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Opinions June 4, 2014

June 4, 2014
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The following Indiana Supreme Court opinion was posted after IL deadline Tuesday:
Bruce Ryan v. State of Indiana
49S02-1311-CR-734
Criminal. Affirms two convictions of Class C felony sexual misconduct with a minor, finding no fundamental error by prosecutor’s statements during closing argument. The prosecutor improperly urged the jury to convict Ryan for reasons other than his guilt, but his failure to contemporaneously object and enable the trial court to take corrective action results in procedural default on his appellate claim.

Wednesday’s opinions
Lori Nicklas v. Von Tobel Corporation, Individually, and d/b/a Von Tobel Lumber; and Von Tobel Lumber Company, Inc.
64A03-1310-CC-429
Civil collection. Affirms summary judgment in favor of Von Tobel Corp. and the denial of Nicklas’ motion for summary judgment on the company’s action to recover money owed on a promissory note executed by Nicklas and her husband. An agreed judgment against one obligor does not merge and extinguish the obligation of another person jointly and severally liable on the same contract, so Van Tobel was free to seek a judgment against Lori Nicklas after an agreed judgment with Shawn Nicklas had been entered.

In the Matter of the Supervised Estate of Mildred Borgwald, Deceased v. Old National Bank and Raelynn Pound
84A01-1302-ES-80
Estate, supervised. Affirms decision in favor of Old National Bank and Pound, entitling the bank to foreclose on the mortgage and equity line of credit against the estate. The trial court properly excluded the testimony of the estate’s proffered expert witness, Dr. Robert Lalouche pursuant to Evid. R. 702; the estate was not denied the opportunity to make an offer of proof regarding Lalouche’s anticipated testimony; the trial court did not abuse its discretion by admitting redacted, certified copies of medical records; and ONB’s mortgage was not invalidated.

Michael W. Palmby v. Karen M. Palmby
32A04-1310-DR-506
Domestic relation. Affirms denial of Michael Palmby’s verified petition for revocation of spousal maintenance. The trial court did not abuse its discretion when it denied his request and instead modified the payment terms of the accumulated rehabilitative maintenance.

Indiana Insurance Company v. Patricia Kopetsky, and KB Home Indiana Inc.
49A02-1304-PL-340
Civil plenary. KB Home has successfully alleged “property damage” caused by an “occurrence” pursuant to the policies and that the policies’ “expected and intended” and “contractual liability” exclusions do not work to bar coverage in this case. However, the designated evidence generates a question of fact as to whether the known loss doctrine works to bar coverage in this case, and so remands for trial on that question only. Reverses the trial court’s determination that Indiana Insurance is obligated to indemnify Kopetsky as a question not yet ripe for adjudication and affirms that the trial court did not err in granting summary judgment in favor of Indiana Insurance on her bad faith counterclaim.

Marilee Garrison v. State of Indiana (NFP)
82A04-1312-CR-599
Criminal. Affirms conviction and sentence for Class C felony conspiracy to commit theft.

Shemika L. Boyd v. Review Board of the Indiana Department of Workforce Development and Amazon Com INDC, LLC (NFP)
93A02-1310-EX-886
Agency action. Affirms decision that Boyd is ineligible for unemployment benefits.

Corday C. Dixon v. State of Indiana (NFP)
20A03-1311-CR-448
Criminal. Affirms convictions and sentence for two counts of Class C felony child molesting and one count of Class A felony child molesting.

Dennis Daniels v. State of Indiana (NFP)
20A05-1310-CR-517
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class A misdemeanor criminal recklessness.

Nathan Ferguson and Deanna Ferguson v. Shiel Sexton Company, Inc. d/b/a Shiel Sexton, And WR Dunkin & Son, Incorporated; Lynch, Harrison & Brumleve, Inc.; et al (NFP)
29A02-1310-CT-839
Civil tort. Affirms summary judgment in favor of Shiel Sexton on the Fergusons’ negligence claim.

Aubrey Thompson v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A02-1307-CR-606
Criminal. Reverses conviction of Class B misdemeanor public intoxication.

Jason Severs v. State of Indiana (NFP)
84A05-1310-CR-527
Criminal. Affirms sentence for securities fraud as a Class B felony, unlawful acts related to offer of sale of a security as a Class C felony and violating broker-dealer registration requirements as a Class C felony.

Jacob Lutz v. State of Indiana (NFP)
15A01-1310-CR-451
Criminal. Affirms determination that Lutz is a sexually violent predator.

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

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  1. I like the concept. Seems like a good idea and really inexpensive to manage.

  2. I don't agree that this is an extreme case. There are more of these people than you realize - people that are vindictive and/or with psychological issues have clogged the system with baseless suits that are costly to the defendant and to taxpayers. Restricting repeat offenders from further abusing the system is not akin to restricting their freedon, but to protecting their victims, and the court system, from allowing them unfettered access. From the Supreme Court opinion "he has burdened the opposing party and the courts of this state at every level with massive, confusing, disorganized, defective, repetitive, and often meritless filings."

  3. So, if you cry wolf one too many times courts may "restrict" your ability to pursue legal action? Also, why is document production equated with wealth? Anyone can "produce probably tens of thousands of pages of filings" if they have a public library card. I understand this is an extreme case, but our Supreme Court really got this one wrong.

  4. He called our nation a nation of cowards because we didn't want to talk about race. That was a cheap shot coming from the top cop. The man who decides who gets the federal government indicts. Wow. Not a gentleman if that is the measure. More importantly, this insult delivered as we all understand, to white people-- without him or anybody needing to explain that is precisely what he meant-- but this is an insult to timid white persons who fear the government and don't want to say anything about race for fear of being accused a racist. With all the legal heat that can come down on somebody if they say something which can be construed by a prosecutor like Mr Holder as racist, is it any wonder white people-- that's who he meant obviously-- is there any surprise that white people don't want to talk about race? And as lawyers we have even less freedom lest our remarks be considered violations of the rules. Mr Holder also demonstrated his bias by publically visiting with the family of the young man who was killed by a police offering in the line of duty, which was a very strong indicator of bias agains the offer who is under investigation, and was a failure to lead properly by letting his investigators do their job without him predetermining the proper outcome. He also has potentially biased the jury pool. All in all this worsens race relations by feeding into the perception shared by whites as well as blacks that justice will not be impartial. I will say this much, I do not blame Obama for all of HOlder's missteps. Obama has done a lot of things to stay above the fray and try and be a leader for all Americans. Maybe he should have reigned Holder in some but Obama's got his hands full with other problelms. Oh did I mention HOlder is a bank crony who will probably get a job in a silkstocking law firm working for millions of bucks a year defending bankers whom he didn't have the integrity or courage to hold to account for their acts of fraud on the United States, other financial institutions, and the people. His tenure will be regarded by history as a failure of leadership at one of the most important jobs in our nation. Finally and most importantly besides him insulting the public and letting off the big financial cheats, he has been at the forefront of over-prosecuting the secrecy laws to punish whistleblowers and chill free speech. What has Holder done to vindicate the rights of privacy of the American public against the illegal snooping of the NSA? He could have charged NSA personnel with violations of law for their warrantless wiretapping which has been done millions of times and instead he did not persecute a single soul. That is a defalcation of historical proportions and it signals to the public that the government DOJ under him was not willing to do a damn thing to protect the public against the rapid growth of the illegal surveillance state. Who else could have done this? Nobody. And for that omission Obama deserves the blame too. Here were are sliding into a police state and Eric Holder made it go all the faster.

  5. JOE CLAYPOOL candidate for Superior Court in Harrison County - Indiana This candidate is misleading voters to think he is a Judge by putting Elect Judge Joe Claypool on his campaign literature. paragraphs 2 and 9 below clearly indicate this injustice to voting public to gain employment. What can we do? Indiana Code - Section 35-43-5-3: Deception (a) A person who: (1) being an officer, manager, or other person participating in the direction of a credit institution, knowingly or intentionally receives or permits the receipt of a deposit or other investment, knowing that the institution is insolvent; (2) knowingly or intentionally makes a false or misleading written statement with intent to obtain property, employment, or an educational opportunity; (3) misapplies entrusted property, property of a governmental entity, or property of a credit institution in a manner that the person knows is unlawful or that the person knows involves substantial risk of loss or detriment to either the owner of the property or to a person for whose benefit the property was entrusted; (4) knowingly or intentionally, in the regular course of business, either: (A) uses or possesses for use a false weight or measure or other device for falsely determining or recording the quality or quantity of any commodity; or (B) sells, offers, or displays for sale or delivers less than the represented quality or quantity of any commodity; (5) with intent to defraud another person furnishing electricity, gas, water, telecommunication, or any other utility service, avoids a lawful charge for that service by scheme or device or by tampering with facilities or equipment of the person furnishing the service; (6) with intent to defraud, misrepresents the identity of the person or another person or the identity or quality of property; (7) with intent to defraud an owner of a coin machine, deposits a slug in that machine; (8) with intent to enable the person or another person to deposit a slug in a coin machine, makes, possesses, or disposes of a slug; (9) disseminates to the public an advertisement that the person knows is false, misleading, or deceptive, with intent to promote the purchase or sale of property or the acceptance of employment;

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