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Opinions Jan. 28, 2014

January 28, 2014
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7th Circuit Court of Appeals
The following opinion was issued after IL deadline Monday.

Bitler Investment Venture II, LLC, et al. v. Marathon Petroleum Company LP, et al.
12-3722.
Civil. Affirms in part, reverses in part a $269,000 judgment in favor of Bitler. Remands with instructions to double damages awarded under Michigan’s laws regarding doctrine of waste for properties that Marathon failed to maintain and were ultimately condemned. Reverses dismissal of certain contract claims and remands to the District Court for the Northern District of Indiana for trial on those issues.

Indiana Court of Appeals
Tammy Lou Kelly v. State of Indiana
09A04-1303-CR-98
Criminal. Reverses trial court’s ruling that Tammy Lou Kelley is guilty but mentally ill after she attacked her boyfriend’s young daughter. Finds the lower court did not have sufficient probative evidence to disregard two psychiatrists’ conclusions that Young was unable to appreciate the wrongfulness of her actions at the time of the attack. Remands with instructions for the trial court to enter a finding of not guilty by reason of insanity.  

Wayne Campbell v. State of Indiana
13A05-1304-PC-201
Post conviction. Affirms denial of relief from a conviction of Class B felony burglary, holding that Campbell failed to establish that he received ineffective assistance of counsel. Campbell unsuccessfully argued that his trial counsel should have objected to an Indiana Pattern Jury Instruction regarding the definition of intent. Tension exists as to whether part of the instruction is a correct statement of law, and the Supreme Court has yet to resolve the issue.

Audie Wilson v. State of Indiana
49A02-1210-CR-846
Criminal. Affirms convictions of Class B felony and Class C felony counts of sexual misconduct with a minor and Class B felony attempted sexual misconduct with a minor. The court rejected appellate arguments that nicknames or aliases used by Wilson were improperly admitted and that the jury was improperly instructed with regard to Wilson’s defense that he had a reasonable belief that the victim was older than 16.

Jeremy Schath v. State of Indiana
16A05-1308-CR-433
Criminal. Reverses Class C misdemeanor conviction of chasing wildlife on private property without the consent of the owner, finding that the undisputed evidence showed Schath entered the property only for the purpose of retrieving a dog that had wandered from property where Schath had permission to hunt.

Allen County Public Library v. Shambaugh & Son, L.P., Hamilton Hunter Builders, Inc., W.A. Sheets & Sons, Inc., and MSKTD & Associates, Inc.
02A04-1302-PL-78
Civil plenary. On rehearing, reaffirms opinion in all respects that the library was entitled to pursue damages from defendants for diesel pollution that affected surrounding properties during a construction project, rejecting arguments raised for the first time on rehearing that there was no contamination outside the project area and that caselaw on which the defense relied was wrongly decided.

Michael Johnson v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A02-1307-CR-590
Criminal. Affirms convictions of seven counts of Class A felony and three counts of Class C felony child molesting and habitual offender finding.

Jesse Imel v. State of Indiana (NFP)
48A04-1306-CR-280
Criminal. Affirms conviction and 18-year sentence for Class B felony incest.

John Collins v. State of Indiana (NFP)
15A01-1306-CR-277
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class D felony auto theft.

Thomas A. Christopher v. Mike Raisor Imports (NFP)
79A05-1304-SC-214
Small claims. Affirms judgment in favor of Mike Raisor Imports.

In the Matter of the Involunatary Termination of the Parent-Child Relationship of K.B., Minor Child, and Her Mother, M.B., M.B. v. Indiana Department of Child Services (NFP)

69A05-1305-JT-230
Juvenile. Affirms termination of parental rights.

Raul Fuentes v. State of Indiana (NFP)
02A03-1306-CR-223
Criminal. Affirms conviction of three counts of Class A felony and four counts of Class C felony child molesting.

Eleanor L. Mitchell v. RIH Acquisitions IN, LLC, d/b/a Resorts East Chicago (NFP)
45A03-1306-CT-226
Civil tort. Affirms jury verdict that defendants were not at fault for Mitchell’s injuries sustained in a fall in a casino parking lot.

Charles A. DePree v. State of Indiana (NFP)
20A05-1308-PC-420
Post conviction. Affirms post-conviction court’s grant in part and denial in part of a petition for relief from a conviction of Class B felony dealing in methamphetamine.

Reginal Exson v. State of Indiana (NFP)
79A02-1306-CR-490
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class A misdemeanor domestic battery.

Indiana Supreme Court  and Indiana Tax Court issued no opinions by IL deadline. 7th Circuit Court of Appeals issued no Indiana opinions by IL deadline Tuesday.






 

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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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