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Opinions Dec. 9, 2013

December 9, 2013
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Indiana Court of Appeals
Lagro Township and Karen Pinkerton Tatro v. George E. Bitzer and Zelma E. Bitzer
85A02-1306-PL-520
Civil plenary. Affirms summary judgment for the Bitzers on Lagro Township’s action seeking to exercise control over an area of land referred to as “the Belden Cemetery,” which is located on land owned by the Bitzers. The statute authorizing a township trustee to exercise control over cemeteries located within the township is inapplicable where the cemetery is located on land on which property taxes have been paid. And here, even though there was a genuine issue of material fact with regard to whether and to what extent the dedication of the Belden Cemetery to the public was accepted by the public through usage, there is no genuine issue of material fact with regard to the Bitzers’ payment of property taxes on the land on which the Belden Cemetery is located for decades. For this reason alone, the township’s claims of authority over the Belden Cemetery must fail.

John Aaron Schoultz III v. State of Indiana (NFP)
36A01-1301-CR-9
Criminal. Affirms convictions of two counts of Class A felony conspiracy to commit murder and 40-year sentence.

Jacob Phipps v. State of Indiana (NFP)
48A05-1303-CR-129
Criminal. Affirms order revoking probation and order Phipps serve the entirety of his previously suspended sentence.

In the Matter of the Involuntary Termination of the Parent-Child Relationship of B.R., Minor Child and His Father, V.R. v. Marion County Department of Child Services and Child Advocates, Inc (NFP)
49A04-1304-JT-156
Juvenile. Affirms involuntary termination of father’s parental rights.

Edward R. Hoffman v. State of Indiana (NFP)
18A02-1307-PC-587
Post conviction. Affirms denial of petition for post-conviction relief.

Jon Alan Young v. State of Indiana (NFP)
18A05-1303-CR-125
Criminal. Affirms 30-month sentence following guilty plea to Class D felony strangulation.

Willie L. Montgomery v. State of Indiana (NFP)
82A05-1305-CR-246
Criminal. Dismisses on interlocutory appeal the denial of motion to dismiss a charge that Montgomery failed to register as a sex or violent offender.

Pamela J. (McConnell) Neal v. David A. McConnell (NFP)
33A01-1305-DR-202
Domestic relation. Affirms modification of child custody, reverses modification of child support and remands for proceedings consistent with the opinion.

Lori A. Cissom v. Review Board of the Indiana Department of Workforce Development and Supreme Indiana Operations, Inc (NFP)
93A02-1304-EX-404
Agency action. Affirms denial by the Review Board of the Indiana Department of Workforce Development of Cissom’s request to reinstate appeal of denial of claim for unemployment benefits.

Joshua Wilson v. State of Indiana (NFP)
33A01-1305-CR-205
Criminal. Affirms sentence following guilty plea to Class D felony theft and Class B misdemeanor criminal mischief.

The Indiana Supreme Court and Tax Court posted no opinions by IL deadline. The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals posted no Indiana opinions by IL deadline.
 

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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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