Opinions July 31, 2012

July 31, 2012
7th Circuit Court of Appeals
Carol Aschermann v. Aetna Life Insurance Company, et al.
U.S. District Court, Southern District of Indiana, Indianapolis Division. Judge Larry J. McKinney.
Civil. Affirms the District Court judgment in favor of the insurers, in which an insurer stopped paying a worker’s disability benefits claim, holding that the decision was not arbitrary or capricious.

Opinions July 30, 2012

July 30, 2012
7th Circuit Court of Appeals
Winforge, Inc., et al., v. Coachmen Industries, Inc., et al.
U.S. District Court, Southern District of Indiana, Indianapolis Division, Judge Sarah Evans Barker.
Civil. Affirms trial court judgment for defendants, agreeing that the parties had never entered into a final, enforceable contract.

Opinions July 27, 201

July 27, 2012
7th Circuit Court of Appeals
Leonard Lapsley, et al. v. Xtek Inc.
U.S. District Court, Northern District of Indiana, Hammond Division. Judge Joseph S. Van Bokkelen.
Civil. Affirms denial of Xtek’s Daubert motion that sought to bar Dr. Gary Hutter from offering his expert opinions, which were essential to Lapsley’s case that a design defect in Xtek’s equipment was the cause of his accident. In this case, the District Court’s stated analysis of the proposed testimony was brief, but it was also directly to the point and was sufficient to trigger deferential review on appeal. The District Court did not misapply Daubert.

Opinions July 26, 2012

July 26, 2012
Indiana Supreme Court
Michael J. Lock v. State of Indiana
Criminal. Affirms Lock’s conviction and sentence for Class D felony operating a motor vehicle as a habitual traffic violator and the revocation of his driving privileges for life. I.C. 9-30-10-16 is not unconstitutionally vague and based on the stipulation that Lock’s Zuma was traveling 43 MPH, a reasonable fact-finder could find beyond a reasonable doubt that the Zuma had a maximum design speed in excess of 25 MPH. Justice Rucker dissents.

Opinions July 25, 2012

July 25, 2012
Indiana Supreme Court
Kenneth Dwayne Vaughn v. State of Indiana
Criminal. Affirms decision not to grant a mistrial. Vaughn did not suffer actual harm from the bailiff restraining him by covering Vaughn’s mouth in front of the jury so he would stop taking.

Opinions July 24, 2012

July 24, 2012
7th Circuit Court of Appeals
Jeffrey D. Kirkland v. United States of America
U.S. District Court, Northern District of Indiana, South Bend Division, Judge Jon E. DeGuilio.
Civil. Reverses District Court’s conclusion that an enhancement of Kirkland’s sentence under the Armed Criminal Career Act was still appropriate based on his remaining three convictions for violent felonies. Court may only consider Shepard-approved sources in determining whether prior offenses occurred on separate occasions under 18 U.S.C. Section 924(e)(1). Based on the record, the appellate court can’t conclude that Kirkland’s robbery and burglary offenses – which were on the same day – occurred on separate occasions. Remands for resentencing.

Opinions July 23, 2012

July 23, 2012
7th Circuit Court of Appeals
Mark McCleskey, trustee, et al. v. DLF Construction Inc., an Indiana corporation
U.S. District Court, Southern District of Indiana, Indianapolis Division, Judge William T. Lawrence.
Civil. Affirms finding that the construction company, as employer, had to contribute to the funds for all hours worked by members of the union, not just bargaining unit work. The collective bargaining agreements are clear that DLF is required to make contributions to the pension and health and welfare funds for each hour worked by a covered employee.

Opinions July 20, 2012

July 20, 2012
7th Circuit Court of Appeals
Bradley M. Shideler v. Michael J. Astrue, commissioner of Social Security
U.S. District Court, Northern District of Indiana, South Bend Division, Judge Robert L.
Miller Jr.
Civil. Affirms denial of application for Social Security Disability Insurance benefits. The administrative law judge adequately evaluated Shideler’s credibility. Whatever his current condition is, the ALJ’s decision finding that he was not disabled as of March 31, 2000, is supported by substantial evidence.

Opinions July 19, 2012

July 19, 2012
Indiana Court of Appeals
Bobby A. Harlan v. State of Indiana
Criminal. Affirms sentence imposed for two convictions of Class B felony child molesting and order that Harlan register as a sexually violent predator. The order requiring Harlan register as a SVP does not violate the ex post facto clause of the Indiana Constitution, the trial court did not abuse its discretion in the course of identifying aggravating and mitigating factors at sentencing, and his sentence is reasonable.

Opinions July 18, 2012

July 18, 2012
Indiana Court of Appeals
Annette Pittman v. State of Indiana
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class B misdemeanor public intoxication. I.C. 12-23-15-2 did not require the arresting officer, or other law enforcement personnel elsewhere, to perform an evaluation so thorough as to eliminate all other possible causes for each of the symptoms of alcoholic intoxication that Pittman exhibited.

Opinions July 17, 2012

July 17, 2012
Indiana Court of Appeals
Darrell Larue Brown v. State of Indiana
Criminal. Affirms Brown’s sentence following guilty plea to two counts of Class B felony child molesting. Brown waived his right to appeal.

Opinions July 16, 2012

July 16, 2012
Indiana Court of Appeals
M & M Investment Group, LLC v. Ahlemeyer Farms, Inc. and Monroe Bank
Civil collection. Affirms trial court order denying M&M’s petition for a tax deed for property of which Monroe Bank was the mortgagee, holding that the court properly denied the petition. Finds that the Indiana pre-tax-sale notice statute violates the Due Process Clause of the 14th Amendment.

Opinions July 13, 2012

July 13, 2012
Indiana Court of Appeals
John W. Schoettmer and Karen Schoettmer v. Jolene C. Wright and South Central Community Action Program, Inc.
Civil tort. Affirms summary judgment in favor of Wright and South Central Community Action Program Inc., finding that the plaintiffs did not timely file notice as governed by the Indiana Tort Claims Act.

Opinions July 12, 2012

July 12, 2012
7th Circuit Court of Appeals
Carlene M. Craig, et al. v. FedEx Ground Package System Inc.
U.S. District Court, Northern District of Indiana, South Bend Division, Judge Robert L. Miller Jr.
Multidistrict litigation. Certifies two questions to the Kansas Supreme Court in a suit that was based on the Employee Retirement Income Security act and Kansas law regarding whether FedEx drivers are employees or independent contractors. Craig is the “lead” case in a nationwide class action.

Opinions July 11, 2012

July 11, 2012
7th Circuit Court of Appeals
Michael Dean Overstreet v. Bill Wilson, superintendent, Indiana State Prison
U.S. District Court, Northern District of Indiana, South Bend Division, Chief Judge Philip P. Simon.
Civil. Finds Overstreet, who is sentenced to death, did not receive constitutionally ineffective assistance of counsel relating to the handling of an alleged plea bargain, the handling of spectators in the courtroom, and relating to the sentencing proceeding. Judge Wood dissents regarding the attorneys’ handling of the sentencing proceeding and would grant the petition for writ of habeas corpus limited to the sentence imposed.

Opinions July 10, 2012

July 10, 2012
Indiana Court of Appeals
In the Matter of the Adoption of N.W.R.; M.R. v. R.B. and R.B., and Indiana Dept. of Child Services
Adoption. Reverses the trial court’s grant of a petition to adopt to foster parents R.B. and R.B., and remands to the trial court with instructions to reconsider evidence after DCS completes investigation of aunt M.R. as a potential adoptive replacement. The court held that the trial court erred in denying DCS’ motion to withdraw consent for the petition after discovering it failed to conduct a complete adoptive placement investigation.

Opinions July 9, 2012

July 9, 2012
Indiana Court of Appeals
Derrick Baker v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms trial court conviction of dealing cocaine as a Class B felony.


Opinions July 6, 2012

July 6, 2012
7th Circuit Court of Appeals
U.S. v. Justin Cephus, Jovan Stewart, and Stanton L. Cephus
10-3838, 10-3840, 11-1098
Criminal. Affirms in a case involving conspiracy to entice underage girls to engage in prostitution and transport them across state lines the life sentences without parole of multiple convictions for Justin and Stanton Cephus. The order remands to the trial court to enable the judge to reconcile a discrepancy in Stewart’s sentence of 324 months in federal prison. The judge said Stewart’s sentences were to be served consecutively; the written order indicates the sentences are concurrent.

Opinions July 5, 2012

July 5, 2012
7th Circuit Court of Appeals
Nipponkoa Insurance Company, Ltd. v. Atlas Van Lines Inc.
Civil plenary/contract. Reverses the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana’s summary judgment for defendant and remands for further proceedings, finding summary judgment inappropriate pending further determination of the relationship between plaintiffs, defendant and ancillary parties involved in a shipping loss.  

Opinions July 3, 2012

July 3, 2012
Indiana Court of Appeals
In Re: The Matter of the Paternity of S.C.: K.C. (Appellant), and C.C. (Appellee), and B.H. (Appellee-Intervenor)
Juvenile paternity. Reaffirms original opinion affirming Hancock Circuit Court’s ruling vacating a finding of paternity for C.C. because another paternity action on behalf of B.H. was pending in Fayette Circuit. The decision grants rehearing in Hancock Circuit, finding that mother, S.C., did not inform the Hancock court of B.H’s pending paternity proceeding.

Opinions July 2, 2012

July 2, 2012
Indiana Supreme Court
Annette (Oliver) Hirsch v. Roger Lee Oliver
Domestic relations/emancipation. Affirms the trial court ruling that father Roger Lee Oliver is not obligated to contribute to his daughter’s post-secondary expenses and remands to the trial court to determine the correct date of the daughter’s emancipation.

Opinions June 29, 2012

June 29, 2012
7th Circuit Court of Appeals
Zachary Medlock v. Trustees of Indiana University, et al.
U.S. District Court, Southern District of Indiana, Indianapolis Division, Judge Tanya Walton Pratt.
Civil. Dismisses Medlock’s appeal of the denial of his request for a preliminary injunction to prevent the enforcement of a one-year suspension from the school. The appeal is moot because the 7th Circuit cannot grant any effectual relief.


Opinions June 28, 2012

June 28, 2012
7th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals
Robert Jones v. C&D Technologies, Inc.
Civil plenary. Affirms summary judgment for C&D Technologies, Inc. granted by U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana, upholding that Jones was not entitled to benefits from the Family and Medical Leave Act because he did not receive treatment during his absence.

Opinions June 27, 2012

June 27, 2012
7th Circuit Court of Appeals
A.B., a child by his next friend, Linda Kehoe v. Housing Authority of South Bend
U.S. District Court, Northern District of Indiana, South Bend Division, Chief Judge Philip P. Simon.
Civil. Dismisses appeal of the order denying A.B.’s motion for a preliminary injunction to prevent the housing authority from pursuing the eviction in state court. Since A.B. has already been evicted, the appeal is moot.

Opinions June 26, 2012

June 26, 2012
Indiana Court of Appeals
Gwen E. Morgal-Henrich v. David Brian Henrich
Domestic relation. Affirms the trial court did not abuse its discretion by applying the equal division presumption in dividing the marital assets. Reverses trial court’s use of $390 per week as David Henrich’s weekly gross income for purposes of calculating child support. Remands for a recalculation and recommends the trial court uses an income averaging calculation due to his fluctuating income.
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  1. Lori, you must really love wedding cake stories like this one ... happy enuf ending for you? http://www.churchmilitant.com/news/article/state-takes-legal-action-to-seize-135k-from-bakers-who-refused-to-make-cake

  2. This new language about a warning has not been discussed at previous meetings. It's not available online. Since it must be made public knowledge before the vote, does anyone know exactly what it says? Further, this proposal was held up for 5 weeks because members Carol and Lucy insisted that all terms used be defined. So now, definitions are unnecessary and have not been inserted? Beyond these requirements, what is the logic behind giving one free pass to discriminators? Is that how laws work - break it once and that's ok? Just don't do it again? Three members of Carmel's council have done just about everything they can think of to prohibit an anti-discrimination ordinance in Carmel, much to Brainard's consternation, I'm told. These three 'want to be so careful' that they have failed to do what at least 13 other communities, including Martinsville, have already done. It's not being careful. It's standing in the way of what 60% of Carmel residents want. It's hurting CArmel in thT businesses have refused to locate because the council has not gotten with the program. And now they want to give discriminatory one free shot to do so. Unacceptable. Once three members leave the council because they lost their races, the Carmel council will have unanimous approval of the ordinance as originally drafted, not with a one free shot to discriminate freebie. That happens in January 2016. Why give a freebie when all we have to do is wait 3 months and get an ordinance with teeth from Day 1? If nothing else, can you please get s copy from Carmel and post it so we can see what else has changed in the proposal?

  3. Here is an interesting 2012 law review article for any who wish to dive deeper into this subject matter: https://web0.memphis.edu/law/currentstudents/mentalhealthjournal/1-2-203-Bird.pdf Excerpt: "Judicial interpretation of the ADA has extended public entity liability to licensing agencies in the licensure and certification of attorneys.49 State bar examiners have the authority to conduct fitness investigations for the purpose of determining whether an applicant is a direct threat to the public.50 A “direct threat” is defined as “a significant risk to the health or safety of others that cannot be eliminated by a modification of policies, practices or procedures, or by the provision of auxiliary aids or services as provided by § 35.139.”51 However, bar examiners may not utilize generalizations or stereotypes about the applicant’s disability in concluding that an applicant is a direct threat.52"

  4. We have been on the waiting list since 2009, i was notified almost 4 months ago that we were going to start receiving payments and we still have received nothing. Every time I call I'm told I just have to wait it's in the lawyers hands. Is everyone else still waiting?

  5. I hope you dont mind but to answer my question. What amendment does this case pretain to?