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Opinions June 10, 2014

June 10, 2014
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7th Circuit Court of Appeals
Eric Grandberry v. Brian Smith, superintendent, Plainfield Correctional Facility
12-2081
U.S. District Court, Southern District of Indiana, Terre Haute Division, Judge William T. Lawrence.
Civil. Reverses discipline and revocation of 30 days of Grandberry’s good-time credits for unauthorized use of an electronic device. Remands with instructions to issue a writ of habeas corpus restoring Grandberry’s good-time credits. Library staff asked him to use the computer to fill out forms that he was not supposed to complete as head inmate law clerk.

Indiana Court of Appeals
Lora Hoagland v. Franklin Township Community School Corporation
49A02-1301-PL-44
Civil plenary. Affirms in part and reverses in part. Affirm the trial court’s conclusion that Hoagland is not entitled to legal relief, as there is no right of action for monetary damages under the Indiana Constitution. Concludes that the Indiana Tort Claims Act does not apply to Hoagland’s state constitutional claim, and reverses the trial court on that ground. Also concludes that Franklin Township acted unconstitutionally by discontinuing student transportation to and from school and by later contracting with
CIESC to provide that transportation for a yearly fee, and Hoagland is entitled to declaratory judgment. Remands with instructions.

West Bend Mutual Insurance Company and K.B. Electric, LLC v. MacDougal Pierce Construction, Inc., Amerisure Insurance Company, et al.
06A01-1304-CT-162
Civil tort. Affirms trial court judgment in all respects. Concludes that the trial court correctly granted summary judgment in favor of Amerisure and MacDougall. The parties’ rights and liabilities to each other were outlined contractually by the terms of indemnification. Once that determination was made, then the insurance coverage issues could be resolved. Thus, the trial court’s decision on indemnification was not premature, but in fact, necessary to prevent the hazards of circular litigation. The subcontract explicitly referred to the prime contract and other documents, incorporating their terms into the subcontract. That K.B. Electric obtained umbrella coverage from West Bend further evinces the understanding that K.B. Electric was required to do just that.

Kevin M. Barber v. State of Indiana (NFP)
53A01-1310-CR-464
Criminal. Affirms denial of motion to correct erroneous sentence.

Latoya C. Lee v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A02-1310-CR-867
Criminal. Affirms conviction and sentence for Class B felony attempted aggravated battery but remands with instructions to correct error in the abstract of judgment.

Robert F. Petty v. State of Indiana (NFP)
72A05-1310-CR-538
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class B felony unlawful possession of a firearm by a serious violent felon.

Michael A. Riley v. Oscar and Linda Sandlin (NFP)
32A01-1310-PL-453
Civil plenary. Affirms judgment in favor of the Sandlins on Riley’s action alleging conversion.

Ted Mueller, Jr. v. State of Indiana (NFP)
82A05-1305-CR-240
Criminal. Affirms convictions of murder and Class C felony conspiracy to commit robbery.

Dwayne Anderson v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A04-1309-CR-468
Criminal. Affirms conviction of possession of marijuana as a Class A misdemeanor.

Brandon Kincheloe v. State of Indiana (NFP)
03A05-1312-CR-640
Criminal. Dismisses appeal filed after Kincheloe’s probation was revoked.

The Indiana Supreme Court and Tax Court posted no opinions 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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