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Opinions Dec. 11, 2013

December 11, 2013
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The following Indiana Tax Court opinion was posted after IL deadline Tuesday:
Roderick E. Kellam v. Fountain County Assessor
49T10-1211-TA-78
Tax. Reverses the Indiana Board of Tax Review’s final determination denying a homestead standard deduction on Kellam’s Fountain County property for the 2010 tax year. The decision is unsupported by substantial or reliable evidence and the conclusion that the property was not his principal place of residence is contrary to law.  

Wednesday’s opinions
Indiana Court of Appeals

Carol Sparks Drake v. Thomas A. Dickey, Craig Anderson, Charles E. Podell, and Duke Realty Corporation
29A02-1302-CT-152
Civil tort. Reverses summary judgment for Duke Realty on Drake’s claim that it intentionally interfered with her partnership agreement with the law firm. The trial court erred when it concluded that Drake had failed to present a genuine issue of material fact as to whether Duke Realty intentionally induced Parr Richey to terminate Drake as a partner. Remands for further proceedings.

John Kader v. State of Indiana, Department of Correction, and The Geo Group, Inc.
33A01-1302-CT-72
Civil tort. Affirms in part, reverses in part and remands with instructions. The trial court abused its discretion when it struck the entirety of Holland’s affidavit, which Kader designated as evidentiary material in response to the motion for summary judgment. The trial court erred when it entered summary judgment against Kader regarding his claims against GEO, except as to Kader’s claim that GEO was negligent in its procurement and supervision of his follow-up medical care. The trial court also erred when it entered summary judgment against Kader on his claim of negligent medical treatment as it pertained to the state and the Department of Correction.

In Re the Paternity of: L.M.J. b/n/f, D.R.D. v C.A.J. (NFP)
34A02-1305-JP-458
Juvenile. Affirms denial of mother’s request for summary judgment on motion for a rule to show cause that father had failed to pay child support beyond his weekly obligation pursuant to the terms of the 1998 order regarding support.

Kelli Alvarez, f/k/a Kelli Galanos v. Horizon Bank, N.A. (NFP)
46A03-1304-CC-155
Civil collection. Dismisses appeal of order denying Alvarez’s motion to correct error challenging the entry of summary judgment in favor of Horizon Bank on a promissory note.

Willie Huguley v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A02-1305-CR-443
Criminal. Affirms convictions of Class A felony child molesting, sexual intercourse; Class A felony child molesting, deviate sexual conduct; and Class C felony child molesting, fondling.

Joseph A. Harrell v. State of Indiana (NFP)
52A02-1307-CR-576
Criminal. Affirms revocation of probation.

L.M. Zeller, individually, and d/b/a Zeller Elevator Company v. Indiana Fire Prevention and Building Safety Commission (NFP)
82A01-1303-PL-115
Civil plenary. Affirms order affirming the decision of the Indiana Fire Prevention and Building Safety Commission regarding the servicing of elevators.

Kenneth Morton v. State of Indiana (NFP)
64A05-1305-CR-222
Criminal. Affirms sentence for four counts of Class D felony theft.

James B. Studabaker, II v. State of Indiana (NFP)
90A04-1303-CR-126
Criminal. Affirms convictions and sentence for two counts of Class B felony sexual misconduct with a minor.

Julie Marie King v. State of Indiana (NFP)
17A03-1305-CR-186
Criminal. Affirms sentence following guilty plea to aiding in attempted murder as a Class A felony.

Douglas A. Smith v. State of Indiana (NFP)
45A03-1304-CR-154
Criminal. Affirms murder conviction.

Randy Winters v. State of Indiana (NFP)
46A03-1302-CR-59
Criminal. Affirms sentence following guilty plea to Class B felony robbery.

The Indiana Supreme Court and Tax Court posted no opinions by IL deadline. The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals posted no Indiana decisions by IL deadline.
 

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  1. Where may I find an attorney working Pro Bono? Many issues with divorce, my Disability, distribution of IRA's, property, money's and pressured into agreement by my attorney. Leaving me far less than 5% of all after 15 years of marriage. No money to appeal, disabled living on disability income. Attorney's decision brought forward to judge, no evidence ever to finalize divorce. Just 2 weeks ago. Please help.

  2. For the record no one could answer the equal protection / substantive due process challenge I issued in the first post below. The lawless and accountable only to power bureaucrats never did either. All who interface with the Indiana law examiners or JLAP be warned.

  3. Hi there I really need help with getting my old divorce case back into court - I am still paying support on a 24 year old who has not been in school since age 16 - now living independent. My visitation with my 14 year old has never been modified; however, when convenient for her I can have him... I am paying past balance from over due support, yet earn several thousand dollars less. I would contact my original attorney but he basically molest me multiple times in Indy when I would visit.. Todd Woodmansee - I had just came out and had know idea what to do... I have heard he no longer practices. Please help1

  4. Yes diversity is so very important. With justice Rucker off ... the court is too white. Still too male. No Hispanic justice. No LGBT justice. And there are other checkboxes missing as well. This will not do. I say hold the seat until a physically handicapped Black Lesbian of Hispanic heritage and eastern religious creed with bipolar issues can be located. Perhaps an international search, with a preference for third world candidates, is indicated. A non English speaker would surely increase our diversity quotient!!!

  5. First, I want to thank Justice Rucker for his many years of public service, not just at the appellate court level for over 25 years, but also when he served the people of Lake County as a Deputy Prosecutor, City Attorney for Gary, IN, and in private practice in a smaller, highly diverse community with a history of serious economic challenges, ethnic tensions, and recently publicized but apparently long-standing environmental health risks to some of its poorest residents. Congratulations for having the dedication & courage to practice law in areas many in our state might have considered too dangerous or too poor at different points in time. It was also courageous to step into a prominent and highly visible position of public service & respect in the early 1990's, remaining in a position that left you open to state-wide public scrutiny (without any glitches) for over 25 years. Yes, Hoosiers of all backgrounds can take pride in your many years of public service. But people of color who watched your ascent to the highest levels of state government no doubt felt even more as you transcended some real & perhaps some perceived social, economic, academic and professional barriers. You were living proof that, with hard work, dedication & a spirit of public service, a person who shared their same skin tone or came from the same county they grew up in could achieve great success. At the same time, perhaps unknowingly, you helped fellow members of the judiciary, court staff, litigants and the public better understand that differences that are only skin-deep neither define nor limit a person's character, abilities or prospects in life. You also helped others appreciate that people of different races & backgrounds can live and work together peacefully & productively for the greater good of all. Those are truths that didn't have to be written down in court opinions. Anyone paying attention could see that truth lived out every day you devoted to public service. I believe you have been a "trailblazer" in Indiana's legal community and its judiciary. I also embrace your belief that society's needs can be better served when people in positions of governmental power reflect the many complexions of the population that they serve. Whether through greater understanding across the existing racial spectrum or through the removal of some real and some perceived color-based, hope-crushing barriers to life opportunities & success, movement toward a more reflective representation of the population being governed will lead to greater and uninterrupted respect for laws designed to protect all peoples' rights to life, liberty & the pursuit of happiness. Thanks again for a job well-done & for the inevitable positive impact your service has had - and will continue to have - on countless Hoosiers of all backgrounds & colors.

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