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Opinions April 10, 2013

April 10, 2013
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7th Circuit Court of Appeals
Kevin B. McCarthy, et al., and Langsenkamp Family Apostolate, et al. v. Patricia Ann Fuller, et al.
12-2157, 12-2257, 12-2262
U.S. District Court, Southern District of Indiana, Indianapolis Division, Judge William T. Lawrence.
Civil. The District Court’s denial of McCarthy’s motion that the court take judicial notice of the Holy See’s rulings on Fuller’s status in the Roman Catholic Church is reversed, with a reminder to the district court that federal courts are not empowered to decide (or to allow juries to decide) religious questions. The other two appeals are dismissed.

Indiana Court of Appeals
Valentin Escobedo v. State of Indiana
71A03-1202-CR-60
Criminal. Affirms convictions and sentence for Class A felony battery and Class D felony neglect of a dependent. The trial court did not abuse its discretion by allowing Dr. Stephens to testify while limiting his testimony or in allowing the state to present rebuttal evidence.

Harold Haggerty v. Hoosier Energy Rural Electric Cooperative, Inc.; Merom Generating Station
77A01-1206-CT-293
Civil tort. Affirms grant of summary judgment to Hoosier Energy Rural Electric Cooperative Inc. on Haggerty’s negligence claim. Hoosier Energy successfully negated the element of duty in Haggerty’s negligence claim.

In the Matter of A.W. & C.S., Children in Need of Services; and L.D., Mother v. The Indiana Dept. of Child Services (NFP)
49A02-1208-JC-692
Juvenile. Affirms determination that the two minor children are children in need of services.

Jake E. Estes v. State of Indiana (NFP)

39A01-1205-CR-214
Criminal.  Affirms conviction and sentence for dealing in marijuana as a Class D felony. Reverses and remands with instructions that the court vacate Estes’ conviction of possession of marijuana as a Class D felony based on double jeopardy principles. Judge Bailey dissents.

Timothy Miller v. State of Indiana (NFP)
06A04-1211-PC-591
Post conviction. Affirms denial of petition for post-conviction relief.

Jeff Rolston and Jana Rolston v. Brad's Realty and Property Management, LLC, and Dan L. Bradbury (NFP)
20A04-1209-CC-489
Civil collection. Affirms denial of the Rolstons’ motion to correct error on the judgment denying their claim for fraud, and the denial of Brad’s Realty’s motion to have the Rolstons pay attorney fees.

Demetrius Damon Taylor v. State of Indiana (NFP)
32A01-1205-CR-230
Criminal. Affirms convictions of Class A felony rape, Class B felony criminal confinement enhanced because of the use of a firearm, Class D felony criminal recklessness, Class B felony robbery, Class A felony burglary, two counts of Class D felony theft and determination Taylor is a habitual offender.

Kevin Hester v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A02-1205-CR-381
Criminal. Affirms sentence for murder.

The Indiana Supreme Court and Tax Court posted no opinions by IL deadline.
 

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  1. Access to the court (judiciary branch of government) is the REAL problem, NOT necessarily lack of access to an attorney. Unfortunately, I've lived in a legal and financial hell for the past six years due to a divorce (where I was, supposedly, represented by an attorney) in which I was defrauded of settlement and the other party (and helpers) enriched through the fraud. When I attempted to introduce evidence and testify (pro se) in a foreclosure/eviction, I was silenced (apparently on procedural grounds, as research I've done since indicates). I was thrown out of a residence which was to be sold, by a judge who refused to allow me to speak in (the supposedly "informal") small claims court where the eviction proceeding (by ex-brother-in-law) was held. Six years and I can't even get back on solid or stable ground ... having bank account seized twice, unlawfully ... and now, for the past year, being dragged into court - again, contrary to law and appellate decisions - by former attorney, who is trying to force payment from exempt funds. Friday will mark fifth appearance. Hopefully, I'll be allowed to speak. The situation I find myself in shouldn't even be possible, much less dragging out with no end in sight, for years. I've done nothing wrong, but am watching a lot of wrong being accomplished under court jurisdiction; only because I was married to someone who wanted and was granted a divorce (but was not willing to assume the responsibilities that come with granting the divorce). In fact, the recalcitrant party was enriched by well over $100k, although it was necessarily split with other actors. Pro bono help? It's a nice dream ... but that's all it is, for too many. Meanwhile, injustice marches on.

  2. Both sites mentioned in the article appear to be nonfunctional to date (March 28, 2017). http://indianalegalanswers.org/ returns a message stating the "server is taking too long to respond" and http://www.abafreelegalasnswers.org/ "can't find the server". Although this does not surprise me, it is disheartening to know that access to the judicial branch of government remains out of reach for too many citizens (for procedural rather than meritorious reasons) of Indiana. Any updates regarding this story?

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