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Opinions May 25, 2012

May 25, 2012
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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

E. Paul Haste v. State of Indiana
03A01-1108-CR-369
Criminal. Dismisses Haste’s appeal of his conviction of and sentence for Class B felony dealing in methamphetamine because the order from which he appeals isn’t a final judgment.

Mark Gasser v. Lesa B. Downing, Auto-Owners Insurance Company, and Property Owners Insurance Company
19A05-1108-PL-419
Civil plenary. Affirms denial of Gasser’s motion for summary judgment, and affirms summary judgment in favor of Auto-Owners, on Gasser’s suit for underinsured motorist coverage. Gasser’s friend’s car, in which Gasser was riding, was not a “temporary substitute” for purposes of the Auto Owners policy because it was being used as a favor or friendly accommodation, not to fulfill a legal or contractual obligation Gasser had.

Cody Dallas v. Brandon Cessna
80A02-1110-CT-925
Civil tort. Affirms finding that Dallas is jointly and severally liable to Cessna for damages following intentional acts of battery. The Comparative Fault Act clearly stipulates that Cessna may recover 100 percent of his damages for the intentional tort from Dallas, as Dallas pleaded guilty after a prosecution based on the same evidence used in the civil proceedings.
 
In Re the Estate of Ruby Shuler Blankenbaker Botkins, Deceased; Mark Allen Shuler and David Lee Shuler, co-personal representatives v. Estate of George Botkins and Larry Botkins, personal rep.
22A05-1109-ES-481
Estate supervised. Dismisses appeal by Mark and David Shuler of the trial court’s denial of their motion to set aside a family settlement agreement relating to the administration of Ruby Botkins’ estate because the order is neither a final judgment nor an appealable interlocutory order.

Anthony Dorelle-Moore v. State of Indiana
45A04-1109-CR-482
Criminal. Affirms murder conviction. Dorelle-Moore claimed the trial court abused its discretion relating to the prosecutor’s communications with a potential witness. Any suppression of a witness’s testimony was no more than a harmless error.

Tyjuan J. Dixon v. State of Indiana
45A03-1110-CR-482
Criminal. Affirms convictions of murder and two counts of Class A felony attempted murder. The trial court did not abuse its discretion when it allowed the state to introduce extrinsic evidence in the form of testimony from a police detective as impeachment of another prosecution witness.

Anthony McCoy v. State of Indiana (NFP)
02A03-1110-PC-511
Post conviction. Affirms denial of petition for post-conviction relief.

Keith M. Butler v. State of Indiana (NFP)
02A03-1105-CR-187
Criminal. Affirms convictions of and sentence for two counts each of Class B felony sexual misconduct with a minor and Class C felony sexual misconduct with a minor and one count of Class D felony child solicitation.

William Pargo v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A05-1104-CR-174
Criminal. Affirms grant of state’s motion to amend charges against Pargo.

Clovis Smith v. Alexandra Ryan (NFP)
07A01-1111-PO-518
Protective order. Affirms issuance of protection order and determination that Smith is “Brady disqualified” from buying a firearm.

Victoria Thomas v. National Education Association-South Bend and South Bend School Corporation (NFP)
71A03-1107-MI-383
Miscellaneous. Affirms denial of Thomas’ motion to stay and affirmation of the decision by the Indiana Education Employment Relations Board that concluded the National Education Association – South Bend did not violate its duty to fairly represent Thomas in her grievance against her employer, South Bend Community School Corp.

Lucas E. Holland v. State of Indiana (NFP)
53A01-1107-CR-333
Criminal. Affirms sentence for murder and Class B felony armed robbery.

Lorinda Harper v. State of Indiana (NFP)
90A02-1110-CR-981
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class D felony receiving stolen property.

Darrell Lawrence v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A02-1110-CR-939
Criminal. Affirms order that Lawrence serve his entire suspended sentence following a probation violation.

Shane J. Johnson v. State of Indiana (NFP)
84A01-1107-CR-350
Criminal. Affirms in part and remands for a more specific statement of the terms of Johnson’s probation revocation consistent with the opinion.

Jeremy Kyle Everhart v. State of Indiana (NFP)
64A04-1105-CR-253
Criminal. Dismisses appeal for lack of jurisdiction.

Paul Esparza v. Denis Lynch (NFP)
http://media.ibj.com/Lawyer/websites/opinions/index.php?pdf=2012/may/05251204msm.pdf
75A04-1104-SC-184
Small claim. Affirms $1,000 judgment in favor of Lynch for destruction of property.
 

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  1. Applause, applause, applause ..... but, is this duty to serve the constitutional order not much more incumbent upon the State, whose only aim is to be pure and unadulterated justice, than defense counsel, who is also charged with gaining a result for a client? I agree both are responsible, but it seems to me that the government attorneys bear a burden much heavier than defense counsel .... "“I note, much as we did in Mechling v. State, 16 N.E.3d 1015 (Ind. Ct. App. 2014), trans. denied, that the attorneys representing the State and the defendant are both officers of the court and have a responsibility to correct any obvious errors at the time they are committed."

  2. Do I have to hire an attorney to get co-guardianship of my brother? My father has guardianship and my older sister was his co-guardian until this Dec 2014 when she passed and my father was me to go on as the co-guardian, but funds are limit and we need to get this process taken care of quickly as our fathers health isn't the greatest. So please advise me if there is anyway to do this our self or if it requires a lawyer? Thank you

  3. I have been on this program while on parole from 2011-2013. No person should be forced mentally to share private details of their personal life with total strangers. Also giving permission for a mental therapist to report to your parole agent that your not participating in group therapy because you don't have the financial mean to be in the group therapy. I was personally singled out and sent back three times for not having money and also sent back within the six month when you aren't to be sent according to state law. I will work to het this INSOMM's removed from this state. I also had twelve or thirteen parole agents with a fifteen month period. Thanks for your time.

  4. Our nation produces very few jurists of the caliber of Justice DOUGLAS and his peers these days. Here is that great civil libertarian, who recognized government as both a blessing and, when corrupted by ideological interests, a curse: "Once the investigator has only the conscience of government as a guide, the conscience can become ‘ravenous,’ as Cromwell, bent on destroying Thomas More, said in Bolt, A Man For All Seasons (1960), p. 120. The First Amendment mirrors many episodes where men, harried and harassed by government, sought refuge in their conscience, as these lines of Thomas More show: ‘MORE: And when we stand before God, and you are sent to Paradise for doing according to your conscience, *575 and I am damned for not doing according to mine, will you come with me, for fellowship? ‘CRANMER: So those of us whose names are there are damned, Sir Thomas? ‘MORE: I don't know, Your Grace. I have no window to look into another man's conscience. I condemn no one. ‘CRANMER: Then the matter is capable of question? ‘MORE: Certainly. ‘CRANMER: But that you owe obedience to your King is not capable of question. So weigh a doubt against a certainty—and sign. ‘MORE: Some men think the Earth is round, others think it flat; it is a matter capable of question. But if it is flat, will the King's command make it round? And if it is round, will the King's command flatten it? No, I will not sign.’ Id., pp. 132—133. DOUGLAS THEN WROTE: Where government is the Big Brother,11 privacy gives way to surveillance. **909 But our commitment is otherwise. *576 By the First Amendment we have staked our security on freedom to promote a multiplicity of ideas, to associate at will with kindred spirits, and to defy governmental intrusion into these precincts" Gibson v. Florida Legislative Investigation Comm., 372 U.S. 539, 574-76, 83 S. Ct. 889, 908-09, 9 L. Ed. 2d 929 (1963) Mr. Justice DOUGLAS, concurring. I write: Happy Memorial Day to all -- God please bless our fallen who lived and died to preserve constitutional governance in our wonderful series of Republics. And God open the eyes of those government officials who denounce the constitutions of these Republics by arbitrary actions arising out capricious motives.

  5. From back in the day before secularism got a stranglehold on Hoosier jurists comes this great excerpt via Indiana federal court judge Allan Sharp, dedicated to those many Indiana government attorneys (with whom I have dealt) who count the law as a mere tool, an optional tool that is not to be used when political correctness compels a more acceptable result than merely following the path that the law directs: ALLEN SHARP, District Judge. I. In a scene following a visit by Henry VIII to the home of Sir Thomas More, playwriter Robert Bolt puts the following words into the mouths of his characters: Margaret: Father, that man's bad. MORE: There is no law against that. ROPER: There is! God's law! MORE: Then God can arrest him. ROPER: Sophistication upon sophistication! MORE: No, sheer simplicity. The law, Roper, the law. I know what's legal not what's right. And I'll stick to what's legal. ROPER: Then you set man's law above God's! MORE: No, far below; but let me draw your attention to a fact I'm not God. The currents and eddies of right and wrong, which you find such plain sailing, I can't navigate. I'm no voyager. But in the thickets of law, oh, there I'm a forester. I doubt if there's a man alive who could follow me there, thank God... ALICE: (Exasperated, pointing after Rich) While you talk, he's gone! MORE: And go he should, if he was the Devil himself, until he broke the law! ROPER: So now you'd give the Devil benefit of law! MORE: Yes. What would you do? Cut a great road through the law to get after the Devil? ROPER: I'd cut down every law in England to do that! MORE: (Roused and excited) Oh? (Advances on Roper) And when the last law was down, and the Devil turned round on you where would you hide, Roper, the laws being flat? (He leaves *1257 him) This country's planted thick with laws from coast to coast man's laws, not God's and if you cut them down and you're just the man to do it d'you really think you would stand upright in the winds that would blow then? (Quietly) Yes, I'd give the Devil benefit of law, for my own safety's sake. ROPER: I have long suspected this; this is the golden calf; the law's your god. MORE: (Wearily) Oh, Roper, you're a fool, God's my god... (Rather bitterly) But I find him rather too (Very bitterly) subtle... I don't know where he is nor what he wants. ROPER: My God wants service, to the end and unremitting; nothing else! MORE: (Dryly) Are you sure that's God! He sounds like Moloch. But indeed it may be God And whoever hunts for me, Roper, God or Devil, will find me hiding in the thickets of the law! And I'll hide my daughter with me! Not hoist her up the mainmast of your seagoing principles! They put about too nimbly! (Exit More. They all look after him). Pgs. 65-67, A MAN FOR ALL SEASONS A Play in Two Acts, Robert Bolt, Random House, New York, 1960. Linley E. Pearson, Atty. Gen. of Indiana, Indianapolis, for defendants. Childs v. Duckworth, 509 F. Supp. 1254, 1256 (N.D. Ind. 1981) aff'd, 705 F.2d 915 (7th Cir. 1983)

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