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Justices take felony murder, child support cases

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The Indiana Supreme Court has granted transfer to two cases - a convicted murder’s appeal and a case involving child support nonpayment.

The justices accepted Joey Addison v. State of Indiana, No. 49S05-1105-CR-267, in which Joey Addison, an African-American, claimed the trial court erred in denying his Batson challenges and erred in excluding evidence. Addison was found guilty but mentally ill of murder and sentenced to 45 years. The trial court had accepted the state’s race-neutral rationale for striking four African-Americans who were potential jurors. The Indiana Court of Appeals concluded the state’s proffered explanations were facially valid and there was no racially discriminatory intent inherent.

He also claimed the trial court should have admitted his sister’s prior deposition into evidence despite her refusal to travel from Georgia to testify at his trial. The Court of Appeals found the sister’s testimony created an issue of fact that the jury could have taken into account in arriving at its verdict, but it was a harmless error under the circumstances of the case.

In Amir H. Sanjari v. State of Indiana, No. 20S03-1105-CR-268, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled that the double jeopardy prohibition had been violated by filing two charges of Class C felony nonsupport of a dependent child against Amir Sanjari related to his refusal to pay any support for his two children. The judges noted that the law says a person can be charged with a Class C felony if the total amount of unpaid child support is at least $15,000 and is owed for one or more children. Sanjari, who owed more than $17,000, argued that only one child support order had been issued and it included both children, so he shouldn’t have been charged or convicted twice.

The Court of Appeals vacated one of his convictions and affirmed the five-year sentence on the remaining charge. The appellate court also concluded Sanjari received enough notice and there wasn’t evidence that he couldn’t have attended a hearing.

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  1. Hail to our Constitutional Law Expert in the Executive Office! “What you’re not paying attention to is the fact that I just took an action to change the law,” Obama said.

  2. What is this, the Ind Supreme Court thinking that there is a separation of powers and limited enumerated powers as delegated by a dusty old document? Such eighteen century thinking, so rare and unwanted by the elites in this modern age. Dictate to us, dictate over us, the massess are chanting! George Soros agrees. Time to change with times Ind Supreme Court, says all President Snows. Rule by executive decree is the new black.

  3. I made the same argument before a commission of the Indiana Supreme Court and then to the fedeal district and federal appellate courts. Fell flat. So very glad to read that some judges still beleive that evidentiary foundations matter.

  4. 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.

  5. 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?

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