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Opinions Nov. 10, 2011

November 10, 2011
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The following Indiana Tax Court opinion was posted after IL deadline Wednesday:
Maurice O. Fuller and Craig L. Fuller v. Cass County Assessor (NFP)
49T10-1011-TA-68
Tax. Affirms the final determination of the Indiana Board of Tax Review that Maurice Fuller did not establish that he was entitled to the homestead credit, the homestead standard deduction or the mortgage deduction for the 2007-pay-2008 period. Denies Fuller’s claim for fees and costs.

Thursday’s opinions
7th Circuit Court of Appeals

United States of America v. Dale Russell
10-2259
U.S. District Court, Southern District of Indiana, Indianapolis Division. Judge Sarah Evans Barker.
Criminal. Affirms Dale Russell’s convictions of producing sexually explicit photographs of his minor daughters, which later crossed international boundaries, and his 38-year prison sentence. Russell argued that the District Court erred in allowing one of his daughters to testify that he had touched her inappropriately one to two years before he took the photographs charged in this case; in excluding from evidence a number of photography books from his collection containing photographs of nude families and children, as well as the proffered testimony of an expert concerning the practice of nudism; and instructing the jury that evidence of a defendant’s flight from prosecution could be considered as evidence of his consciousness of guilt. Judge Gottschall concurs in a separate opinion.

Krysten A. Overly v. KeyBank National Association, et al.
10-2705
U.S. District Court, Southern District of Indiana, Indianapolis Division, Judge Sarah Evans Barker.
Civil. Affirms summary judgment for KeyBank on Overly’s suit for gender discrimination and retaliation. There are no disputed issues of genuine fact to Overly’s claims.

Gregory L. Payne v. Richard Brown, superintendent, Wabash Valley Correctional Facility
10-1869
U.S. District Court, Southern District of Indiana, Terre Haute Division, Chief Judge Richard L. Young.
Civil. Affirms 50-year sentence following guilty plea to four felony charges related to raping a teen. Concludes the state court’s decision in Payne’s case regarding the appropriateness of his sentence was contrary to clearly established federal law as determined by the Supreme Court of the United States, but Payne knew that his time in prison could be 50 years or more with consecutive sentences.

Indiana Supreme Court had posted no opinions at IL deadline.

Indiana Court of Appeals

Anthony H. Dye v. State of Indiana
20A04-1011-CR-728
Criminal. Affirms 30-year sentence, which was enhanced after a finding that Dye is a habitual offender, following Dye’s guilty plea to Class B felony unlawful possession of a firearm by a serious violent felon. The trial court did not err in denying Dye’s motion to dismiss the habitual offender charge. Although the two convictions arose out of the same res gestae, it did not constitute an impermissible double enhancement. Affirms in all other respects. Judge Melissa May dissents.

Jai Cook v. Atlanta, Indiana Town Council
29A02-1105-MI-410
Miscellaneous. Reverses denial of Cook’s petition for judicial review and writ of mandamus. Concludes that Indiana Code 36-8-3-4(m) does not permit a town to terminate the employment of a town marshal in contravention of the express language of I.C. 36-5-7-3 related to the termination or suspension of town marshals specifically. Remands for further proceedings.

In the Matter of Commitment of M.E. v. V.A. Medical Center
49A04-1102-MH-63
Mental health. Affirms order of regular commitment entered by the trial court. M.E. has not established that the trial court committed fundamental error. Judge Bailey concurs in result.

Tommy Britt v. State of Indiana (NFP)
13A01-1012-CR-682
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class B felony arson.

David J. Johnson v. Kira Johnson Bower (NFP)
54A04-1102-DR-108
Domestic relation. Reverses denial of David Johnson’s motion to modify custody.

In Re the Marriage of: Leigh Sewell v. Lois Sewell (NFP)
53A05-1103-DR-272
Domestic relation. Affirms order that Leigh Sewell receive $140,000 from the TIAA-CREF retirement account of Lois Sewell and no amount of the remainder of the funds in the account.

Wayne Neal Cavanaugh v. State of Indiana (NFP)
05A05-1105-CR-236
Criminal. Affirms finding Cavanaugh violated the terms of his probation and the sentence imposed following the revocation of probation.

David Dunlap v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A02-1104-CR-333
Criminal. Affirms sentence following guilty plea to seven counts of Class B felony robbery.

Miriam M. Rutherford v. State of Indiana (NFP)
34A05-1106-CR-293
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class B misdemeanor disorderly conduct.

Willie Myles, Jr. v. State of Indiana (NFP)
52A02-1011-CR-1315
Criminal. Affirms sentence following guilty plea to Class B felony dealing in cocaine.

Term. of Parent-Child Rel. of C.T. and J.D.; D.T. v. Indiana Dept. of Child Services (NFP)
56A03-1103-JT-111
Juvenile. Reverses involuntary termination of parental rights and remands with instructions that the trial court enter additional findings to support its judgment.

Johnny Ray Foster v. State of Indiana (NFP)
81A01-1103-CR-157
Criminal. Affirms convictions of Class B felony burglary, Class C felony burglary, Class D felony theft and Class D felony criminal gang activity, but reverses sentence and remands with instructions to correct the sentencing order.

In the Matter of the Term. of the Parent-Child Rel. of V.H.; V.H. v. The Indiana Dept. of Child Svcs. (NFP)

57A03-1103-JT-141
Juvenile. Affirms involuntary termination of parental rights.

Vassil Marinov and Venetka Marinov v. Wake Robin Estates II Homeowner's Association, Inc. (NFP)
79A02-1104-SC-299
Small claim. Affirms judgment against the Marinovs for homeowner’s association dues and attorney fees.

State of Indiana and the Metropolitan Drug Task Force v. Joseph Ferguson (NFP)
49A05-1106-MI-271
Miscellaneous. Affirms decision by the trial court to exclude the state’s witnesses and exhibits.

Dale D. Wing, Jr. v. State of Indiana (NFP)
20A04-1103-CR-164
Criminal. Reverses denial of petition for jail credit time.

In the Matter of the Term. of the Parent-Child Rel. of S.S. and D.S.; Do.S. v. Indiana Dept. of Child Svcs. (NFP)

03A05-1102-JT-101
Juvenile. Affirms involuntary termination of parental rights.

N.B. v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A02-1101-JV-121
Juvenile. Affirms determination N.B. is a delinquent child for committing what would be Class A felony arson if committed by an adult.

Joseph Fairrow v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A05-1012-CR-765
Criminal. Grants rehearing to clarify that a tape recording of the incident involving Fairrow was considered in rendering the appellate court’s decision.

Joseph A. Geesy v. April L. Geesy (NFP)
68A05-1106-RS-330
Reciprocal support. Reverses finding that Joseph Geesy was in contempt for failing to pay child support.

Derek J. Jones v. State of Indiana (NFP)
20A03-1103-CR-95
Criminal. Affirms convictions of various child molesting and other related charges. Vacates trial court’s 40-year sentence for Class C felony child molesting and remands for the trial court to enter a six-year sentence on that count to run consecutively to the sentences for the convictions related to the other victims, for an aggregate sentence of 69 years.

William C. Davis v. State of Indiana (NFP)
65A01-1004-PC-208
Post conviction. Affirms denial of petition for post-conviction relief and remands for specific findings as to the remaining issues as to which no specific findings were made.

Dwight A. Sanaker v. Delaware Advancement Corp. d/b/a Horizon Convention Center (NFP)
18A05-1104-CT-154
Civil tort. Reverses summary judgment for Horizon Convention Center in a negligence case. Remands for further proceedings.

Michael Henderson v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A02-1102-CR-108
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class B misdemeanor disorderly conduct and reverses conviction of Class B misdemeanor public intoxication.

Craig S. Alvey v. Forest River Inc. (NFP)
20A03-1105-PL-216
Civil plenary. Affirms partial grant of summary judgment for Forest River in an employment contract dispute.

Indiana Tax Court had posted no opinions at IL deadline.
 

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  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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)

  4. "Meanwhile small- and mid-size firms are getting squeezed and likely will not survive unless they become a boutique firm." I've been a business attorney in small, and now mid-size firm for over 30 years, and for over 30 years legal consultants have been preaching this exact same mantra of impending doom for small and mid-sized firms -- verbatim. This claim apparently helps them gin up merger opportunities from smaller firms who become convinced that they need to become larger overnight. The claim that large corporations are interested in cost-saving and efficiency has likewise been preached for decades, and is likewise bunk. If large corporations had any real interest in saving money they wouldn't use large law firms whose rates are substantially higher than those of high-quality mid-sized firms.

  5. The family is the foundation of all human government. That is the Grand Design. Modern governments throw off this Design and make bureaucratic war against the family, as does Hollywood and cultural elitists such as third wave feminists. Since WWII we have been on a ship of fools that way, with both the elite and government and their social engineering hacks relentlessly attacking the very foundation of social order. And their success? See it in the streets of Fergusson, on the food stamp doles (mostly broken families)and in the above article. Reject the Grand Design for true social function, enter the Glorious State to manage social dysfunction. Our Brave New World will be a prison camp, and we will welcome it as the only way to manage given the anarchy without it.

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