Opinions

Opinions April 20, 2016

April 20, 2016
Indiana Court of Appeals
Eddie G. Love v. State of Indiana
20A05-1509-CR-1327
Criminal. Remands Eddie Love’s petition for habeas corpus to Elkhart Circuit Court with instructions to dismiss because Love improperly field his petition without permission from the court.
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Opinions April 19, 2016

April 19, 2016
Indiana Supreme Court
Citizens Action Coalition of Indiana, Energy Policy Institute, and Common Cause of Indiana v. Eric Koch, and Indiana House Republican Caucus
49S00-1510-PL-607
Civil plenary. Affirms dismissal of lawsuit seeking copies of Koch’s, and his staff’s, correspondence with various business organizations in relation to specific legislation. Holds whether the work product exception within the Indiana Access to Public Records Act applies to the Indiana General Assembly presents a non-justiciable question. Justice Rucker dissents in part with separate opinion.
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Opinions April 18, 2016

April 18, 2016
Indiana Court of Appeals
Toddrick Ogburn v. State of Indiana
82A01-1509-CR-1546
Criminal. Reverses and remands Toddrick Ogburn’s conviction of possession of marijuana with intent to deliver in an amount greater than 10 pounds, a Class C felony, because the court abused its discretion by admitting evidence in violation of the Fourth Amendment.
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Opinions April 15, 2016

April 15, 2016
Indiana Court of Appeals
Paul Angel v. Vanderburgh County Treasurer and Townsquare Media, LLC
82A04-1511-MI-1902
Miscellaneous. Reverses and remands order denying Paul Angel’s motion to establish redemption amount, finding Angel is entitled to recover from Townsquare Media under Ind. Code 6-1.1-25-12. Remands for determination of amount Angel is entitled to recover.
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Opinions April 14, 2016

April 14, 2016
Indiana Court of Appeals
Mason W. Meunier-Short v. State of Indiana
32A01-1507-CR-968
Criminal. Remands to trial court to conduct an indigency hearing at some point before Mason Meunier-Short’s probation ends. Vacates part of order imposing a $200 substance abuse fee and $200 alcohol and drug countermeasures fee. Reverses condition that would require Meunier-Short to go to school and maintain a “C” average and remands for the court to amend the probation order to give him the option to maintain fulltime employment or faithfully pursue a course of study that will equip him for suitable employment.
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Opinions April 13, 2016

April 13, 2016
Indiana Supreme Court
The following opinions were issued after IL deadline Tuesday.

William Clyde Gibson III v State of Indiana

22S00-1206-DP-00360.
Criminal. Affirms death sentence for William Clyde Gibson in murder of Stephanie Kirk, finding the trial court did not err and the sentence is not inappropriate.
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Opinions April 12, 2016

April 12, 2016
Indiana Supreme Court
Scott Hitch v. State of Indiana
49S02-1506-CR-376
Criminal. Affirms there was no violation of Scott Hitch’s Sixth Amendment right to trial by jury and evidence was sufficient to sustain his conviction of battery as a Class A misdemeanor and that he committed a crime of domestic violence. Justice Massa concurs in result with separate opinion in which Justice Dickson joins.
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Opinions April 11, 2016

April 11, 2016
Indiana Court of Appeals
Dorothea Bragg, on Behalf of Herself and All Others Similarly Situated v. Kittle's Home Furnishings, Inc.
49A02-1506-PL-653
Civil plenary. Affirms summary judgment for Kittle’s on all claims raised by former employee Dorothea Bragg against the store. Bragg alleged Kittle’s failed to pay employees earned commissions within the 10-day limit set forth in the Indiana Wage Payment Statute.

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Opinions April 8, 2016

April 8, 2016
Indiana Court of Appeals
Joshua S. Black v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)
33A01-1509-CR-1361
Criminal. Affirms Level 5 felony conviction of dealing in methamphetamine, finding the trial court did not abuse its discretion in denying Joshua Black’s motion to withdraw a guilty plea.
 

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Opinions April 7, 2016

April 7, 2016
Indiana Court of Appeals
Community Health Network v. Pamela D. Bails
49A05-1512-PL-2059
Civil plenary. Reverses and remands motion to correct error, which vacated an agreed judgment between Pamela Bails and Community Health Network from Decatur Township Small Claims Court. An agreed judgment is not appealable, absent fraud.
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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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  1. Hi there I really need help with getting my old divorce case back into court - I am still paying support on a 24 year old who has not been in school since age 16 - now living independent. My visitation with my 14 year old has never been modified; however, when convenient for her I can have him... I am paying past balance from over due support, yet earn several thousand dollars less. I would contact my original attorney but he basically molest me multiple times in Indy when I would visit.. Todd Woodmansee - I had just came out and had know idea what to do... I have heard he no longer practices. Please help1

  2. Yes diversity is so very important. With justice Rucker off ... the court is too white. Still too male. No Hispanic justice. No LGBT justice. And there are other checkboxes missing as well. This will not do. I say hold the seat until a physically handicapped Black Lesbian of Hispanic heritage and eastern religious creed with bipolar issues can be located. Perhaps an international search, with a preference for third world candidates, is indicated. A non English speaker would surely increase our diversity quotient!!!

  3. First, I want to thank Justice Rucker for his many years of public service, not just at the appellate court level for over 25 years, but also when he served the people of Lake County as a Deputy Prosecutor, City Attorney for Gary, IN, and in private practice in a smaller, highly diverse community with a history of serious economic challenges, ethnic tensions, and recently publicized but apparently long-standing environmental health risks to some of its poorest residents. Congratulations for having the dedication & courage to practice law in areas many in our state might have considered too dangerous or too poor at different points in time. It was also courageous to step into a prominent and highly visible position of public service & respect in the early 1990's, remaining in a position that left you open to state-wide public scrutiny (without any glitches) for over 25 years. Yes, Hoosiers of all backgrounds can take pride in your many years of public service. But people of color who watched your ascent to the highest levels of state government no doubt felt even more as you transcended some real & perhaps some perceived social, economic, academic and professional barriers. You were living proof that, with hard work, dedication & a spirit of public service, a person who shared their same skin tone or came from the same county they grew up in could achieve great success. At the same time, perhaps unknowingly, you helped fellow members of the judiciary, court staff, litigants and the public better understand that differences that are only skin-deep neither define nor limit a person's character, abilities or prospects in life. You also helped others appreciate that people of different races & backgrounds can live and work together peacefully & productively for the greater good of all. Those are truths that didn't have to be written down in court opinions. Anyone paying attention could see that truth lived out every day you devoted to public service. I believe you have been a "trailblazer" in Indiana's legal community and its judiciary. I also embrace your belief that society's needs can be better served when people in positions of governmental power reflect the many complexions of the population that they serve. Whether through greater understanding across the existing racial spectrum or through the removal of some real and some perceived color-based, hope-crushing barriers to life opportunities & success, movement toward a more reflective representation of the population being governed will lead to greater and uninterrupted respect for laws designed to protect all peoples' rights to life, liberty & the pursuit of happiness. Thanks again for a job well-done & for the inevitable positive impact your service has had - and will continue to have - on countless Hoosiers of all backgrounds & colors.

  4. Diversity is important, but with some limitations. For instance, diversity of experience is a great thing that can be very helpful in certain jobs or roles. Diversity of skin color is never important, ever, under any circumstance. To think that skin color changes one single thing about a person is patently racist and offensive. Likewise, diversity of values is useless. Some values are better than others. In the case of a supreme court justice, I actually think diversity is unimportant. The justices are not to impose their own beliefs on rulings, but need to apply the law to the facts in an objective manner.

  5. Have been seeing this wonderful physician for a few years and was one of his patients who told him about what we were being told at CVS. Multiple ones. This was a witch hunt and they shold be ashamed of how patients were treated. Most of all, CVS should be ashamed for what they put this physician through. So thankful he fought back. His office is no "pill mill'. He does drug testing multiple times a year and sees patients a minimum of four times a year.

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