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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. 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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