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Opinions Jan. 31, 2011

January 31, 2011
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Indiana Supreme Court had posted no opinions at IL deadline.

Indiana Court of Appeals
Cynthia L. Foley v. Robert L. Schwartz and Danny L. Collins
78A04-1005-CT-305
Civil tort. Reverses grant of Schwartz’s motion to dismiss Foley’s complaint following an ATV accident on Collins’ property. The trial court erred when it granted Schwartz’s motion to dismiss for lack of personal jurisdiction. Remands for further proceedings.

JK Harris & Co. v. Ronald Sandlin
49A05-1003-CT-184
Civil tort. Affirms denial of JK Harris’ motions to set aside default judgment and class certification. JK Harris received adequate notice of the proceedings, and waived its right to compel arbitration. Remands for a new evidentiary hearing to define the plaintiff class with more specificity.

Term. of Parent-Child Rel. of D.B.; W.B. v. IDCS and Lake County CASA
45A03-1005-JT-285
Juvenile. Reveres involuntary termination of father W.B.’s parental rights to his child D.B. Given the circumstances before the court, this case hasn’t reached the “last resort” stage to terminate the relationship. Remands for further proceedings under the juvenile court’s previous child in need of services orders.

Merle R. Webb v. State of Indiana
49A02-1006-CR-650
Criminal. Affirms sentence following guilty plea to driving while suspended as a Class A misdemeanor, robbery as a Class B felony, six counts of fraud as Class D felonies, and two counts of attempted fraud as Class D felonies. As Webb pled guilty to all charges without the benefit of a plea agreement, the trial court should have identified his guilty plea as a mitigating factor. However, the trial court would not have imposed a lesser sentence even if it had explicitly identified his guilty plea as a mitigating factor. Webb has not established that his sentence is inappropriate.

R.M. v. Second Injury Fund
93A02-1007-EX-792
Civil. Reverses order of the Full Worker’s Compensation Board that determined R.M. is entitled to receive benefits from the Second Injury Fund beginning with the 501st week after the date of his workplace injury. R.M. should be entitled to receive benefits from the fund beginning with the week following the effective exhaustion of his worker’s compensation benefits.

John M. Norris v. State of Indiana
64A05-1003-CR-168
Criminal. Affirms conviction of murder. The trial court did not err in refusing to instruct the jury on involuntary manslaughter and there is sufficient evidence to prove that Norris knowingly or intentionally killed his long-term live-in girlfriend.

Brett Zagorac v. State of Indiana
45A03-0910-CR-481
Criminal. Affirms denial of motion to correct error following the summary denial of Zagorac’s petition to expunge his arrest record. He hasn’t show the summary denial was an abuse of the trial court’s “almost unfettered discretion” to deny his petition nor can he succeed with his argument that the expungement statute violates the Indiana Constitution as he waived that argument for appeal.

Charleen (Turi) King v. Kenneth Robert Turi (NFP)
82A01-1006-DR-267
Domestic relation. Affirms denial of King’s motion to correct error following the court’s ruling on her information for indirect contempt. Remands for a hearing on appellate attorney fee damages.

Daniel J. Hooper v. Donna J. Smith (NFP)
32A01-1009-DR-439
Domestic relation. Reverses order granting Smith’s “motion for acceptance of jurisdiction under the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction Act.”

Roy A. Selby v. State of Indiana (NFP)
63A01-1005-CR-235
Criminal. Affirms convictions of child molesting, one count as a Class A felony and one count as a Class C felony, and 50-year aggregate sentence.

Gary G. Lane v. State of Indiana (NFP)
15A01-1007-CR-346
Criminal. Affirms sentence imposed following revocation of probation.

G.W. v. Review Board (NFP)
93A02-1004-EX-542
Civil. Affirms denial of claim for full unemployment benefits.

Katherine Weber v. Carrie Schlichtenmyer (NFP)
02A03-1008-PL-460
Civil plenary. Affirms summary judgment in favor of Schlichtenmyer as personal representative of the estate of Gerald Schlichtenmyer on Weber’s claim asserting the estate owed her money for personal services rendered to Gerald before his death.

Marty B. Beard v. State of Indiana (NFP)
12A02-1001-CR-423
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class D felony maintaining a common nuisance but reverses the Class D felony conviction of possession of precursors. Affirms sentence enhancement imposed due to habitual substance offender status. Remands for further proceedings.

Term. of Parent-Child Rel. of Ca.K and Co.K.; J.S. v. I.D.C.S. ad Monroe County CASA (NFP)
53A05-1006-JT-345
Juvenile. Affirms involuntary termination of parental rights.

Dorian L. Harris v. State of Indiana (NFP)
71A04-1004-CR-258
Criminal. Affirms convictions of Class B felonies burglary and robbery.

Virgil Austin v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A02-1007-CR-868
Criminal. Affirms sentence following guilty plea to two counts of Class C felony operating a motor vehicle after license forfeited for life, Class D felony resisting law enforcement, and Class A misdemeanor criminal recklessness.

R.K. v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A02-1002-JV-343
Juvenile. Affirms adjudication as a delinquent child for committing what would be Class A misdemeanor possession of marijuana if committed by an adult.

Jackie Joiner v. State of Indiana (NFP)
89A01-1005-CR-249
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class C felony nonsupport of a dependent child.

A.C., et al., Alleged to be CHINS; D.B. v. IDCS and Child Advocates (NFP)
49A05-1002-JC-154
Juvenile. Affirms adjudication of A.C. as a child in need of services. Remands for the court to remove reference to E.C. from the order that D.B. establish paternity.

Tiffany Shelman v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A02-1006-CR-664
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class A misdemeanor possession of marijuana.

Scott A. Hesser v. Wendy S. Hesser (NFP)
71A05-1004-DR-300
Domestic relation. Affirms division of marital property.

Conan L. Helsley v. State of Indiana (NFP)
87A05-1006-CR-402
Criminal. Affirms order denying Helsley’s motion for discharge pursuant to Indiana Criminal Rule 4(C) and remands for trial.

James Daher, Jr. v. State of Indiana (NFP)
56A03-1006-CR-315
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class B felony conspiracy to commit escape with a deadly weapon.

Gregory Barkdull v. State of Indiana (NFP)
48A05-1004-CR-218
Criminal. Affirms convictions of and 9-year sentence for Class D felony operation a vehicle while intoxicated, Class C infraction speeding, and determination he is an habitual substance offender.

T.B. v. Review Board (NFP)
93A02-1003-EX-535
Civil. Affirms Review Board’s affirmation of an administrative law judge’s decision finding T.B. was terminated for good cause.

Adoption of D.M.C., et al.; D.L.C. v. Chr.P. and Cha.P. (NFP)
43A03-1007-AD-370
Adoption. Affirms adoption by stepfather Chr.P.

D.A. v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A05-1006-JV-448
Juvenile. Affirms adjudication as a delinquent for committing what would be two counts of Class B felony child molesting if committed by an adult.

Company v. Review Board, K.S. (NFP)
93A02-1007-EX-765
Civil. Affirms decision to grant unemployment benefits to K.S.

Term. of Parent-Child Rel. of S.S.; B.S. & T.S. v. I.D.C.S. (NFP)
15A05-1006-JT-406
Juvenile. Affirms termination of parental rights.

David Farmer, II v. State of Indiana (NFP)
55A05-1008-CR-512
Criminal. Affirms convictions of Class B felony burglary and Class D felony theft.

Charles D. Lamphier v. State of Indiana (NFP)
71A03-1006-CR-335
Criminal. Affirms sentence following guilty plea to operating a motor vehicle after driving privileges had been forfeited for life as a Class C felony.

Monica M. Emmons v. State of Indiana (NFP)
30A05-1004-CR-414
Criminal. Affirms trial court didn’t abuse its discretion in allowing a brief continuance or in admitting audio recordings. Reverses trial court award of credit time and remands with instructions to recalculate the amount of credit time.

Charles Vernon Nute, Jr. v. State of Indiana (NFP)
48A02-1007-CR-828
Criminal. Affirms convictions of two counts of Class D felony child solicitation and one count of Class C felony child molesting.

Kaouthar Chamem v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A05-1004-CR-214
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class B misdemeanor battery.

Indiana Tax Court had posted no opinions at IL deadline.

The Indiana Supreme Court granted one transfer and denied 12 for the week ending Jan. 28.
 

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  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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!

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