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Opinions Aug. 8, 2011

August 8, 2011
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7th Circuit Court of Appeals
United States of America v. Wanda Joshua, et al.
10-2140, 10-2181, 10-2182
U.S. District Court, Northern District of Indiana, Hammond Division, Judge Philip Simon.
Criminal. Affirms convictions of two counts of mail fraud. Although the evidence of the mailing element of mail fraud was thin, it was enough to send the case to the jury. Finds the defendants arguments that Skilling v. United States requires the court to set aside their convictions, and that the District Court improperly instructed the jury regarding their advice-of-counsel defense have no merit.

United States of America v. Anthony Rutledge
10-2734
U.S. District Court, Southern District of Indiana, Indianapolis Division, Judge Larry J. McKinney.
Criminal. Because the 7th Circuit couldn’t find the necessary credibility finding in the trial record, the judges were unable to make an informed decision about the District Court’s decision to deny the Batson challenge. Remands to the District Court for further proceedings as outlined in the opinion.

United States of America v. Wynell Gray
10-3936
U.S. District Court, Northern District of Indiana, Hammond Division, Judge James T. Moody.
Criminal. Affirms convictions of Medicaid fraud and conspiracy to defraud the government and a sentence of 33 months in prison and $846,115 in restitution to Indiana Medicaid. Even if the timestamp evidence were Brady material that the prosecution had concealed from the defense, that concealment wouldn’t have been a reversible error because the evidence would not have changed the outcome of the trial assuming the jury was reasonable. The judge’s declining to tell the jury that a witness had refused treatment at the courthouse for an illness before testifying was proper. A person will often refuse treatment because he is feeling better, not just because he is trying to not testify.

Indiana Supreme Court posted no opinions at IL deadline.

Indiana Court of Appeals
Karamchand Paul, et al. v. Home Bank SB
55A01-1012-MF-635
Mortgage foreclosure. Affirms summary judgment for Home Bank SB and the denial of summary judgment for Drs. Paul, Singh, and Ansari regarding guaranties for a subordinate loan. The superior loan and the subordinate loan were two entirely separate contractual transactions, and the integration clause in the superior guaranty integrated only those agreements that were part of the negotiations directly leading to the superior loan. The doctors can’t now complain that the bank failed to advise them as to the meaning of the superior guaranty because they failed to read the guaranty or seek the advice of legal counsel before signing.

Brad Curtis and Rhonda Curtis v. The National Insurance Group and Celina Insurance Group (NFP)
01A05-1011-CT-718
Civil tort. Affirms summary judgment for The National Mutual Insurance Co. and Celina Insurance Group on the Curtises’ complaint for damages for breach of contract, violation of Indiana insurance law, and bad faith.

Paul Davis v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A02-1012-CR-1445
Criminal. Affirms order that Davis serve the entirety of his previously suspended sentence following a probation violation.

Robert Fiedler v. Indiana Office of Environmental Adjudication, et al. (NFP)
49A02-1011-MI-1263
Miscellaneous. Affirms dismissal of Fiedler’s petition for judicial review of an administrative permit.

Leroy H. Hall v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A02-1101-PC-65
Post conviction. Reverses denial of petition for post-conviction relief and remands for a hearing and decision consistent with the Indiana Rules of Post-Conviction Relief.

Phillip D. Fairholm v. State of Indiana (NFP)
48A02-1101-CR-84
Criminal. Affirms order that Fairholm serve the entire five years of his suspended sentence following the revocation of probation.

Joseph Lundy v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A04-1012-CR-765
Criminal. Affirms denial of motion to suppress evidence.

B.G. v. J.B. (NFP)
52A02-1101-DR-11
Domestic relation. Dismisses B.G.’s appeal of the order modifying custody of his children, parenting time, and child support.

Alex Callison v. State of Indiana (NFP)
28A01-1103-CR-133
Criminal. Affirms sentence following guilty plea to Class A felony burglary, Class B felony rape, Class B felony criminal deviate conduct, and Class D felony intimidation.

Jerome Williams v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A04-1008-PC-547
Post conviction. Affirms denial of petition for post-conviction relief.

Indiana Tax Court posted no opinions at IL deadline.

The Indiana Supreme Court denied transfer to 16 cases for the week ending Aug. 5.
 

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  1. Frankly, it is tragic that you are even considering going to an expensive, unaccredited "law school." It is extremely difficult to get a job with a degree from a real school. If you are going to make the investment of time, money, and tears into law school, it should not be to a place that won't actually enable you to practice law when you graduate.

  2. As a lawyer who grew up in Fort Wayne (but went to a real law school), it is not that hard to find a mentor in the legal community without your school's assistance. One does not need to pay tens of thousands of dollars to go to an unaccredited legal diploma mill to get a mentor. Having a mentor means precisely nothing if you cannot get a job upon graduation, and considering that the legal job market is utterly terrible, these students from Indiana Tech are going to be adrift after graduation.

  3. 700,000 to 800,000 Americans are arrested for marijuana possession each year in the US. Do we need a new justice center if we decriminalize marijuana by having the City Council enact a $100 fine for marijuana possession and have the money go towards road repair?

  4. I am sorry to hear this.

  5. I tried a case in Judge Barker's court many years ago and I recall it vividly as a highlight of my career. I don't get in federal court very often but found myself back there again last Summer. We had both aged a bit but I must say she was just as I had remembered her. Authoritative, organized and yes, human ...with a good sense of humor. I also appreciated that even though we were dealing with difficult criminal cases, she treated my clients with dignity and understanding. My clients certainly respected her. Thanks for this nice article. Congratulations to Judge Barker for reaching another milestone in a remarkable career.

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