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Opinions April 4, 2012

April 4, 2012
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The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals, Indiana Supreme Court and Indiana Tax Court had no opinions at IL deadline.

Indiana Court of Appeals

Melanie Webster v. Walgreen Co.
55A01-1110-CT-442
Civil. Affirms judgment of trial court denying motion to amend the filing date of a complaint against Walgreen in order to comply with the statute of limitations. The appellate court held that “mailing” for purposes of the Indiana Trial Rules requires the sender to affix sufficient postage, and since that didn’t happen here the original complaint was untimely.

Calvin Hair v. Mike Schellenberger and Lawyers Title Ins. Corp., Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., Felix Adejare, and Sharon Adejare
49A02-1107-PL-685
Civil. Affirms trial court’s judgment in a property title dispute in which the court denied Calvin Hair’s motion for partial summary judgment and granted the appellees' motions for summary judgment. Appellate panel found that Hair’s judgment was outside the chain of title and that the person who purchased the Talbott Street property in Indianapolis was a bona fide purchaser as a matter of law.

Mid-Century Ins. Co. v. Estate of Thomas Lynn Morris, by and through his personal representative, Tommy Lynn Morris, Daemen Sampson, and Dora Robinson
07A01-1106-PL-313
Civil. Affirms trial court judgment granting an estate’s motion to dismiss a complaint for declaratory judgment filed by a California-based insurance exchange operation. Holds the trial court didn’t abuse its discretion in granting the motion to dismiss.

Ronald Rexroat v. State of Indiana
49A02-1107-CR-594
Criminal. Affirms convictions of two counts of child molesting and finds that they do no violate double jeopardy principles simply because the pair of charges are worded identically. Appellate court also found that a condition of probation requiring defendant to have no contact with any person 18 or younger unless first approved is not overbroad and a violation of First Amendment rights.

Mark Todisco v. State of Indiana
32A01-1108-CR-393
Criminal. Affirms trial court’s denial of a motion to discharge, finding against defendant who was found guilty by a jury of Class B misdemeanor disorderly conduct and alleged the state failed to bring him to trial within one year according to Indiana Criminal Rule 4(C).

In Re the Term. of the Parent-Child Rel. of D.T. and J.T. v. The Indiana Dept. of Child Services (NFP)
79A04-1108-JT-483
Juvenile. Affirms trial court’s termination of a mother’s parental rights as to her minor child, finding clear and convincing evidence to support the findings that the conditions that led to the child’s removal will not be remedied and termination is in the child’s best interest.

Gregory Hayes v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A02-1109-CR-848
Criminal. Reverses trial court’s order revoking probation, finding evidence insufficient to support the determination that defendant violated his probation terms.

In re the Marriage of: Richard A. Medcalf v. Sheri L. Medcalf (NFP)
32A04-1111-DR-582
Divorce. Reverses trial court’s decision to award attorney fees in a protracted divorce case involving a new parenting time agreement. Remands for court to hold further proceedings on the fees.

Rex A. Clark v. State of Indiana (NFP)
03A04-1109-CR-485
Criminal. Affirms sentence of man convicted of Class A misdemeanor resisting law enforcement and Class D felony receiving stolen auto parts, finding trial court didn’t abuse its discretion in issuing a sentence of nearly 3.5 years and the penalty is not inappropriate.

Lorraine Tietjen v. PEP Educational Support, Inc., Turner Marketing, Inc., and Richard P. Turner (NFP)
49A02-1102-PL-152
Civil. Affirms trial court’s judgment in favor of an educational support service and marketing company following a bench trial involving fraud and breach of contract. Appellate panel finds trial court did not err in its judgment.

In the Matter of the Involuntary Term. of the Parent-Child Rel. of Ja.B., J.B., J.P., A.P. & C.P.; and R.P. v. Indiana Dept. of Child Services and Lake Co. CASA (NFP)
45A03-1110-JT-453
Juvenile. Affirms order terminating mother’s parental rights to three children, finding the state DCS provided sufficient evidence to support the termination.

Ryan S. Shearer v. State of Indiana (NFP)
92A04-1108-CR-405
Criminal. Affirms sentence for a man convicted of Class B felony sexual misconduct with a minor, where the trial court sentenced him to an advisory 10 years with two years suspended to probation.

Rachel Ann Ruch v. State of Indiana (NFP)
57A03-1111-CR-498
Criminal. Affirms sentence imposed for Class B felony conviction of dealing in methamphetamine and Class A misdemeanor conviction of possession of paraphernalia, finding trial court did not err in imposing aggregate 15-year sentence with five years suspended to probation.

James Alvarado v. State of Indiana (NFP)
52A02-1110-CR-984
Criminal. Reverses trial court’s revocation of probation on grounds that evidence is insufficient to support findings that defendant violated his probation.
 

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  1. I have been on this program while on parole from 2011-2013. No person should be forced mentally to share private details of their personal life with total strangers. Also giving permission for a mental therapist to report to your parole agent that your not participating in group therapy because you don't have the financial mean to be in the group therapy. I was personally singled out and sent back three times for not having money and also sent back within the six month when you aren't to be sent according to state law. I will work to het this INSOMM's removed from this state. I also had twelve or thirteen parole agents with a fifteen month period. Thanks for your time.

  2. Our nation produces very few jurists of the caliber of Justice DOUGLAS and his peers these days. Here is that great civil libertarian, who recognized government as both a blessing and, when corrupted by ideological interests, a curse: "Once the investigator has only the conscience of government as a guide, the conscience can become ‘ravenous,’ as Cromwell, bent on destroying Thomas More, said in Bolt, A Man For All Seasons (1960), p. 120. The First Amendment mirrors many episodes where men, harried and harassed by government, sought refuge in their conscience, as these lines of Thomas More show: ‘MORE: And when we stand before God, and you are sent to Paradise for doing according to your conscience, *575 and I am damned for not doing according to mine, will you come with me, for fellowship? ‘CRANMER: So those of us whose names are there are damned, Sir Thomas? ‘MORE: I don't know, Your Grace. I have no window to look into another man's conscience. I condemn no one. ‘CRANMER: Then the matter is capable of question? ‘MORE: Certainly. ‘CRANMER: But that you owe obedience to your King is not capable of question. So weigh a doubt against a certainty—and sign. ‘MORE: Some men think the Earth is round, others think it flat; it is a matter capable of question. But if it is flat, will the King's command make it round? And if it is round, will the King's command flatten it? No, I will not sign.’ Id., pp. 132—133. DOUGLAS THEN WROTE: Where government is the Big Brother,11 privacy gives way to surveillance. **909 But our commitment is otherwise. *576 By the First Amendment we have staked our security on freedom to promote a multiplicity of ideas, to associate at will with kindred spirits, and to defy governmental intrusion into these precincts" Gibson v. Florida Legislative Investigation Comm., 372 U.S. 539, 574-76, 83 S. Ct. 889, 908-09, 9 L. Ed. 2d 929 (1963) Mr. Justice DOUGLAS, concurring. I write: Happy Memorial Day to all -- God please bless our fallen who lived and died to preserve constitutional governance in our wonderful series of Republics. And God open the eyes of those government officials who denounce the constitutions of these Republics by arbitrary actions arising out capricious motives.

  3. From back in the day before secularism got a stranglehold on Hoosier jurists comes this great excerpt via Indiana federal court judge Allan Sharp, dedicated to those many Indiana government attorneys (with whom I have dealt) who count the law as a mere tool, an optional tool that is not to be used when political correctness compels a more acceptable result than merely following the path that the law directs: ALLEN SHARP, District Judge. I. In a scene following a visit by Henry VIII to the home of Sir Thomas More, playwriter Robert Bolt puts the following words into the mouths of his characters: Margaret: Father, that man's bad. MORE: There is no law against that. ROPER: There is! God's law! MORE: Then God can arrest him. ROPER: Sophistication upon sophistication! MORE: No, sheer simplicity. The law, Roper, the law. I know what's legal not what's right. And I'll stick to what's legal. ROPER: Then you set man's law above God's! MORE: No, far below; but let me draw your attention to a fact I'm not God. The currents and eddies of right and wrong, which you find such plain sailing, I can't navigate. I'm no voyager. But in the thickets of law, oh, there I'm a forester. I doubt if there's a man alive who could follow me there, thank God... ALICE: (Exasperated, pointing after Rich) While you talk, he's gone! MORE: And go he should, if he was the Devil himself, until he broke the law! ROPER: So now you'd give the Devil benefit of law! MORE: Yes. What would you do? Cut a great road through the law to get after the Devil? ROPER: I'd cut down every law in England to do that! MORE: (Roused and excited) Oh? (Advances on Roper) And when the last law was down, and the Devil turned round on you where would you hide, Roper, the laws being flat? (He leaves *1257 him) This country's planted thick with laws from coast to coast man's laws, not God's and if you cut them down and you're just the man to do it d'you really think you would stand upright in the winds that would blow then? (Quietly) Yes, I'd give the Devil benefit of law, for my own safety's sake. ROPER: I have long suspected this; this is the golden calf; the law's your god. MORE: (Wearily) Oh, Roper, you're a fool, God's my god... (Rather bitterly) But I find him rather too (Very bitterly) subtle... I don't know where he is nor what he wants. ROPER: My God wants service, to the end and unremitting; nothing else! MORE: (Dryly) Are you sure that's God! He sounds like Moloch. But indeed it may be God And whoever hunts for me, Roper, God or Devil, will find me hiding in the thickets of the law! And I'll hide my daughter with me! Not hoist her up the mainmast of your seagoing principles! They put about too nimbly! (Exit More. They all look after him). Pgs. 65-67, A MAN FOR ALL SEASONS A Play in Two Acts, Robert Bolt, Random House, New York, 1960. Linley E. Pearson, Atty. Gen. of Indiana, Indianapolis, for defendants. Childs v. Duckworth, 509 F. Supp. 1254, 1256 (N.D. Ind. 1981) aff'd, 705 F.2d 915 (7th Cir. 1983)

  4. "Meanwhile small- and mid-size firms are getting squeezed and likely will not survive unless they become a boutique firm." I've been a business attorney in small, and now mid-size firm for over 30 years, and for over 30 years legal consultants have been preaching this exact same mantra of impending doom for small and mid-sized firms -- verbatim. This claim apparently helps them gin up merger opportunities from smaller firms who become convinced that they need to become larger overnight. The claim that large corporations are interested in cost-saving and efficiency has likewise been preached for decades, and is likewise bunk. If large corporations had any real interest in saving money they wouldn't use large law firms whose rates are substantially higher than those of high-quality mid-sized firms.

  5. The family is the foundation of all human government. That is the Grand Design. Modern governments throw off this Design and make bureaucratic war against the family, as does Hollywood and cultural elitists such as third wave feminists. Since WWII we have been on a ship of fools that way, with both the elite and government and their social engineering hacks relentlessly attacking the very foundation of social order. And their success? See it in the streets of Fergusson, on the food stamp doles (mostly broken families)and in the above article. Reject the Grand Design for true social function, enter the Glorious State to manage social dysfunction. Our Brave New World will be a prison camp, and we will welcome it as the only way to manage given the anarchy without it.

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