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Opinions Dec. 6, 2010

December 6, 2010
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7th Circuit Court of Appeals
Brian D. Grigsby v. Ray LaHood, Secretary of the U.S. Department of Transportation
U.S. District Court, Southern District of Indiana, Indianapolis Division, Chief Judge Richard L. Young.
Civil. Affirms summary judgment for the Department of Transportation in his suit claiming he wasn’t hired because of his Native American heritage. Grigsby was not qualified for any of the positions he applied for.

Indiana Supreme Court had posted no opinions at IL deadline.

Indiana Court of Appeals
Rex E. Breeden Revocable Trust v. Rebecca Jane Hoffmeister-Repp
03A04-1003-CT-185
Civil tort. Affirms summary judgment for Hoffmeister-Repp on the trust’s complaint for rescission and/or damages of an agreement to purchase Hoffmeister-Repp’s residence. Concludes that exception nine - transfers to a living trust - enacted in I.C. § 32-21-5-1(9) only applies when the transfer occurs between a seller and the seller’s own living trust. Therefore, Hoffmeister-Repp was required to comply with the statute and to complete a disclosure form. Finds the trust’s fraud claim fails and there is insufficient designated evidence to support a finding of mutual mistake.

Charles E. Green v. State of Indiana
49A05-1001-CR-37
Criminal. Affirms felony murder conviction. Based on the evidence, a trier of fact could reasonably infer that Green murdered the victim, or at the very least, he aided, induced or caused James Townsend to murder her. Also, Jury Instruction 21(F) as a whole was not misleading.

Peggy J. Rider and James R. Rider v. Larry L. McCamment, et al.
16A01-1004-CT-180
Civil tort. Affirms summary judgment for McCamment as landowner because Peggy Rider’s negligence claim against him fails as a matter of law. Reverses summary judgment for independent contractor Lee. Although Lee exercised control over the premises, the facts designated aren’t sufficient to conclude whether Rider was rightfully on the premises and whether she was a foreseeable visitor. Judge Kirsch concurs in part and dissents in part.

Northeast Civic Association, Inc. et al. v. Gloria J. Beard, et al. (NFP)
49A02-1003-PL-470
Civil plenary. Affirms summary judgment in favor of defendants Gloria J. Beard and others in Northeast Civil Association’s verified compliant to quiet title and for damages.

Guillermo Toledo v. State of Indiana (NFP)
02A03-1006-CR-360
Criminal. Affirms sentence following guilty plea to operating a vehicle while intoxicated causing death as a Class B felony, and to being a habitual controlled substance offender.

Quantita L. Jackson v. State of Indiana (NFP)
48A02-1005-CR-581
Criminal. Reverses order Jackson serve an executed sentence following her guilty plea to Class C felony fraud on a financial institution. Remands with instructions.

Ira James Washington, Jr. v. State of Indiana (NFP)
45A03-1003-CR-151
Criminal. Affirms sentence following guilty plea to Class B felony attempted aggravated battery and Class D felony battery.

Patrick T. Tolbert v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A02-1005-CR-545
Criminal. Affirms convictions of Class B felonies robbery and criminal confinement.

Stephen Ray Jones, Jr. v. State of Indiana (NFP)
48A04-1003-CR-161
Criminal. Affirms revocation of probation.

Barry Wanner v. Jill Hutchcroft (NFP)
79A02-1004-DR-467
Domestic relation. Affirms order Wanner pay Hutchcroft more than $37,000 to compensate her for a tax liability assumed when she liquidated part of his TIAA-CREF retirement account.

Indiana Tax Court had posted no opinions at IL deadline.

The Indiana Supreme Court denied seven transfers for the week ending Dec. 3.
 

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  1. The practitioners and judges who hail E-filing as the Saviour of the West need to contain their respective excitements. E-filing is federal court requires the practitioner to cram his motion practice into pigeonholes created by IT people. Compound motions or those seeking alternative relief are effectively barred, unless the practitioner wants to receive a tart note from some functionary admonishing about the "problem". E-filing is just another method by which courts and judges transfer their burden to practitioners, who are the really the only powerless components of the system. Of COURSE it is easier for the court to require all of its imput to conform to certain formats, but this imposition does NOT improve the quality of the practice of law and does NOT improve the ability of the practitioner to advocate for his client or to fashion pleadings that exactly conform to his client's best interests. And we should be very wary of the disingenuous pablum about the costs. The courts will find a way to stick it to the practitioner. Lake County is a VERY good example of this rapaciousness. Any one who does not believe this is invited to review the various special fees that system imposes upon practitioners- as practitioners- and upon each case ON TOP of the court costs normal in every case manually filed. Jurisprudence according to Aldous Huxley.

  2. Any attorneys who practice in federal court should be able to say the same as I can ... efiling is great. I have been doing it in fed court since it started way back. Pacer has its drawbacks, but the ability to hit an e-docket and pull up anything and everything onscreen is a huge plus for a litigator, eps the sole practitioner, who lacks a filing clerk and the paralegal support of large firms. Were I an Indiana attorney I would welcome this great step forward.

  3. Can we get full disclosure on lobbyist's payments to legislatures such as Mr Buck? AS long as there are idiots that are disrespectful of neighbors and intent on shooting fireworks every night, some kind of regulations are needed.

  4. I am the mother of the child in this case. My silence on the matter was due to the fact that I filed, both in Illinois and Indiana, child support cases. I even filed supporting documentation with the Indiana family law court. Not sure whether this information was provided to the court of appeals or not. Wish the case was done before moving to Indiana, because no matter what, there is NO WAY the state of Illinois would have allowed an appeal on a child support case!

  5. "No one is safe when the Legislature is in session."

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