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Opinions June 22, 2012

June 22, 2012
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The following Indiana Supreme Court opinion was posted after IL deadline Thursday:
Roy Lee Ward v. State of Indiana
74S00-0907-PD-320
Death penalty. Affirms post-conviction court’s denial of Ward’s petition for relief from his death sentence. Ward raised several issues in his petition for relief, including ineffective assistance of counsel claims and that the state’s death penalty statute violates the Eighth Amendment.  

Friday’s opinions
7th Circuit Court of Appeals posted no Indiana opinions at IL deadline.

Indiana Supreme Court and Indiana Tax Court posted no opinions at IL deadline.

Indiana Court of Appeals

Rafael Bocanegra v. State of Indiana
20A03-1108-CR-361
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class C felony forgery. Holds that potential injury remains a sufficient basis for a finding of criminal intent in a forgery prosecution. Remands for vacation of his identity deception conviction. Senior Judge Sullivan dissents.

German American Financial Advisors & Trust Co. d/b/a German American Investment Svcs., PrimeVest Financial Svcs., Inc., and Jeffery W. Tooley v. Dennis M. Reed
19A01-1110-PL-428
Civil plenary. Reverses denial of German American Financial Advisors & Trust Co. and other appellants’ second motion to compel arbitration of Reed’s claims against them. Remands with instructions. Appellants have sustained their burden to show the existence of an enforceable arbitration agreement and that the disputed matter is the type of claim that is intended to be arbitrated under the agreement. Holds Reed must arbitrate his claims against GAFA under the doctrine of equitable estoppel. Judge Barnes concurs in part and dissents in part.

Karla P. Estrada v. State of Indiana
20A03-1110-CR-474
Criminal. Affirms convictions and 24-year sentence for two counts of Class B felony armed robbery and one count of Class C felony conspiracy to commit robbery. The trial court did not abuse its discretion by denying Estrada’s motion to dismiss or by admitting her statement to police into evidence. Her conspiracy conviction does not violate double jeopardy prohibition and her sentence is appropriate.

William T. Carter, derivatively on behalf of CNO Financial Group, Inc. v. R. Glenn Hilliard, et al.
49A02-1106-PL-582
Civil plenary. Affirms grant of CNO’s motion to dismiss Carter’s complaint for failure to make pre-suit demand on the board of directors. Carter has not alleged particularized facts to show that the director defendants face a substantial likelihood of liability for the conduct described in the amended complaint, nor has he alleged particularized facts to show that the director defendants breached their duties of good faith and loyalty. Therefore, Carter has not shown under Delaware law that pre-suit demand on the board would have been futile.

In Re: Prosecutor's Subpoena Regarding S.H. and S.C.; S.H. v. State of Indiana
73A01-1109-CR-468
Criminal. Affirms order granting the state’s petition to compel testimony by parents S.H. and S.C. by providing use immunity. Agrees with the state that because a prosecutor can compel testimony in grand jury proceedings by granting use immunity, the prosecutor has the same authority when conducting a pre-charge investigation without a grand jury.

Carl E. Thomas, III v. State of Indiana (NFP)
63A05-1108-CR-423
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class A felony rape.

Kevin L. Govan v. State of Indiana (NFP)
02A05-1111-CR-663
Criminal. Affirms denial of motion to correct erroneous sentence.
 

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  1. The child support award is many times what the custodial parent earns, and exceeds the actual costs of providing for the children's needs. My fiance and I have agreed that if we divorce, that the children will be provided for using a shared checking account like this one(http://www.mediate.com/articles/if_they_can_do_parenting_plans.cfm) to avoid the hidden alimony in Indiana's child support guidelines.

  2. Fiat justitia ruat caelum is a Latin legal phrase, meaning "Let justice be done though the heavens fall." The maxim signifies the belief that justice must be realized regardless of consequences.

  3. Indiana up holds this behavior. the state police know they got it made.

  4. Additional Points: -Civility in the profession: Treating others with respect will not only move others to respect you, it will show a shared respect for the legal system we are all sworn to protect. When attorneys engage in unnecessary personal attacks, they lose the respect and favor of judges, jurors, the person being attacked, and others witnessing or reading the communication. It's not always easy to put anger aside, but if you don't, you will lose respect, credibility, cases, clients & jobs or job opportunities. -Read Rule 22 of the Admission & Discipline Rules. Capture that spirit and apply those principles in your daily work. -Strive to represent clients in a manner that communicates the importance you place on the legal matter you're privileged to handle for them. -There are good lawyers of all ages, but no one is perfect. Older lawyers can learn valuable skills from younger lawyers who tend to be more adept with new technologies that can improve work quality and speed. Older lawyers have already tackled more legal issues and worked through more of the problems encountered when representing clients on various types of legal matters. If there's mutual respect and a willingness to learn from each other, it will help make both attorneys better lawyers. -Erosion of the public trust in lawyers wears down public confidence in the rule of law. Always keep your duty to the profession in mind. -You can learn so much by asking questions & actively listening to instructions and advice from more experienced attorneys, regardless of how many years or decades you've each practiced law. Don't miss out on that chance.

  5. Agreed on 4th Amendment call - that was just bad policing that resulted in dismissal for repeat offender. What kind of parent names their boy "Kriston"?

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