Opinions July 27, 201

July 27, 2012
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7th Circuit Court of Appeals
Leonard Lapsley, et al. v. Xtek Inc.
U.S. District Court, Northern District of Indiana, Hammond Division. Judge Joseph S. Van Bokkelen.
Civil. Affirms denial of Xtek’s Daubert motion that sought to bar Dr. Gary Hutter from offering his expert opinions, which were essential to Lapsley’s case that a design defect in Xtek’s equipment was the cause of his accident. In this case, the District Court’s stated analysis of the proposed testimony was brief, but it was also directly to the point and was sufficient to trigger deferential review on appeal. The District Court did not misapply Daubert.

The Indiana Supreme Court posted the following decisions Thursday after IL deadline
Indiana Dept. of Revenue v. Miller Brewing Co.

Tax appeal. Reverses Tax Court ruling that Miller owes no tax on certain sales to Indiana consumers, holding that the Tax Court clearly erred in determining that an example of the application of an administrative rule had the force of law.

Douglas Cottingham v. State of Indiana
Criminal. Finds the statutory amendment to Indiana Code 35-38-2.6-6 regarding good time credit for home detention retroactively does not apply to Cottingham. By using “is placed” in the statute, the Legislature intended for the amendment to apply only to people who are placed on home detention on or after the amendment’s effective date.

Robert Smith v. State of Indiana
Criminal. Affirms revocation of probation and placement in a community-corrections program and order Smith serve time in the Department of Correction. Rejects Smith’s argument that his due process right to confrontation in revocation hearings requires confrontation as defined in Crawford. Affirms finding that the state’s Exhibit 1 was substantially trustworthy, so his due process right to confrontation was not violated by its admission.

Indiana Court of Appeals
John Cherry v. State of Indiana
Criminal. Affirms trial court convictions and sentences for Class B felony aiding, inducing or causing dealing in heroin and Class D felony unlawful possession of a syringe, finding the trial court did not abuse its discretion.

Dale Brenon v. The 1st Advantage Corp, d/b/a Omega Insurance Services
Executive administrative/workers’ compensation. Reverses and remands to the Worker’s Compensation Board of Indiana dismissal of Brenon’s application for adjustment of claim. The court held that the decision is not sustainable under the doctrine of collateral estoppel, Wisconsin laws or Supreme Court precedent, and that the board’s decision gave no effect to the reservation of rights clauses contained in settlement agreements.

Phillip L. White v. State of Indiana
Criminal/post-conviction relief. Affirms trial court’s denial of post-conviction relief, holding that White cannot demonstrate that his appellate counsel’s performance was deficient.

Kathleen K. Peterink v. State of Indiana
Criminal. Reverses and remands, finding that the trial court’s sentence exceeded the statutory maximum for a Class A misdemeanor.

Andre Graham v. State of Indiana
Criminal. Affirms convictions of Class A felony dealing in cocaine, Class A felony possession of cocaine, Class B felony dealing in a schedule III controlled substance, and Class D felony possession of a controlled substance, holding that Graham’s constitutional rights were not violated during the traffic stop that resulted in his arrest.

Ronald Davis v. State of Indiana
Criminal. Affirms 245-year aggregate sentence resulting from a guilty plea to four counts of murder, one count of Class B felony conspiracy to commit robbery and one count of Class B felony unlawful possession of a firearm, ruling that the sentence was not inappropriate in light of Davis’s character and the nature of the crime.   

Damon Tyree Johnson v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class B felony robbery.

The Carl Kaetzel Trust U/T/D December 10, 1977, The Roberta Kaetzel Trust U/T/D December 10, 1977 and Carl Kaetzel, Roberta Kaetzel, et al v. Jon Marc Kaetzel and Beverly Kaetzel (NFP)
Civil plenary/rescission of deed and constructive fraud. Affirms trial court determination that the plaintiffs were not entitled to the remedy of rescission and that judgment was properly entered for Jon and Beverly Kaetzel.

In Re the Term. of the Parent-Child Rel. of S.S.; D.S. v. Department of Child Services (NFP)
Juvenile/termination of parental rights. Affirms termination of parental rights.

Joshua A. Willey-Rumback v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class B felony robbery and revocation of probation.

Chad A. Jeffries v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms conviction of dealing in methamphetamine.

Craig Watts v. Betty (Watts) Lankford (NFP)
Domestic relations/child support. Affirms trial court order for father to pay child support arrearage and mother’s attorney fees.

Anthony Ramirez v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms conviction of battery with a deadly weapon and residential entry.
Michael S. Dornbusch v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms convictions of four counts of Class B felony burglary and a count of Class D felony attempted residential entry.
Tarrance Battle v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms sentence for Class A felony possession of cocaine.
The Indiana Tax Court posted no opinions prior to IL deadline


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  1. Especially I would like to see all the republican voting patriotic good ole boys to stop and understand that the wars they have been volunteering for all along (especially the past decade at least) have not been for God & Jesus etc no far from it unless you think George Washington's face on the US dollar is god (and we know many do). When I saw the movie about Chris Kyle, I thought wow how many Hoosiers are just like this guy, out there taking orders to do the nasty on the designated bad guys, sometimes bleeding and dying, sometimes just serving and coming home to defend a system that really just views them as reliable cannon fodder. Maybe if the Christians of the red states would stop volunteering for the imperial legions and begin collecting welfare instead of working their butts off, there would be a change in attitude from the haughty professorial overlords that tell us when democracy is allowed and when it isn't. To come home from guarding the borders of the sandbox just to hear if they want the government to protect this country's borders then they are racists and bigots. Well maybe the professorial overlords should gird their own loins for war and fight their own battles in the sandbox. We can see what kind of system this really is from lawsuits like this and we can understand who it really serves. NOT US.... I mean what are all you Hoosiers waving the flag for, the right of the president to start wars of aggression to benefit the Saudis, the right of gay marriage, the right for illegal immigrants to invade our country, and the right of the ACLU to sue over displays of Baby Jesus? The right of the 1 percenters to get richer, the right of zombie banks to use taxpayer money to stay out of bankruptcy? The right of Congress to start a pissing match that could end in WWIII in Ukraine? None of that crud benefits us. We should be like the Amish. You don't have to go far from this farcical lawsuit to find the wise ones, they're in the buggies in the streets not far away....

  2. Moreover, we all know that the well heeled ACLU has a litigation strategy of outspending their adversaries. And, with the help of the legal system well trained in secularism, on top of the genuinely and admittedly secular 1st amendment, they have the strategic high ground. Maybe Christians should begin like the Amish to withdraw their services from the state and the public and become themselves a "people who shall dwell alone" and foster their own kind and let the other individuals and money interests fight it out endlessly in court. I mean, if "the people" don't see how little the state serves their interests, putting Mammon first at nearly every turn, then maybe it is time they wake up and smell the coffee. Maybe all the displays of religiosity by American poohbahs on down the decades have been a mask of piety that concealed their own materialistic inclinations. I know a lot of patriotic Christians don't like that notion but I entertain it more and more all the time.

  3. If I were a judge (and I am not just a humble citizen) I would be inclined to make a finding that there was no real controversy and dismiss them. Do we allow a lawsuit every time someone's feelings are hurt now? It's preposterous. The 1st amendment has become a sword in the hands of those who actually want to suppress religious liberty according to their own backers' conception of how it will serve their own private interests. The state has a duty of impartiality to all citizens to spend its judicial resources wisely and flush these idiotic suits over Nativity Scenes down the toilet where they belong... however as Christians we should welcome them as they are the very sort of persecution that separates the sheep from the wolves.

  4. What about the single mothers trying to protect their children from mentally abusive grandparents who hide who they truly are behind mounds and years of medication and have mentally abused their own children to the point of one being in jail and the other was on drugs. What about trying to keep those children from being subjected to the same abuse they were as a child? I can understand in the instance about the parent losing their right and the grandparent having raised the child previously! But not all circumstances grant this being OKAY! some of us parents are trying to protect our children and yes it is our God given right to make those decisions for our children as adults!! This is not just black and white and I will fight every ounce of this to get denied

  5. Mr Smith the theory of Christian persecution in Indiana has been run by the Indiana Supreme Court and soundly rejected there is no such thing according to those who rule over us. it is a thought crime to think otherwise.