Court opinions

Split court upholds man’s conviction for conspiracy to commit robbery

July 22, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
Citing an issue of first impression, the majority on the Indiana Supreme Court Tuesday concluded that a man could be convicted of Class A felony conspiracy to commit robbery even though the targeted victim was not robbed or harmed in any way.
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City fails to prove urine sample arrived at lab with seal intact

July 22, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed the finding that a city of Gary employee was discharged but not for just cause. The judges pointed to incomplete paperwork regarding an on-site screen custody form.
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COA splits over whether pat down after traffic stop was justified

July 22, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
A majority on the Indiana Court of Appeals concluded that a trial court abused its discretion when it denied a man’s motion to suppress drug evidence found on him after police pulled him over for failing to signal a turn. But the dissenting judge believed the arresting officer had sufficient reason to think the defendant might be armed and dangerous during their encounter.
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Justices agree amendment adding defendants was timely filed

July 21, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Supreme Court on Monday granted transfer to a case and adopted the Court of Appeals opinion in the matter involving a wrongful death claim stemming from a mower accident.
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Woman waived challenge to amount of loss attributable to her conduct

July 21, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed the 57-month sentence for a woman involved in a real estate fraud scheme, finding she waived the issue regarding the amount of loss attributable to her conduct.
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Mom can’t receive damages based on daughter’s injuries caused by mold

July 21, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals reversed a compensatory damage award of $20,000 to the parents of an adult daughter who was sickened by mold growing in her apartment after finding the facts of the case don’t support the amount awarded.
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Trial court correctly determined physician had no duty to patient

July 21, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals agreed with the lower court that summary judgment is appropriate for a physician being sued for medical malpractice because there was no physician-patient relationship.
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Inmate’s action for credit time moot after DOC grants request

July 21, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
A Henry Circuit judge correctly dismissed an inmate’s action for educational credit time as moot after the Department of Correction determined he was entitled to the time and awarded him the credit, the Indiana Court of Appeals held Monday.
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Plea agreement bars defendant from appealing sentence

July 18, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
A defendant who agreed to waive his right to appeal his sentence after pleading guilty to a drug offense was unable to convince the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals that he should be allowed to pursue his ineffective assistance of counsel claim.
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Admittance of hearsay evidence harmless error, rules 7th Circuit

July 17, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The out-of-court testimony of a woman who said she purchased crack cocaine from a man who was on supervised release should not have been admitted during the man’s hearing regarding revoking his release, the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals held Wednesday. But this was a harmless error because the circumstantial evidence supports that the man dealt crack cocaine to the woman.
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Dad’s text to daughter supports violation of protective order

July 17, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
A Johnson County man who sent a text message to his daughter to give to his ex-wife – who had a protective order against him – violated that order when he sent his daughter the message, the Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed.
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COA reverses public intox conviction based on potential danger

July 17, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The state’s claim that a man’s public intoxication conviction should stand because of possible danger he faced if he left an apartment complex while intoxicated was rejected by the Indiana Court of Appeals Thursday because the argument was merely speculative.
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COA clarifies and affirms original opinion in environmental cleanup case

July 17, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals granted the request of the city of Indianapolis and the Department of Environmental Management to take another look at its opinion issued in April that allowed businesses that neighbored a contaminated property to intervene in the cleanup case. But the judges affirmed the court’s original decision in all respects.
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Statute does not allow for deferral of dealing marijuana charge

July 17, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals rejected a man’s argument that I.C. 35-48-4-12 would run afoul of double jeopardy or collateral estoppel if the court defers his marijuana possession charge but not his charge of dealing marijuana.
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Justices uphold $94,000 in damages, fees for failed condo sale

July 17, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Supreme Court agreed with the trial court that a seller of a condo whose buyers backed out of the purchase agreement over failed repairs could have mitigated her damages by selling the condo in 2007 to a different buyer instead of waiting until 2011 and accepting a lower price.
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‘Sovereign citizen’ convicted of kidnapping daughter loses appeal

July 16, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The Kansas man who kidnapped his adult daughter and held her captive in northern Indiana had his convictions and sentence upheld by the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals Wednesday.
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Judge: Outdated caselaw needs revised to handle Internet issues

July 16, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
A dissenting judge in an unfair competition case involving the near simultaneous registrations of the same Internet domain name urged the Indiana Legislature and Supreme Court to “usher Indiana into the technological realities of the 21st Century.”
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1 same-sex marriage lawsuit remains in District Court

July 16, 2014
Marilyn Odendahl
One challenge to Indiana’s same-sex marriage law remains in federal court and could, again, open a window for gay and lesbian couples in the state to get married, an attorney representing the plaintiffs in the case said.
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Owner of Anderson location yanks suit against Motel 6

July 16, 2014
Dave Stafford
Owners of an Anderson hotel that has operated as a Motel 6 since its construction in 1974 – but soon won’t –  withdrew a federal lawsuit Tuesday that claimed the national chain had not maintained the site “as a first class motel” required under its decades-old lease.
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Judges uphold felony conviction for kicking cat

July 16, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed an Allen County man’s conviction of Class D felony torturing or mutilating a vertebrate animal, finding sufficient evidence that the man knowingly or intentionally mutilated a cat that somehow got into his house.
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Interest rate charged by bank upheld by Court of Appeals

July 16, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals relied on a similar case out of Ohio to find that a bank did not exceed the agreed-upon interest rate of commercial borrowers by applying a 365/360 interest calculation method as some borrowers claimed in a class action.
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Ruling may expedite demise of Marion County township venues

July 16, 2014
Dave Stafford
Marion County’s unique township small claims courts may be on the verge of extinction, hastened by a game-changing ruling this month by the full 7th Circuit Court of Appeals.
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Admission of video and recorded statements did not violate Sixth Amendment

July 15, 2014
Marilyn Odendahl
The defendant in a drug trial was unable to convince the Indiana Court of Appeals that his constitutional right to confront a witness was violated when the confidential informant did not testify at trial.
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Court rejects automatic change in custody for moving mom

July 15, 2014
Dave Stafford
A mother will not automatically lose custody of one of her children if she chooses to relocate to Texas, the Indiana Court of Appeals held Tuesday, reversing in part a trial court order in favor of the child’s presumptive father.
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Ex-HHGregg manager's lawsuit grows into class-action

July 15, 2014
Scott Olson, IBJ Staff
A lawsuit brought by a former HHGregg Inc. manager charging that the company failed to pay incentive bonuses has been granted class-action status by a Marion Superior Court judge.
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