Opinions Aug. 14, 2014

August 14, 2014
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7th Circuit Court of Appeals
Elliott D. Levin, as trustee in bankruptcy for Irwin Financial Corp. v. William I. Miller, et al.
U.S. District Court, Southern District of Indiana, Indianapolis Division, Judge Sarah Evans Barker.
Civil. Affirms dismissal with respects to counts 1, 2, 4 and 5 that claim bank managers violated their fiduciary duties to Irwin because those claims are now owned by the FDIC.  Vacates dismissal of counts 3 – that managers allowed Irwin to pay dividends in amounts that left it short of capital - and 7 – that two of the managers breach their duties of care and loyalty – and and remands for further proceedings because those claims are categorized as direct claims that must be pursued by the bank, not the FDIC. Judge Hamilton concurs in result.

Fortres Grand Corp. v. Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc.
U.S. District Court, Northern District of Indiana, South Bend Division, Judge Philip P. Simon.
Civil. Affirms finding that Fortres Grand Corp. failed to state a claim under the traditional confusion or reverse confusion theory and that Warner Bros.’ use of the words “clean slate” was protected by the First Amendment.

Indiana Court of Appeals
Michael H. Kretschmer v. Bank of America, N.A.
Mortgage foreclosure. Reverses the denial of Kretschmer’s motion to set aside a default judgment in favor of Bank of America. Finds that Kretschmer has demonstrated grounds for setting aside the entry of default judgment pursuant to Trial Rule 60(B)(1) and (3) and has alleged a meritorious defense.

Amy L. Falatovics v. Imre L. Falatovics
Domestic relation. Reverses divorce decree and remands with instructions to include in the marital estate the husband’s interest in two parcels of real estate he owns as a joint tenant with his brother subject to a life estate in his mother. Husband’s interest in the real estate was improperly excluded because he has a present pecuniary interest in the properties.

Stephanie Lucas v. State of Indiana
Criminal. Reverses on interlocutory appeal the denial of Lucas’ motion to suppress evidence obtained in the course of a traffic stop. The traffic stop was more intrusive than authorized for a permissible investigatory stop because the police officer did not articulate a legitimate reason as to why he could not complete his investigation standing alongside Lucas’ vehicle instead of having her sit in his police vehicle. Judge Bradford concurs in result in a separate opinion.

Trent A. Burnworth v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms conviction and sentence for Class D felony theft and finding that Burnworth is a habitual offender.

Arthur B. Greco, Jr. v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms sentence for Class D felonies intimidation and escape, and Class A misdemeanor resisting law enforcement.

Charles J. Dean v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms sentence following guilty plea to Class B felony dealing in a Schedule I controlled substance.

In the Matter of the Voluntary Termination of the Parent-Child Relationship of: M.C., Jr., M.C., Sr., Father v. Indiana Department of Child Services (NFP)
Juvenile. Affirms denial of motion for relief from judgment following the termination of father’s parental rights.

Kyle J. Eckstein v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms convictions of Class B felony burglary and Class D felony theft.

In the Matter of the Termination of the Parent-Child Relationship of: G.S.T. & C.T. (Minor Children), and G.T. (Father) v. The Indiana Department of Child Services (NFP)
Juvenile. Affirms termination of father’s parental rights.

Jason S. Aliff v. State of Indiana (NFP)

Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class C felony escape.

Tremayne Terry v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms convictions of Class C felony burglary and Class D felony theft.

In the Matter of the Termination of the Parent-Child Relationship of: G.V. (Minor Child) and M.V. (Mother) v. Indiana Department of Child Services (NFP)
Juvenile. Affirms termination of mother’s parental rights.


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  1. I think the cops are doing a great job locking up criminals. The Murder rates in the inner cities are skyrocketing and you think that too any people are being incarcerated. Maybe we need to lock up more of them. We have the ACLU, BLM, NAACP, Civil right Division of the DOJ, the innocent Project etc. We have court system with an appeal process that can go on for years, with attorneys supplied by the government. I'm confused as to how that translates into the idea that the defendants are not being represented properly. Maybe the attorneys need to do more Pro-Bono work

  2. We do not have 10% of our population (which would mean about 32 million) incarcerated. It's closer to 2%.

  3. If a class action suit or other manner of retribution is possible, count me in. I have email and voicemail from the man. He colluded with opposing counsel, I am certain. My case was damaged so severely it nearly lost me everything and I am still paying dearly.

  4. There's probably a lot of blame that can be cast around for Indiana Tech's abysmal bar passage rate this last February. The folks who decided that Indiana, a state with roughly 16,000 to 18,000 attorneys, needs a fifth law school need to question the motives that drove their support of this project. Others, who have been "strong supporters" of the law school, should likewise ask themselves why they believe this institution should be supported. Is it because it fills some real need in the state? Or is it, instead, nothing more than a resume builder for those who teach there part-time? And others who make excuses for the students' poor performance, especially those who offer nothing more than conspiracy theories to back up their claims--who are they helping? What evidence do they have to support their posturing? Ultimately, though, like most everything in life, whether one succeeds or fails is entirely within one's own hands. At least one student from Indiana Tech proved this when he/she took and passed the February bar. A second Indiana Tech student proved this when they took the bar in another state and passed. As for the remaining 9 who took the bar and didn't pass (apparently, one of the students successfully appealed his/her original score), it's now up to them (and nobody else) to ensure that they pass on their second attempt. These folks should feel no shame; many currently successful practicing attorneys failed the bar exam on their first try. These same attorneys picked themselves up, dusted themselves off, and got back to the rigorous study needed to ensure they would pass on their second go 'round. This is what the Indiana Tech students who didn't pass the first time need to do. Of course, none of this answers such questions as whether Indiana Tech should be accredited by the ABA, whether the school should keep its doors open, or, most importantly, whether it should have even opened its doors in the first place. Those who promoted the idea of a fifth law school in Indiana need to do a lot of soul-searching regarding their decisions. These same people should never be allowed, again, to have a say about the future of legal education in this state or anywhere else. Indiana already has four law schools. That's probably one more than it really needs. But it's more than enough.

  5. This man Steve Hubbard goes on any online post or forum he can find and tries to push his company. He said court reporters would be obsolete a few years ago, yet here we are. How does he have time to search out every single post about court reporters and even spy in private court reporting forums if his company is so successful???? Dude, get a life. And back to what this post was about, I agree that some national firms cause a huge problem.