Indiana Court of Appeals

Judges reverse convictions based on use of witness’s statement

May 21, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
Because the state called a witness solely to impeach her with a pretrial statement, and the jury may have relied on the witness’s testimony to convict the defendant, a majority on the Indiana Court of Appeals reversed burglary and receiving stolen property convictions. 
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Lucas Oil vendor not entitled to summary judgment in dram shop case

May 21, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
It should be up to the trial court or a jury to determine whether a vendor in Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis should be held responsible for serving alcohol to a man who later hit two children while driving home after a game.
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COA: Court should not have imposed 2-mile ban as part of probation

May 21, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals found a trial court abused its discretion when it originally imposed a probation condition prohibiting a man from going within two miles of where he committed battery against a stranger.
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CLEO interns assigned to Court of Appeals, Tax Court

May 20, 2014
IL Staff
Eight students from three law schools have been selected for summer internships with judges of the Indiana Court of Appeals and Tax Court through the 2014 Carr L. Darden Conference for Legal Education Opportunity internship program.
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COA rules natural parents’ consent unnecessary in adoption

May 20, 2014
Marilyn Odendahl

Once a trial court found a child’s natural parents to be unfit, the court did not need to revisit that finding at an adoption hearing, the Indiana Court of Appeals has ruled.

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School district not immune from liability in shooting incident

May 19, 2014
Marilyn Odendahl
Although a principal was responsible for formulating and implementing a security plan for her school, the level of discretion the principal had was not enough to give the school district immunity from liability following an in-school shooting.
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Bank wins in appeal of foreclosure action

May 15, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed summary judgment in favor of Wells Fargo on its action to foreclose on a mortgage and collect from the guarantor of the loan, ruling that the loan documents were properly assigned to the bank.
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COA: Wife is entitled to maintenance, larger amount of marital estate

May 13, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals has ordered a trial court to divvy up a marital estate with more than 50 percent of it going to the wife because she rebutted the presumption of an equal division.
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Judges reverse judgment in favor of town in water agreement dispute

May 9, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
A trial court erred as a matter of law in its interpretation of a disputed section of a water agreement between a real estate developer and the town of Huntertown; as such, the Indiana Court of Appeals reversed partial summary judgment in favor of the town.
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Man lacks standing to pursue cause of actions in failed home purchase

May 9, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed that the underwriter of title insurance stands in the shoes of its insureds, so a man suing several entities over a failed home purchase lacks standing to pursue his causes of action.
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Judges affirm $40,000 judgment in lawsuit involving neighbors

May 9, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
Noting the grounds on which a defendant sought relief from a $40,000 default judgment are unclear, the Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed that the man must pay his neighbor that amount.
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Judges affirm $6,600 in child support arrearage

May 8, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals agreed that a father owed only $6,600 in back child support and not $74,000 as the child’s mother claimed.
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COA: State had no authority to bring paternity action

May 8, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
A trial court erred in ordering a southern Indiana teen to undergo genetic testing to establish paternity of a stillborn child, the Indiana Court of Appeals held Thursday. It found the state, which filed the petition for paternity on behalf of the mother, had no authority to bring the action because there were no custody or support issues to be determined.
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Court finds man abandoned shareholder derivative claim

May 8, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
Because a man “expressly and unambiguously” abandoned his shareholder derivative claim when responding to a court demand to specify his legal claims, he cannot now assert that claim on appeal, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled.
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COA addresses evidence needed for animal fighting conviction

May 7, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
For only the second time, the Indiana Court of Appeals has addressed the issue of evidence used to obtain a conviction under I.C. 35-46-3-8, which outlaws buying or owning an animal for an animal fighting contest.
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Court of Appeals allows legal malpractice case to continue

May 7, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The legal malpractice action filed by a man who pleaded guilty to money laundering – when he had the possibility to plead guilty to a misdemeanor if not for his attorney’s actions – will proceed after the Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed the denial of the attorney’s motion for summary judgment.
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Statute doesn’t allow consecutive habitual offender sentences

May 7, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals reversed a man’s sentence for operating a vehicle while intoxicated, finding the trial court had no authority to order his present sentence, enhanced by the habitual substance offender statute, to be served consecutively to his previously enhanced sentences.
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Appeals panel reverses judgment favoring insurer

May 2, 2014
Dave Stafford
A trial court erred in granting summary judgment to an insurance company that argued a driver injured in a car crash could not collect on an underinsured motorist policy because she received payments from other sources in excess of her policy limits.
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Company that violated HICA not entitled to attorney fees

April 30, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
Because a company hired to provide water remediation services for a homeowner did not comply with the Indiana Home Improvement Contract Act, it is not entitled to recover attorney fees on its complaint against the homeowner after he didn’t pay the full amount billed.
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COA: Man not entitled to have restricted access to OWI conviction

April 30, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
Because a man committed another crime while on probation, he failed to satisfy the obligations imposed as part of his sentence, so he did not qualify to have access to his conviction records restricted under Indiana Code 35-38-8, the Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed.
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Court orders hearing on child’s best interests

April 30, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals has reversed an order giving a father physical custody of his child. The child’s maternal grandparents had assumed guardianship of the child following the death of the child’s mother. 
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COA affirms $120,000 for student attacked at school

April 30, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
A former Gary high school student is entitled to $120,000 in damages following an attack in a hallway during school, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled Wednesday. Gary Community School Corp. appealed the jury award.
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Lessor entitled to judgment that oil and gas lease expired

April 30, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
Partial summary judgment for the lessor was affirmed Wednesday by the Indiana Court of Appeals in a contract dispute involving an oil and gas lease of land in Sullivan County.
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Majority reverses teen’s underage drinking adjudication

April 29, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals wanted to make a point “loud and clear” Tuesday: Suspicion of criminal activity is not an exception to the warrant requirement. The majority reversed a teen’s adjudication as a delinquent based on acts of illegal possession of alcohol, illegal consumption of alcohol, and aiding illegal consumption of alcohol.
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DNA in glove at scene sufficient to uphold burglary conviction

April 29, 2014
Dave Stafford
The Indiana Supreme Court on Tuesday reinstated a conviction vacated by the Indiana Court of Appeals. The high court unanimously affirmed a conviction of Class C felony burglary with a habitual offender enhancement, finding a glove at the crime scene with the suspect’s DNA was sufficient for a jury to determine guilt.
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  1. 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.

  2. 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?

  3. I will agree with that as soon as law schools stop lying to prospective students about salaries and employment opportunities in the legal profession. There is no defense to the fraudulent numbers first year salaries they post to mislead people into going to law school.

  4. The sad thing is that no fish were thrown overboard The "greenhorn" who had never fished before those 5 days was interrogated for over 4 hours by 5 officers until his statement was illicited, "I don't want to go to prison....." The truth is that these fish were measured frozen off shore and thawed on shore. The FWC (state) officer did not know fish shrink, so the only reason that these fish could be bigger was a swap. There is no difference between a 19 1/2 fish or 19 3/4 fish, short fish is short fish, the ticket was written. In addition the FWC officer testified at trial, he does not measure fish in accordance with federal law. There was a document prepared by the FWC expert that said yes, fish shrink and if these had been measured correctly they averaged over 20 inches (offshore frozen). This was a smoke and mirror prosecution.

  5. I love this, Dave! Many congrats to you! We've come a long way from studying for the bar together! :)

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