Opinions

Opinions April 6, 2016

April 6, 2016
Indiana Court of Appeals
Larry J. Jernas and R & R Horse Haven, Inc. v. Kevin J. Gumz
75A03-1511-CC-1903
Civil collection. Affirms Kevin Gumz can keep $25,000 deposit after sale of real estate did not go through. Rejects claims the agreement was invalid because it was indefinite or not properly executed.
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Opinions April 5, 2016

April 5, 2016
Indiana Supreme Court
Michael Ackerman v. State of Indiana
49S00-1409-CR-770
Criminal. Affirms Michael Ackerman’s conviction and sentence for second-degree murder. He was sentenced to life in prison with the possibility of parole. The court found an admission of an autopsy report into evidence does not violate the defendant’s right to confront witnesses against him when the pathologist who performed the autopsy against him was not available to testify.
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Opinions April 4, 2016

April 4, 2016
Indiana Court of Appeals
Richard Lee Dulin v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)

79A05-1508-CR-1155
Criminal. Affirms sentence of five years with two suspended to probation for conviction of Level 5 felony operating a vehicle while privileges are suspended for life and Class A misdemeanor resisting law enforcement.
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Opinions March 31, 2016

March 31, 2016
Indiana Court of Appeals
Noe Escamilla v. Shiel Sexton Company, Inc.
54A01-1506-CT-602
Civil tort. Affirms denial of Noe Escamillia’s motion in limine, ruling that evidence of his immigration status would be admissible and his expert testimony based on future lost wages based on what he could have made in the U.S. would not be admissible. Affirms grant of Shiel Sexton’s motion to exclude Escamillia’s experts. Remands for further proceedings. Judge John Baker dissents.
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Opinions March 30, 2016

March 30, 2016
Indiana Supreme Court
State of Indiana v. Brian J. Taylor

46S04-1509-CR-552
Criminal. Reverses and remands the prospective blanket suppression of police officers’ testimony in a murder case. Even though the officers’ testimony is presumptively tainted by the eavesdropping, they may yet have an independent basis for certain limited testimony.
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Federal court denies state's request for stay in Exodus case

March 29, 2016
IL Staff
A federal judge has denied the state’s motion for a stay on a preliminary injunction granted last month in a lawsuit challenging Gov. Mike Pence’s suspension of funds to groups that resettle Syrian refugees in Indiana.
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Opinions March 29, 2016

March 29, 2016
Indiana Court of Appeals
3155 Development Way, LLC v. APM Rental Properties, LLC
10A01-1508-PL-1235
Civil plenary. Affirms rescission of a contract to purchase a tract of land after the court found a company relied on a misrepresentation to purchase it.
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Opinions March 28, 2016

March 28, 2016
Indiana Court of Appeals
Rogers Group, Inc. v. Tippecanoe County, et al.
79A02-1506-PL-694
Civil plenary. Affirms one zoning ordinance as enforceable and a second not enforceable. Tippecanoe County’s requirement of a special exception to mine in a flood plain is valid and enforceable, but a quarry ban that prohibits new mines within two miles of residential areas is not because it was not enacted in accordance with Indiana’s zoning statutes.
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Opinions March 24, 2016

March 24, 2016
Indiana Court of Appeals
In the Matter of: D.W. (Minor Child), and, T.W. (Mother) v. The Ind. Dept. of Child Services
45A03-1507-JC-842
Juvenile. Dismisses appeal of order terminating mother’s visitation with her daughter and denying her motion to modify a CHINS action. Dismisses for lack of subject matter jurisdiction because the trial court’s order is not a final judgment.
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Opinions March 23, 2016

March 23, 2016
Indiana Court of Appeals
Cheryl L. Underwood v. Thomas Bunger, in his capacity as the Personal Representative of The Estate of Kenneth K. Kinney; Judith M. Fulford; and Sheree Demming
53A01-1509-MI-1305
Miscellaneous. Affirms grant of the estate of Kenneth K. Kinney’s motion to dismiss. The estate was not a proper defendant in Underwood’s claim for partition.
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Opinions March 22, 2016

March 22, 2016

Indiana Supreme Court
State of Indiana, Acting on Behalf of the Indiana Family & Social Services Administration v. International Business Machines Corporation  

49S02-1408-PL-513.
Civil plenary. Reverses trial court ruling that IBM was not in material breach of its master services agreement to administer Indiana’s welfare systems under a $1.3 billion contract that the state terminated for cause. Summarily affirms the Court of Appeals on all other  issues:  affirming the trial court’s award of $40 million in assignment fees and $9,510,795 in equipment fees to IBM; affirming the trial court’s denial of deferred fees to IBM; and reversing the trial court’s award of $2,570,621 in early termination close out payments and $10,632,333 in prejudgment interest to IBM. Remands to the trial court to determine the amount of fees IBM is entitled to for two change orders, and for calculation of the parties’ damages, including any appropriate offsets to the state as a result of IBM’s material breach of the MSA.   

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Opinions March 21, 2016

March 21, 2016
Indiana Court of Appeals
Kulon N. Lewis, Jr. v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)
02A03-1508-CR-1140
Criminal. Affirms Kulon Lewis Jr.’s conviction of attempted murder , a Level 1 felony, and the sentencing enhancement for using a firearm in the commission of an offense.
 

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Opinions March 18, 2016

March 18, 2016
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Opinions March 17, 2016

March 17, 2016
Indiana Court of Appeals
KS&E Sports and Edward J. Ellis v. Dwayne H. Runnels
49A02-1501-CT-42
Civil tort. Affirms denial of KS&E Sports’ motion for judgment on the pleadings against Dwayne Runnels. KS&E asserted immunity from suit arguing Runnels’ damages resulted from criminal misuse of a firearm by a third party.
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Opinions March 16, 2016

March 16, 2016
Indiana Court of Appeals
Edward P. Kramer v. Focus Realty Group, LLC, successor in interest to AES Restaurants, LLC
29A04-1508-PL-1089
Civil plenary. Affirms award of summary judgment in favor of Focus Realty Group for breach of contract after it paid $40,000 more than the correct purchase price. Kramer’s attorney had responded to a request by Focus’ attorney with a figure higher than the lease actually was.
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Opinions March 15, 2016

March 15, 2016
Indiana Supreme Court
In Re The Marriage of Amy Steele-Giri v Brian K. Steele
45S04-1512-DR-00682
Domestic relations. Affirms trial court’s denial of mother’s motion for custody modification and contempt. There was ample evidence for the trial court to concluded that a custody modification was not in the child’s best interests.
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Opinions March 14, 2016

March 14, 2016
7th Circuit Court of Appeals
Paul Dimmett v. Carolyn Colvin
15-2233
United States District Court for the Southern District of Indiana, Evansville Division, Chief Judge Richard L. Young.
Civil/Social Security disability. Reverses grant of summary judgment in favor of the Social Secuirty Administration. The denial was not a reasonable analysis of the plaintiff's claim and served to rubber stamp the agency's denial of benefits for a 33-year sheet metal journeyman who sought disability benefits due to chronic breathing difficulties and possible exposure to asbestos.
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Opinions March 11, 2016

March 11, 2016
Indiana Court of Appeals

Indiana High School Athletic Association, Inc., and Hammond Gavit High School v. Nasir Cade, et al.
45A03-1503-PL-84
Civil plenary. Reverses preliminary injunction granted in favor of the high schools and players. Remands for dismissal of claims brought by students who would have been banned from participating in the IHSAA boys’ basketball state tournament because their claims are now moot. COA says trial court erred by concluding the schools demonstrated a likelihood of success on the merits and remands to trial court.
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Opinions March 10, 2016

March 10, 2016
Indiana Court of Appeals
Tricia A. Davis Williams v. State of Indiana
29A02-1506-CR-528
Criminal. Affirms Tricia A. Davis Williams’ sentencing order after she pleaded guilty to one count of Class D felony theft. Her placement in the Department of Correction is not inappropriate.
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Opinions March 9, 2016

March 9, 2016
Indiana Court of Appeals
David Lee Marshall v. State of Indiana
20A03-1507-MI-973
Criminal. Affirms the denial of David Lee Marshall’s petition for expungement, holding the trial court could properly find, based upon Marshall’s own admission, that he had committed a crime in the relevant time period and was not entitled to the requested relief. 
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Opinions March 8, 2016

March 8, 2016
Indiana Court of Appeals
Tyrone Grayson v. State of Indiana

49A05-1505-CR-350
Criminal. Affirms Tyrone Grayson’s conviction of Class B felony unlawful possession of a firearm by a serious violent felon. An anonymous tip was sufficient probable cause for police to stop Grayson’s vehicle, where a handgun was found in plain sight.
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Opinions March 7, 2016

March 7, 2016
Indiana Tax Court

Nick Popovich v Ind. Dept. of State Revenue
49T10-1010-TA-53
Awards Nick Popovich $24,963 for successfully prosecuting his first motion to compel.

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Opinions March 4, 2016

March 4, 2016
7th Circuit Court of Appeals
Aduwali Abdukhadir Muse v. Charles A. Daniels, Warden, FCI Terre Haute
15-2646
Civil. Affirms denial of writ of habeas corpus because Muse waived the right to challenge his guilty plea based on his age when he pleaded guilty.
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Opinions March 3, 2016

March 3, 2016
Indiana Court of Appeals
Caterpillar Inc. v. William Sudlow
79A02-1507-CT-801
Civil tort. Reverses and remands summary judgment for William Sudlow in favor of Caterpillar Inc. after it found Sudlow is not entitled to relief under statute or common law. Sudlow was a Caterpillar employee who was fired after another employee observed a partially visible gun in his vehicle in the Caterpillar parking lot.
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Opinions March 2, 2016

March 2, 2016
Indiana Supreme Court
Ashonta Kenya Jackson v. State of Indiana
48S02-1509-CR-554
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class C felony corrupt business influence, holding that Indiana’s Racketeer Influenced and Criminal Organizations Act does not contain a continuity element, but rather a requirement that the pattern of crimes are “not isolated.” The evidence was sufficient to show the underlying robberies Jackson was convicted of were not isolated. Remands for revision of the sentencing order to indicate which offense was enhanced by the habitual offender adjudication.
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  1. "So we broke with England for the right to "off" our preborn progeny at will, and allow the processing plant doing the dirty deeds (dirt cheap) to profit on the marketing of those "products of conception." I was completely maleducated on our nation's founding, it would seem. (But I know the ACLU is hard at work to remedy that, too.)" Well, you know, we're just following in the footsteps of our founders who raped women, raped slaves, raped children, maimed immigrants, sold children, stole property, broke promises, broke apart families, killed natives... You know, good God fearing down home Christian folk! :/

  2. Who gives a rats behind about all the fluffy ranking nonsense. What students having to pay off debt need to know is that all schools aren't created equal and students from many schools don't have a snowball's chance of getting a decent paying job straight out of law school. Their lowly ranked lawschool won't tell them that though. When schools start honestly (accurately) reporting *those numbers, things will get interesting real quick, and the looks on student's faces will be priceless!

  3. Whilst it may be true that Judges and Justices enjoy such freedom of time and effort, it certainly does not hold true for the average working person. To say that one must 1) take a day or a half day off work every 3 months, 2) gather a list of information including recent photographs, and 3) set up a time that is convenient for the local sheriff or other such office to complete the registry is more than a bit near-sighted. This may be procedural, and hence, in the near-sighted minds of the court, not 'punishment,' but it is in fact 'punishment.' The local sheriffs probably feel a little punished too by the overwork. Registries serve to punish the offender whilst simultaneously providing the public at large with a false sense of security. The false sense of security is dangerous to the public who may not exercise due diligence by thinking there are no offenders in their locale. In fact, the registry only informs them of those who have been convicted.

  4. Unfortunately, the court doesn't understand the difference between ebidta and adjusted ebidta as they clearly got the ruling wrong based on their misunderstanding

  5. A common refrain in the comments on this website comes from people who cannot locate attorneys willing put justice over retainers. At the same time the judiciary threatens to make pro bono work mandatory, seemingly noting the same concern. But what happens to attorneys who have the chumptzah to threatened the legal status quo in Indiana? Ask Gary Welch, ask Paul Ogden, ask me. Speak truth to power, suffer horrendously accordingly. No wonder Hoosier attorneys who want to keep in good graces merely chase the dollars ... the powers that be have no concerns as to those who are ever for sale to the highest bidder ... for those even willing to compromise for $$$ never allow either justice or constitutionality to cause them to stand up to injustice or unconstitutionality. And the bad apples in the Hoosier barrel, like this one, just keep rotting.

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