ILNews

Opinions Nov. 19, 2010

November 19, 2010
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Indiana Supreme Court had posted no opinions at IL deadline.

Indiana Court of Appeals
Florence R. Lacy-McKinney v. Taylor Bean and Whitaker Mortgage Corp.
71A03-0912-CV-587
Civil. Reverses summary judgment in favor of Taylor Bean & Whitaker Mortgage Corp. on its action to foreclose on Lacy-McKinney’s mortgage that was insured by the Federal Housing Administration. Views the affirmative defense of noncompliance with HUD regulations as the failure of the mortgagee to satisfy a HUD-imposed condition precedent to foreclosure. To hold otherwise would circumvent the public policy of HUD. Remands for further proceedings.

Darren Witt v. State of Indiana
45A05-1005-PC-319
Post conviction. Affirms denial of petition for post-conviction relief, in which Witt challenged his sentence of life without parole imposed after pleading guilty to murder. Witt can’t prevail upon his attempt to present a free-standing claim of sentencing error and didn’t establish he was denied the effective assistance of counsel.

David A. Lanham v. State of Indiana
60A01-1003-CR-114
Criminal. Affirms convictions of Class D felony possession of marijuana and Class A infraction possession of paraphernalia. The trial court acted within its discretion in admitting the marijuana and drug paraphernalia found in Lanham’s residence.

Earl Budd v. State of Indiana
31A01-0910-PC-504
Post conviction. Grants rehearing to clarify that only sex offenders who are committed to the Department of Correction after committing new sex crimes while required to register as sex or violent offenders are no longer eligible to earn educational credit time. Affirms original opinion in all other respects.

Jeffery S. Curtis v. State of Indiana
20A03-1002-CR-110
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class C misdemeanor operating while intoxicated. Rejects Curtis’ invitation to construe I.C. Section 9-30-5-2 such as to require separate proof of impairment of action, and impairment of thought, and loss of control of faculties because such a construction would fly in the face of clearly contrary legislative intent. Impairment is established by proof of certain behaviors and traits evincing impairment, irrespective of whether that evidence established particularized impairment of action, thought, and loss of control of faculties.

Brian Keith Thompson v. State of Indiana (NFP)
48A05-1003-CR-268
Criminal. Affirms sentence following guilty plea to Class B felony burglary and Class D felony theft.

Joseph Hackler v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A02-1004-CR-417
Criminal. Affirms order revoking placement in community corrections.

Indiana Tax Court had posted no opinions at IL deadline.
 
 

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  1. Where may I find an attorney working Pro Bono? Many issues with divorce, my Disability, distribution of IRA's, property, money's and pressured into agreement by my attorney. Leaving me far less than 5% of all after 15 years of marriage. No money to appeal, disabled living on disability income. Attorney's decision brought forward to judge, no evidence ever to finalize divorce. Just 2 weeks ago. Please help.

  2. For the record no one could answer the equal protection / substantive due process challenge I issued in the first post below. The lawless and accountable only to power bureaucrats never did either. All who interface with the Indiana law examiners or JLAP be warned.

  3. Hi there I really need help with getting my old divorce case back into court - I am still paying support on a 24 year old who has not been in school since age 16 - now living independent. My visitation with my 14 year old has never been modified; however, when convenient for her I can have him... I am paying past balance from over due support, yet earn several thousand dollars less. I would contact my original attorney but he basically molest me multiple times in Indy when I would visit.. Todd Woodmansee - I had just came out and had know idea what to do... I have heard he no longer practices. Please help1

  4. Yes diversity is so very important. With justice Rucker off ... the court is too white. Still too male. No Hispanic justice. No LGBT justice. And there are other checkboxes missing as well. This will not do. I say hold the seat until a physically handicapped Black Lesbian of Hispanic heritage and eastern religious creed with bipolar issues can be located. Perhaps an international search, with a preference for third world candidates, is indicated. A non English speaker would surely increase our diversity quotient!!!

  5. First, I want to thank Justice Rucker for his many years of public service, not just at the appellate court level for over 25 years, but also when he served the people of Lake County as a Deputy Prosecutor, City Attorney for Gary, IN, and in private practice in a smaller, highly diverse community with a history of serious economic challenges, ethnic tensions, and recently publicized but apparently long-standing environmental health risks to some of its poorest residents. Congratulations for having the dedication & courage to practice law in areas many in our state might have considered too dangerous or too poor at different points in time. It was also courageous to step into a prominent and highly visible position of public service & respect in the early 1990's, remaining in a position that left you open to state-wide public scrutiny (without any glitches) for over 25 years. Yes, Hoosiers of all backgrounds can take pride in your many years of public service. But people of color who watched your ascent to the highest levels of state government no doubt felt even more as you transcended some real & perhaps some perceived social, economic, academic and professional barriers. You were living proof that, with hard work, dedication & a spirit of public service, a person who shared their same skin tone or came from the same county they grew up in could achieve great success. At the same time, perhaps unknowingly, you helped fellow members of the judiciary, court staff, litigants and the public better understand that differences that are only skin-deep neither define nor limit a person's character, abilities or prospects in life. You also helped others appreciate that people of different races & backgrounds can live and work together peacefully & productively for the greater good of all. Those are truths that didn't have to be written down in court opinions. Anyone paying attention could see that truth lived out every day you devoted to public service. I believe you have been a "trailblazer" in Indiana's legal community and its judiciary. I also embrace your belief that society's needs can be better served when people in positions of governmental power reflect the many complexions of the population that they serve. Whether through greater understanding across the existing racial spectrum or through the removal of some real and some perceived color-based, hope-crushing barriers to life opportunities & success, movement toward a more reflective representation of the population being governed will lead to greater and uninterrupted respect for laws designed to protect all peoples' rights to life, liberty & the pursuit of happiness. Thanks again for a job well-done & for the inevitable positive impact your service has had - and will continue to have - on countless Hoosiers of all backgrounds & colors.

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