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Opinions June 27, 2013

June 27, 2013
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Indiana Court of Appeals
Timothy W. Parish v. State of Indiana
64A03-1210-CR-438
Criminal. Finds trial court properly denied Parish’s request for counsel at public expense because he had $130,000 in equity in his house, but the facts and circumstances of the case do not warrant a knowing and intelligent waiver of his right to counsel because the trial court did not advise him of the dangers and disadvantages of self-representation. Remands for a new trial.

Term. of the Parent-Child Rel. of: S.S., J.S., and C.S. (Minor Children) and, T.S. (Mother) v. The Indiana Dept. of Child Services
09A02-1211-JT-936
Juvenile. Affirms mother was not denied due process when the juvenile court denied her motion to continue a termination hearing. Mother was represented by counsel, voluntarily left Indiana and was aware of the hearing.

Terry L. Sturgis, Sr. v. State of Indiana
71A03-1207-CR-330
Criminal. Affirms convictions of murder, two counts of Class B felony criminal confinement, four counts of Class B felony battery, three counts of Class C felony battery, one count of Class A misdemeanor battery and two counts of Class D felony neglect of a dependent. There are no double jeopardy violations and there is ample evidence from which a reasonable trier of fact could determine that Sturgis knowingly killed his 10-year-old son.

Stephen G. Smith v. Board of School Trustees of the Monroe County Community School Corporation
53A01-1211-MI-511
Miscellaneous. Affirms order affirming the decision of the board of school trustees to terminate Smith’s teaching contract. There is substantial evidence to support the decision and the board followed proper procedures in cancelling the contract.

Hickory Creek at Connersville v. Estate of Otto K. Combs
21A04-1211-ES-600
Estate, supervised. The trial court did not err in denying Hickory Creek’s claim against Otto Combs’ estate because it did not first pursue Marianne Combs. According to the doctrine of necessaries, a creditor must first seek satisfaction from the income and property of the spouse who incurred the debt, and only if those resources are insufficient may a creditor seek satisfaction from the non-contracting spouse.

D.D. v. D.P. (NFP)
49A02-1211-DR-896
Domestic relation. Remands for further proceedings because the trial court applied the incorrect standard for the burden of proof.

Angela Spurgeon v. Review Board of the Indiana Dept. of Workforce Development and French Lick Professional Management, Inc. (NFP)
93A02-1210-EX-861
Agency action. Affirms denial of unemployment benefits.

Timothy Alex Lear v. State of Indiana (NFP)
65A01-1209-CR-426
Criminal. Affirms conviction of murder and 60-year sentence.

Jeffrey Baker v. State of Indiana (NFP)
67A01-1301-PC-1
Post conviction. Affirms denial of petition for post-conviction relief.

Noel Stack v. State of Indiana (NFP)
29A02-1211-CR-951
Criminal. Affirms sentence following guilty plea to Class D felony theft, but reverses restitution order and remands with instructions to vacate the order.

C.S. v. Review Board of the Indiana Dept. of Workforce Development (NFP)
93A02-1209-EX-774
Agency action. Affirms denial of unemployment benefits.

S.L. v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A02-1211-JV-937
Juvenile. Affirms adjudication for child molesting, which would be a Class B felony if committed by an adult.

Noah Mani v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A05-1211-CR-569
Criminal. Affirms revocation of community corrections placement.

Nephrology Specialists, P.C., Shahabul Arfeen, M.D., Sanjeev Rastogi, M.D., Maher Ajam, M.D., and Raied Abdullah, M.D. v. Asim Chughtai, M.D., Rafael Fletes, M.D., et al. (NFP)
45A03-1212-CT-535
Civil tort. Reverses denial of Nephrology Specialists’ motion for injunctive relief as the trial court abused its discretion in determining that certain non-compete contractual provisions were rescinded following a board meeting.

Jacob K. Smith v. County of Hancock, Indiana (NFP)
33A04-1212-MI-626
Miscellaneous. Affirms dismissal from the Hancock County Sheriff’s Department following a hearing on charges of misconduct.

Gerry Lucas v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A05-1210-CR-532
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class A misdemeanor battery.

Leonard Shaw v. State of Indiana (NFP)
71A03-1210-CR-433
Criminal. Affirms three-year sentence for Class D felony counterfeiting.

The Indiana Supreme Court and Tax Court posted no opinions by IL deadline. The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals posted no Indiana decisions by IL deadline.
 

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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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