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Opinions Dec. 15, 2011

December 15, 2011
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7th Circuit Court of Appeals
Adrianna Brown, et al. v. Columbia Sussex Corp., et al.
10-3849
U.S. District Court, Northern District of Indiana, Hammond Division, Chief Judge Philip P. Simon.
Civil. Affirms dismissal of 53 of the 224 plaintiffs who had their civil rights and breach of contract claims dismissed because they continually missed both formal and informal deadlines. Holds that, in the context of a multi-party or multi-claim suit, a premature notice of appeal from the dismissal of a party or claim will ripen upon the entry of a belated Rule 54(b) judgment under Rule 4(a)(2) and FirsTier. The District Court was within its discretion to find that the appellants acted willfully, in bad faith, or with fault.

Indiana Supreme Court
David R. Snyder v. J. Bradley King and Trent Deckard, in their Official Capacities as Co-Directors of the Indiana Election Division; and Linda Silcott and Pam Brunette
94S00-1101-CQ-50
Certified question. Holds that the Indiana Constitution was not violated when, upon being convicted of Class A misdemeanor battery and sentenced to an executed term of incarceration, Snyder was disenfranchised, but only for the duration of his incarceration. Also holds that the General Assembly has separate constitutional authority to cancel the registration of any person incarcerated following conviction, for the duration of incarceration.

Indiana Court of Appeals
P.J. v. Review Board of the Indiana Dept. of Workforce Development, and Indianapolis Public Schools (NFP)
93A02-1102-EX-64
Agency appeal. Affirms determination that P.J. voluntarily left his employment without good cause and was ineligible for unemployment compensation.

Donald S. Forker v. State of Indiana (NFP)
28A04-1106-CR-364
Criminal. Affirms sentence following guilty plea to Class B felony dealing in a controlled substance.

Robert D. Spangler v. State of Indiana (NFP)
26A01-1106-CR-284
Criminal. Affirms sentence imposed after Spangler pleaded guilty but mentally ill to murder.

Brad A. Morcombe v. Kim D. Morcombe (NFP)
50A03-1104-DR-172
Domestic relation. Affirms division of assets.

Clara Combs v. State of Indiana (NFP)
72A05-1104-CR-148
Criminal. Affirms sentence for dealing in a schedule II controlled substance as a Class B felony.

Good Host, LLC v. Advanced Interventional Pain Center, LLC (NFP)
49A05-1105-PL-217
Civil plenary. Affirms finding that Good Host failed to state a claim for breach of contract under the theory of an assignment of the lease. Reverses dismissal of Good Host’s equitable assignment claim and remands for further proceedings.

P. Bryan Lilly, D.O. v. Tammy Meserve, as Natural Guardian of Samantha Jo Aders, Darien Aders, and Mason James Aders, minors (NFP)
19A04-1104-CT-193
Civil tort. Affirms in part and reverses in part judgment in favor of Meserve on her complaint alleging Dr. Lilly’s negligence resulted in Chad Aders’ death. Any error in the admission of Exhibit 4 or the expert testimony relating the content of the autopsy report did not affect Lilly’s substantial rights and was harmless. The trial court improperly denied Meserve’s request for attorney fees. Remands for the calculation of such.

In Re: (Supervised) Estate of Robert E. Bradley, Decedent; Phyllis C. Bradley v. Martha T. Starkey (NFP)
49A02-1103-EU-245
Estate, unsupervised. Affirms probate court’s order on the emergency petition to recover estate assets filed by Starkey.

Joshua Hudson v. State of Indiana (NFP)
87A05-1105-PC-280
Post conviction. Affirms denial of petition for post-conviction relief.

Najee Sabree Q. Blackman v. Samantha Maddox, et al. (NFP)
34A05-1106-CT-379
Civil tort. Affirms dismissal of Blackman’s complaint for damages.

R.D. v. Review Board of the Indiana Dept. of Workforce Development, et al. (NFP)

93A02-1103-EX-210
Agency appeal. Reverses denial of unemployment benefits.

Theresa L. Trensey and Louis L. Roth, Sr. v. Garland D. Anderson, M.D., Parkview Medical Group, and Unnamed Hospital, Inc. d/b/a Unnamed Hospital (NFP)
02A05-1104-CT-222
Civil tort. Affirms summary judgment in favor of Dr. Anderson, Parkview Medical Group and the unnamed hospital on the parents’ complaint for damages alleging medical malpractice.

Indiana Tax Court had posted no opinions at IL deadline.
 

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  1. So that none are misinformed by my posting wihtout a non de plume here, please allow me to state that I am NOT an Indiana licensed attorney, although I am an Indiana resident approved to practice law and represent clients in Indiana's fed court of Nth Dist and before the 7th circuit. I remain licensed in KS, since 1996, no discipline. This must be clarified since the IN court records will reveal that I did sit for and pass the Indiana bar last February. Yet be not confused by the fact that I was so allowed to be tested .... I am not, to be clear in the service of my duty to be absolutely candid about this, I AM NOT a member of the Indiana bar, and might never be so licensed given my unrepented from errors of thought documented in this opinion, at fn2, which likely supports Mr Smith's initial post in this thread: http://caselaw.findlaw.com/us-7th-circuit/1592921.html

  2. When I served the State of Kansas as Deputy AG over Consumer Protection & Antitrust for four years, supervising 20 special agents and assistant attorneys general (back before the IBLE denied me the right to practice law in Indiana for not having the right stuff and pretty much crushed my legal career) we had a saying around the office: Resist the lure of the ring!!! It was a take off on Tolkiem, the idea that absolute power (I signed investigative subpoenas as a judge would in many other contexts, no need to show probable cause)could corrupt absolutely. We feared that we would overreach constitutional limits if not reminded, over and over, to be mindful to not do so. Our approach in so challenging one another was Madisonian, as the following quotes from the Father of our Constitution reveal: The essence of Government is power; and power, lodged as it must be in human hands, will ever be liable to abuse. We are right to take alarm at the first experiment upon our liberties. I believe there are more instances of the abridgement of freedom of the people by gradual and silent encroachments by those in power than by violent and sudden usurpations. Liberty may be endangered by the abuse of liberty, but also by the abuse of power. All men having power ought to be mistrusted. -- James Madison, Federalist Papers and other sources: http://www.constitution.org/jm/jm_quotes.htm RESIST THE LURE OF THE RING ALL YE WITH POLITICAL OR JUDICIAL POWER!

  3. My dear Mr Smith, I respect your opinions and much enjoy your posts here. We do differ on our view of the benefits and viability of the American Experiment in Ordered Liberty. While I do agree that it could be better, and that your points in criticism are well taken, Utopia does indeed mean nowhere. I think Madison, Jefferson, Adams and company got it about as good as it gets in a fallen post-Enlightenment social order. That said, a constitution only protects the citizens if it is followed. We currently have a bevy of public officials and judicial agents who believe that their subjectivism, their personal ideology, their elitist fears and concerns and cause celebs trump the constitutions of our forefathers. This is most troubling. More to follow in the next post on that subject.

  4. Yep I am not Bryan Brown. Bryan you appear to be a bigger believer in the Constitution than I am. Were I still a big believer then I might be using my real name like you. Personally, I am no longer a fan of secularism. I favor the confessional state. In religious mattes, it seems to me that social diversity is chaos and conflict, while uniformity is order and peace.... secularism has been imposed by America on other nations now by force and that has not exactly worked out very well.... I think the American historical experiment with disestablishmentarianism is withering on the vine before our eyes..... Since I do not know if that is OK for an officially licensed lawyer to say, I keep the nom de plume.

  5. I am compelled to announce that I am not posting under any Smith monikers here. That said, the post below does have a certain ring to it that sounds familiar to me: http://www.catholicnewworld.com/cnwonline/2014/0907/cardinal.aspx

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