Indiana Court of Appeals

Robber’s use of debit card is forgery, COA affirms

July 1, 2016
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals rejected a defendant’s claim that he couldn’t be convicted of forgery under Indiana law because using his robbery victims’ ATM cards did not qualify as “uttering a written instrument.”
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COA reverses lifetime sex offender registration, upholds ban from school property

July 1, 2016
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals agreed with a man challenging his lifetime registration as a sex offender that the law as applied to him violates the Indiana Constitution’s prohibition against ex post facto laws. But he lost a similar challenge to the unlawful-entry statute that prohibits him from entering school property.
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COA majority rules dog sniff did not prolong stop

June 30, 2016
Scott Roberts
The Indiana Court of Appeals reversed a woman’s motion to suppress evidence found at a traffic stop in a 2-1 decision after the court ruled the stop was not extended by an officer’s check of the car with his dog.
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Evidence found during arrest for public intox is admissible, COA rules

June 30, 2016
Scott Roberts
The Indiana Court of Appeals upheld a man’s misdemeanor cocaine possession conviction after it held the search an officer conducted after finding the man asleep in his car did not violate his Fourth Amendment rights and thus the trial court did not abuse its discretion by admitting the cocaine found during the search.
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Majority: 2 shoplifting charges not RICO violations

June 30, 2016
Scott Roberts
The Indiana Court of Appeals ruled in a split decision the state went too far when it convicted a man who committed two acts of shoplifting under the state’s Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act and reversed his conviction for corrupt business influence.
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COA: Failure to give breath test sample was refusal to take test

June 30, 2016
Scott Roberts
The Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed a woman refused a chemical breath test, noting the officer giving the test followed all the proper procedures and was within his rights to determine she refused the test after she failed to give a valid sample three times.
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COA: Minors’ malpractice suit can continue

June 29, 2016
Scott Roberts
The Indiana Court of Appeals ruled a medical malpractice lawsuit filed by minor children can continue after it found the suit was not untimely filed. The children were in the correct age range to trigger an exception in the Medical Malpractice Act.
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COA: Death during robbery is felony murder

June 29, 2016
Scott Roberts
The Indiana Court of Appeals found evidence was sufficient to uphold a robber’s conviction of felony murder after one of his accomplices was killed in a fight with a robbery victim.
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Deadline for mandatory e-filing nears for Hamilton County, Indiana appellate courts

June 29, 2016
Dave Stafford
Ready or not, the era of e-filing begins July 1 for everyone submitting court documents in Hamilton County and in Indiana’s appellate courts. There’s evidence that despite the buildup over recent months, many lawyers and filers may be caught off guard.
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Are old convictions still relevant?

June 29, 2016
Dave Stafford
A man who admitted fault and negligence for a Lake County drunken-driving crash is appealing damages of $2 million awarded in the case, claiming the jury was wrongly provided evidence of his prior alcohol-related driving convictions that were 17 and 30 years old.
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COA: Couple proved adverse possession of land along fence

June 28, 2016
Jennifer Nelson
In a dispute between neighbors over a property line, the Indiana Court of Appeals agreed with the trial court that a Johnson County couple satisfied the elements needed to be successful in their adverse possession and quiet title counterclaim.
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Judges reinstate woman’s legal malpractice claim

June 28, 2016
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals reversed the dismissal of a woman’s complaint against her attorney, finding the trial court improperly dismissed it pursuant to Indiana Trial Rule 12(B)(6).
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COA: Testimony would have restricted jury’s ability to decide

June 28, 2016
Scott Roberts
The Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed a man’s conviction of voluntary manslaughter after it found the trial court did not err in restricting the testimony of an expert witness for the defense.
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COA: CVRA damages are distinct from punitive damages

June 28, 2016
Scott Roberts
The Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed a damages award pursuant to the Crime Victim Relief Act after the court found in its second hearing of a case that CVRA damages are distinct from common law punitive damages.
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COA: Tenant does not have obligation to indemnify landlord

June 27, 2016
Scott Roberts
The Indiana Court of Appeals ruled a tenant did not have to indemnify a landlord against a woman’s personal injury claims after she filed suit against both of them.
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COA reverses grant of woman’s unemployment benefits

June 27, 2016
Scott Roberts
The Indiana Court of Appeals reversed unemployment benefits awarded to a woman after it found she did have notice her job was in jeopardy despite various notes thanking her for her help in office matters she received from her employer.
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COA: Seller not liable for undisclosed septic system

June 23, 2016
Scott Roberts
The Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed judgment against a man who claimed fraud because he was not told the property he bought was connected to a septic system.
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Murder defendant’s trial attorney ineffective, COA rules

June 23, 2016
Scott Roberts
The Indiana Court of Appeals reversed and remanded the denial of a man’s post-conviction relief petition, finding his trial counsel was ineffective and his petition was not barred by laches.
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Appeals court reverses adoption petition

June 22, 2016
Scott Roberts
The Indiana Court of Appeals reversed an adoption petition after it found the adoptive mother did not participate in a sufficient background check and the court should have combined the adoption proceedings with a paternity hearing that was also occurring at the same time.
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COA: Unreturned warrant doesn’t justify trial delay

June 22, 2016
Scott Roberts
A man’s criminal charges will be dismissed after Indiana Court of Appeals found the fact that a warrant for his arrest was not returned to trial court didn’t mean the court was absolved of its responsibility to grant him the speedy trial he asked for.
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Appeals court affirms reinstatement of drug sentence

June 17, 2016
Scott Roberts
The Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed the reinstatement of a woman’s sentence after she was terminated from drug court, finding a request for new counsel she made was too late and a stay of her drug court supervision was meant to help her, not harm her.
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COA dismisses appeal of agreed judgment

June 17, 2016
Scott Roberts
The Indiana Court of Appeals upheld long-standing precedent when it dismissed an appeal of an agreed judgment between a law firm and a couple that accused the firm of malpractice.
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Appeals court affirms town’s annexation ordinance is void

June 16, 2016
Scott Roberts
The Indiana Court of Appeals ruled a town’s failure to include roads in an annexation ordinance where it sought to annex two pieces of land rendered the ordinance void.
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COA: Judge’s comments do not require dismissal of charges

June 16, 2016
Scott Roberts
The Indiana Court of Appeals ruled a trial court judge’s inappropriate comments during trial did not “goad” the defense into asking for a mistrial and affirmed denial of the defense’s motion to dismiss child molesting, rape and sexual misconduct charges against the defendant.
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COA upholds kidnapper's sex offender status

June 16, 2016
Scott Roberts
A prisoner at the Indiana Department of Correction failed to convince the Indiana Court of Appeals that his sex offender classification should be dropped as the COA found it did not violate the ex post facto clause of the Indiana Constitution.
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