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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. I can understand a 10 yr suspension for drinking and driving and not following the rules,but don't you think the people who compleate their sentences and are trying to be good people of their community,and are on the right path should be able to obtain a drivers license to do as they please.We as a state should encourage good behavior instead of saying well you did all your time but we can't give you a license come on.When is a persons time served than cause from where I'm standing,its still a punishment,when u can't have the freedom to go where ever you want to in car,truck ,motorcycle,maybe their should be better programs for people instead of just throwing them away like daily trash,then expecting them to change because they we in jail or prison for x amount of yrs.Everyone should look around because we all pay each others bills,and keep each other in business..better knowledge equals better community equals better people...just my 2 cents

  2. I was wondering about the 6 million put aside for common attorney fees?does that mean that if you are a plaintiff your attorney fees will be partially covered?

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  4. I expressed my thought in the title, long as it was. I am shocked that there is ever immunity from accountability for ANY Government agency. That appears to violate every principle in the US Constitution, which exists to limit Government power and to ensure Government accountability. I don't know how many cases of legitimate child abuse exist, but in the few cases in which I knew the people involved, in every example an anonymous caller used DCS as their personal weapon to strike at innocent people over trivial disagreements that had no connection with any facts. Given that the system is vulnerable to abuse, and given the extreme harm any action by DCS causes to families, I would assume any degree of failure to comply with the smallest infraction of personal rights would result in mandatory review. Even one day of parent-child separation in the absence of reasonable cause for a felony arrest should result in severe penalties to those involved in the action. It appears to me, that like all bureaucracies, DCS is prone to interpret every case as legitimate. This is not an accusation against DCS. It is a statement about the nature of bureaucracies, and the need for ADDED scrutiny of all bureaucratic actions. Frankly, I question the constitutionality of bureaucracies in general, because their power is delegated, and therefore unaccountable. No Government action can be unaccountable if we want to avoid its eventual degeneration into irrelevance and lawlessness, and the law of the jungle. Our Constitution is the source of all Government power, and it is the contract that legitimizes all Government power. To the extent that its various protections against intrusion are set aside, so is the power afforded by that contract. Eventually overstepping the limits of power eliminates that power, as a law of nature. Even total tyranny eventually crumbles to nothing.

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