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Opinions July 3, 2013

July 3, 2013
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The following Indiana Supreme Court opinion was posted after IL deadline Tuesday:

Michael Chambers v. State of Indiana
53S01-1307-CR-459
Criminal. Reverses Court of Appeals ruling reducing an aggregate sentence for two convictions of Class B felony sexual misconduct with a minor and reinstates a trial court’s maximum consecutive sentence of 40 years in prison. Justices held the sentence imposed by the trial court was not inappropriate given the nature of the crime and the character of the defendant and did not warrant appellate revision.

Wednesday’s opinions
7th Circuit Court of Appeals
United States of America v. Ronald Ritz
11-3320
U.S. District Court, Southern District of Indiana, Indianapolis Division, Judge William T. Lawrence.
Civil. Dismisses Ritz’s appeal of the grant of summary judgment in favor of the government that Ritz’s campground is subject to the Safe Drinking Water Act and its regulations. Ritz has waived all of the new arguments he now raises for the first time on appeal by failing to present them to the District Court.

Indiana Court of Appeals
Richard Hawkins v. State of Indiana
79A02-1211-CR-958
Criminal. Affirms sentence following guilty plea to Class A felonies dealing in cocaine and possession of cocaine. Hawkins waived the right to appeal the appropriateness of his sentence.

In Re the Marriage of: Harry L. Tillman v. R. Virginia Tillman
87A05-1212-DR-619
Domestic relation. Affirms dismissal of Harry Tillman’s petition, by guardian Deborah Wagner, for dissolution of marriage. The trial court acted within its discretion when it granted R. Virginia Tillman’s motion to dismiss as neither the current Indiana statutes governing dissolution of marriage nor governing the guardianship of incapacitated persons provide a means for the guardian of an incapacitated person to file a petition for dissolution of marriage on behalf of the incapacitated person.

Pier 1 Imports (U.S.), Inc., v. Acadia Merrillville Realty, L.P. and Boyd Construction Company, Inc.
45A03-1207-CT-318
Civil tort. Reverses summary judgment for Acadia and Boyd Construction on whether the companies breached their respective duties of care after a Pier 1 customer brought a negligence claim against the three companies following a slip-and-fall. Whether Acadia discharged its duty of care merely by contracting with Boyd is a question for the jury to decide, and, because there is evidence that additional salting was necessary after Boyd salted the sidewalk, a jury could reasonably infer that Boyd failed to exercise reasonable care in performing its snow and ice removal services. Judge Brown dissents.

Booker T. Prince, Jr. v. Marion County Auditor and Marion County Treasurer
49A02-1210-MI-835
Miscellaneous. Affirms denial of Prince’s motion for relief from judgment. The trial court did not abuse its discretion in determining that the application for judgment and order for sale of his property of the Marion County auditor and treasure substantially complied with statutory requirements. The court did not abuse its discretion in determining that the officials’ notices regarding the tax sale process met the requirements of due process.

Keion Gaddie v. State of Indiana
49A02-1212-CR-953
Criminal. Reverses conviction of Class A misdemeanor resisting law enforcement. Gaddie had no duty to stop when law enforcement ordered him to do so.

Anthony Edwards v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A02-1210-CR-803
Criminal. Affirms sentence for convictions of Class B felony burglary, Class D felony theft, seven counts of Class A misdemeanor criminal trespass, and Class B misdemeanors public intoxication, voyeurism, and failure to stop after an accident causing damage to property other than another vehicle.

Carlos A. Smith v. State of Indiana (NFP)
71A03-1211-CR-466
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class D felony possession of marijuana with a prior conviction of possession of marijuana.

Michael G. Chamlee v. State of Indiana (NFP)
65A04-1301-CR-9
Criminal. Affirms convictions of Class A felony dealing in methamphetamine, Class B felony unlawful possession of a firearm by a serious violent felon and Class C felony possession of chemical reagents or precursors.

Jasen M. Snelling v. State of Indiana (NFP)
24A01-1301-CR-30
Criminal. Affirms aggregate 40-year sentence following guilty plea to five counts of Class C felony offering and selling a security that was not registered, federally covered or exempt from registration; five counts of Class C felony failing to register as a broker-dealer, and nine counts of Class C felony securities fraud.

Thomas R. Tokarski and Sandra W. Tokarski v. State of Indiana (NFP)
53A01-1211-PL-498
Criminal. Affirms trial court striking of the Tokarskis’ objections and issuance of an order of appropriation and appointment of appraisers after the state sought to condemn real property owned by the couple to build I-69.

Adam J. Smith v. State of Indiana (NFP)
05A05-1301-CR-41
Criminal. Affirms revocation of probation.

Wesley Cashdollar v. State of Indiana (NFP)

70A01-1204-CR-139
Criminal. Affirms revocation of probation.

In Re: the Marriage of: William Scott Wilson v. Andrea (Wilson) Gunning (NFP)
29A04-1208-DR-435
Domestic relation. Affirms order dissolving marriage and determination of issues including division of property, attorney fees, child support and custody.

In Re: The Paternity of S.J.E-C: Clarence Cones, III v. S.J.E-C, by next friend: Tabetha J. Emenaker, and Tabetha J. Emenaker (NFP)
49A02-1210-JP-805
Juvenile. Affirms order modifying custody of the minor child in favor of mother T.E.

Kevin Govan v. State of Indiana (NFP)
02A03-1302-CR-60
Criminal. Affirms denial of motion to correct erroneous sentence.

William Temple v. State of Indiana (NFP)
33A01-1211-MI-533
Miscellaneous. Reverses order dismissing petition for writ of state habeas corpus relief following revocation of Temple’s parole. Remands with instructions to transfer the cause to the court where he was convicted and sentenced.

State of Indiana v. Mark M. Hairston (NFP)
02A04-1209-PC-476
Post conviction. Grants rehearing and concludes that Hairston’s sentence runs afoul of the protection against double jeopardy enhancements and his appellate counsel’s failure to raise the issue on direct appeal amounts to ineffective assistance. Remands with instructions to vacate his 10-year repeat sexual offender enhancement and adjust his sentence accordingly.

Justin Land v. State of Indiana (NFP)
32A01-1212-CR-546
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class B felony causing death while operating a motor vehicle.

Armando B. Quintero v. Maria L. Quintero (NFP)
43A03-1210-DR-434
Domestic relation. Affirms order with respect to the award of one-half of the value of the home and attorney fees of $8,000 to Maria Quintero. Reverses division of the full value of Armando Quintero’s pension between the parties and remands with instructions.

Corrie Tomblin v. Michael A. Tomblin (NFP)

50A03-1211-DR-471
Domestic relation. Affirms order modifying custody in the decree dissolving the Tomblins’ marriage.

Greg Haney, as Trustee of the Revocable Trust Agreement of Jay Budman Farrar Executed October 5, 1999 v. Patricia J. Farrar, as Personal Representative of the Estate of Jay B. Farrar (NFP)
29A02-1212-EU-1004
Estate, unsupervised. Affirms denial of Haney’s petition to require Patricia Farrar to pay certain estate expense out of the estate as opposed to funds within the trust over which Haney was the trustee.

Joseph E. Stambaugh v. State of Indiana (NFP)
71A03-1212-CR-545
Criminal. Affirms convictions of Class C felony operation a motor vehicle after lifetime suspension of driving privileges, Class D felonies resisting law enforcement and possession of cocaine, Class A misdemeanor possession of marijuana and Class B misdemeanor false informing.

Arlisha Williams v. Review Board of the Indiana Department of Workforce Development, and UPS Ground Freights, Inc. (NFP)
93A02-1211-EX-959
Agency action. Affirms denial of unemployment benefits.

Alfred Vela v. State of Indiana (NFP)
45A05-1210-CR-559
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class A felony voluntary manslaughter.

The Indiana Supreme Court and Tax Court posted no decisions by IL deadline.
 

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  1. The fee increase would be livable except for the 11% increase in spending at the Disciplinary Commission. The Commission should be focused on true public harm rather than going on witch hunts against lawyers who dare to criticize judges.

  2. Marijuana is safer than alcohol. AT the time the 1937 Marijuana Tax Act was enacted all major pharmaceutical companies in the US sold marijuana products. 11 Presidents of the US have smoked marijuana. Smoking it does not increase the likelihood that you will get lung cancer. There are numerous reports of canabis oil killing many kinds of incurable cancer. (See Rick Simpson's Oil on the internet or facebook).

  3. The US has 5% of the world's population and 25% of the world's prisoners. Far too many people are sentenced for far too many years in prison. Many of the federal prisoners are sentenced for marijuana violations. Marijuana is safer than alcohol.

  4. My daughter was married less than a week and her new hubbys picture was on tv for drugs and now I havent't seen my granddaughters since st patricks day. when my daughter left her marriage from her childrens Father she lived with me with my grand daughters and that was ok but I called her on the new hubby who is in jail and said didn't want this around my grandkids not unreasonable request and I get shut out for her mistake

  5. From the perspective of a practicing attorney, it sounds like this masters degree in law for non-attorneys will be useless to anyone who gets it. "However, Ted Waggoner, chair of the ISBA’s Legal Education Conclave, sees the potential for the degree program to actually help attorneys do their jobs better. He pointed to his practice at Peterson Waggoner & Perkins LLP in Rochester and how some clients ask their attorneys to do work, such as filling out insurance forms, that they could do themselves. Waggoner believes the individuals with the legal master’s degrees could do the routine, mundane business thus freeing the lawyers to do the substantive legal work." That is simply insulting to suggest that someone with a masters degree would work in a role that is subpar to even an administrative assistant. Even someone with just a certificate or associate's degree in paralegal studies would be overqualified to sit around helping clients fill out forms. Anyone who has a business background that they think would be enhanced by having a legal background will just go to law school, or get an MBA (which typically includes a business law class that gives a generic, broad overview of legal concepts). No business-savvy person would ever seriously consider this ridiculous master of law for non-lawyers degree. It reeks of desperation. The only people I see getting it are the ones who did not get into law school, who see the degree as something to add to their transcript in hopes of getting into a JD program down the road.

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