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Opinions April 23, 2013

April 23, 2013
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Indiana Court of Appeals
Kenyatta Erkins and Ugbe Ojile v. State of Indiana
58A01-1205-CR-215
Criminal. Affirms convictions of Class A felony conspiracy to commit robbery resulting in serious bodily injury. Rejected all the issues Erkins and Ojile raised on appeal. Found the trial court did not err in permitting the amendment to the charging information; the evidence was sufficient to show the pair intended and agreed to commit robbery that would result in serious bodily injury; the trial court did not abuse its discretion in admitting evidence gathered after Erkins and Ojile left the casino; any error in admitted interpretations of the pair’s phone conversation was harmless; and the prosecutor did not commit misconduct nor cause a fundamental error.

Paul Sparks v. State of Indiana
49A02-1207-CR-593
Criminal. Granted the state’s petition for a rehearing of the COA’s decision in Sparks v. State, 983 N.E.2d 221 (Ind. Ct. App. 2013). Ruled the state cannot rely solely on Sparks’ original admission of a probation violation to revoke his probation.

Joanna S. Robinson v. State of Indiana
20A04-1209-CR-561
Criminal. Reversed Robinson’s convictions for operating a vehicle with a suspended license, a Class A misdemeanor; possession of marijuana, a Class A misdemeanor; and operating a vehicle while intoxicated, a Class A misdemeanor. Ruled that Robinson driving her car over the fog line twice was insufficient to justify a traffic stop.

Term. of the Parent-Child Rel. of J.L.W. (Minor Child) and S.R.W. (Mother), J.C.H. (Alleged Father), and Alleged Unknown Father v. The Indiana Dept. of Child Services (NFP)
02A03-1207-JT-307
Termination of parental rights. Affirmed involuntary termination of mother’s parental rights. Found the trial court did not err in concluding that there is a reasonable possibility that the conditions that resulted in the minor’s placement outside the home will not be remedied.

Ronald A. Bohannon v. State of Indiana (NFP)
28A04-1212-CR-656
Criminal. Affirms sentence of eight years for a reckless homicide conviction, which was enhanced by five years as a result of Bohannon’s habitual offender status; seven years for handgun convictions, to be served consecutively to the enhanced sentence; and two years for a conviction of receiving stolen property, to be served concurrently with the other sentences.

Kenyatta Erkins and Ugbe Ojile v. State of Indiana
58A01-1205-CR-215
Criminal. Affirms convictions of Class A felony conspiracy to commit robbery resulting in serious bodily injury. Rejected all the issues Erkins and Ojile raised on appeal. Found the trial court did not err in permitting the amendment to the charging information; the evidence was sufficient to show the pair intended and agreed to commit robbery that would result in serious bodily injury; the trial court did not abuse its discretion in admitting evidence gathered after Erkins and Ojile left the casino; any error in admitted interpretations of the pair’s phone conversation was harmless; and the prosecutor did not commit misconduct nor cause a fundamental error.

In Re the Paternity of A.H., A.E., A.M., A.I., A.N.; A.G. v. A.H. (NFP)
49A02-1208-JP-668
Paternity. Affirms trial court calculation of father’s weekly child support obligation since 2007. Found the trial court did not abuse its discretion when it made the calculations.

Sungold Holdings, Inc., Midwest Auto Body, and Robert H. Gentry, III v. Donald Blair (NFP)
18A02-1207-MI-612
Miscellaneous. Affirms trial court’s decision to issue tax deeds to Blair for three properties sold at a tax sale. Found the trial court did not err in holding that Sungold Holdings, et. al., failed to raise a viable objection to the sale.

D.S. v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A04-1210-JV-522
Juvenile. Affirms juvenile court’s adjudication finding that D.S. is a delinquent child for committing what would be the crime of receiving stolen property, a Class D felony, is committed by an adult. Found the juvenile court did not abuse its discretion by permitting the state to reopen its case in chief. Also ruled the juvenile court did not commit a reversible error by denying D.S.’s motion for involuntary dismissal under Indiana Trial Rule 41(B).

Antwan Parks v. State of Indiana (NFP)
79A02-1208-CR-672
Criminal. Affirms Parks’s conviction for Class C felony battery. Concluded the evidence was sufficient to establish bodily injury.

 

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  1. So that none are misinformed by my posting wihtout a non de plume here, please allow me to state that I am NOT an Indiana licensed attorney, although I am an Indiana resident approved to practice law and represent clients in Indiana's fed court of Nth Dist and before the 7th circuit. I remain licensed in KS, since 1996, no discipline. This must be clarified since the IN court records will reveal that I did sit for and pass the Indiana bar last February. Yet be not confused by the fact that I was so allowed to be tested .... I am not, to be clear in the service of my duty to be absolutely candid about this, I AM NOT a member of the Indiana bar, and might never be so licensed given my unrepented from errors of thought documented in this opinion, at fn2, which likely supports Mr Smith's initial post in this thread: http://caselaw.findlaw.com/us-7th-circuit/1592921.html

  2. When I served the State of Kansas as Deputy AG over Consumer Protection & Antitrust for four years, supervising 20 special agents and assistant attorneys general (back before the IBLE denied me the right to practice law in Indiana for not having the right stuff and pretty much crushed my legal career) we had a saying around the office: Resist the lure of the ring!!! It was a take off on Tolkiem, the idea that absolute power (I signed investigative subpoenas as a judge would in many other contexts, no need to show probable cause)could corrupt absolutely. We feared that we would overreach constitutional limits if not reminded, over and over, to be mindful to not do so. Our approach in so challenging one another was Madisonian, as the following quotes from the Father of our Constitution reveal: The essence of Government is power; and power, lodged as it must be in human hands, will ever be liable to abuse. We are right to take alarm at the first experiment upon our liberties. I believe there are more instances of the abridgement of freedom of the people by gradual and silent encroachments by those in power than by violent and sudden usurpations. Liberty may be endangered by the abuse of liberty, but also by the abuse of power. All men having power ought to be mistrusted. -- James Madison, Federalist Papers and other sources: http://www.constitution.org/jm/jm_quotes.htm RESIST THE LURE OF THE RING ALL YE WITH POLITICAL OR JUDICIAL POWER!

  3. My dear Mr Smith, I respect your opinions and much enjoy your posts here. We do differ on our view of the benefits and viability of the American Experiment in Ordered Liberty. While I do agree that it could be better, and that your points in criticism are well taken, Utopia does indeed mean nowhere. I think Madison, Jefferson, Adams and company got it about as good as it gets in a fallen post-Enlightenment social order. That said, a constitution only protects the citizens if it is followed. We currently have a bevy of public officials and judicial agents who believe that their subjectivism, their personal ideology, their elitist fears and concerns and cause celebs trump the constitutions of our forefathers. This is most troubling. More to follow in the next post on that subject.

  4. Yep I am not Bryan Brown. Bryan you appear to be a bigger believer in the Constitution than I am. Were I still a big believer then I might be using my real name like you. Personally, I am no longer a fan of secularism. I favor the confessional state. In religious mattes, it seems to me that social diversity is chaos and conflict, while uniformity is order and peace.... secularism has been imposed by America on other nations now by force and that has not exactly worked out very well.... I think the American historical experiment with disestablishmentarianism is withering on the vine before our eyes..... Since I do not know if that is OK for an officially licensed lawyer to say, I keep the nom de plume.

  5. I am compelled to announce that I am not posting under any Smith monikers here. That said, the post below does have a certain ring to it that sounds familiar to me: http://www.catholicnewworld.com/cnwonline/2014/0907/cardinal.aspx

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