Court opinions

COA split over whether convicted murderer needs new trial

June 18, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals upheld a murder conviction Wednesday after the defendant argued his right to confront witnesses against him was violated. But one judge on the panel agreed with Michael Torres and wrote in his dissent that Torres should have a new trial.
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Order requiring man to participate in sex offender program not unconstitutional

June 18, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals has found that the order requiring a man to participate in the Sex Offender Management and Monitoring program does not violate Indiana’s prohibition of ex post facto laws.
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Dealership did not abide by contract terms, COA rules

June 17, 2014
Marilyn Odendahl
Citing the terms spelled out in the contract, the Indiana Court of Appeals has ruled that a car dealer that entrusted a buyer with mailing a title to the lender will have to pay the balance of the auto loan.
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Blogger Brewington seeks rehearing, wants Rush to recuse

June 16, 2014
Dave Stafford
A blogger whose intimidation convictions arising from a child-custody dispute were affirmed by the Indiana Supreme Court is seeking a rehearing in an effort to vacate his convictions.
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Mother’s argument crushed by precedent

June 13, 2014
Marilyn Odendahl
The Indiana Court of Appeals upheld precedent in finding a mother who made sporadic child support payments over several years did fail to provide assistance for one entire year as outlined in state statute.
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Insurance credit in criminal restitution case affirmed

June 13, 2014
Dave Stafford
A woman who pleaded guilty to drunken driving and was ordered to pay restitution to a victim hurt as a result of a crash was entitled to use insurance proceeds to pay the court-ordered damages, the Court of Appeals ruled Friday.
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Court upholds man’s conviction for confining wife’s sister

June 13, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
Although a prosecutor made an inappropriate comment during a man’s trial for criminal confinement, that comment had little persuasive effect on the jury, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled Friday. The judges affirmed Jonathan Stephens’ conviction of Class C felony criminal confinement.
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Court affirms repeat burglar’s sentence

June 13, 2014
Dave Stafford
A man who broke into the same property repeatedly and another property at a different time could not persuade an appellate panel that his 24-year sentence was inappropriate because the crimes were from a single episode.
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Father entitled to counsel at contempt hearing

June 13, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
A Marion County man has made a prima facie showing that the trial court erred by denying his request for counsel at a hearing on contempt. Brian Moore’s ex-wife wanted him found in contempt for not paying the full amount of child support.
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Justices affirm life without parole for murderer

June 13, 2014
Dave Stafford
The Indiana Supreme Court affirmed in all respects the life without parole sentence imposed on a man sentenced for murder.
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COA affirms order mother attend psychotherapy

June 12, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
Ruling on a matter of first impression, the Indiana Court of Appeals upheld a trial court’s decision to impose psychotherapy in a marital dissolution and custody order.
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COA reverses conviction based on charging information

June 12, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
Because the charging information did not give a defendant fair notice of the crime of which he was convicted, the Indiana Court of Appeals reversed his Class B felony attempted aggravated battery conviction.
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Officer’s testimony about victim’s statement admissible, COA rules

June 12, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
A trial court did not abuse its discretion when it allowed an Indianapolis police officer to testify as to a victim’s out-of-court statements made to the officer shortly after an incident where she was beaten up.
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Inherited IRA funds not considered ‘retirement funds’

June 12, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The Supreme Court of the United States unanimously held Thursday that funds contained in an inherited individual retirement account do not qualify as “retirement funds” within the meaning of a bankruptcy exemption.
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Reasonable suspicion needed to search home detention participant’s residence

June 11, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed the suppression of evidence found at a Tippecanoe County home by community corrections officers, finding the roommate of the man on home detention had a reasonable expectation of privacy.
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Judges order protective order extension recalculated

June 11, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
Finding a 28-year extension of a protective order to be unreasonable, the Indiana Court of Appeals ordered the trial court to determine a “reasonable extension.”
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COA rules against former Junior Achievement boss in defamation suit

June 11, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed that a central Indiana organization and its president did not defame the former president of Junior Achievement of Central Indiana or tortiously interfere with a business relationship.
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Uninsured coverage doesn't include property damage in hit-and-run accident

June 11, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Supreme Court Tuesday affirmed summary judgment for an insurance company that its motor vehicle policy issued to a family does not provide uninsured motorists coverage in a hit-and-run accident.
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COA affirms judgment in coverage dispute between insurance companies

June 10, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed a trial court’s judgment regarding indemnification clauses and coverage under insurance policies. The issue came before the trial court after a worker sought compensation for severe injuries he sustained when he was electrocuted on the construction site of a Wal-Mart in Boone County.
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Judges order good-time credit reinstated

June 10, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The head inmate law clerk at an Indiana correctional facility is entitled to the 30 days of good-time credit that the prison revoked after finding he used the library’s computers without authorization. But the inmate was just following orders from prison library staff, the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals pointed out.
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COA: Schools required to transport students for free

June 10, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals ruled Tuesday that Indiana students cannot be charged to ride the bus to and from school. The judges found an arrangement between a school corporation and a private company that required parents to pay for their children to ride the bus violated the state constitution.
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Nonprofit unable to prove it is entitled to charitable tax exemption

June 9, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Tax Court Friday upheld the decision to deny a charitable purposes exemption for the 2006 tax year to a Bartholomew County nonprofit that provides housing for low-income residents. The court agreed the nonprofit failed to show that its rental properties qualified for the exemption under I.C. 6-1.1-10-16.
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COA: Man’s sentence after guilty plea is illegal

June 5, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals reversed a man’s 10-year sentence resulting from a guilty plea for abusing his adopted teenaged children, holding that the sentence was based on an incorrect application of I.C. 35-50-1-2.
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Husband’s agreement doesn’t preclude judgment against wife

June 4, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
A company is allowed to sue both parties who executed a promissory note seeking recovery of owed funds because it will still only be entitled to one satisfaction on the debt, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled Wednesday.
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Court rules gynecologist can’t testify on mental competency

June 4, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
A bank is able to foreclose on a mortgage against the estate of a deceased 95-year-old woman who opened the line of credit to pay her granddaughter to take care of her. But the elderly woman’s daughter argued the granddaughter unduly influenced Mildred Borgwald to open the account.
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  1. This is easily remedied, and in a fashion that every church sacrificing incense for its 501c3 status and/or graveling for government grants should have no problem with ..... just add this statue, http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Capitoline_she-wolf_Musei_Capitolini_MC1181.jpg entitled, "Jesus and Cousin John learn to suckle sustenance from the beloved Nanny State." Heckfire, the ACLU might even help move the statue in place then. And the art will certainly reflect our modern life, given the clergy's full-bellied willingness to accede to every whim of the new caesars. If any balk, just threaten to take away their government milk … they will quiet down straightaway, I assure you. Few, if any of them, are willing to cross the ruling elite as did the real J&J

  2. Tina has left the building.

  3. Is JLAP and its bevy of social "scientists" the cure to every ailment of the modern practitioner? I see no allegations as to substance abuse, but I sure see a judge who has seemingly let power go to her head and who lacks any appreciation for the rule of law. Seems that she needs help in her legal philosophy and judicial restraint, not some group encounter session to affirm she is OK, we are OK. Can’t we lawyers just engage in peer professionalism and even peer pressure anymore? Need we social workers to tell us it is wrong to violate due process? And if we conduct ourselves with the basic respect for the law shown by most social workers .... it that good enough in Indiana? If not, then how is JLAP to help this 2003 law school grad get what her law school evidently failed to teach her? (In addition .... rhetorical question … I have a theory that the LAP model serves as a conduit for governmental grace when the same strict application of the law visited upon the poor and the powerless just will not do. See in the records of this paper ... can the argument be made that many who save their licenses, reputations, salaries by calling upon that font of grace are receiving special treatment? Who tracks the application of said grace to assure that EP and DP standards are fully realized? Does the higher one climbs inside the Beltway bring greater showers of grace? Should such grace be the providence of the government, or the churches and NGO's? Why, we would not want to be found mixing the remnants of our abandoned faith with the highest loyalty to the secularist state, now would we?)

  4. Is JLAP and its bevy of social "scientists" the cure to every ailment of the modern practitioner? I see no allegations as to substance abuse, but I sure see a judge who has seemingly let power go to her head and who lacks any appreciation for the rule of law. Seems that she needs help in her legal philosophy and judicial restraint, not some group encounter session to affirm she is OK, we are OK. Cannot we lawyers not engage in peer professionalism and even pressure anymore? Need we social workers to tell us it is wrong to violate due process? And if we conduct ourselves with the basis respect for the law shown by most social workers .... it that good enough in Indiana?

  5. Judge Baker nails it: "Russell was in a place he did not have a right to be, to take an action he did not have a right to take. Russell neglected to leave that property even after engaging in a heated argument with and being struck with a broom handle by the property owner." AS is noted below ... sad to think that the next shoe to drop will be the thief suing the car owner. That is justice?

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