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Opinions July 20, 2010

July 20, 2010
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7th Circuit Court of Appeals
Brenda Chaney v. Plainfield Healthcare Center
09-3661
U.S. District Court, Southern District of Indiana, Indianapolis Division. Judge Sarah Evans Barker.
Civil. Reverses the District Court’s order of summary judgment in favor of Plainfield Healthcare Center. Finds that Plainfield’s racial preference policy for patients violates Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act. That policy, along with other incidents that occurred before Plainfield fired Chaney, contributed to a hostile work environment, and should be considered in determining whether Chaney was fired because of her race.

United States of America v. John Doe a/k/a Adaberto Guzman a/k/a Juaquin Tapia, Andres Cuellar-Chavez, and Enedeo Rodriguez Jr.
U.S. District Court, Northern District of Indiana, Fort Wayne Division. Judge Theresa L. Springmann
09-1658, 09-1756, 09-2242
Criminal. Affirms convictions of and sentences for conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute more than 100 kilograms of marijuana following a jury trial. Appellants were conspirators in a drug distribution ring whose scheme was infiltrated by an undercover officer. During sentencing hearings, the District Court overruled each defendant’s sentencing objections and imposed a sentence on each defendant.

Indiana Supreme Court had posted no opinions before IL deadline.

Indiana Court of Appeals
Jeffery H. McCabe, as Representative of the Estate of Jean Francis McCabe (deceased) v. Commissioner, Indiana Dept. of Insurance
49A02-0908-CV-728
Civil. Affirms trial court’s grant of partial summary judgment in favor of commissioner of the Indiana Department of Insurance as administrator of the Indiana Patient’s Compensation Fund, in which the trial court found that attorney fees and expenses incurred by the attorney representing the personal representative of a wrongful death estate are not recoverable damages under Indiana’s Adult Wrongful Death Statute.
 
Steven M. Rosenbaum v. State of Indiana
29A02-0911-CV-1097
Civil. Affirms trial court’s ruling Rosenbaum committed a Class A infraction even though he claimed he did not know the insurance had lapsed on the borrowed vehicle he was driving. According to Indiana Code Section 9-25-4-4, a person who knowingly operates a motor vehicle on a public highway, et al., commits a Class A infraction unless financial responsibility is in effect with respect to the motor vehicle.

John Thomas Pontius v. State of Indiana
29A04-1001-CR-24
Criminal. Affirms convictions of five counts of possession of child pornography, a Class D felony, for which Pontius received an aggregate sentence of three years in the Department of Correction, with 545 days executed and 550 days suspended to probation, following a bench trial. On appeal, Pontius claimed two of his convictions violated double jeopardy and that he received ineffective assistance of trial counsel.

Michael J. Shepherd v. State of Indiana (NFP)

70A01-0911-CR-529
Criminal. Affirms trial court’s order resentencing Shepherd after he successfully pursued post-conviction relief.
 
Kayla Johnson v. Timothy J. Reinhardt (NFP)
92A03-0912-CV-586
Civil. Affirms trial court order for Johnson to pay a portion of Reinhardt’s attorney fees.
 
Daniel Brewington v. Melissa Brewington (NFP)
69A05-0909-CV-542
Civil. Affirms trial court’s judgment and final order on marriage dissolution decree, division of the marital estate, and award of sole custody of the parties’ two minor children to mother.
 
S.T.P. v. State of Indiana (NFP)
71A04-0912-JV-729
Juvenile. Affirms juvenile court’s reinstatement of jurisdiction over S.T.P. for the purpose of establishing restitution after adjudicating him as a delinquent child and entering a dispositional order awarding him to the Department of Correction.

Andrew Hirsty v. Kathy Hirsty (NFP)
02A03-1002-DR-55
Civil. Affirms trial court’s determination of the child support to be paid by Andrew Hirsty’s ex-wife Kathy Hirsty.
 
Termination of Parent-Child Relationship of K.S; B.S. v. Indiana Dept. of Child Services (NFP)
82A01-1002-JT-76
Juvenile. Affirms termination of parental rights.

Zachary McCloud v. State of Indiana (NFP)
82A05-0911-CR-656
Criminal. Affirms convictions of an eight-year sentence for battery, a Class C felony, and resisting law enforcement, a Class A misdemeanor.
 
Kevin Early v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A04-0912-CR-701
Criminal. Affirms conviction of resisting law enforcement, a Class A misdemeanor.
 
Christopher W. Turner v. State of Indiana (NFP)
29A02-0905-CR-479
Criminal. Affirms sentence of eight years for five counts of operating a vehicle while intoxicated following a guilty plea.
 
William Michael Lacy v. State of Indiana (NFP)
32A01-1002-CR-48
Criminal. Affirms conviction of strangulation; remands with instructions to vacate convictions of criminal confinement and battery.
 
Termination of Parent-Child Relationship of D.W. and T.W.; N.W. v. Indiana Dept. of Child Services, et al. (NFP)
49A02-0912-JV-1280
Juvenile. Affirms termination of parental rights.
 
Termination of Parent-Child Relationship of J.C.; M.C. v. Marion County Dept. of Child Services, et al. (NFP)
49A04-0912-JV-728
Juvenile. Reverses the involuntary termination of M.C.’s parental rights to her child, J.C., and remands with instructions.

Indiana Tax Court
Dekalb Co. Eastern Community School District v. Dept. of Local Government Finance
49T10-0906-TA-31
Tax. Reverses final determination of the Department of Local Government Finance. Given the actual language used in Indiana Code Section 6-1.1-18-12, the phrase “actual percentage increase” means increase only. If there is no increase, however, a zero value should be used in steps 2 and 4 of Indiana Code Section 6-1.1-18-12(e). Remands for further proceedings.
 

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  3. 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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  5. 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!

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