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High court takes 2 cases

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The Indiana Supreme Court has taken a counterfeiting case and a case involving credit time that presents an issue of first impression, according to its latest transfer order.

The justices took two cases for the week ending Dec. 23 - An-Hung Yao and Yu-Ting Lin v. State of Indiana, No. 35S02-1112-CR-704, and Douglas Cottingham v. State of Indiana, No. 06S01-1112-CR-703.

In Yao, the Indiana Court of Appeals ordered counterfeiting and theft charges dropped against An-Hung Yao and Yu-Ting Lin, of Houston, because the Indiana trial court lacked territorial jurisdiction. The appellate court noted that there has only been a small number of cases in Indiana to address territorial jurisdiction, and all either held that there is no serious evidentiary dispute that Indiana has territorial jurisdiction or there is a serious evidentiary dispute requiring a jury determination.

“However, given that Indiana Code section 35-34-1-4(a)(10) provides that the trial court may dismiss an information if there is a jurisdictional impediment to the prosecution, we believe the converse of the rule announced in Ortiz (v. State, 766 N.E.2d 370, 374 (Ind. 2002)) is also true: if there is no serious evidentiary dispute that Indiana does not have territorial jurisdiction, the trial court may dismiss the information as a matter of law and the issue need not be submitted to the jury,” wrote Chief Judge Margret Robb.

In Cottingham, Douglas Cottingham appealed the order that he serve the remainder of his sentence incarcerated after he admitted to a probation violation. At the time his probation was revoked, he was serving home detention. The Court of Appeals affirmed, but it addressed his argument for recalculation of his credit time because it is an issue of first impression regarding recent amendments to Indiana Code 35-38-2.6-6. The statute was amended in 2010 to remove the exclusion of credit time for those in home detention.

The appellate court applied the doctrine of amelioration to the issue of good time credit for Cottingham while he was on home detention. The judges remanded for the trial court to determine his credit class for good time credit purposes during home detention, to calculate the good time credit to which he is entitled, and to adjust his sentence accordingly.

The justices denied transfer to 25 cases.  

 

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  1. I expressed my thought in the title, long as it was. I am shocked that there is ever immunity from accountability for ANY Government agency. That appears to violate every principle in the US Constitution, which exists to limit Government power and to ensure Government accountability. I don't know how many cases of legitimate child abuse exist, but in the few cases in which I knew the people involved, in every example an anonymous caller used DCS as their personal weapon to strike at innocent people over trivial disagreements that had no connection with any facts. Given that the system is vulnerable to abuse, and given the extreme harm any action by DCS causes to families, I would assume any degree of failure to comply with the smallest infraction of personal rights would result in mandatory review. Even one day of parent-child separation in the absence of reasonable cause for a felony arrest should result in severe penalties to those involved in the action. It appears to me, that like all bureaucracies, DCS is prone to interpret every case as legitimate. This is not an accusation against DCS. It is a statement about the nature of bureaucracies, and the need for ADDED scrutiny of all bureaucratic actions. Frankly, I question the constitutionality of bureaucracies in general, because their power is delegated, and therefore unaccountable. No Government action can be unaccountable if we want to avoid its eventual degeneration into irrelevance and lawlessness, and the law of the jungle. Our Constitution is the source of all Government power, and it is the contract that legitimizes all Government power. To the extent that its various protections against intrusion are set aside, so is the power afforded by that contract. Eventually overstepping the limits of power eliminates that power, as a law of nature. Even total tyranny eventually crumbles to nothing.

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