Opinions Feb. 11, 2011

February 11, 2011
Back to TopE-mailPrintBookmark and Share

7th Circuit Court of Appeals
Mouhamadou M. Sow v. Fortville Police Department, et al.
U.S. District Court, Southern District of Indiana, Indianapolis Division, Chief Judge Richard L. Young
Civil. Affirms District Court’s grant of summary judgment to the Fortville Police Department, Officer Michael Fuller of the Fortville Police Department, and the McCordsville Police Department. Sow’s action was brought under 42 U.S.C. sections 1983, 1985, and 1986 after he was arrest for forgery but the charges were later dropped. Sow also alleged numerous state law claims, asserting that the District Court had supplemental jurisdiction over those claims.

The Indiana Supreme Court
In the Matter of Patrick K. Rocchio
Discipline. Suspends Rocchio from the practice of law for at least 180 days without automatic reinstatement. He was charged with violating Indiana Professional Conduct Rules 7.2(c)(3) and 5.5(b)(2), but found to also have violated 7.2(d)(2), 7.3(c). His conduct during the disciplinary process demonstrates his inability to recognize his clear violations of this state's disciplinary rules, his contempt for those rules and this disciplinary process, and his lack of appreciation for the role of the court's hearing officer and Disciplinary Commission members and staff led to his suspension without automatic reinstatement. Justice Rucker dissents to length of suspension.

Indiana Court of Appeals
Amir H. Sanjari v. State of Indiana
Criminal. Vacates Sanjari’s conviction and five-year sentence on his second count of Class C felony nonsupport of a dependent due to double jeopardy constraints. Affirms his conviction of and five-year sentence for the first count of Class C felony nonsupport of a dependent, with fines, costs, and restitution.

Alexander R. Pala v. Annare L. Pala Loubser
Civil. Affirms trial court’s grant of Loubser’s motion to terminate maintenance award. Based upon review of the record, the appellate court can’t say that the evidence leaves them with the firm conviction that a mistake was made or that the trial court’s decision is clearly against the logic and effect of the facts and circumstances before it.

T.L. v. Review Board of the Indiana Dept. of Workforce Development
Civil. Reverses and remands denial of T.L.’s motion to reinstate his appeal from an adverse determination of his claim for unemployment benefits. The following issue was presented for review: whether the board abused its discretion by adopting the findings and conclusions of the director, thereby affirming the denial of the request to reinstate T.L.’s appeal.

P.K.E. v. Review Board of the Indiana Dept. of Workforce Development and D.Z.
Civil. Affirms administrative law judge’s decision that P.K.E. had not discharged D.Z. for just cause and D.Z. was therefore entitled to unemployment benefits. The review board affirmed the ALJ’s decision and P.K.E. appealed.

David Martinez Zarate v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms sentence for conviction of dealing in cocaine, a Class B felony.

Juan Salazar-Arvisu v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Post-conviction. Affirms denial of petition for post-conviction relief.

Anthony A. Coffey v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms revocation of probation.

William T. Sexton v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms convictions of Class B misdemeanor false informing and Class D felony attempting to acquire a legend drug by fraud, deceit, misrepresentation, or subterfuge.

Robert W. Gard v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Reverses trial court’s grant of the state’s motion for relief from order, which set aside its previous order granting Gard’s motion to suppress.

Michael J. Huffman v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Post-conviction. Affirms denial of petition for post-conviction relief.

Paternity of C.F.; Rita K. Manns v. Richard A. Faler (NFP)
Juvenile. Reverses and remands order of the trial court emancipating Manns’ son and terminating the support obligation of Faler.

William E. Cathey v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms sentence following convictions of two counts of Class D felony theft.

Candace Brewer v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class D felony possession of a controlled substance.

Donald R. Tweedy v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms convictions of maintaining a common nuisance as a Class D felony, and driving while suspended as a Class A misdemeanor.

David Alan Davis Sr. v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Reverses termination from the Madison County Drug Court Program and remands with instructions.

Michael Todd Hughes v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms denial of Hughes’ motion to withdraw his guilty plea.

James E. McGee v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms conviction of two counts of child molesting as Class A felonies.

Kenneth L. Duckworth Jr. v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms trial court’s finding Duckworth is a habitual offender following his three convictions for dealing in a controlled substance, one as a Class A felony and the other two as Class B felonies.

The Indiana Tax Court posted no opinions before IL deadline.


Sponsored by
Subscribe to Indiana Lawyer
  1. I think the cops are doing a great job locking up criminals. The Murder rates in the inner cities are skyrocketing and you think that too any people are being incarcerated. Maybe we need to lock up more of them. We have the ACLU, BLM, NAACP, Civil right Division of the DOJ, the innocent Project etc. We have court system with an appeal process that can go on for years, with attorneys supplied by the government. I'm confused as to how that translates into the idea that the defendants are not being represented properly. Maybe the attorneys need to do more Pro-Bono work

  2. We do not have 10% of our population (which would mean about 32 million) incarcerated. It's closer to 2%.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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.