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Opinions June 18, 2014

June 18, 2014
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7th Circuit Court of Appeals
Gabriel V. Mendoza v. United States of America
13-3195, 13-3196
U.S. District Court, Northern District of Indiana, South Bend Division, Judge Robert L. Miller Jr.
Civil. Affirms denial of Mendoza’s petition for relief from his drug convictions. He was not deprived due process when an interpreter relocated her position in the courtroom to translate for a witness nor was he provided ineffective assistance of counsel.

Indiana Court of Appeals
George Patrick v. Keith Butts, Superintendent, State of Indiana and Indiana Parole Board
33A04-1311-MI-577
Miscellaneous. Affirms denial of Patrick’s petition for a writ of habeas corpus. The order that Patrick participate in the Sex Offender Management and Monitoring program does not violate the ex post facto clause of the Indiana Constitution.

Michael Torres v. State of Indiana
49A02-1308-CR-727
Criminal. Affirms convictions of murder and Class A misdemeanor carrying a handgun without a license. There was no fundamental error when the chief forensic pathologist testified as an expert witness instead of the doctor who performed the autopsy, who had left the state by the time Torres’ trial began. Torres’ right to confrontation was not violated. Judge Kirsch dissents and would remand for a new trial.

Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. v. Edward P. Dechert, Trustee of the Bankruptcy Estate of John E. Smith and Isley's Plumbing, Inc.
34A02-1311-PL-980
Civil plenary. Affirms denial of Wells Fargo’s motion to set aside default judgments against it in favor of Dechert, as bankruptcy trustee for John E. Smith Builders Inc. and Isley’s Plumbing Inc. Dechert’s and Isley’s second amended complaint and crossclaim did not vacate the default judgments entered in their favor against Wells Fargo. The trial court did not abuse its discretion when it denied Wells Fargo’s motion to set aside the default judgments on the basis of defective service of process. The trial court did not abuse its discretion on policy grounds when it denied the motion to set aside the default judgments.

Keith D. Bott v. State of Indiana (NFP)
48A02-1312-CR-1058
Criminal. Affirms revocation of probation.

Joshua Ketchem v. State of Indiana (NFP)
48A02-1308-PC-695
Post conviction. Affirms denial of petition for post-conviction relief.

Edwin Hunt v. State of Indiana (NFP)
60A01-1309-CR-406
Criminal. Affirms 40-year sentence for Class B felony burglary and adjudication as a habitual offender.

Bruce L. Truett v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A02-1311-CR-926
Criminal. Affirms revocation of placement in community corrections and order Truett serve three of his six years in the Department of Correction.

Larry Page v. State of Indiana (NFP)
48A05-1311-PC-556
Post conviction. Affirms denial of petition for post-conviction relief.

Demitrus Grant v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A02-1311-CR-959
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class C felony operating a motor vehicle after license was suspended for life.

In re the Paternity of E.S.: Makayla LeGault v. Michael J. Scott (NFP)
71A05-1312-JP-606
Juvenile. Affirms modification of mother’s custody of minor child and grant of sole physical custody of child to Scott.

Christopher Baxter v. State of Indiana (NFP)
22A01-1312-CR-551
Criminal. Affirms 40-year sentence for murder.

Signature Estates of Indiana, Inc. d/b/a Gordon Marketing, Stephens-Matthews Marketing, Inc., Shields Brokerage, Inc. et al. v. Conseco Medical Insurance Company, et al. (NFP)
29A02-1310-PL-846
Civil plenary. Reverses partial summary judgment for Conseco Medical Insurance Company and other defendants in lawsuit alleging fraud and breach of fiduciary duty. Remands for further proceedings.

Omert'a LLC, Dino Zurzolo d/b/a Shangri-La East, and Wholesalers, Inc. d/b/a Shangri-La Show Club v. Phillip Gray (NFP)
93A02-1309-EX-812
Agency action. Affirms order directing payment of money to complainant Gray and other actions by the respondents.

David Gregg v. State of Indiana (NFP)
15A01-1311-CR-505
Criminal. Affirms two-year sentence imposed after Gregg admitted violating a term of his probation.

The Indiana Supreme Court and Tax Court issued no opinions prior to IL deadline. The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals issued no Indiana decisions prior to IL deadline.
 

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  1. "Am I bugging you? I don't mean to bug ya." If what I wrote below is too much social philosophy for Indiana attorneys, just take ten this vacay to watch The Lego Movie with kiddies and sing along where appropriate: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=etzMjoH0rJw

  2. I've got some free speech to share here about who is at work via the cat's paw of the ACLU stamping out Christian observances.... 2 Thessalonians chap 2: "And we also thank God continually because, when you received the word of God, which you heard from us, you accepted it not as a human word, but as it actually is, the word of God, which is indeed at work in you who believe. For you, brothers and sisters, became imitators of God’s churches in Judea, which are in Christ Jesus: You suffered from your own people the same things those churches suffered from the Jews who killed the Lord Jesus and the prophets and also drove us out. They displease God and are hostile to everyone in their effort to keep us from speaking to the Gentiles so that they may be saved. In this way they always heap up their sins to the limit. The wrath of God has come upon them at last."

  3. Did someone not tell people who have access to the Chevy Volts that it has a gas engine and will run just like a normal car? The batteries give the Volt approximately a 40 mile range, but after that the gas engine will propel the vehicle either directly through the transmission like any other car, or gas engine recharges the batteries depending on the conditions.

  4. Catholic, Lutheran, even the Baptists nuzzling the wolf! http://www.judicialwatch.org/press-room/press-releases/judicial-watch-documents-reveal-obama-hhs-paid-baptist-children-family-services-182129786-four-months-housing-illegal-alien-children/ YET where is the Progressivist outcry? Silent. I wonder why?

  5. Thank you, Honorable Ladies, and thank you, TIL, for this interesting interview. The most interesting question was the last one, which drew the least response. Could it be that NFP stamps are a threat to the very foundation of our common law American legal tradition, a throwback to the continental system that facilitated differing standards of justice? A throwback to Star Chamber’s protection of the landed gentry? If TIL ever again interviews this same panel, I would recommend inviting one known for voicing socio-legal dissent for the masses, maybe Welch, maybe Ogden, maybe our own John Smith? As demographics shift and our social cohesion precipitously drops, a consistent judicial core will become more and more important so that Justice and Equal Protection and Due Process are yet guiding stars. If those stars fall from our collective social horizon (and can they be seen even now through the haze of NFP opinions?) then what glue other than more NFP decisions and TRO’s and executive orders -- all backed by more and more lethally armed praetorians – will prop up our government institutions? And if and when we do arrive at such an end … will any then dare call that tyranny? Or will the cost of such dissent be too high to justify?

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