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Opinions March 27, 2012

March 27, 2012
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7th Circuit Court of Appeals had issued no Indiana opinions at IL deadline.

Indiana Court of Appeals
Lorraine (Carpenter) Miller v. Karl Carpenter
29A02-1107-DR-663
Domestic relation. Reverses the trial court’s grant of joint legal custody to father, holding the evidence does not support modification of custody. Rejects the mother’s argument that the court made a de facto modification of physical custody, holding the court merely modified parenting time, and holds the trial court did not abuse its discretion in reducing the father’s child support obligations.  

Earl Arnold, Sr. v. Rose Acre Farms, Inc.
93A02-1109-EX-874
Civil. Affirms finding by Worker’s Compensation Board that Arnold did not suffer an injury arising out of and in the course of his employment with Rose Acre Farms. Arnold was on a public road on his way to work when the crash that injured him occurred, and although his car came to rest in the driveway entrance to Rose Acre Farms, the crash did not occur on its property.

Hane C. Harris v. State of Indiana
18A04-1108-CR-391
Criminal. Affirms convictions of and sentence for one count each of Class A and Class C felony child molesting, and Class D felony child solicitation, holding that the victim’s testimony via closed-circuit television did not affect Harris’ right to cross-examination. Affirms consecutive sentences, holding the court needs to identify only one aggravator to impose consecutive sentences, and Harris had several, including 10 prior felony convictions. Remands to correct sentence to reflect that the habitual offender finding was an enhancement, not a separate offense.

Kevin K. Cotton v. State of Indiana (NFP)
64A03-1107-CR-334
Criminal. Affirms conviction of and sentence for two counts Class C felony child molesting.

Stacy I. Cottrill v. State of Indiana (NFP)
03A01-1110-CR-471
Criminal. Affirms trial court’s revocation of probation and order that Cottrill serve her previously-suspended four-year sentence.

Cynthia J. Biddle, as Personal Rep. of the Estate of Edgar E. Biddle, Deceased v. Joseph W. Laskowski and Barbara J. Laskowski (NFP)
54A01-1105-MI-196
Miscellaneous. Affirms trial court’s order that decreased the attorney fees to be paid to the Biddle estate. On cross-appeal, holds that the trial court did not abuse its discretion when it interpreted the agreement between parties, but due to the death of Edgar Biddle, “specific performance” is no longer possible and therefore the case is remanded to the trial court for determination of a money judgment.  

Term. of Parent-Child Rel. of A.F.-M (Minor Child); A.M. (Mother) and B.S.M. (Father) v. The Indiana Dept. of Child Services (NFP)
28A05-1109-JT-497
Juvenile. Affirms termination of parental rights of mother and father.

Karyl Pogue v. Kim Rawlings and Deborah S. Rawlings (NFP)
12A02-1107-PL-654
Civil plenary. Affirms trial court’s judgment in favor of the Rawlingses on a fraud complaint.

Steffin T. McFall v. State of Indiana (NFP)
20A03-1109-CR-410
Criminal. Affirms sentence for five counts of Class A felony child molesting.  

Indiana Tax Court and Indiana Supreme Court had issued no opinions at IL deadline.
 

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  1. Frankly, it is tragic that you are even considering going to an expensive, unaccredited "law school." It is extremely difficult to get a job with a degree from a real school. If you are going to make the investment of time, money, and tears into law school, it should not be to a place that won't actually enable you to practice law when you graduate.

  2. As a lawyer who grew up in Fort Wayne (but went to a real law school), it is not that hard to find a mentor in the legal community without your school's assistance. One does not need to pay tens of thousands of dollars to go to an unaccredited legal diploma mill to get a mentor. Having a mentor means precisely nothing if you cannot get a job upon graduation, and considering that the legal job market is utterly terrible, these students from Indiana Tech are going to be adrift after graduation.

  3. 700,000 to 800,000 Americans are arrested for marijuana possession each year in the US. Do we need a new justice center if we decriminalize marijuana by having the City Council enact a $100 fine for marijuana possession and have the money go towards road repair?

  4. I am sorry to hear this.

  5. I tried a case in Judge Barker's court many years ago and I recall it vividly as a highlight of my career. I don't get in federal court very often but found myself back there again last Summer. We had both aged a bit but I must say she was just as I had remembered her. Authoritative, organized and yes, human ...with a good sense of humor. I also appreciated that even though we were dealing with difficult criminal cases, she treated my clients with dignity and understanding. My clients certainly respected her. Thanks for this nice article. Congratulations to Judge Barker for reaching another milestone in a remarkable career.

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