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Opinions June 20, 2012

June 20, 2012
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The following opinions were posted after IL deadline Tuesday:

Indiana Supreme Court

Tina Whiting v. State of Indiana
38S05-1206-CR-345
Criminal. Affirms a murder conviction and sentence, holding the trial court did not err when it empanelled a juror after denying a joint challenge for cause. The court ruled that because the defendant had not exhausted peremptory challenges and didn’t move to strike the juror, no error was preserved for review.

Indiana Tax Court
Harsukh and Parul Bosamia v. Marion County Assessor
49T10-1108-TA-53
Tax. Dismisses the Bosamias’ appeal of the Indiana Board of Tax Review’s final determination upholding the commercial real property assessments for the 2007 and 2008 tax years. The Bosamias did not timely file the certified administrative record as required by Tax Court Rule 3(E).

Wednesday’s opinions:
Indiana Supreme Court

In the Matter of: Douglas W. Patterson
82S00-1111-DI-662
Discipline. Disbars Patterson for committing three counts of Class D felony theft of client funds and for engaging in conduct involving dishonesty, fraud, deceit or misrepresentation.

John Berry v. State of Indiana
49S04-1110-CR-611
Criminal. Affirms Class A felony attempted murder conviction and the trial court’s rejection of Berry’s insanity defense because there was credible expert testimony that his behavior was caused by his voluntary abuse of alcohol.

Rondell Walker v. State of Indiana
34S02-1206-CR-346
Criminal. Grants transfer and orders Walker’s sentence revised from 20 years to 12 years, citing Abbot v. State. Walker pleaded guilty to Class B felony possession of cocaine and originally was referred to drug court, but his participation in the program was terminated and the trial court sentenced him to the maximum term of 20 years. Justice Massa voted to deny transfer.

Indiana Court of Appeals
Town of Zionsville, Indiana and Zionsville Plan Commission v. Hamilton County Airport Authority
49A05-1107-PL-374
Civil plenary. Reverses judgment in favor of the airport authority and orders judgment entered for the town of Zionsville. Rejects the airport authority’s argument that it’s not obligated to seek zoning approval from Zionsville or any other entity before carrying out its duties regarding an airport it owns in Boone County.

Jason Michael Palilonis v. State of Indiana
42A05-1104-CR-197
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class B felony rape. Finds trial court’s admittance of evidence of alleged rape victim B.S.’s death because this was the fairest resolution for both parties as to why she was not testifying at trial. The statements B.S. made to the nurse during her sexual-assault examination are admissible under Evidence Rule 803(4) and the reasoning in Perry v. State for the description of the events of the rape. The nurse’s statements that were impermissible vouching testimony should not have been admitted at trial but it did not rise to the level of fundamental error.

Danny L. Weaver v. State of Indiana (NFP)
28A01-1111-CR-582
Criminal. Affirms sentence following guilty plea to Class A felony child molesting.

Mickey S. Owen v. State of Indiana (NFP)
87A01-1111-CR-562
Criminal. Affirms sentence following guilty plea to two counts of Class D felony theft.

Walter James Blake v. State of Indiana (NFP)
29A02-1112-PC-1134
Post conviction. Affirms denial of petition for post-conviction relief.

Ronnie D. Inabnitt v. State of Indiana (NFP)
33A01-1110-CR-517
Criminal. Affirms convictions of two counts of Class A felony child molesting but revises sentence from 70 years to 35 years.

Bakari Edwards v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A02-1111-CR-1006
Criminal. Affirms convictions of Class D felony obstruction of justice and Class A misdemeanor possession of marijuana. Reverses order Edwards serve a term of imprisonment for a Class A infraction and remands for further proceedings.

Indiana Tax Court posted no opinions at 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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