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Opinions Aug. 10, 2011

August 10, 2011
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7th Circuit Court of Appeals
Gregory K. Weatherbee v. Michael J. Astrue, Commissioner of the Social Security Administration
10-3736
U.S. District Court, Southern District of Indiana, New Albany Division, Judge Tanya Walton Pratt.
Civil. Affirms denial of application for Social Security disability insurance benefits and supplemental security income payments after plaintiff suffered serious injuries in a motorcycle crash. The decision to deny his application was supported by substantial evidence.

Indiana Supreme Court
Howard Regional Health System, et al. v. Jacob Gordon, b/n/f Lisa Gordon
34S02-1009-CV-476
Civil. Reverses partial summary judgment for the Gordons, who sought a finding of liability against the hospital for the count alleging third-party spoliation, separate from their Medical Malpractice claim. The Supreme Court declines to recognize that count as representing a separate cause of action, so the hospital is entitled to summary judgment on that count. Justice Dickson concurs in result.
 

Indiana Court of Appeals
Raymond Flores v. Juan P. Rocha Gutierrez
45A04-1101-CT-28
Civil tort. Affirms denial of motion to correct error; the admission of certain evidence, including a photograph of property damage and Flores’ claim for workers’ compensation benefits relating to a subsequent fall; and the exclusion of certain medical records of Flores. The jury’s determination that Flores was entitled to zero damages arising out of his accident with Gutierrez is not outside the bounds of evidence.

Thomas Kornelik v. Mittal Steel USA, Inc., et al.
45A03-1011-CT-583
Civil tort. Reverses the trial court’s decision to not reduce Kornelik’s lien arising under the Indiana Worker’s Compensation Act by attorney fees and pro rata costs, but affirms the refusal to reduce the lien in the same proportion that Kornelik’s full recovery was reduced. Based on the circumstances of the case, Lafarge, Kornelik’s employer, was not fully protected, so the trial court did not err in failing to reduce the lien in the same proportion that his full recovery was reduced. Remands with instructions for the trial court to reduce the lien by attorney fees and a pro rata share of the costs.

Thomas R. Crowel v. Marshall County Drainage Board
50A03-1011-MI-606
Miscellaneous. Reverses the denial of Crowel’s petition for judicial review. The trial court erred in concluding that the drainage board’s decision was not arbitrary, capricious, unlawful, or unsupported by substantial evidence. The additional drainage of surface water naturally flowing off of Crowel’s land and burdening the lower-lying parcels does not constitute a benefit to Crowel’s land supporting the drainage board’s assessment. Remands with instructions. Judge Vaidik dissents.

Jose Lozano v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A02-1010-CR-1129
Criminal. Affirms denial of motion to suppress pretrial identification evidence drawn from an allegedly impermissibly suggestive photo array and the trial court ruling that a hearsay statement concerning an unnamed third party’s purported confession to the crimes with which Lozano has been charged was inadmissible.

Freddie McKnight v. Curtis T. Hill, Jr., et al. (NFP)
20A03-1005-CT-277
Civil tort. Affirms that Hill and Wargo are entitled to absolute immunity for McKnight’s negligence claim and McKnight’s federal constitutional claims are barred by the doctrine of res judicata.

R.J.C. v. State of Indiana (NFP)
28A01-1102-JV-69
Juvenile. Affirms dispositional order placing R.J.C. with the Indiana Department of Correction.

Christopher Richmond v. State of Indiana (NFP)
45A04-1101-CR-9
Criminal. Affirms sentence for Class D felony theft.

Yasmin Wilson v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A05-1012-CR-761
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class A misdemeanor carrying a handgun without a license.

Javier Soto v. Monaco Coach Corp. (NFP)
93A02-1102-EX-204
Agency appeal. Reverses in part the denial of Soto’s application for adjustment of claim. Remands to the Full Worker’s Compensation Board of Indiana to vacate paragraph 27 of the hearing member’s decision, as adopted by the board, and any other portions of the decision related to the issue of Soto’s permanent and total disability. Permits the parties to present evidence and argument on this issue at a further hearing.

Tradell Marzette v. State of Indiana (NFP)
79A04-1004-CR-346
Criminal. Affirms convictions of and sentences for Class B felony conspiracy to commit robbery and four counts of Class B felony criminal confinement. Remands with instructions to vacate his conviction and sentence for Class B felony attempted robbery.

D.R., Alleged to be C.H.I.N.S.; J.R. v. I.D.C.S. & Child Advocates (NFP)
49A02-1012-JC-1450
Juvenile. Affirms determination that D.R. is a child in need of services.

Indiana Tax Court had posted no opinions at IL deadline.





 
 

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  2. Fiat justitia ruat caelum is a Latin legal phrase, meaning "Let justice be done though the heavens fall." The maxim signifies the belief that justice must be realized regardless of consequences.

  3. Indiana up holds this behavior. the state police know they got it made.

  4. Additional Points: -Civility in the profession: Treating others with respect will not only move others to respect you, it will show a shared respect for the legal system we are all sworn to protect. When attorneys engage in unnecessary personal attacks, they lose the respect and favor of judges, jurors, the person being attacked, and others witnessing or reading the communication. It's not always easy to put anger aside, but if you don't, you will lose respect, credibility, cases, clients & jobs or job opportunities. -Read Rule 22 of the Admission & Discipline Rules. Capture that spirit and apply those principles in your daily work. -Strive to represent clients in a manner that communicates the importance you place on the legal matter you're privileged to handle for them. -There are good lawyers of all ages, but no one is perfect. Older lawyers can learn valuable skills from younger lawyers who tend to be more adept with new technologies that can improve work quality and speed. Older lawyers have already tackled more legal issues and worked through more of the problems encountered when representing clients on various types of legal matters. If there's mutual respect and a willingness to learn from each other, it will help make both attorneys better lawyers. -Erosion of the public trust in lawyers wears down public confidence in the rule of law. Always keep your duty to the profession in mind. -You can learn so much by asking questions & actively listening to instructions and advice from more experienced attorneys, regardless of how many years or decades you've each practiced law. Don't miss out on that chance.

  5. Agreed on 4th Amendment call - that was just bad policing that resulted in dismissal for repeat offender. What kind of parent names their boy "Kriston"?

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