Opinions Nov. 30, 2012

November 30, 2012
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Indiana Supreme Court
State of Indiana Ex Rel., Indiana Supreme Court Disciplinary Commission v. Derek A. Farmer
Attorney discipline. Rejected petition to enjoin unauthorized practice of law, holding that the Disciplinary Commission failed to prove that Farmer had engaged in the unauthorized practice of law, and failed to convince the court that Farmer could not have reasonably expected to be authorized for temporary admission due to a pending disciplinary proceeding.

Indiana Court of Appeals
In the Matter of the Adoption of Minor Children: C.B.M. and C.R.M.: C.A.B. v. J.D.M. and K.L.M.
Adoption. Reverses trial court’s denial of birth mother’s petition to set aside the adoption decree and remands for further proceedings, finding that the state’s consent to the adoption of C.B.M. and C.R.M. was arbitrary and capricious and in derogation of the birth mother’s procedural due process right to a meaningful appeal of the termination order, which was overturned prior to the grant of the adoption decree.

Peabody Energy Corp., Peabody Coal Co., LLC, and Black Beauty Coal Co. v. Richard F. Roark and Beelman Truck Co., and North American Capacity Ins. Co.
Civil Tort. Affirms its opinion in all regards to reverse a trial court’s grant of summary judgment to North American Capacity Insurance Co. In its petition for a rehearing, NAC argued the opinion did not explain if it had a duty to indemnify or only a duty to defend. The COA rejected the argument on the grounds it was not raised on appeal.  

Steven Hook, Jr. v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class C felony battery with a deadly weapon.

Erich Wilhelmi v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms conviction and sentence for three years in prison with two executed for a conviction of Class D felony failure to return to the scene of an accident resulting in serious bodily injury.

In Re: 2009 Marion County Tax Sale Parcel No. 1019054; Darryl W. Finkton, Sr. v. Auditor of Marion County, Treasurer of Marion County, and Indy-East Asset Development Corp. (NFP)
Miscellaneous/tax sale. Affirms reissuance of tax deed to auditor.

Danny G. Young v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms concurrent sentence of six years for a conviction of Class C felony forgery and two years each for convictions of Class D felony counts of receiving stolen property and fraud.

Jose Carlos Arce v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Post-conviction relief. Affirms in part, reverses in part and remands to the trial court for a hearing on Arce’s claim of ineffective assistance of counsel.

Siraj Khaja Ahmed v. Asma Saman Ahmed (NFP)
Domestic relations/divorce. Affirms trial court denial of Siraj’s motion to correct error and its grant of Asma’s motion to dismiss.  
Alberto R. Melendez Cruz v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms conviction of murder.


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  1. Lori, you must really love wedding cake stories like this one ... happy enuf ending for you?

  2. This new language about a warning has not been discussed at previous meetings. It's not available online. Since it must be made public knowledge before the vote, does anyone know exactly what it says? Further, this proposal was held up for 5 weeks because members Carol and Lucy insisted that all terms used be defined. So now, definitions are unnecessary and have not been inserted? Beyond these requirements, what is the logic behind giving one free pass to discriminators? Is that how laws work - break it once and that's ok? Just don't do it again? Three members of Carmel's council have done just about everything they can think of to prohibit an anti-discrimination ordinance in Carmel, much to Brainard's consternation, I'm told. These three 'want to be so careful' that they have failed to do what at least 13 other communities, including Martinsville, have already done. It's not being careful. It's standing in the way of what 60% of Carmel residents want. It's hurting CArmel in thT businesses have refused to locate because the council has not gotten with the program. And now they want to give discriminatory one free shot to do so. Unacceptable. Once three members leave the council because they lost their races, the Carmel council will have unanimous approval of the ordinance as originally drafted, not with a one free shot to discriminate freebie. That happens in January 2016. Why give a freebie when all we have to do is wait 3 months and get an ordinance with teeth from Day 1? If nothing else, can you please get s copy from Carmel and post it so we can see what else has changed in the proposal?

  3. Here is an interesting 2012 law review article for any who wish to dive deeper into this subject matter: Excerpt: "Judicial interpretation of the ADA has extended public entity liability to licensing agencies in the licensure and certification of attorneys.49 State bar examiners have the authority to conduct fitness investigations for the purpose of determining whether an applicant is a direct threat to the public.50 A “direct threat” is defined as “a significant risk to the health or safety of others that cannot be eliminated by a modification of policies, practices or procedures, or by the provision of auxiliary aids or services as provided by § 35.139.”51 However, bar examiners may not utilize generalizations or stereotypes about the applicant’s disability in concluding that an applicant is a direct threat.52"

  4. We have been on the waiting list since 2009, i was notified almost 4 months ago that we were going to start receiving payments and we still have received nothing. Every time I call I'm told I just have to wait it's in the lawyers hands. Is everyone else still waiting?

  5. I hope you dont mind but to answer my question. What amendment does this case pretain to?