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Opinions May 12, 2011

May 12, 2011
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Indiana Supreme Court
State ex rel. Gregory F. Zoeller v. Aisin USA Manufacturing, Inc.
36S01-1009-CV-469
Civil. Holds the attorney general’s attempt to recover a “tax refund” from Aisin in Jackson Superior Court may proceed. It does not arise under the tax laws because the “refund” was the result of accounting and clerical errors with in the Department of Revenue that were wholly unrelated to any interpretation or application of tax law. Justices Rucker and Dickson dissent.

Richard L. Barnes v. State of Indiana
82S05-1007-CR-343
Criminal. Affirms convictions of Class A misdemeanor battery on a law enforcement officer, Class A misdemeanor resisting law enforcement, and Class B misdemeanor disorderly conduct. There is no right to reasonably resist unlawful entry by police officers, so the trial court didn’t err in failing to give Barnes’ proffered jury instruction on this right, and the evidence was sufficient to support Barnes’ convictions. Justices Rucker and Dickson dissent.


Indiana Court of Appeals
Commissioner of Labor on the Relation of Vincent and Antimo Scialdone v. An Island, LLC
49A05-1011-PL-777
Civil plenary. Affirms grant of An Island LLC’s motion to dismiss for improper venue and order the case transferred to Perry County. The trial court did not abuse its discretion when it determined that Perry County was the only preferred venue for the case.

Erodney Davis v. State of Indiana
45A05-1008-CR-502
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class C felony possession of cocaine. The trial court did err by permitting a police detective to testify as a skilled witness, but it was a harmless error. The trial court did not err by excluding evidence of a witness’s prior drug-related convictions or by giving an additional instruction to the jury that it had inadvertently omitted from the final jury instructions.

Jameson Malbrough v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A02-1009-CR-958
Criminal. Affirms convictions of two counts of Class B felony child molesting, and one count each of Class C felony child molesting, Class D felony vicarious sexual gratification, and Class D felony intimidation.

James Spann v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A05-1009-CR-588
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class A misdemeanor obstructing traffic.

Rodney Griffin v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A02-1010-CR-1108
Criminal. Reverses conviction of Class A misdemeanor invasion of privacy.

Term. of Parent-Child Rel. of R.A., et al.; A.L. v. I.D.C.S. (NFP)
45A03-1005-JT-271
Juvenile. Affirms involuntary termination of parental rights.

Lloyd Conn v. State of Indiana
24A01-1009-CR-508
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class A felony conspiracy to commit murder. The evidence is sufficient to sustain his conviction.

Robert A. Jordan v. State of Indiana (NFP)
79A02-1006-PC-674
Post conviction. Affirms denial of request for additional educational credit time.

Thomas Huffine v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A02-1010-CR-1098
Criminal. Affirms sentence following revocation of probation.

Indiana Tax Court had 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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