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Evidence supports elevated burglary conviction

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The Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed a man’s conviction of Class A felony burglary resulting in bodily injury because all the statute requires is evidence the victim experienced physical pain, which the victim in this case did when the burglar twisted her hand.

Angus Toney and an accomplice broke into the home of G.R. and demanded money, drugs and her purse. When G.R. tried to dial 911, Toney grabbed her hand, twisted the phone out of it, and threw the phone across the room. G.R. later testified that caused her pain.

Toney argued that he only committed Class B felony burglary, not Class A felony burglary resulting in bodily injury, because there wasn’t sufficient evidence to find his victim suffered any bodily injury. The applicable statute defines bodily injury as “any impairment of physical condition, including physical pain.” Tony claimed that G.R. only had a fleeting moment of pain, so it’s insufficient to establish bodily injury.

“To us, however, the statutory definition of bodily injury is clear and unambiguous. It contains no requirement that the pain be of any particular severity, nor does it require that the pain endure for any particular length of time. It must simply be physical pain,” wrote Judge Paul Mathias in Angus Toney v. State of Indiana, No. 89A01-1108-CR-374.

 

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  1. Frankly, it is tragic that you are even considering going to an expensive, unaccredited "law school." It is extremely difficult to get a job with a degree from a real school. If you are going to make the investment of time, money, and tears into law school, it should not be to a place that won't actually enable you to practice law when you graduate.

  2. As a lawyer who grew up in Fort Wayne (but went to a real law school), it is not that hard to find a mentor in the legal community without your school's assistance. One does not need to pay tens of thousands of dollars to go to an unaccredited legal diploma mill to get a mentor. Having a mentor means precisely nothing if you cannot get a job upon graduation, and considering that the legal job market is utterly terrible, these students from Indiana Tech are going to be adrift after graduation.

  3. 700,000 to 800,000 Americans are arrested for marijuana possession each year in the US. Do we need a new justice center if we decriminalize marijuana by having the City Council enact a $100 fine for marijuana possession and have the money go towards road repair?

  4. I am sorry to hear this.

  5. I tried a case in Judge Barker's court many years ago and I recall it vividly as a highlight of my career. I don't get in federal court very often but found myself back there again last Summer. We had both aged a bit but I must say she was just as I had remembered her. Authoritative, organized and yes, human ...with a good sense of humor. I also appreciated that even though we were dealing with difficult criminal cases, she treated my clients with dignity and understanding. My clients certainly respected her. Thanks for this nice article. Congratulations to Judge Barker for reaching another milestone in a remarkable career.

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