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COA reverses trial court in personal injury case

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The Indiana Court of Appeals has reversed a trial court’s denial of a motion to transfer, holding that Marion County is not a preferred venue for the case.

In Salsbery Pork Producers, Inc., Richard K. Wilson, Tipton Co. Commissioners, Tipton Co. Highway Department, Chad Bergin, State of Indiana, Indiana Department of Transportation v. Latina Booth, No. 49A02-1110-CT-983, Latina Booth filed a lawsuit in Marion County after she was seriously injured in a crash. The basis for filing in Indianapolis was that she named the state as a defendant, holding it had failed to properly maintain the Tipton County road where she was injured.

Booth was a passenger in Chad Bergin’s car, traveling along County Road 1100 in Tipton County. Richard K. Wilson was driving a tractor in the scope of his employment with Salsbery Pork Producers when he pulled onto the road and struck Bergin’s car.

Booth named Bergin, Wilson, Salsbery, the state and Tipton County as defendants in her negligence suit.

Tipton County filed a motion for change of venue, saying that only the county – not the state – had control over CR 1100, and therefore the case should be moved from Marion County. The trial court denied the motion, but the appellate court reversed that decision.

The COA held that the state should have been dropped from the case and that the preferred venue is Tipton County, where most of the defendants are located, and where the accident happened. But the appellate judges rejected the defendants’ claims that Booth’s decision to file in Marion County was in bad faith, because evidence of who controlled the county road surfaced only after the Tipton County defendants moved for transfer of venue. The case is remanded for proceedings consistent with the appellate court opinion.   

 

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  1. KUDOS to the Indiana Supreme Court for realizing that some bureacracies need to go to the stake. Recall what RWR said: "No government ever voluntarily reduces itself in size. Government programs, once launched, never disappear. Actually, a government bureau is the nearest thing to eternal life we'll ever see on this earth!" NOW ... what next to this rare and inspiring chopping block? Well, the Commission on Gender and Race (but not religion!?!) is way overdue. And some other Board's could be cut with a positive for State and the reputation of the Indiana judiciary.

  2. During a visit where an informant with police wears audio and video, does the video necessary have to show hand to hand transaction of money and narcotics?

  3. I will agree with that as soon as law schools stop lying to prospective students about salaries and employment opportunities in the legal profession. There is no defense to the fraudulent numbers first year salaries they post to mislead people into going to law school.

  4. The sad thing is that no fish were thrown overboard The "greenhorn" who had never fished before those 5 days was interrogated for over 4 hours by 5 officers until his statement was illicited, "I don't want to go to prison....." The truth is that these fish were measured frozen off shore and thawed on shore. The FWC (state) officer did not know fish shrink, so the only reason that these fish could be bigger was a swap. There is no difference between a 19 1/2 fish or 19 3/4 fish, short fish is short fish, the ticket was written. In addition the FWC officer testified at trial, he does not measure fish in accordance with federal law. There was a document prepared by the FWC expert that said yes, fish shrink and if these had been measured correctly they averaged over 20 inches (offshore frozen). This was a smoke and mirror prosecution.

  5. I love this, Dave! Many congrats to you! We've come a long way from studying for the bar together! :)

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