SHANN M. MARTIN APPELLANT
JAMES MITCHELL MARTIN JR. APPELLEE
OF JUDGMENT: 02/02/2018
COUNTY CHANCERY COURT, HON. JANE R. WEATHERSBY JUDGE.
ATTORNEY FOR APPELLANT: DAVID M. SESSUMS.
ATTORNEY FOR APPELLEE: BRANAN PATRICK SOUTHERLAND.
CARLTON, P.J., GREENLEE AND McCARTY, JJ.
The Chancery Court of Warren County granted Shann Martin and
James "Mitch" Martin a divorce on the ground of
irreconcilable differences. The divorce decree awarded Mitch
physical custody of the couple's son and three parcels of
real property. Shann appeals, challenging the chancery
court's custody determination and distribution of the
AND PROCEDURAL HISTORY
Shann and Mitch were married twice, most recently in 2013.
Their union produced one child, a son. The couple again
separated in 2017. During their marriage, Mitch's parents
gifted the couple three different parcels of property
totaling thirty-five acres. Both Shann's and Mitch's
names were on the deeds. One parcel was where the couple
intended to build their family home. The land was cleared,
but the home was never built. Another parcel was exchanged
for Shann's mobile home. Upon the death of Mitch's
father, his mother did not want to live in the house she
shared with her husband, and the parties traded Shann's
mobile home for her house. That parcel contained Mitch's
childhood home, which Shann and Mitch used as their marital
home. The couple used their joint tax returns to make repairs
and improvements on the property.
When distributing the marital assets, the chancery court
awarded Mitch the thirty-five acres, including the marital
home. The chancery court awarded Shann $20, 000 in
compensation for improvements on the marital home. In
exchange, Shann was to deed her undivided one-half interest
in the thirty-five acres to Mitch. The chancery court found
that each party had enough money to meet his or her needs and
that the property division eliminated the necessity of
During the custody proceedings the chancery court conducted a
best-interest analysis under Albright v. Albright,
437 So.2d 1003 (Miss. 1983). The factors were found to
equally favor both parents except for two: the morality of
the parents and preference of the child, both of which
favored Mitch. The chancery court awarded physical custody of
the couple's son to Mitch and ordered that Shann pay $382
a month in child support.
Shann's appeal requests a different division of the
property and a change in the custody determination.
I.The division of the assets was ...