civil Rights Civil Liberties Law Review. She received a B.A., summa cum laude, from Boston College, where she was elected to Phi Beta Kappa and awarded membership in the National Jesuit Honor Society—The Order of the Cross and Crown.

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A recent local news story concerning New Hampshire Motor Speedway general manager Jerry Gappens centers around NH’s public indecency and lewdness statute, RSA 645:1. As reported, Mr. Gappens was arrested last week and charged with lewdness after police allegedly spotted him engaged in sexual activity with a woman in the back seat of his Toyota Sequoya SUV. Detectives from the Manchester Police Street Crime Unit were monitoring illicit activities at around 5:45 p.m. near Lincoln and Manchester streets when they spotted a woman enter the passenger side of an SUV, which then drove toward Hanover Street, the police said. Manchester police officers followed the SUV into a parking lot where they say they “observed an act of lewdness take place in the vehicle.”Mr. Gappens, 53, along with Kendra Johnson, 19 was charged with a misdemeanor level offense. lewdness

Public Indecency and Lewdness in NH is defined as:

NH RSA 645:1 Indecent Exposure and Lewdness.  
    I. A person is guilty of a misdemeanor if such person fornicates, exposes his or her genitals, or performs any other act of gross lewdness under circumstances which he or she should know will likely cause affront or alarm. 
    II. A person is guilty of a class B felony if: 
       (a) Such person purposely performs any act of sexual penetration or sexual contact on himself or herself or another in the presence of a child who is less than 16 years of age. 
       (b) Such person purposely transmits to a child who is less than 16 years of age, or an individual whom the actor reasonably believes is a child who is less than 16 years of age, an image of himself or herself fornicating, exposing his or her genitals, or performing any other act of gross lewdness. 
       (c) Having previously been convicted of an offense under paragraph I, or of an offense that includes the same conduct under any other jurisdiction, the person subsequently commits an offense under paragraph I. 
    III. A person shall be guilty of a class A felony if having previously been convicted of 2 or more offenses under paragraph II, or a reasonably equivalent statute in another state, the person subsequently commits an offense under this section. Continue reading →