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Justices take forfeiture, adoption appeals

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The Indiana Supreme Court added to its docket a Marion County drug forfeiture case and a Lake County adoption matter.

Justices agreed to review Antonio Hughley, $3,861.00 in U.S. Currency and One (1) Buick, VIN# 4V37J7E133835 v. State of Indiana, The Consolidated City of Indianapolis/Marion County and The Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department, 49S04-1406-MI-386.

In a five-page memorandum decision, the Court of Appeals affirmed summary judgment in favor of the state for seizure of cash found on Hughley. Authorities asserted the money was related to drugs seen in plain view as police searched his home for a suspect in a separate investigation.

Despite Hughley’s affidavit denying the cash was the proceeds of criminal activity, the appeals panel ruled summary judgment for the state was proper for the seizure of the money because the affidavit didn’t give rise to a genuine issue of material fact.  

Justices also granted transfer in In Re The Adoption of: J.T.D. & J.S. (Minor Children), Children to be Adopted and N.E. (Prospective Adoptive Parent) v. Indiana Department of Child Services, 49S04-1406-MI-386.

In that case, the Court of Appeals ruled that an adoption petition should remain in Lake Superior Court over the objection of the Department of Child Services. DCS had initiated termination of parental rights proceedings in juvenile court involving the children, and sought to transfer the adoption proceeding to juvenile court under the county’s case allocation plan.

The appeals court held, though, that the General Assembly had placed jurisdiction in adoption cases with probate courts, so keeping the matter in Superior Court was proper.

Justices denied transfer in 18 cases. Supreme Court transfer dispositions may be viewed here
 

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