Opinions Dec. 31, 2012

January 2, 2013
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No Indiana Court of Appeals, Indiana Supreme Court or Indiana Tax Court opinions were released on Wednesday. No Indiana opinions were released before IL deadline Wednesday by the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals.

Dec. 31, 2012
Indiana Court of Appeals
Indiana Public Employee Retirement Fund v. Paul Bryson
Miscellaneous. Affirms original opinion that Bryson’s on-duty injury was a “covered impairment” making him eligible for Class 1 impairment disability benefits even though he had a pre-existing condition.

Damon Ray Bowers v. State of Indiana
Criminal. Affirms trial court’s denial of motion to suppress evidence gathered at a traffic stop and remands for further proceedings. Finds the minimal intrusion into Bowers’ activity caused by the brief traffic stop was justified based on the police having reasonable suspicion that he was intoxicated.

Lisa Svenstrup v. Thomas Svenstrup
Domestic relation. Affirms trial court denial of mother’s petition for allocation of college expenses, holding that where mother petitioned for educational support prior to a child’s emancipation age which was denied by a trial court, a child support order is subject to modification upon the showing of changed circumstances so substantial and continuing as to make terms of the existing order unreasonable.

Israel Cruz v. State of Indiana
Criminal. Reverses Cruz’s conviction of operating a vehicle while suspended as a habitual traffic violator. Rules that even though there is ample evidence that Cruz knew he had never received a license and that he was not supposed to drive because he was unlicensed, the state did not charge him with driving without having received a license. Instead, it chose to charge him with driving while suspended but did not provide sufficient evidence beyond a reasonable doubt that Cruz knew he was suspended.  

Albert Jackson Counce v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms 20-year sentence for conviction of Class B felony robbery resulting in injury.
In Re the Paternity of Z.H.; S.E. v. C.H. (NFP)
Juvenile/parenting. Dismisses appeal of order for parties to participate in treatment, counseling and therapy.

Dandre Matlock v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms convictions of dealing and possession of marijuana and cocaine, maintaining a common nuisance and two counts of neglect of a dependent.
Roy G. Lewis v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms revocation of probation and execution of suspended sentence for Class D felony operating a vehicle while intoxicated.

Damon Gee v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms convictions of Class B felony possession of a firearm by a serious violent felon and Class D felony possession of a stolen vehicle.   

In the Matter of the Term. of the Parent-Child Rel. of A.D.; and M.D. v. Indiana Dept. of Child Services (NFP)
Juvenile. Affirms termination of parental rights.
Micha Seymour v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms in part, reverses in part and remands with instructions to vacate a habitual offender adjudication and vacate the 30-year sentence enhancement on a conviction of attempted murder.

Arthur J. Bryant v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Post-conviction relief/rehearing. Reaffirms denial of post-conviction relief.

In Re the Paternity of K.H., S.E. v. C.H. (NFP)
Juvenile. Dismisses appeal of order that parties participate in treatment, counseling and therapy.

Roy Bessler v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms conviction and 30-year sentence on two counts each of Class A and Class B felony dealing in cocaine.  

George R. Clark v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class A misdemeanor resisting law enforcement.

Francis McDonnell, M.D. v. Stacy Wissel, as Trustee of the Bankruptcy Estate of Roy L. Harris and Anita K. Harris (NFP)
Civil tort. Affirms trial court determination of liability and interest but reverses prejudgment interest award.

James L. Morgan v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms trial court order imposing sanctions after revocation of probation.  

Kimberly A. Harrison and Christine G. Portell v. Yale Rice, III, as Trustee of the Yale Rice, Jr. Living Trust, et al. (NFP)
Trust. Affirms trial court approval of final accounting and finding of no breach of fiduciary duty by the trustee.

Paulette Petkovich, et al. v. Prime Contractors Co., Inc. (NFP)
Mortgage foreclosure/rehearing. Affirms prior ruling in all respects, again denying Prime’s request for appellate attorney fees.

Joseph Ward v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms 34-year sentence for convictions of Class A felony child molestation and Class C felony child exploitation.
Joseph Rushing v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Post-conviction relief. Affirms denial of post-conviction relief on child molestation convictions.

Job Steel Corp, and Lisco, Inc. v. Board of Zoning Appeals of the Town of Burns Harbor and the Plan Commission of the Town of Burns Harbor (NFP)
Civil plenary. Affirms the Board of Zoning Appeals’ denial of an application for a special exception to operate a truck terminal.

Marvin Dewayne Davey v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms revocation of probation and order Davey serve remainder of sentence in the Department of Correction.

Joseph Laich, III v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class B felony aggravated battery.

T.S. v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Juvenile. Affirms commitment of T.S. to the Department of Correction for an indeterminate time at a juvenile correctional facility after adjudication as a delinquent for an act that would be Class C felony battery with a deadly weapon if committed by an adult.  

Ronald Rostochak v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms conviction and sentence of 25 years executed for a conviction of Class A felony child molestation.

Jason Castillo v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms conviction and six-year sentence for convictions of Class C felony operating a motor vehicle after lifetime suspension and Class A misdemeanor operating a vehicle with an alcohol concentration equivalent of at least 0.15 percent.

Bradley C. Taylor v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class C felony child molestation.

Shawn D. Jaco v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms convictions of Class B felony aggravated battery and Class C felony criminal confinement.

Demaris Snyder Wehr, Timothy John Snyder, Terence Glen Snyder and Daniel Owen Snyder v. Thomas Price, II, individually and as the named executor of the estate of Nilah Snyder, et al. (NFP)
Civil plenary. Affirms trial court judgment on pleadings concluding that beneficiaries had not breached any contract or tortiously interfered with any inheritance.

Townsend H. Porter, Jr., Townsend Porter Revocable Trust, and Brian H. Merritt v. 1st Source Bank (NFP)
Civil collection. Affirms trial court’s denial of Porter’s request for exemption from proceedings supplemental.



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  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. rensselaer imdiana is doing same thing to children from the judge to attorney and dfs staff they need to be investigated as well

  5. Sex offenders are victims twice, once when they are molested as kids, and again when they repeat the behavior, you never see money spent on helping them do you. That's why this circle continues