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Opinions Feb. 27, 2014

February 27, 2014
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7th Circuit Court of Appeals
United States of America v. John A. Peters III
12-3830
U.S. District Court, Southern District of Indiana, Indianapolis Division, Judge Jane E. Magnus-Stinson.
Criminal. Affirms denial of motion to suppress evidence discovered during the search of a car in which Peters was a passenger. The District Court committed no error in crediting the testimony of an experienced police officer who, after observing two cars traveling in tandem for a period of time, said he credibly believed that the trailing car was approximately 75 feet behind the lead car at a speed of approximately 60 miles-per-hour. If an officer knowing these facts could reasonably conclude that this combination of speed and distance violated Indiana law, that is all that is necessary to support probable cause.

Indiana Court of Appeals
State of Indiana v. Chad Bryant
32A01-1306-CR-282
Criminal. Reverses dismissal of charges against Bryant for Class D felony operating a vehicle as a habitual traffic violator. The state properly charged Bryant with Class D felony operating a vehicle as an HTV as a matter of law, and that the trial court abused its discretion when it granted Bryant’s motion to dismiss.

State of Indiana v. Michael E. Cunningham
19A05-1310-CR-489
Criminal. Affirms grant of Cunningham’s motion to suppress marijuana and a marijuana pipe. The state has failed to establish that Cunningham’s purported consent to the pat down was constitutionally valid. As such, the discovery of the marijuana in the pill bottle during the illegal pat down and the subsequent discovery of the pipe must be suppressed as fruits of the poisonous tree. Judge Brown dissents.

In the Matter of the Termination of the Parent-Child Relationship of: J.G. and C.G. (Minor Children) and B.G. (Mother) v. The Indiana Department of Child Services
84A05-1305-JT-219
Juvenile. Dismisses mother’s appeal of order terminating her parental rights to two of her seven children. The mother forfeited her right to appeal because she failed to file a timely notice of appeal.

Kathy K. Brunner v. Review Board of the Indiana Department of Workforce Development (NFP)
93A02-1307-EX-592
Agency action. Affirms denial of claim for unemployment benefits.

M.M. v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A05-1307-JV-367
Juvenile. Affirms adjudication as a delinquent child for committing an act that would be Class A misdemeanor criminal mischief if committed by an adult.

Brad S. Brown v. State of Indiana (NFP)
90A02-1306-CR-485
Criminal. Reverses conviction of Class C felony robbery and affirms convictions of Class B felony robbery and Class D felony domestic battery.

Michael L. Wilson v. State of Indiana (NFP)
20A04-1109-CR-531
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class B felony burglary and adjudication as a habitual offender.

Jose Ayala Cuevas v. State of Indiana (NFP)
29A04-1306-CR-298
Criminal. Affirms convictions of Class A misdemeanor criminal recklessness and Class B misdemeanor reckless driving.

Anna Marie Kelley v. State of Indiana (NFP)
27A05-1307-CR-333
Criminal. Affirms conviction and sentence for Class D felony auto theft.

David E. Matney v. State of Indiana (NFP)
55A01-1308-CR-372
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class D felony auto theft.

David Burroughs v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A04-1307-CR-360
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class C felony burglary.

Paul Farrell v. Deborah Farrell (NFP)
40A01-1307-DR-305
Domestic relation. Affirms in part. Concludes that the trial court did not abuse its discretion in the calculation and distribution of the marital estate. Remands with instructions for the trial court to replace the joint and several liability language consistent with its intent that the medical debt be equally divided between the parties.

Johnny D. Wayt v. State of Indiana (NFP)
36A05-1307-PC-338
Post conviction. Affirms denial of petition for post-conviction relief.

In the Matter of the Civil Commitment of: E.G. v. Eskenazi Health Midtown Community Mental Health Center (NFP)
49A02-1308-MH-724
Mental health. Affirms order concluding that Midtown proved by clear and convincing evidence that E.G. was dangerous to others and ordering him to take his prescribed medications.

Rapkin Group, Inc., as a minority Member on behalf and for the benefit of The Eye Center Group, LLC and Surgicenter Group, LLC. v. L. Marshall Roch, M.D. and Lynnette M. Watkins, M.D. (NFP)
18A02-1302-CT-193
Civil tort. Affirms summary judgment in favor of Drs. Roch and Watkins in Rapkin’s claim for actual fraud, constructive fraud and breach of fiduciary duty.

The Indiana Supreme Court and Tax Court posted no opinions by IL deadline.

 

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  1. 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.

  2. Being dedicated to a genre keeps it alive until the masses catch up to the "trend." Kent and Bill are keepin' it LIVE!! Thank you gentlemen..you know your JAZZ.

  3. Hemp has very little THC which is needed to kill cancer cells! Growing cannabis plants for THC inside a hemp field will not work...where is the fear? From not really knowing about Cannabis and Hemp or just not listening to the people teaching you through testimonies and packets of info over the last few years! Wake up Hoosier law makers!

  4. If our State Government would sue for their rights to grow HEMP like Kentucky did we would not have these issues. AND for your INFORMATION many medical items are also made from HEMP. FOOD, FUEL,FIBER,TEXTILES and MEDICINE are all uses for this plant. South Bend was built on Hemp. Our states antiquated fear of cannabis is embarrassing on the world stage. We really need to lead the way rather than follow. Some day.. we will have freedom in Indiana. And I for one will continue to educate the good folks of this state to the beauty and wonder of this magnificent plant.

  5. Put aside all the marijuana concerns, we are talking about food and fiber uses here. The federal impediments to hemp cultivation are totally ridiculous. Preposterous. Biggest hemp cultivators are China and Europe. We get most of ours from Canada. Hemp is as versatile as any crop ever including corn and soy. It's good the governor laid the way for this, regrettable the buffoons in DC stand in the way. A statutory relic of the failed "war on drugs"

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