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Opinions Feb. 14, 2013

February 14, 2013
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7th Circuit Court of Appeals
In the matter of: Castleton Plaza LP; Appeal of: El-SNPR Notes Holdings LLC
12-2639
U.S. Bankruptcy Court, Southern District of Indiana, Indianapolis Division, Judge Basil H. Lorch III.
Bankruptcy. Holds an equity investor cannot evade the competitive process by arranging for the new value to be contributed by (and the new equity to go to) an “insider” as 11 U.S.C. Section 101(31) defines that term. Competition is essential whenever a plan of reorganization leaves an objecting creditor unpaid yet distributes an equity interest to an insider.

Indiana Court of Appeals
James Roberson v. State of Indiana
18A02-1204-PC-306
Post conviction. Reverses denial of petition for post-conviction relief, which challenged his murder conviction. Roberson received ineffective assistance of trial counsel with respect to failing to ensure that the jury was properly instructed regarding the elements of murder, voluntary manslaughter, and the state’s burden of proof regarding sudden heat. Remands for further proceedings.

American Acceptance Co., LLC., as Assignee of Washington Mutual Finance v. Melissa Willis

42A04-1208-CC-466
Civil collection. Affirms denial of American Acceptance Co.’s motion for a garnishment order against Willis. Given Willis’ financial circumstances, the trial court didn’t abuse its discretion.

Daquan Whitener v. State of Indiana

20A04-1205-CR-254
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class A felony burglary and the determination that Whitener register as a sex offender as a condition of probation. The state presented evidence of a probative nature from which a reasonable trier of fact could have found beyond a reasonable doubt that Whitener’s entry of K.A.’s home was unauthorized and that he was guilty of burglary as a Class A felony. Dismisses the state’s cross-appeal of whether the court properly declined to enter a judgment of conviction for rape as a Class B felony based on double jeopardy principles.

Omar G. Burton v. State of Indiana (NFP)
03A01-1206-CR-263
Criminal. Affirms sentence imposed following revocation of probation.

James N. Arnold v. State of Indiana (NFP)
16A01-1206-CR-252
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class D felony being a habitual traffic violator and the Class C infraction of disregarding a traffic control device.

David Garden and Star Homes, Inc. d/b/a Garden Homes Realty v. Lucas International, LLC and Wade Lucas (NFP)
49A02-1206-CC-523
Civil collection. Affirms denial of David Garden’s and Garden Homes Realty’s motion to set aside default judgment.

Kevin Pendleton v. State of Indiana (NFP)
34A05-1207-CR-383
Criminal. Affirms convictions of two counts of Class B felony conspiracy to commit dealing in cocaine.

Charles L. Myers v. Glen L. Williams (NFP)
77A01-1204-CT-142
Civil tort. Affirms jury verdict awarding Williams $130,000 in damages following an automobile accident.

The Indiana Supreme Court and Tax Court issued no opinions prior to IL deadline.
 

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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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