Indiana Court of Appeals

COA: Revocation of sex offender’s probation was not an abuse of discretion

January 11, 2017
Olivia Covington
The Harrison Superior Court did not abuse its discretion when it revoked a convicted sex offender’s probation after he contacted people under 18 years of age and lived within one mile of his victim in violation of the terms of his probation, the Indiana Court of Appeals held Wednesday.
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State judicial leaders present budget proposals at first Ways and Means meeting

January 11, 2017
Olivia Covington
Indiana’s top judicial leaders made their cases for additional funding in the next two years on Wednesday, with the biggest funding boost requested to support continued court technology initiatives.
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COA upholds child support order in peculiar case involving non-biological son

January 11, 2017
Marilyn Odendahl
A divorce involving a troubled husband, unfaithful wife and a 12-year lie unraveled into a child support and paternity dispute that ended with a split Indiana Court of Appeals ordering the non-biological father to provide financial assistance. Any other ruling, the majority reasoned, would leave the minor without a dad.
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COA considers liability in sheriff’s office suicide case

January 10, 2017
Olivia Covington
After the wife of a Harrison County sheriff’s deputy killed herself with her husband’s gun while he was off duty, the sheriff’s office and her estate began debating a single question: was the deputy acting in the line of duty when his wife committed suicide?
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Trial court domestic violence counseling order affirmed

January 10, 2017
Olivia Covington
The Marion Superior Court was within its discretion when it ordered a man to complete domestic violence counseling even though he was not convicted on a domestic battery charge, the Indiana Court of Appeals held Tuesday.
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Divided COA backs Pence in public records case

January 9, 2017
Olivia Covington
A divided Indiana Court of Appeals sided with former Indiana Gov. and Vice President-elect Mike Pence in a Monday opinion, writing that Pence was within his discretion to redact and withhold certain documents sought through a public records request.
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Divided COA rules in favor of Pence in public records case

January 9, 2017
Olivia Covington
The Indiana Court of Appeals has upheld a trial court decision finding that former Indiana Gov. and Vice President-elect Mike Pence did not violate open records laws when he redacted and withheld certain documents related to his decision to join a Texas lawsuit challenging federal executive orders on immigration.
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COA reverses drug convictions for unreasonable ‘military-style assault’

January 6, 2017
Olivia Covington
A “military-style assault” on an Evansville home was unreasonable, a divided Indiana Court of Appeals held Friday, reversing a man’s various felony and misdemeanor drug convictions.
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Property contract with no-cheating clause enforceable

January 3, 2017
Olivia Covington
A Jefferson County woman must convey her assets in a property she shared with her ex-boyfriend after she became pregnant by another man in breach of a contract she signed with the ex-boyfriend, the Indiana Court of Appeals found Friday.
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Owners of flooded house lose appeal in suit against Valparaiso

January 3, 2017
Jennifer Nelson
A couple whose home near a water retention and detention facility was flooded in 2008 when the city of Valparaiso experienced a 200-year storm are not able to assert a private cause of action under Indiana’s Flood Control Act, the Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed Friday.
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COA: Court properly denied motion to set aside default judgment

January 3, 2017
Jennifer Nelson
A company being sued for negligence failed to convince the Indiana Court of Appeals that the default judgment entered against it in the matter should be overturned.
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Former IDEM employee’s unlawful termination case can continue

December 29, 2016
Olivia Covington
A former Indiana state employee can continue her case against the Indiana Department of Environmental Management after the Court of Appeals decided Thursday that her unlawful termination complaint stated a claim upon which relief can be granted and that sovereign immunity cannot apply.
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Granddaughter can continue to seek guardianship of grandfather

December 29, 2016
Olivia Covington
The Indiana Court of Appeals is allowing a granddaughter to continue seeking guardianship over her grandfather after determining that the trial court erroneously dismissed her guardianship petition.
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COA: Trial court’s erroneous statement did not change terms of plea agreement

December 29, 2016
Olivia Covington
A man convicted of drug-related charges must adhere to the waiver of his right  to appeal his sentence as part of his plea deal after the Indiana Court of Appeals found Thursday that the trial court’s erroneous statement did not change the terms of that agreement.
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Gun evidence admissibility divides Court of Appeals

December 29, 2016
Jennifer Nelson
In a “he said, she said” case before the Indiana Court of Appeals Thursday, the judges were divided on whether admission of a gun into evidence prejudiced a woman’s convictions of resisting law enforcement and battery against a public safety official and her boyfriend’s battery conviction.
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Appeals court finds judge complied with credit-restricted felon statute

December 29, 2016
Jennifer Nelson
In an issue of first impression, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled that an Elkhart Superior judge’s advisement to a convicted child molester that she is a credit-restricted felon substantially complied with statute.
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COA upholds dismissal of fired DOT employee’s untimely petition for review

December 29, 2016
Jennifer Nelson
A former employee of the Indiana Department of Transportation, who was fired in 2013, untimely filed his petition for judicial review after he was unsuccessful in his administrative appeals and the trial court correctly dismissed his petition, the Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed Thursday.
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Reopening case after closing arguments was not an abuse of discretion

December 28, 2016
Olivia Covington
The Marion Superior Court did not abuse its discretion when it allowed the state to reopen its case against a defendant after closing arguments because the defendant had been forewarned that certain evidence could be admitted if he presented a contrary intent defense, the Indiana Court of Appeals held Wednesday.
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COA: Purchase agreement valid, case against company must go to arbitration

December 28, 2016
Olivia Covington
A Kentucky-based houseboat company cannot be forced to refund a deposit to a Henry County couple after the Indiana Court of Appeals found Wednesday that an existing purchase agreement was a valid and binding contract that allowed the company to request arbitration.
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Lack of expert testimony leads to judgment in favor of Indiana attorney

December 27, 2016
Olivia Covington
The lack of expert testimony in a yearslong bankruptcy case led to the appropriate grant of summary judgment to an Indiana attorney, the Indiana Court of Appeals found Tuesday.
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COA holds that arbitration exclusion applies to State Farm case

December 27, 2016
Olivia Covington
The Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed summary judgment in favor of State Farm Insurance Tuesday, writing that the appellants in the case could not compel arbitration due to an exception in the arbitration agreement it signed with the insurance company.
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Summary judgment in favor of New Castle prison employees reversed

December 27, 2016
Olivia Covington
An Indiana inmate can continue his case against prison officials he said prohibited him from bringing his case before the U.S. Supreme Court after the Indiana Court of Appeals decided Tuesday that summary judgment in favor of the officials was erroneous.
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COA: Stage collapses not foreseeable as a matter of law

December 27, 2016
Olivia Covington
The company hired to provide security to country duo Sugarland on the night of the deadly stage collapse at the 2011 Indiana State Fair could not have reasonably foreseen the stage collapse as a matter of law and, thus, is entitled to summary judgment, the Indiana Court of Appeals held Tuesday.
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Delinquency adjudication upheld for student who planned a school shooting

December 22, 2016
Olivia Covington
A Jackson County teenager who plotted a school shooting with a classmate will retain his delinquency adjudication after the Indiana Court of Appeals found Thursday that the trial court did not abuse its discretion in admitting Facebook conversations detailing the shooting plans.
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COA reverses termination of parental rights, finds DCS exhibited ‘troubling behavior’

December 21, 2016
Olivia Covington
The Indiana Court of Appeals reversed Wednesday a decision terminating a mother and father’s parental relationships with their son, writing that the Department of Child Services had exhibited an “extraordinarily troubling pattern of behavior.”
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  1. Mr. Levin says that the BMV engaged in misconduct--that the BMV (or, rather, someone in the BMV) knew Indiana motorists were being overcharged fees but did nothing to correct the situation. Such misconduct, whether engaged in by one individual or by a group, is called theft (defined as knowingly or intentionally exerting unauthorized control over the property of another person with the intent to deprive the other person of the property's value or use). Theft is a crime in Indiana (as it still is in most of the civilized world). One wonders, then, why there have been no criminal prosecutions of BMV officials for this theft? Government misconduct doesn't occur in a vacuum. An individual who works for or oversees a government agency is responsible for the misconduct. In this instance, somebody (or somebodies) with the BMV, at some time, knew Indiana motorists were being overcharged. What's more, this person (or these people), even after having the error of their ways pointed out to them, did nothing to fix the problem. Instead, the overcharges continued. Thus, the taxpayers of Indiana are also on the hook for the millions of dollars in attorneys fees (for both sides; the BMV didn't see fit to avail itself of the services of a lawyer employed by the state government) that had to be spent in order to finally convince the BMV that stealing money from Indiana motorists was a bad thing. Given that the BMV official(s) responsible for this crime continued their misconduct, covered it up, and never did anything until the agency reached an agreeable settlement, it seems the statute of limitations for prosecuting these folks has not yet run. I hope our Attorney General is paying attention to this fiasco and is seriously considering prosecution. Indiana, the state that works . . . for thieves.

  2. I'm glad that attorney Carl Hayes, who represented the BMV in this case, is able to say that his client "is pleased to have resolved the issue". Everyone makes mistakes, even bureaucratic behemoths like Indiana's BMV. So to some extent we need to be forgiving of such mistakes. But when those mistakes are going to cost Indiana taxpayers millions of dollars to rectify (because neither plaintiff's counsel nor Mr. Hayes gave freely of their services, and the BMV, being a state-funded agency, relies on taxpayer dollars to pay these attorneys their fees), the agency doesn't have a right to feel "pleased to have resolved the issue". One is left wondering why the BMV feels so pleased with this resolution? The magnitude of the agency's overcharges might suggest to some that, perhaps, these errors were more than mere oversight. Could this be why the agency is so "pleased" with this resolution? Will Indiana motorists ever be assured that the culture of incompetence (if not worse) that the BMV seems to have fostered is no longer the status quo? Or will even more "overcharges" and lawsuits result? It's fairly obvious who is really "pleased to have resolved the issue", and it's not Indiana's taxpayers who are on the hook for the legal fees generated in these cases.

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  5. From the article's fourth paragraph: "Her work underscores the blurry lines in Russia between the government and businesses . . ." Obviously, the author of this piece doesn't pay much attention to the "blurry lines" between government and businesses that exist in the United States. And I'm not talking only about Trump's alleged conflicts of interest. When lobbyists for major industries (pharmaceutical, petroleum, insurance, etc) have greater access to this country's elected representatives than do everyday individuals (i.e., voters), then I would say that the lines between government and business in the United States are just as blurry, if not more so, than in Russia.

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