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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. Whether you support "gay marriage" or not is not the issue. The issue is whether the SCOTUS can extract from an unmentionable somewhere the notion that the Constitution forbids government "interference" in the "right" to marry. Just imagine time-traveling to Philadelphia in 1787. Ask James Madison if the document he and his fellows just wrote allowed him- or forbade government to "interfere" with- his "right" to marry George Washington? He would have immediately- and justly- summoned the Sergeant-at-Arms to throw your sorry self out into the street. Far from being a day of liberation, this is a day of capitulation by the Rule of Law to the Rule of What's Happening Now.

  2. With today's ruling, AG Zoeller's arguments in the cases of Obamacare and Same-sex Marriage can be relegated to the ash heap of history. 0-fer

  3. She must be a great lawyer

  4. Ind. Courts - "Illinois ranks 49th for how court system serves disadvantaged" What about Indiana? A story today from Dave Collins of the AP, here published in the Benton Illinois Evening News, begins: Illinois' court system had the third-worst score in the nation among state judiciaries in serving poor, disabled and other disadvantaged members of the public, according to new rankings. Illinois' "Justice Index" score of 34.5 out of 100, determined by the nonprofit National Center for Access to Justice, is based on how states serve people with disabilities and limited English proficiency, how much free legal help is available and how states help increasing numbers of people representing themselves in court, among other issues. Connecticut led all states with a score of 73.4 and was followed by Hawaii, Minnesota, New York and Delaware, respectively. Local courts in Washington, D.C., had the highest overall score at 80.9. At the bottom was Oklahoma at 23.7, followed by Kentucky, Illinois, South Dakota and Indiana. ILB: That puts Indiana at 46th worse. More from the story: Connecticut, Hawaii, Minnesota, Colorado, Tennessee and Maine had perfect 100 scores in serving people with disabilities, while Indiana, Georgia, Wyoming, Missouri and Idaho had the lowest scores. Those rankings were based on issues such as whether interpretation services are offered free to the deaf and hearing-impaired and whether there are laws or rules allowing service animals in courthouses. The index also reviewed how many civil legal aid lawyers were available to provide free legal help. Washington, D.C., had nearly nine civil legal aid lawyers per 10,000 people in poverty, the highest rate in the country. Texas had the lowest rate, 0.43 legal aid lawyers per 10,000 people in poverty. http://indianalawblog.com/archives/2014/11/ind_courts_illi_1.html

  5. A very thorough opinion by the federal court. The Rooker-Feldman analysis, in particular, helps clear up muddy water as to the entanglement issue. Looks like the Seventh Circuit is willing to let its district courts cruise much closer to the Indiana Supreme Court's shorelines than most thought likely, at least when the ADA on the docket. Some could argue that this case and Praekel, taken together, paint a rather unflattering picture of how the lower courts are being advised as to their duties under the ADA. A read of the DOJ amicus in Praekel seems to demonstrate a less-than-congenial view toward the higher echelons in the bureaucracy.

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