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Opinions, Aug. 21, 2013

August 21, 2013
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Opinions – Aug. 21, 2013
Indiana Court of Appeals

Rodney Melton v. State of Indiana
49A02-1212-CR-1008
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class C felony child molesting and Class D felony dissemination of matter harmful to minors, rejecting an argument that the dissemination statute requires a “performance” under that law be public. The court also found Melton’s 11-year aggregate sentence was not inappropriate in light of his character and the nature of the offense.

In Re: The Matter of A.H., and S.H., Minor Children, V.H., Mother v. Indiana Department of Child Services
10A01-1302-JM-93
Juvenile. Affirms trial court order granting Department of Child Services petitions to interview minor children on a complaint the mother was using and selling drugs despite no evidence in a home search or drug screen of the mother. The majority held that DCS’s interest could be served only by interviewing the children and that mother’s due process rights were not violated. Dissenting Judge Patricia Riley would dismiss the case as moot because the trial court declined to stay the order allowing the interviews.

In the Matter of the Commitment of T.K. v. Department of Veterans Affairs
49A05-1303-MH-100
Mental health. Affirms order for regular commitment, agreeing that T.K. was suffering from mental illness and was a danger to others. Although T.K. never harmed anyone, the COA finds his persistent threatening phone calls and hostile behavior is sufficient to find him a danger and to support his involuntary commitment to a mental health facility.

Dustin Trowbridge v. State of Indiana (NFP)
48A02-1205-CR-453
Criminal. Affirms denial of motion to correct erroneous sentence for conviction of murder, rape, robbery, burglary, aggravated battery, criminal confinement, theft, auto theft, abuse of a corpse and escape.

Runyon Equipment Rental, Inc. v. Review Board of the Indiana Department of Workforce Development and Stephen Mortimore (NFP)
93A02-1302-EX-182
Agency action. Reverses Indiana Department of Workforce Development Review Board’s grant of unemployment benefits and remands to the review board, also reversing a denial of a trial court order denying Runyon’s request to present additional evidence.

John Aaron Shoultz, III v. State of Indiana (NFP)
36A01-1208-CR-359
Criminal. Affirms conviction of murder and Class B felony unlawful possession of a firearm by a serious violent felon.

Luke Smith v. State of Indiana (NFP)
82A04-1212-CR-650
Criminal. Affirms conviction and seven-year executed sentence on a charge of Class C felony robbery.

David A. Perry v. State of Indiana (NFP)
90A05-1301-CR-24
Criminal. Affirms revocation of probation on a conviction of Class D felony possession of a controlled substance.

Marcella Mullins v. State of Indiana (NFP)
44A03-1303-CR-102
Criminal. Affirms on interlocutory appeal denial of a motion to suppress evidence gathered in a police protective sweep of her residence that resulted in charges of multiple felony methamphetamine charges and related counts.

Indiana Supreme Court and Indiana Tax Court issued no opinions by IL deadline Wednesday.

7th Circuit Court of Appeals issued no Indiana opinions by IL deadline Wednesday.

 

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  1. Bill Satterlee is, indeed, a true jazz aficionado. Part of my legal career was spent as an associate attorney with Hoeppner, Wagner & Evans in Valparaiso. Bill was instrumental (no pun intended) in introducing me to jazz music, thereby fostering my love for this genre. We would, occasionally, travel to Chicago on weekends and sit in on some outstanding jazz sessions at Andy's on Hubbard Street. Had it not been for Bill's love of jazz music, I never would have had the good fortune of hearing it played live at Andy's. And, most likely, I might never have begun listening to it as much as I do. Thanks, Bill.

  2. The child support award is many times what the custodial parent earns, and exceeds the actual costs of providing for the children's needs. My fiance and I have agreed that if we divorce, that the children will be provided for using a shared checking account like this one(http://www.mediate.com/articles/if_they_can_do_parenting_plans.cfm) to avoid the hidden alimony in Indiana's child support guidelines.

  3. 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.

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

  5. 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.

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