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Opinions Feb. 22, 2012

February 22, 2012
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7th Circuit Court of Appeals had posted no Indiana opinions at IL deadline.

Indiana Supreme Court

Jerrme Cartwright v. State of Indiana
82S01-1109-CR-564
Criminal. Affirms convictions of attempted battery and unlawful possession of a firearm by a serious violent felon. Finds no evidence of pretext in the state’s strike of venireperson Bard, the only African-American.

Joey Addison v. State of Indiana
49S05-1105-CR-267
Criminal. Uses the fundamental error doctrine to examine Addison’s Batson claim on appeal. The state’s mischaracterization of Turner’s voir dire testimony, its failure to engage Turner in any meaningful voir dire examination to explore his alleged undue reliance on the testimony of professionals, and the comparative juror analysis, when taken collectively, leave the firm impression that the state’s proffered explanation for striking venireperson Turner was a mere pretext based on race, making a fair trial impossible. Remands for a new trial.

Antwon Abbott v. State of Indiana
34S02-1202-CR-110
Criminal. Remands to the trial court to revise Abbott’s sentence from the maximum 20 years to 12 years for possession of cocaine as a Class B felony. But for the police officer’s choice of location in stopping the car in which Abbott was a passenger, he would have received no more than the maximum three-year sentence for possessing less than three grams of cocaine. Justices David and Dickson dissent.

Indiana Court of Appeals
Ernesto Gutierrez v. State of Indiana
44A03-1106-CR-257
Criminal. Reverses convictions of two counts of Class A felony child molesting. The trial court erred in admitting improper vouching testimony that invaded the province of the jury and prejudiced Gutierrez’s substantial rights. Remands for a new trial.

In the Matter of the Adoption of M.S.T.; R.P.M.T. v. C.K. and J.P. (NFP)
02A03-1106-AD-258
Adoption. Affirms grant of petition for C.K. and J.P. to adopt M.S.T.

Carol Showalter v. Donald Showalter (NFP)
20A03-1107-DR-332
Domestic relation. Remands for the trial court to explain its calculation of the parenting time credit and, if necessary, to recalculate the parenting time credit and father’s child support obligation. The trial court should also address the issue of whether son Brandt’s participation in ROTC should be credited toward his share of post-secondary education expenses.

Brent Goodman v. GMH Snyder Farms, Inc. (NFP)
53A05-1110-CT-531
Civil tort. Affirms order granting a motion to transfer venue from Monroe County to Montgomery County filed by GMH Snyder Farms.

Chuck W. Adams v. Mauro Chavez, M.D., Prison Health Services, Gil Kaufman, Craig Underwood, Dean Reiger (NFP)
49A05-1104-CT-218
Civil tort. Affirms summary judgment in favor of Chavez and other defendants on a complaint for medical malpractice.

LaDawn D. Johnson v. State of Indiana (NFP)
02A04-1106-CR-271
Criminal. Affirms conviction of and sentence for Class A felony battery.

Scott W. Bishop v. State of Indiana (NFP)
48A02-1108-CR-797, 48A05-1108-CR-441
Criminal. Affirms revocation of probation.

James Ingram v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A02-1106-CR-578
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class A felony voluntary manslaughter.

Philip Gregory Yeary v. State of Indiana (NFP)
78A01-1108-CR-388
Criminal. Affirms denial of motion to correct erroneous sentence.

Jeremy L. Hopkins v. State of Indiana (NFP)
48A02-1104-CR-342
Criminal. Affirms conviction of and sentence for Class A felony dealing in cocaine.

Michael Dunfee v. State of Indiana (NFP)
79A03-1106-CR-279
Criminal. Affirms sentence following guilty plea to Class C felony operating a motor vehicle while driving privileges are forfeited for life, Class A misdemeanor operating while intoxicated in a manner that endangers a person, and being a habitual substance offender. Reverses order that Dunfee pay restitution.

Indiana Tax Court had posted no opinions at 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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