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Opinions April 10, 2014

April 10, 2014
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Indiana Court of Appeals
HRC Hotels, LLC v. Metropolitan Board of Zoning Appeals Division II of Marion County, Indiana, Jeffrey R. Baumgarth and The Myers Y. Cooper Company
49A04-1307-PL-313
Civil plenary. Reverses dismissal of HRC Hotels’ amended petition for judicial review, which substituted I-465 LLC as the real party in interest instead of HRC Hotels. The standing requirements under I.C. 36-7-4-1603 are procedural rather than jurisdictional, so HRC Hotels’ alleged lack of standing when the petition was filed does not deprive the trial court of subject-matter jurisdiction. It should substitute I-465 LLC as a real party in interest and hear the merits of the petition for judicial review. Remands for further proceedings.

Michael Johnson v. State of Indiana
49A02-1307-CR-562
Criminal. Affirms convictions of two counts of Class B felony criminal confinement, Class B felony rape, Class C felony battery, Class D felonies intimidation and strangulation, and Class A misdemeanor interfering with the reporting of a crime. Johnson knowing, voluntarily and intelligently waived his right to a jury trial on all of his charges, the trial court did not abuse its discretion in denying him the right to cross-examine the victim about past sexual conduct, and the state presented sufficient evidence to prove Johnson committed Class B felony rape and Class D felony intimidation. Judge Bradford concurs in result.

Monterius D. Sharp v. State of Indiana (NFP)
05A02-1306-CR-522
Criminal. Affirms convictions and sentence for Class C felony escape, Class A misdemeanor carrying a handgun and three counts of Class D felony intimidation.

Dawayne J. Thomas v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A05-1309-CR-452
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class B felony unlawful possession of a firearm by a serious violent felon.

John Orville Study v. State of Indiana (NFP)
06A04-1308-CR-391
Criminal. Affirms convictions of four counts of Class B felony robbery, six counts of Class B felony criminal confinement, one count of Class D felony resisting law enforcement, one count of Class D felony pointing a firearm and one count of Class D felony auto theft.

Adam W. Powell v. State of Indiana (NFP)
38A02-1304-IF-316
Infraction. Affirms finding Powell committed Class A infraction operating a motor vehicle without financial responsibility, Class A infraction driving while suspended, Class C infraction failure to register and Class C infraction window tint in violation by a driver.

Jamie L. Strickler v. State of Indiana (NFP)
85A02-1308-CR-707
Criminal. Affirms sentence following guilty plea to three counts of Class B felony dealing in a controlled substance under two different cause numbers.  

Richard Brown and Janet Brown v. City of Valparaiso, Indiana (NFP)
64A03-1308-PL-332
Civil plenary. Affirms order denying the Browns’ inverse condemnation claim on the merits.

The Indiana Supreme Court and Tax Court posted no opinions by IL deadline. The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals posted no Indiana decisions by IL deadline.

 

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  3. I expressed my thought in the title, long as it was. I am shocked that there is ever immunity from accountability for ANY Government agency. That appears to violate every principle in the US Constitution, which exists to limit Government power and to ensure Government accountability. I don't know how many cases of legitimate child abuse exist, but in the few cases in which I knew the people involved, in every example an anonymous caller used DCS as their personal weapon to strike at innocent people over trivial disagreements that had no connection with any facts. Given that the system is vulnerable to abuse, and given the extreme harm any action by DCS causes to families, I would assume any degree of failure to comply with the smallest infraction of personal rights would result in mandatory review. Even one day of parent-child separation in the absence of reasonable cause for a felony arrest should result in severe penalties to those involved in the action. It appears to me, that like all bureaucracies, DCS is prone to interpret every case as legitimate. This is not an accusation against DCS. It is a statement about the nature of bureaucracies, and the need for ADDED scrutiny of all bureaucratic actions. Frankly, I question the constitutionality of bureaucracies in general, because their power is delegated, and therefore unaccountable. No Government action can be unaccountable if we want to avoid its eventual degeneration into irrelevance and lawlessness, and the law of the jungle. Our Constitution is the source of all Government power, and it is the contract that legitimizes all Government power. To the extent that its various protections against intrusion are set aside, so is the power afforded by that contract. Eventually overstepping the limits of power eliminates that power, as a law of nature. Even total tyranny eventually crumbles to nothing.

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