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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. I can understand a 10 yr suspension for drinking and driving and not following the rules,but don't you think the people who compleate their sentences and are trying to be good people of their community,and are on the right path should be able to obtain a drivers license to do as they please.We as a state should encourage good behavior instead of saying well you did all your time but we can't give you a license come on.When is a persons time served than cause from where I'm standing,its still a punishment,when u can't have the freedom to go where ever you want to in car,truck ,motorcycle,maybe their should be better programs for people instead of just throwing them away like daily trash,then expecting them to change because they we in jail or prison for x amount of yrs.Everyone should look around because we all pay each others bills,and keep each other in business..better knowledge equals better community equals better people...just my 2 cents

  2. 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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  4. 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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