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Justices accept 2 cases, decline feticide case

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The Indiana Supreme Court has taken two cases and declined to accept more than two dozen petitions seeking transfer.

During its private conference on Oct. 13, the state’s justices granted transfer petitions in the cases of Reginald N. Person Jr. v. Carol A. Shipley, No. 20S03-1110-CT-609, and John Witt, et al. v. Jay Petroleum, Nos. 38S02-1110-CV-608.

In Person, the Court of Appeals in May reversed a civil jury verdict in favor of Shipley and remanded for future proceedings. The case involved a 2004 Elkhart County accident. Person, the driver of an 18-wheeler semi tractor, sued Shipley, the driver of a sedan, after Shipley fell asleep at the wheel and her smaller car rear-ended his truck and resulted in his injuries. The jury found in favor of Shipley and awarded no damages, and the 2010 trial led to appellate issues about what expert witness testimony should be allowed. The appellate court found that the trial court abused its discretion in admitting the prejudicial expert testimony.

In Witt, the courts are analyzing a case involving underground storage tanks that were located on a former gas station lot in Portland, Ind., and led to environmental concerns and litigation. The appellate court found that the trial court erred when it held the appellants in contempt of court, both because a temporary restraining order was improvidently granted and because the appellants’ conduct during a June 2008 hearing didn’t constitute a willful violation of the terms of the order.

The justices denied the remaining 28 cases, including the case of Brian Kendrick v. State of Indiana, No. 49A02-1003-CR-300, which involves the man who shot a pregnant teller during a bank robbery in Indianapolis in 2008. That shooting led to the death of her twins, one being stillborn. The appellate court earlier this year vacated Kendrick’s two felony feticide convictions because of double jeopardy violations. The judges remanded for resentencing, noting the trial court can now consider Katherine Shuffield’s pregnancy and termination of it in crafting Kendrick’s sentence for attempted murder, as long as the aggregate sentence is not more than 53 years. Chief Justice Randall T. Shepard and Justice Steven David voted to grant transfer, but the three other justices denied the request.

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  1. So that none are misinformed by my posting wihtout a non de plume here, please allow me to state that I am NOT an Indiana licensed attorney, although I am an Indiana resident approved to practice law and represent clients in Indiana's fed court of Nth Dist and before the 7th circuit. I remain licensed in KS, since 1996, no discipline. This must be clarified since the IN court records will reveal that I did sit for and pass the Indiana bar last February. Yet be not confused by the fact that I was so allowed to be tested .... I am not, to be clear in the service of my duty to be absolutely candid about this, I AM NOT a member of the Indiana bar, and might never be so licensed given my unrepented from errors of thought documented in this opinion, at fn2, which likely supports Mr Smith's initial post in this thread: http://caselaw.findlaw.com/us-7th-circuit/1592921.html

  2. When I served the State of Kansas as Deputy AG over Consumer Protection & Antitrust for four years, supervising 20 special agents and assistant attorneys general (back before the IBLE denied me the right to practice law in Indiana for not having the right stuff and pretty much crushed my legal career) we had a saying around the office: Resist the lure of the ring!!! It was a take off on Tolkiem, the idea that absolute power (I signed investigative subpoenas as a judge would in many other contexts, no need to show probable cause)could corrupt absolutely. We feared that we would overreach constitutional limits if not reminded, over and over, to be mindful to not do so. Our approach in so challenging one another was Madisonian, as the following quotes from the Father of our Constitution reveal: The essence of Government is power; and power, lodged as it must be in human hands, will ever be liable to abuse. We are right to take alarm at the first experiment upon our liberties. I believe there are more instances of the abridgement of freedom of the people by gradual and silent encroachments by those in power than by violent and sudden usurpations. Liberty may be endangered by the abuse of liberty, but also by the abuse of power. All men having power ought to be mistrusted. -- James Madison, Federalist Papers and other sources: http://www.constitution.org/jm/jm_quotes.htm RESIST THE LURE OF THE RING ALL YE WITH POLITICAL OR JUDICIAL POWER!

  3. My dear Mr Smith, I respect your opinions and much enjoy your posts here. We do differ on our view of the benefits and viability of the American Experiment in Ordered Liberty. While I do agree that it could be better, and that your points in criticism are well taken, Utopia does indeed mean nowhere. I think Madison, Jefferson, Adams and company got it about as good as it gets in a fallen post-Enlightenment social order. That said, a constitution only protects the citizens if it is followed. We currently have a bevy of public officials and judicial agents who believe that their subjectivism, their personal ideology, their elitist fears and concerns and cause celebs trump the constitutions of our forefathers. This is most troubling. More to follow in the next post on that subject.

  4. Yep I am not Bryan Brown. Bryan you appear to be a bigger believer in the Constitution than I am. Were I still a big believer then I might be using my real name like you. Personally, I am no longer a fan of secularism. I favor the confessional state. In religious mattes, it seems to me that social diversity is chaos and conflict, while uniformity is order and peace.... secularism has been imposed by America on other nations now by force and that has not exactly worked out very well.... I think the American historical experiment with disestablishmentarianism is withering on the vine before our eyes..... Since I do not know if that is OK for an officially licensed lawyer to say, I keep the nom de plume.

  5. I am compelled to announce that I am not posting under any Smith monikers here. That said, the post below does have a certain ring to it that sounds familiar to me: http://www.catholicnewworld.com/cnwonline/2014/0907/cardinal.aspx

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