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Opinions Feb. 16, 2012

February 16, 2012
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7th Circuit Court of Appeals had posted no Indiana opinions at IL deadline.

Indiana Supreme Court

Richmond State Hospital and All Other Similarly Situated State Institutions and Agencies v. Paula Brattain, et al.
49S02-1106-CV-327
Civil. Holds that the back pay recovery of the non-merit employees of the state should be limited in the same manner as the Court of Appeals has set forth for that of merit employees of the state. Remands with instructions to recalculate the non-merit employees’ back pay judgment based upon the time period beginning either 10 days before the complaint or 10 days before the filing of their grievances until the day the state eliminated its split-pay system, and summarily affirms the COA in all other respects.

Indiana Court of Appeals
Raymond Dale Berryhill v. Parkview Hospital
02A04-1108-SC-400
Small claim. Affirms ruling that Parkview was immune from liability based on a statute that covers persons who assist in detentions. Disagrees with Berryhill that the immunity statute doesn’t apply because he wasn’t detained for purposes of the statute until after his wife filed the application for detention.

State of Indiana v. Elvis Holtsclaw
49A02-1108-CR-743
Criminal. Dismisses the state’s appeal of the denial of its motion to correct error following the trial court’s order granting Holtsclaw’s motion to suppress evidence. The state doesn’t have the authority to appeal the denial of its motion to correct error in this case. Judge Baker dissents.

Paternity of I.I.Y.; L.M.M. v. J.B.Y. (NFP)
84A01-1105-JP-236
Juvenile. Affirms conclusion that a change of custody was necessary. Reverses trial court’s child support award and remand with instructions that the trial court consider the relevant evidence when arriving at the child support award.

The Matter of the Term. of the Parent-Child Rel. of J.D. and R.G. v. Indiana Dept. of Child Services (NFP)
79A02-1108-JT-850
Juvenile. Affirms involuntary termination of parental rights.

City of Fort Wayne, Indiana v. Town of Huntertown, Indiana (NFP)
02A05-1107-MI-384
Miscellaneous. Affirms summary judgment for Huntertown. The trial court properly determined as a matter of law that Fort Wayne’s correspondence did not amount to a termination of an agreement regarding the treatment of sewage collected in Huntertown.

Roger L. Bushhorn v. State of Indiana (NFP)
40A01-1107-CR-315
Criminal. Reverses and remands with instructions to revise Bushhorn’s sentence to an aggregate term of 35 years for charges including Class A felony kidnapping. Affirms in all other respects.

Rosewood Management Company, Inc. v. Twyla Smith (NFP)

45A05-1107-CC-447
Civil collection. Affirms entry of judgment on the evidence in favor of Smith in a dispute as to whether Smith had to pay for damages to her apartment following a fire.

Jason B. Forrest v. State of Indiana (NFP)
91A05-1106-CR-324
Criminal. Affirms denial of motion to withdraw guilty plea.

Jason J. Kucenski v. State of Indiana (NFP)
20A05-1106-CR-353
Criminal. Reverses conviction of neglect of a dependent, but affirms 45-year sentence and conviction of dealing in methamphetamine. Remands for the trial court to vacate the neglect conviction and sentence for that charge.

State of Indiana v. Angela Bennett (NFP)
79A02-1110-PL-952
Civil plenary. Reverses order granting Bennett a restricted driver’s license.

Indiana Tax Court had posted no opinions at IL deadline.
 

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  1. 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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  3. 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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