Indiana Court of Appeals

COA judge applications due May 9

April 6, 2012
IL Staff
The Indiana Judicial Nominating Commission has announced its timeline for selecting the replacement for Judge Carr Darden, who is retiring this summer from the Indiana Court of Appeals.
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Appellate court dismisses small claims venue case

April 5, 2012
Michael Hoskins
The Indiana Court of Appeals has determined that a small claims venue question is not on the list of authorized interlocutory appeals, so it dismissed a case arising out of southern Indiana.
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Homeowner association has authority to decide on new home proposal

April 5, 2012
Michael Hoskins
The Indiana Court of Appeals has upheld a lower court’s ruling against two homeowners challenging their homeowners association’s interpretation of covenants on building a new home.
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Majority reverses conviction based on meth manufacturing

April 5, 2012
Michael Hoskins
A divided Indiana Court of Appeals has determined that the state can’t use the amount of manufacturing materials and empty packets of ingredients at a person’s home to prove he was dealing in that substance, without clear evidence the drug would have been produced in that amount.
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Court preserves woman's day in court despite delays

April 5, 2012
Michael Hoskins
The Indiana Court of Appeals has reversed a trial judge’s order to dismiss a woman’s medical malpractice case because of her failure to comply with discovery deadlines and trial rules, finding that the decision to deny her a day in court was too harsh.
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Panel disagrees on foreclosure settlement resolution

April 5, 2012
Michael Hoskins
The Indiana Court of Appeals has ruled that federal law and housing regulations require that deeds in lieu of foreclosure release the borrower from any mortgage obligation, and the mortgage company issuing an agreement can use that federal language in the contract.
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Summary judgment affirmed in favor of attorney

April 5, 2012
Jenny Montgomery
An attorney who withdrew as counsel for two related family-owned businesses did not make false and defamatory statements in explaining his withdrawal, the Indiana Court of Appeals held.
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COA holds false customer review violates no-contact order

April 5, 2012
Jenny Montgomery
The Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed a trial court’s revocation of probation for a man who wrote a false review of his father’s cleaning company.
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Judges affirm decision in speedy trial claim

April 4, 2012
Michael Hoskins
A Hendricks County judge did not err in denying a man’s motion that his criminal case be discharged because the state failed to conduct a speedy trial within one year of charges being filed, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled.
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Court rules on estate's claim against insurer

April 4, 2012
Michael Hoskins
The Indiana Court of Appeals has upheld a judge’s ruling against a California reciprocal insurance exchange in a dispute over whether the insurer would have to pay part of a million dollar judgment.
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Court upholds child molester's no-contact condition

April 4, 2012
Michael Hoskins
The Indiana Court of Appeals has ruled that a man convicted of two child molesting counts didn’t have his constitutional rights violated because no double jeopardy violation occurred, and the trial judge’s probation condition that he have no contact with anyone younger than 18 is constitutional.
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Appellate court rules on bona fide purchaser dispute

April 4, 2012
Michael Hoskins
The Indiana Court of Appeals has upheld a ruling by a Marion Superior judge in a land title case, finding that a bona fide property purchaser can not be held responsible for deficiencies in the court record that led to the underlying dispute.
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Court of Appeals revises robbery sentence

April 3, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals has ordered that a man’s robbery sentence be reduced because that conviction and sentence were not allowed due to double jeopardy. The man’s sentence for murder, robbery and rape dropped from 160 years to 130 years.
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Judges affirm part of sentence, reverse enhancements on double jeopardy grounds

March 30, 2012
Jenny Montgomery
A woman whose dogs attacked and injured two people failed to prove that the evidence was insufficient to support her convictions. But the Court of Appeals agreed that a portion of her overall sentence should be vacated based on double jeopardy grounds.
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Judges uphold original decision in Clark County surveyor's suit

March 30, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals granted the former Clark County surveyor’s request for a rehearing on its decision regarding his involvement in two county projects, but found his assertions on rehearing are without merit.
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Trial court erred in modifying custody in favor of father

March 30, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
A trial court’s decision to grant a father’s motion to modify custody and prevent his ex-wife from relocating with their son was clearly erroneous, the Indiana Court of Appeals concluded in reversing the decision. The lower court ruling virtually ignored the immense benefit the mother’s new position in Tennessee would bring to her and her son.
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Judges rule in favor of homeowner

March 30, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
A trial court did not err when it found in favor of a homeowner on his breach of contract claim against the contractor he hired to repair his clay tile roof following a storm, the Indiana Court of Appeals concluded.
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Judges: Couple lacked standing to challenge road closure

March 30, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals ruled that a trial court properly dismissed a couple’s complaint over the closure of an access road into cemetery where their daughter is buried.
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Home improvement contract enforceable

March 30, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
Even though a restoration company’s contract with a homeowner did not satisfy the requirements of the Home Improvement Contracts Act, that did not automatically render the contract void, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled. The judges reversed judgment in favor of the homeowner and ordered he pay the company for the work it performed.
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COA affirms judgment for bank in replevin action

March 30, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals has upheld summary judgment for a bank in its attempt to repossess a motorcycle, finding that while the purchasers of the motorcycle had an interest in it, their interest was not superior to the bank’s perfect security interest.
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COA adopts Restatement (Third) of Torts Section 14

March 29, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed the trial court in concluding a new trial is warranted to determine allocation of fault in a man’s murder. At issue is the percentage of fault to allocate to a criminal defendant and his former employer.
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COA rules in favor of DOC employee

March 29, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals has found the trial court should have granted summary judgment to a Department of Correction employee on a man's claim that he was personally deprived a liberty interest when the DOC refused to remove his name from the sex offender registry.
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Appellate judges disagree about dismissal of paternity petition

March 29, 2012
Jenny Montgomery
The Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed a trial court in dismissing a paternity petition, but one judge dissented, saying the ruling now leaves the child with no legally recognized father.
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Judges uphold public intox conviction

March 29, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed a man’s public intoxication conviction, finding police had reasonable suspicion the man was intoxicated, and evidence is sufficient to support the conviction.
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COA upholds drug conviction

March 29, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals rejected a man’s argument that his charges should be dismissed or he deserved a mistrial, finding sufficient evidence to support his dealing in cocaine conviction.
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  1. Applause, applause, applause ..... but, is this duty to serve the constitutional order not much more incumbent upon the State, whose only aim is to be pure and unadulterated justice, than defense counsel, who is also charged with gaining a result for a client? I agree both are responsible, but it seems to me that the government attorneys bear a burden much heavier than defense counsel .... "“I note, much as we did in Mechling v. State, 16 N.E.3d 1015 (Ind. Ct. App. 2014), trans. denied, that the attorneys representing the State and the defendant are both officers of the court and have a responsibility to correct any obvious errors at the time they are committed."

  2. Do I have to hire an attorney to get co-guardianship of my brother? My father has guardianship and my older sister was his co-guardian until this Dec 2014 when she passed and my father was me to go on as the co-guardian, but funds are limit and we need to get this process taken care of quickly as our fathers health isn't the greatest. So please advise me if there is anyway to do this our self or if it requires a lawyer? Thank you

  3. I have been on this program while on parole from 2011-2013. No person should be forced mentally to share private details of their personal life with total strangers. Also giving permission for a mental therapist to report to your parole agent that your not participating in group therapy because you don't have the financial mean to be in the group therapy. I was personally singled out and sent back three times for not having money and also sent back within the six month when you aren't to be sent according to state law. I will work to het this INSOMM's removed from this state. I also had twelve or thirteen parole agents with a fifteen month period. Thanks for your time.

  4. Our nation produces very few jurists of the caliber of Justice DOUGLAS and his peers these days. Here is that great civil libertarian, who recognized government as both a blessing and, when corrupted by ideological interests, a curse: "Once the investigator has only the conscience of government as a guide, the conscience can become ‘ravenous,’ as Cromwell, bent on destroying Thomas More, said in Bolt, A Man For All Seasons (1960), p. 120. The First Amendment mirrors many episodes where men, harried and harassed by government, sought refuge in their conscience, as these lines of Thomas More show: ‘MORE: And when we stand before God, and you are sent to Paradise for doing according to your conscience, *575 and I am damned for not doing according to mine, will you come with me, for fellowship? ‘CRANMER: So those of us whose names are there are damned, Sir Thomas? ‘MORE: I don't know, Your Grace. I have no window to look into another man's conscience. I condemn no one. ‘CRANMER: Then the matter is capable of question? ‘MORE: Certainly. ‘CRANMER: But that you owe obedience to your King is not capable of question. So weigh a doubt against a certainty—and sign. ‘MORE: Some men think the Earth is round, others think it flat; it is a matter capable of question. But if it is flat, will the King's command make it round? And if it is round, will the King's command flatten it? No, I will not sign.’ Id., pp. 132—133. DOUGLAS THEN WROTE: Where government is the Big Brother,11 privacy gives way to surveillance. **909 But our commitment is otherwise. *576 By the First Amendment we have staked our security on freedom to promote a multiplicity of ideas, to associate at will with kindred spirits, and to defy governmental intrusion into these precincts" Gibson v. Florida Legislative Investigation Comm., 372 U.S. 539, 574-76, 83 S. Ct. 889, 908-09, 9 L. Ed. 2d 929 (1963) Mr. Justice DOUGLAS, concurring. I write: Happy Memorial Day to all -- God please bless our fallen who lived and died to preserve constitutional governance in our wonderful series of Republics. And God open the eyes of those government officials who denounce the constitutions of these Republics by arbitrary actions arising out capricious motives.

  5. From back in the day before secularism got a stranglehold on Hoosier jurists comes this great excerpt via Indiana federal court judge Allan Sharp, dedicated to those many Indiana government attorneys (with whom I have dealt) who count the law as a mere tool, an optional tool that is not to be used when political correctness compels a more acceptable result than merely following the path that the law directs: ALLEN SHARP, District Judge. I. In a scene following a visit by Henry VIII to the home of Sir Thomas More, playwriter Robert Bolt puts the following words into the mouths of his characters: Margaret: Father, that man's bad. MORE: There is no law against that. ROPER: There is! God's law! MORE: Then God can arrest him. ROPER: Sophistication upon sophistication! MORE: No, sheer simplicity. The law, Roper, the law. I know what's legal not what's right. And I'll stick to what's legal. ROPER: Then you set man's law above God's! MORE: No, far below; but let me draw your attention to a fact I'm not God. The currents and eddies of right and wrong, which you find such plain sailing, I can't navigate. I'm no voyager. But in the thickets of law, oh, there I'm a forester. I doubt if there's a man alive who could follow me there, thank God... ALICE: (Exasperated, pointing after Rich) While you talk, he's gone! MORE: And go he should, if he was the Devil himself, until he broke the law! ROPER: So now you'd give the Devil benefit of law! MORE: Yes. What would you do? Cut a great road through the law to get after the Devil? ROPER: I'd cut down every law in England to do that! MORE: (Roused and excited) Oh? (Advances on Roper) And when the last law was down, and the Devil turned round on you where would you hide, Roper, the laws being flat? (He leaves *1257 him) This country's planted thick with laws from coast to coast man's laws, not God's and if you cut them down and you're just the man to do it d'you really think you would stand upright in the winds that would blow then? (Quietly) Yes, I'd give the Devil benefit of law, for my own safety's sake. ROPER: I have long suspected this; this is the golden calf; the law's your god. MORE: (Wearily) Oh, Roper, you're a fool, God's my god... (Rather bitterly) But I find him rather too (Very bitterly) subtle... I don't know where he is nor what he wants. ROPER: My God wants service, to the end and unremitting; nothing else! MORE: (Dryly) Are you sure that's God! He sounds like Moloch. But indeed it may be God And whoever hunts for me, Roper, God or Devil, will find me hiding in the thickets of the law! And I'll hide my daughter with me! Not hoist her up the mainmast of your seagoing principles! They put about too nimbly! (Exit More. They all look after him). Pgs. 65-67, A MAN FOR ALL SEASONS A Play in Two Acts, Robert Bolt, Random House, New York, 1960. Linley E. Pearson, Atty. Gen. of Indiana, Indianapolis, for defendants. Childs v. Duckworth, 509 F. Supp. 1254, 1256 (N.D. Ind. 1981) aff'd, 705 F.2d 915 (7th Cir. 1983)

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