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Opinions Jan. 31, 2012

January 31, 2012
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7th Circuit Court of Appeals
Dale J. Atkins v. Michael Zenk
11-1891
Civil. Affirms U.S. District Court’s denial of habeas corpus petition, holding Atkins did not prove his claim that he was deprived of his Sixth Amendment right to effective assistance of trial counsel.

Indiana Supreme Court
Henry C. Bennett and Schupan & Sons, Inc. v. John Richmond and Jennifer Richmond
20S03-1105-CV-293
Civil. Finds the trial court did not abuse its discretion when it allowed a psychologist to testify on behalf of a plaintiff in a personal injury case as to the cause of a brain injury or in finding that the psychologist’s testimony was based on reliable scientific principles.  

Reginald N. Person, Jr. v. Carol A. Shipley
20S03-1110-CT-609
Civil tort. Holds the trial court did not abuse its discretion by admitting expert testimony offered by a personal injury defendant in a rear-end collision case. Dr. Turner’s opinions were based on reliable scientific principles that could be applied to the facts at issue.

Indiana Court of Appeals
William R. Wallace v. State of Indiana
26A01-1101-CR-9
Criminal. Affirms trial court’s order denying Wallace’s motion to dismiss a charge of Class D felony voyeurism for videotaping without consent a sexual encounter he had with a woman.

Nathan Anderson v. State of Indiana
49A05-1105-CR-243
Criminal. Affirms conviction of and sentence for murder, but reverses convictions of and vacates sentences for burglary and abuse of a corpse, holding Anderson had been denied his request for counsel prior to making statements in interrogation and that the admission of that testimony into evidence at trial influenced the jury’s decision.

Steven Nowling v. State of Indiana
31A01-1010-CR-552
Criminal. On petition for rehearing, the appellate court affirmed its original decision affirming the trial court, holding that during trial Nowling never objected to testimony by a forensic scientist who affirmed the presence of methamphetamine in a pen hull seized from Nowling’s home.

Christopher Stark v. State of Indiana
49A05-1104-CR-152
Criminal. On interlocutory appeal, affirms trial court’s denial of Stark’s motion to suppress evidence that he had a handgun in his possession, holding that a police officer found the gun when retrieving Starks’ coat and that any intrusion in finding the gun was minimal.

Ronald D. Tiede v. State of Indiana (NFP)
91A04-1105-CR-248
Criminal. Affirms trial court’s denial of motion to withdraw guilty pleas to two counts of Class B felony dealing in methamphetamine and affirms trial court’s modification of the sentence contained in Tiede’s plea agreement.

Jason Schapker v. State of Indiana (NFP)
55A01-1106-CR-258
Criminal. Affirms revocation of probation.

Gary Hollin v. State of Indiana (NFP)
16A01-1108-CR-389
Criminal. Affirms trial court’s sentence following determination that Hollin violated his probation.

In the Matter of M.K., I.K., and N.K.; R.K. and E.K. v. Indiana Department of Child Services and Stephen P. Griebel (NFP)
02A03-1104-JC-151
Juvenile. Reverses trial court’s determination that a couple’s three children were children in need of services, holding that the Department of Child Services was overzealous in removing the children from the parents’ care at a time when the family was intact but had suffered a series of unfortunate circumstances.

Daddys 'O Pub, LLC v. Purkey Enterprises, Inc. (NFP)
29A02-1105-PL-439
Civil plenary. Affirms trial court’s determination that an 1897 deed did not create an easement in Purkey Enterprises’ building that would enable the owners of an adjoining pub to use its stairway to access the second story of the pub’s building.

Nick Khanthamany v. State of Indiana (NFP)

49A02-1106-CR-497
Criminal. Affirms convictions of felony murder and conspiracy to commit robbery.

James Eubanks, Jr. v. State of Indiana (NFP)
45A03-1105-CR-212
Criminal. Affirms sentence for Class B felony burglary.

Samantha Bradley v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A02-1106-CR-513
Criminal. Affirms convictions of Class A misdemeanor criminal trespass and Class A misdemeanor resisting law enforcement.

Susan Kohl v. Duane Kohl (NFP)
34A05-1105-DR-289
Domestic relation. Affirms trial court’s determination that that husband’s pension should not be included as a marital asset, but finding that the wife presented sufficient evidence to rebut the statutory presumption that an equal division of marital property is just and reasonable; remands to the trial court with instructions to award 60 percent of the marital estate to the wife and 40 percent to the husband.

Brien Clayton v. State of Indiana (NFP)
79A02-1102-CR-138
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class A felony dealing in cocaine, finding harmless any error in the admission of opinion testimony and sufficient evidence to support the conviction.

Indiana Tax Court had issued no opinions by IL deadline.
 

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  1. I like the concept. Seems like a good idea and really inexpensive to manage.

  2. I don't agree that this is an extreme case. There are more of these people than you realize - people that are vindictive and/or with psychological issues have clogged the system with baseless suits that are costly to the defendant and to taxpayers. Restricting repeat offenders from further abusing the system is not akin to restricting their freedon, but to protecting their victims, and the court system, from allowing them unfettered access. From the Supreme Court opinion "he has burdened the opposing party and the courts of this state at every level with massive, confusing, disorganized, defective, repetitive, and often meritless filings."

  3. So, if you cry wolf one too many times courts may "restrict" your ability to pursue legal action? Also, why is document production equated with wealth? Anyone can "produce probably tens of thousands of pages of filings" if they have a public library card. I understand this is an extreme case, but our Supreme Court really got this one wrong.

  4. He called our nation a nation of cowards because we didn't want to talk about race. That was a cheap shot coming from the top cop. The man who decides who gets the federal government indicts. Wow. Not a gentleman if that is the measure. More importantly, this insult delivered as we all understand, to white people-- without him or anybody needing to explain that is precisely what he meant-- but this is an insult to timid white persons who fear the government and don't want to say anything about race for fear of being accused a racist. With all the legal heat that can come down on somebody if they say something which can be construed by a prosecutor like Mr Holder as racist, is it any wonder white people-- that's who he meant obviously-- is there any surprise that white people don't want to talk about race? And as lawyers we have even less freedom lest our remarks be considered violations of the rules. Mr Holder also demonstrated his bias by publically visiting with the family of the young man who was killed by a police offering in the line of duty, which was a very strong indicator of bias agains the offer who is under investigation, and was a failure to lead properly by letting his investigators do their job without him predetermining the proper outcome. He also has potentially biased the jury pool. All in all this worsens race relations by feeding into the perception shared by whites as well as blacks that justice will not be impartial. I will say this much, I do not blame Obama for all of HOlder's missteps. Obama has done a lot of things to stay above the fray and try and be a leader for all Americans. Maybe he should have reigned Holder in some but Obama's got his hands full with other problelms. Oh did I mention HOlder is a bank crony who will probably get a job in a silkstocking law firm working for millions of bucks a year defending bankers whom he didn't have the integrity or courage to hold to account for their acts of fraud on the United States, other financial institutions, and the people. His tenure will be regarded by history as a failure of leadership at one of the most important jobs in our nation. Finally and most importantly besides him insulting the public and letting off the big financial cheats, he has been at the forefront of over-prosecuting the secrecy laws to punish whistleblowers and chill free speech. What has Holder done to vindicate the rights of privacy of the American public against the illegal snooping of the NSA? He could have charged NSA personnel with violations of law for their warrantless wiretapping which has been done millions of times and instead he did not persecute a single soul. That is a defalcation of historical proportions and it signals to the public that the government DOJ under him was not willing to do a damn thing to protect the public against the rapid growth of the illegal surveillance state. Who else could have done this? Nobody. And for that omission Obama deserves the blame too. Here were are sliding into a police state and Eric Holder made it go all the faster.

  5. JOE CLAYPOOL candidate for Superior Court in Harrison County - Indiana This candidate is misleading voters to think he is a Judge by putting Elect Judge Joe Claypool on his campaign literature. paragraphs 2 and 9 below clearly indicate this injustice to voting public to gain employment. What can we do? Indiana Code - Section 35-43-5-3: Deception (a) A person who: (1) being an officer, manager, or other person participating in the direction of a credit institution, knowingly or intentionally receives or permits the receipt of a deposit or other investment, knowing that the institution is insolvent; (2) knowingly or intentionally makes a false or misleading written statement with intent to obtain property, employment, or an educational opportunity; (3) misapplies entrusted property, property of a governmental entity, or property of a credit institution in a manner that the person knows is unlawful or that the person knows involves substantial risk of loss or detriment to either the owner of the property or to a person for whose benefit the property was entrusted; (4) knowingly or intentionally, in the regular course of business, either: (A) uses or possesses for use a false weight or measure or other device for falsely determining or recording the quality or quantity of any commodity; or (B) sells, offers, or displays for sale or delivers less than the represented quality or quantity of any commodity; (5) with intent to defraud another person furnishing electricity, gas, water, telecommunication, or any other utility service, avoids a lawful charge for that service by scheme or device or by tampering with facilities or equipment of the person furnishing the service; (6) with intent to defraud, misrepresents the identity of the person or another person or the identity or quality of property; (7) with intent to defraud an owner of a coin machine, deposits a slug in that machine; (8) with intent to enable the person or another person to deposit a slug in a coin machine, makes, possesses, or disposes of a slug; (9) disseminates to the public an advertisement that the person knows is false, misleading, or deceptive, with intent to promote the purchase or sale of property or the acceptance of employment;

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