Opinions

Opinions Sept. 12, 2016

September 12, 2016
Indiana Court of Appeals
Marc Lindsey v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)
20A03-1508-CR-1086
Criminal. Affirms Marc Lindsey’s conviction of Class D felony operating a vehicle while intoxicated.
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Opinions Sept. 9, 2016

September 9, 2016
Indiana Court of Appeals
Julie R. Waterfield v. Richard D. Waterfield
92A03-1511-PL-1968
Civil plenary. Affirms trial court’s order denying Julie R. Waterford’s request to set aside her divorce decree entered in 1997 based on the allegation of fraud committed by Richard D. Waterfield while negotiating a settlement leading to the dissolution of the marriage. Finds that Julie Waterfield failed to establish that Richard Waterfield committed fraud. Finds that Richard Waterfield is entitled to an award of attorney fees.
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Opinions Sept. 8, 2016

September 8, 2016
Indiana Court of Appeals
Thomas A. Carpenter, et al. v. The Cincinnati Specialty Underwriters Insurance Company
33A01-1602-CT-265
Civil tort. Affirms summary judgment and declaratory judgment in favor of Cincinnati Specialty. It had no obligation to make payments under a consent judgment in which Carpenter and Cincinnati’s insured, Lovell’s Lounge, agreed Carpenter’s injuries were caused by Lovell’s Lounge’s negligence or that Lovell’s was vicariously liable for injuries Carpenter sustained when he was punched in the jaw by patron Jerry Dean Johnson. Finds the consent judgment was obtained by bad faith or collusion, collateral estoppel does not apply, and CSU is not bound by the consent judgment.
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Opinions Sept. 7, 2016

September 7, 2016
Indiana Court of Appeals
In the Matter of: J.B., A Child in Need of Services: S.M. (Mother) v. The Indiana Department of Child Services (mem. dec.)
47A01-1604-JC-765
Juvenile CHINS. Affirms J.B.’s designation as a child in need of services.
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Opinions Sept. 6, 2016

September 6, 2016
Indiana Court of Appeals
Brian W. Ellison v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)
92A05-1604-CR-964
Criminal. Affirms Ellison’s designation as a credit-restricted felon. Finds sufficient evidence to support the trial court’s determination that Ellison molested A.E. on or after July 1, 2008, the effective date of the credit-restricted felon statute.
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Opinions Sept. 2, 2016

September 2, 2016
Indiana Court of Appeals
In the Matter of the Commitment of H.F. v. Eskenazi Health/Midtown Clinic (mem. dec.)
49A02-1602-MH-335
Mental health. Affirms order for temporary involuntary civil commitment, not to exceed 90 days. 
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Opinions Sept. 1, 2016

September 1, 2016
Indiana Supreme Court
In the Matter of: Harold E. Bean
49S00-1601-DI-2
Discipline. Disbars Bean for engaging in attorney misconduct while the elected clerk-treasurer of the town of Warren Park. He pleaded guilty to theft and official misconduct as Class D felonies after writing dozens of checks to himself from town funds.
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Opinions Aug. 31, 2016

August 31, 2016
Indiana Court of Appeals
George P. Broadbent, and Plainfield Village, LP v. Fifth Third Bank
32A01-1602-MF-345
Mortgage foreclosure. Affirms summary judgment for the bank. The trial court properly interpreted the guaranties of the contract and applied the guaranties’ terms to calculate Broadbent’s liability.
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Opinions Aug. 30, 2016

August 30, 2016
Indiana Court of Appeals
In re the Paternity of: L.S., Chen Su v. James Lowe (mem. dec.)
49A02-1512-JP-2196
Juvenile. Affirms order modifying custody of L.S. to sole legal custody of father, parenting time and child support.
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Opinions Aug. 29, 2016

August 29, 2016
Indiana Supreme Court
Michael Day v. State of Indiana
24S05-1606-CR-358
Criminal. Affirms Day’s disorderly conduct conviction. Concludes that the “fighting” subsection of the disorderly conduct statute does not contain a public disturbance element but does require a physical altercation. His intentional spitting provided sufficient evidence of a physical altercation.
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Opinions Aug. 26, 2016

August 26, 2016
Indiana Court of Appeals
Dorothy Williams v. State of Indiana
46A03-1511-CR-1913
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class B misdemeanor disorderly conduct. Finds the state’s impairment of Williams’ speech was constitutional because it was rational and her speech was politically ambiguous for purposes of an Article I, Section 9 affirmative defense.
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Opinions Aug. 25, 2016

August 25, 2016
Indiana Court of Appeals
In re the Scott David Hurwich 1986 Irrevocable Trust Scott D. Hurwich v. Stacey R. MacDonald
71A03-1602-TR-301
Trust. Reverses the probate court’s order dismissing Hurwich’s complaint. Hurwich’s appeal was timely filed and dismissal of his complaint was not appropriate. Specific factual support is not required under Indiana Trial Rule 8(A) as factual specifics may not be available until discovery is made.
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Opinions Aug. 24, 2016

August 24, 2016
Indiana Court of Appeals
Christopher Compton v. State of Indiana
82A01-1511-CR-1997
Criminal. Affirms conviction of three counts of felony murder and the finding that Compton is a habitual offender. The trial court did not deprive Compton of due process when it allowed the media to tweet live updates of his trial from the courtroom, nor did it err in admitting evidence of Compton’s incriminatory statements. Calls for guidance on social media use during criminal trials.
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Opinions Aug. 23, 2016

August 23, 2016

Indiana Supreme Court
Kristy Burnell v. State of Indiana
29S02-1512-CR-707
Criminal. Affirms trial court decision to not terminate license suspension. Holds a refusal to submit to a chemical test occurs when the conduct of the motorist is such that a reasonable person in the officer’s position would be justified in believing the motorist was capable of refusal and manifested an unwillingness to submit to the test. Burnell has the burden of demonstrating the evidence shows her license suspension by the BMV should be overturned, and she did not carry this burden.

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Opinions Aug. 22, 2016

August 22, 2016
Indiana Court of Appeals
Douglas M. Curtis v. State of Indiana
49A02-1512-CR-2293
Criminal. Reverses conviction of Class A misdemeanor criminal trespass. Because the apartment complex where Curtis had been living with his father provided him a 48-hour grace period to remove his property and Curtis was arrested while in the process of gathering his personal belongings, there was insufficient evidence to support the conviction.
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Opinions Aug. 19, 2016

August 19, 2016
Indiana Court of Appeals
Amir Basic and Gerard Arthus v. Numan A. Amouri, Mohamad H. Mohajeri, Mohammad Aslam Chaudhry, Adnan Khan, Imdad Zackariya, Mohammad Sirajuddin, Sarah Shaikh, Aijaz Shaikh, Ismail Al-Ani, et al.
71A03-1510-PL-1820
Civil plenary. Affirms trial court findings that it lacked subject matter jurisdiction, appellants lacked standing and its decision to quash certain subpoenas in a dispute brought against the imam of the Islamic Society of Michiana Inc., by a Amir Basic, a member of the board of directors and trustees, after he was removed. Finds Basic and Gerard Arthus acted in procedural bad faith. Grants appellees’ request for damages and remands to the trial court for a determination of those damages.
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Opinions Aug. 18, 2016

August 18, 2016
Indiana Court of Appeals
J.B. Hunt Transport, Inc., and Terry L. Brown, Jr. v. The Guardianship of Kristen Zak
45A03-1506-CT-670
Civil tort. Affirms jury verdict in favor of the guardianship of Kristen Zak on the guardianship’s negligence claim. Zak’s vehicle slid on snowy conditions on I-65 and crashed into a J.B. Hunt semi that had jackknifed an hour prior. Finds there were multiple questions of fact that needed to be answered by a jury and there is no basis on which to second-guess the jury. There are also no questions of law warranting reversal.
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Opinions Aug. 17, 2016

August 17, 2016
Indiana Court of Appeals
Robert Weathers v. State of Indiana
49A04-1601-CR-3
Criminal. Affirms Level 5 felony possession of a handgun without a license conviction. The trial court did not abuse its discretion in admitting the handgun at trial, which was found after a warrantless inventory search of Weathers’ vehicle after he was stopped and arrested for driving without a license.
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Opinions Aug. 16, 2016

August 16, 2016
Indiana Supreme Court
In Re the Involuntary Termination of the Parent-Child Relationship of R.S., (Minor Child), and R.S. (Father) v. Marion County Department of Child Services and Child Advocates, Inc.
49S04-1606-JT-350
Juvenile. Reverses termination of father’s parental rights. The trial court’s findings do not clearly and convincingly support its conclusion that termination of father’s parental rights is in the best interests of the son.
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Opinions Aug. 15, 2016

August 15, 2016
The following 7th Circuit Court of Appeals opinion was posted after IL deadline Friday:
United States of America v. Darrell L. Duncan
15-3485
Appeal from U.S. District Court, Northern District of Indiana, South Bend Division. Judge Robert L. Miller Jr.
Criminal. Holds that a conviction for robbery under the Indiana statute qualifies under the still-valid elements clause of the Armed Career Criminal Act definition of violent felony. Robbery by placing a person in fear of bodily injury under Indiana law involves an explicit or implicit threat of physical force and therefore qualifies as a violent felony under 18 U.S.C. Section 924(e)(2)(B)(i.)
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Opinions Aug. 12, 2016

August 12, 2016
Indiana Court of Appeals
Bryan Modglin v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)
18A02-1512-CR-2113
Criminal. Affirms convictions of Class A felony attempted murder, Class C felony battery resulting in serious bodily injury, Class D felony battery resulting in bodily injury and Class A misdemeanor battery.
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Opinions Aug. 11, 2016

August 11, 2016
The following opinions were posted after IL deadline Wednesday:
7th Circuit Court of Appeals

Alphonse D. Owens v. LVNV Funding, LLC; Joshua Birtchman v. LVNV Funding LLC, et al.
15-2044, 15-2082, 15-2109
Appeal from U.S. District Court, Southern District of Indiana, Indianapolis Division. Judge Jane Magnus-Stinson.
Civil. Affirms in the three cases the District Court’s grant of the defendant debt collector’s motion to dismiss lawsuits alleging that the act of filing a proof of claim on a stale debt violates the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. The plaintiffs had not stated claims for relief under the Act. Chief Judge Diane Wood dissents.
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Opinions Aug. 10, 2016

August 10, 2016
Indiana Court of Appeals
Peter Aghimien and Mable Aghimien v. Mark Fox (mem. dec.)
71A03-1602-CT-291
Civil tort. Affirms denial of the Aghimiens’ motion for summary judgment and the grant of Fox’s motion for summary judgment on the Aghimiens’ lawsuit claiming defamation, tortious interference with a business relationship, intentional infliction of emotional distress and loss of consortium.
 

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Opinions Aug. 9, 2016

August 9, 2016
Indiana Court of Appeals
Edgardo A. Henriquez v. State of Indiana
20A04-1510-CR-1841
Criminal. Majority affirms Edgardo A. Henriquez’s conviction and 30-year executed sentence for Class A felony child molesting, finding that he was not harmed by the trial court’s failure to advise him of his earliest and latest possible release dates pursuant to Indiana Code 35-38-1-1(b).Urges the Legislature to revisit the statute which the panel found imposes an impracticable burden on trial courts. Judge John Baker dissents and would affirm the conviction and remand to the trial court to include the statutorily required advisement in a new sentencing order.
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Opinions Aug. 5, 2016

August 5, 2016
Indiana Court of Appeals
Jason Dean Hubbell v. State of Indiana
03A01-1511-PC-1927
Post conviction. Reverses denial of a petition for post-conviction relief. Hubbell was deprived a certified copy of the court record from which to question his former counsel on his claim of ineffective assistance of counsel in his murder conviction. Remands to the post-conviction court with orders to obtain the direct appeal record and permit Hubbell to question witnesses and present arguments with the benefit of a certified Record of Proceedings.
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  1. California Sex Offender Management Board (CASOMB) End of Year Report 2014. (page 13) Under the current system many local registering agencies are challenged just keeping up with registration paperwork. It takes an hour or more to process each registrant, the majority of whom are low risk offenders. As a result law enforcement cannot monitor higher risk offenders more intensively in the community due to the sheer numbers on the registry. Some of the consequences of lengthy and unnecessary registration requirements actually destabilize the life’s of registrants and those -such as families- whose lives are often substantially impacted. Such consequences are thought to raise levels of known risk factors while providing no discernible benefit in terms of community safety. The full report is available online at. http://www.casomb.org/index.cfm?pid=231 National Institute of Justice (NIJ) US Department of Justice Office of Justice Programs United States of America. The overall conclusion is that Megan’s law has had no demonstrated effect on sexual offenses in New Jersey, calling into question the justification for start-up and operational costs. Megan’s Law has had no effect on time to first rearrest for known sex offenders and has not reduced sexual reoffending. Neither has it had an impact on the type of sexual reoffense or first-time sexual offense. The study also found that the law had not reduced the number of victims of sexual offenses. The full report is available online at. https://www.ncjrs.gov/app/publications/abstract.aspx? ID=247350 The University of Chicago Press for The Booth School of Business of the University of Chicago and The University of Chicago Law School Article DOI: 10.1086/658483 Conclusion. The data in these three data sets do not strongly support the effectiveness of sex offender registries. The national panel data do not show a significant decrease in the rate of rape or the arrest rate for sexual abuse after implementation of a registry via the Internet. The BJS data that tracked individual sex offenders after their release in 1994 did not show that registration had a significantly negative effect on recidivism. And the D.C. crime data do not show that knowing the location of sex offenders by census block can help protect the locations of sexual abuse. This pattern of noneffectiveness across the data sets does not support the conclusion that sex offender registries are successful in meeting their objectives of increasing public safety and lowering recidivism rates. The full report is available online at. http://www.jstor.org/stable/full/10.1086/658483 These are not isolated conclusions but are the same outcomes in the majority of conclusions and reports on this subject from multiple government agencies and throughout the academic community. People, including the media and other organizations should not rely on and reiterate the statements and opinions of the legislators or other people as to the need for these laws because of the high recidivism rates and the high risk offenders pose to the public which simply is not true and is pure hyperbole and fiction. They should rely on facts and data collected and submitted in reports from the leading authorities and credible experts in the fields such as the following. California Sex Offender Management Board (CASOMB) Sex offender recidivism rate for a new sex offense is 0.8% (page 30) The full report is available online at http://www.cdcr.ca.gov/Adult_Research_Branch/Research_Documents/2014_Outcome_Evaluation_Report_7-6-2015.pdf California Sex Offender Management Board (CASOMB) (page 38) Sex offender recidivism rate for a new sex offense is 1.8% The full report is available online at. http://www.google.com/url?sa= t&source=web&cd=1&ved= 0CCEQFjAA&url=http%3A%2F% 2Fwww.cdcr.ca.gov%2FAdult_ Research_Branch%2FResearch_ documents%2FOutcome_ evaluation_Report_2013.pdf&ei= C9dSVePNF8HfoATX-IBo&usg=AFQjCNE9I6ueHz-o2mZUnuxLPTyiRdjDsQ Bureau of Justice Statistics 5 PERCENT OF SEX OFFENDERS REARRESTED FOR ANOTHER SEX CRIME WITHIN 3 YEARS OF PRISON RELEASE WASHINGTON, D.C. Within 3 years following their 1994 state prison release, 5.3 percent of sex offenders (men who had committed rape or sexual assault) were rearrested for another sex crime, the Justice Department’s Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) announced today. The full report is available online at. http://www.bjs.gov/content/pub/press/rsorp94pr.cfm Document title; A Model of Static and Dynamic Sex Offender Risk Assessment Author: Robert J. McGrath, Michael P. Lasher, Georgia F. Cumming Document No.: 236217 Date Received: October 2011 Award Number: 2008-DD-BX-0013 Findings: Study of 759 adult male offenders under community supervision Re-arrest rate: 4.6% after 3-year follow-up The sexual re-offense rates for the 746 released in 2005 are much lower than what many in the public have been led to expect or believe. These low re-offense rates appear to contradict a conventional wisdom that sex offenders have very high sexual re-offense rates. The full report is available online at. https://www.ncjrs.gov/pdffiles1/nij/grants/236217.pdf Document Title: SEX OFFENDER SENTENCING IN WASHINGTON STATE: RECIDIVISM RATES BY: Washington State Institute For Public Policy. A study of 4,091 sex offenders either released from prison or community supervision form 1994 to 1998 and examined for 5 years Findings: Sex Crime Recidivism Rate: 2.7% Link to Report: http://www.oncefallen.com/files/Washington_SO_Recid_2005.pdf Document Title: Indiana’s Recidivism Rates Decline for Third Consecutive Year BY: Indiana Department of Correction 2009. The recidivism rate for sex offenders returning on a new sex offense was 1.05%, one of the lowest in the nation. In a time when sex offenders continue to face additional post-release requirements that often result in their return to prison for violating technical rules such as registration and residency restrictions, the instances of sex offenders returning to prison due to the commitment of a new sex crime is extremely low. Findings: sex offenders returning on a new sex offense was 1.05% Link to Report: http://www.in.gov/idoc/files/RecidivismRelease.pdf Once again, These are not isolated conclusions but are the same outcomes in the majority of reports on this subject from multiple government agencies and throughout the academic community. No one can doubt that child sexual abuse is traumatic and devastating. The question is not whether the state has an interest in preventing such harm, but whether current laws are effective in doing so. Megan’s law is a failure and is destroying families and their children’s lives and is costing tax payers millions upon millions of dollars. The following is just one example of the estimated cost just to implement SORNA which many states refused to do. From Justice Policy Institute. Estimated cost to implement SORNA Here are some of the estimates made in 2009 expressed in 2014 current dollars: California, $66M; Florida, $34M; Illinois, $24M; New York, $35M; Pennsylvania, $22M; Texas, $44M. In 2014 dollars, Virginia’s estimate for implementation was $14M, and the annual operating cost after that would be $10M. For the US, the total is $547M. That’s over half a billion dollars – every year – for something that doesn’t work. http://www.justicepolicy.org/images/upload/08-08_FAC_SORNACosts_JJ.pdf. Attempting to use under-reporting to justify the existence of the registry is another myth, or a lie. This is another form of misinformation perpetrated by those who either have a fiduciary interest in continuing the unconstitutional treatment of a disfavored group or are seeking to justify their need for punishment for people who have already paid for their crime by loss of their freedom through incarceration and are now attempting to reenter society as honest citizens. When this information is placed into the public’s attention by naive media then you have to wonder if the media also falls into one of these two groups that are not truly interested in reporting the truth. Both of these groups of people that have that type of mentality can be classified as vigilantes, bullies, or sociopaths, and are responsible for the destruction of our constitutional values and the erosion of personal freedoms in this country. I think the media or other organizations need to do a in depth investigation into the false assumptions and false data that has been used to further these laws and to research all the collateral damages being caused by these laws and the unconstitutional injustices that are occurring across the country. They should include these injustices in their report so the public can be better informed on what is truly happening in this country on this subject. Thank you for your time.

  2. Freedom as granted in the Constitution cannot be summarily disallowed without Due Process. Unable to to to the gym, church, bowling alley? What is this 1984 level nonsense? Congrats to Brian for having the courage to say that this was enough! and Congrats to the ACLU on the win!

  3. America's hyper-phobia about convicted sex offenders must end! Politicians must stop pandering to knee-jerk public hysteria. And the public needs to learn the facts. Research by the California Sex Offender Management Board as shown a recidivism rate for convicted sex offenders of less than 1%. Less than 1%! Furthermore, research shows that by year 17 after their conviction, a convicted sex offender is no more likely to commit a new sex offense than any other member of the public. Put away your torches and pitchforks. Get the facts. Stop hysteria.

  4. He was convicted 23 years ago. How old was he then? He probably was a juvenile. People do stupid things, especially before their brain is fully developed. Why are we continuing to punish him in 2016? If he hasn't re-offended by now, it's very, very unlikely he ever will. He paid for his mistake sufficiently. Let him live his life in peace.

  5. This year, Notre Dame actually enrolled an equal amount of male and female students.

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