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Opinions July 21, 2014

July 21, 2014
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7th Circuit Court of Appeals
United States of America v. Donella Locke
11-3743
U.S. District Court, Southern District of Indiana, Indianapolis Division, Judge Larry J. McKinney.
Criminal. Affirms Locke’s sentence of 57 months in prison, three years of supervised release and order she pay more than $340,000 in restitution to lenders for her role in a real estate fraud scheme. Locke argued the District Court erred when it failed to reduce the loss amount incurred as a result of her convicted conduct by the amounts the victims received when they sold the real estate that secured the fraudulently obtained loans, but she waived this issue.

Indiana Supreme Court
Camoplast Crocker, LLC, The Kelch Corporation, and Seats, Inc. v. Kris Schoolcraft, as Personal Representative of the Wrongful Death Estate of Rickie D. Schoolcraft, Deceased, et al.
29S02-1407-CT-476
Civil tort. Grants transfer and affirms denial of new defendants’ motion to dismiss or judgment on the pleadings, arguing the motion to amend the complaint to add them as defendants was filed too late. Expressly adopts and incorporates by reference pursuant to Ind. App. Rule 58(A)(1) the Court of Appeals opinion in this case.

Indiana Court of Appeals
James Giles, Individually and as Executor of the Estate of Ruth Giles, deceased v. Anonymous Physician I, Anonymous Corporation I, Anonymous Hospital I, Anonymous Physician II, et al.
03A01-1306-CT-257
Civil tort. Affirms summary judgment to Anonymous Physician I on Giles’ medical malpractice claim. Caselaw is clear that a physician who does not treat a patient or perform some affirmative act regarding the patient has no physician-patient relationship and thus owes no duty to that patient.

Hi-Tec Properties, LLC v. Brittany Murphy, Kendall Murphy, Lorie Murphy, and Jay Frazier
50A05-1401-CT-14
Civil tort. Reverses a portion of the compensatory damages awarded to the plaintiffs on their claims for negligence, breach of contract and fraud against Hi-Tec. Lorie Murphy cannot collect any damages because she is not a party on the lease and Kendall Murphy is only entitled to $2,360 for the rent he paid on adult daughter Brittany Murphy's apartment. Remands with instructions for revision. The trial court did not err when it concluded that the exculpatory clause in the rental lease was void as against public policy. Affirms $15,000 in punitive damages to Brittany Murphy.  

Alvino Pizano v. Indiana Attorney General Gregory Zoeller, et al.

33A04-1402-MI-85
Miscellaneous. Affirms dismissal of Pizano’s lawsuit claiming he was entitled to credit time for earning a bachelor’s degree from Ball State University while incarcerated. The case was correctly dismissed as moot because the state awarded Pizano the credit time and he has since been released from incarceration, so he has been granted all possible relief.

Glenn Hatmaker v. Betty Hatmaker (NFP)
49A05-1402-DR-56
Domestic relation. Affirms order restricting Glenn Hatmaker’s parenting time to supervised parenting time two hours per week.

In the Matter of the Termination of the Parent-Child Relationship of: Z.S. (Minor Child) and R.S. (Father) v. The Indiana Department of Child Services (NFP)
09A04-1309-JT-473
Juvenile. Affirms involuntary termination of parental rights.

Timothy E. Strowmatt v. State of Indiana (NFP)
71A03-1402-PC-70
Post conviction. Affirms order dismissing petition for writ of state habeas corpus.

Charles Howlett v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A02-1312-CR-1024
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class B misdemeanor criminal mischief.

The Indiana Tax Court posted no opinions by IL deadline.
 

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  1. CCHP's real accomplishment is the 2015 law signed by Gov Pence that basically outlaws any annexation that is forced where a 65% majority of landowners in the affected area disagree. Regardless of whether HP wins or loses, the citizens of Indiana will not have another fiasco like this. The law Gov Pence signed is a direct result of this malgovernance.

  2. I gave tempparry guardship to a friend of my granddaughter in 2012. I went to prison. I had custody. My daughter went to prison to. We are out. My daughter gave me custody but can get her back. She was not order to give me custody . but now we want granddaughter back from friend. She's 14 now. What rights do we have

  3. This sure is not what most who value good governance consider the Rule of Law to entail: "In a letter dated March 2, which Brizzi forwarded to IBJ, the commission dismissed the grievance “on grounds that there is not reasonable cause to believe that you are guilty of misconduct.”" Yet two month later reasonable cause does exist? (Or is the commission forging ahead, the need for reasonable belief be damned? -- A seeming violation of the Rules of Profession Ethics on the part of the commission) Could the rule of law theory cause one to believe that an explanation is in order? Could it be that Hoosier attorneys live under Imperial Law (which is also a t-word that rhymes with infamy) in which the Platonic guardians can do no wrong and never owe the plebeian class any explanation for their powerful actions. (Might makes it right?) Could this be a case of politics directing the commission, as celebrated IU Mauer Professor (the late) Patrick Baude warned was happening 20 years ago in his controversial (whisteblowing) ethics lecture on a quite similar topic: http://www.repository.law.indiana.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1498&context=ilj

  4. I have a case presently pending cert review before the SCOTUS that reveals just how Indiana regulates the bar. I have been denied licensure for life for holding the wrong views and questioning the grand inquisitors as to their duties as to state and federal constitutional due process. True story: https://www.scribd.com/doc/299040839/2016Petitionforcert-to-SCOTUS Shorter, Amici brief serving to frame issue as misuse of govt licensure: https://www.scribd.com/doc/312841269/Thomas-More-Society-Amicus-Brown-v-Ind-Bd-of-Law-Examiners

  5. Here's an idea...how about we MORE heavily regulate the law schools to reduce the surplus of graduates, driving starting salaries up for those new grads, so that we can all pay our insane amount of student loans off in a reasonable amount of time and then be able to afford to do pro bono & low-fee work? I've got friends in other industries, radiology for example, and their schools accept a very limited number of students so there will never be a glut of new grads and everyone's pay stays high. For example, my radiologist friend's school accepted just six new students per year.

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