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)
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
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.
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
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
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
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
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)
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class B felony arson.

David J. Johnson v. Kira Johnson Bower (NFP)
Domestic relation. Reverses denial of David Johnson’s motion to modify custody.

In Re the Marriage of: Leigh Sewell v. Lois Sewell (NFP)
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)
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)
Criminal. Affirms sentence following guilty plea to seven counts of Class B felony robbery.

Miriam M. Rutherford v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class B misdemeanor disorderly conduct.

Willie Myles, Jr. v. State of Indiana (NFP)
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)
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)
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)

Juvenile. Affirms involuntary termination of parental rights.

Vassil Marinov and Venetka Marinov v. Wake Robin Estates II Homeowner's Association, Inc. (NFP)
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)
Miscellaneous. Affirms decision by the trial court to exclude the state’s witnesses and exhibits.

Dale D. Wing, Jr. v. State of Indiana (NFP)
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)

Juvenile. Affirms involuntary termination of parental rights.

N.B. v. State of Indiana (NFP)
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)
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)
Reciprocal support. Reverses finding that Joseph Geesy was in contempt for failing to pay child support.

Derek J. Jones v. State of Indiana (NFP)
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)
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)
Civil tort. Reverses summary judgment for Horizon Convention Center in a negligence case. Remands for further proceedings.

Michael Henderson v. State of Indiana (NFP)
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)
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. This is ridiculous. Most JDs not practicing law don't know squat to justify calling themselves a lawyer. Maybe they should try visiting the inside of a courtroom before they go around calling themselves lawyers. This kind of promotional BS just increases the volume of people with JDs that are underqualified thereby dragging all the rest of us down likewise.

  2. I think it is safe to say that those Hoosier's with the most confidence in the Indiana judicial system are those Hoosier's who have never had the displeasure of dealing with the Hoosier court system.

  3. I have an open CHINS case I failed a urine screen I have since got clean completed IOP classes now in after care passed home inspection my x sister in law has my children I still don't even have unsupervised when I have been clean for over 4 months my x sister wants to keep the lids for good n has my case working with her I just discovered n have proof that at one of my hearing dcs case worker stated in court to the judge that a screen was dirty which caused me not to have unsupervised this was at the beginning two weeks after my initial screen I thought the weed could have still been in my system was upset because they were suppose to check levels n see if it was going down since this was only a few weeks after initial instead they said dirty I recently requested all of my screens from redwood because I take prescriptions that will show up n I was having my doctor look at levels to verify that matched what I was prescripted because dcs case worker accused me of abuseing when I got my screens I found out that screen I took that dcs case worker stated in court to judge that caused me to not get granted unsupervised was actually negative what can I do about this this is a serious issue saying a parent failed a screen in court to judge when they didn't please advise

  4. I have a degree at law, recent MS in regulatory studies. Licensed in KS, admitted b4 S& 7th circuit, but not to Indiana bar due to political correctness. Blacklisted, nearly unemployable due to hostile state action. Big Idea: Headwinds can overcome, esp for those not within the contours of the bell curve, the Lego Movie happiness set forth above. That said, even without the blacklisting for holding ideas unacceptable to the Glorious State, I think the idea presented above that a law degree open many vistas other than being a galley slave to elitist lawyers is pretty much laughable. (Did the law professors of Indiana pay for this to be published?)

  5. Joe, you might want to do some reading on the fate of Hoosier whistleblowers before you get your expectations raised up.