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Opinions Oct. 13, 2010

October 13, 2010
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7th Circuit Court of Appeals
United States of America v. Cruz Saenz
U.S. District Court, Southern District of Indiana, Indianapolis Division, Judge Sarah Evans Barker.
Criminal. Affirms conviction of conspiring to distribute more than 5 kilograms of cocaine but vacates his 293-month sentence. Rejects Saenz’s speedy trial challenge because nearly all of the delay is attributable to requests by Saenz or his co-defendants and the court didn’t error in imposing an obstruction of justice enhancement by concluding Saenz willfully lied about whether he knew the money he was transporting was drug money. Remands for the District Court to reconsider whether Saenz should receive the minor role adjustment as there is no evidence in the record of his involvement in a conspiracy beyond the single transport of money.


Indiana Supreme Court had posted no opinions at IL deadline.

Indiana Court of Appeals
State of Indiana v. Eric Booher, et al.
18A04-0910-CV-599
Civil. Reverses award of pre-judgment and post-judgment interest to the Boohers and Nortra Inc. Based on the language in the settlement agreements, the agreements didn’t contemplate any pre-judgment interest other than that accrued on the amounts previously deposited by the state. Remands for a calculation of post-judgment interest because the record doesn’t reveal when or if the state paid the Boohers the remaining principal payment or when the state paid the remaining principal payment under the Nortra judgment.  

Fabian Morgan v. State of Indiana
49A04-1001-CR-43
Criminal. Affirms conviction of and sentence for unlawful possession of a firearm by a serious violent felon as a Class B felony. Morgan waived his claim that there wasn’t sufficient evidence to prove he qualified as a serious violent felon. Concludes there is persuasive authority for the proposition that a stipulation may be presented to the jury in the form of a preliminary instruction, where it may be challenged by a defendant who preserves the issue for appellate review. The trial court didn’t commit fundamental error when it stated to the jury that the defense attorney’s characterization of certain evidence was “misleading” and “not the evidence.”

Larry E. Hyatt v. State of Indiana (NFP)
48A04-0912-CR-735
Criminal. Affirms convictions of four counts of dealing in cocaine as Class B felonies and one count of maintaining a common nuisance as a Class D felony.

Clarence T. Hunt v. State of Indiana (NFP)
73A04-1001-CR-39
Criminal. Affirms convictions of two counts of Class A felony dealing in a narcotic drug.

Jason Akemon v. State of Indiana (NFP)
38A02-1003-CR-307
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class B felony rape.

Shavaughn C. Wilson v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A02-1002-PC-326
Post conviction. Affirms denial of petition for post-conviction relief.

Ronald B. Blake v. State of Indiana (NFP)
73A01-1002-CR-123
Criminal. Affirms sentence following guilty plea to operating a vehicle after forfeiture for life as a Class C felony.

Christopher James Hovious v. State of Indiana (NFP)
79A02-1003-CR-354
Criminal. Affirms revocation of probation.

Kevin Andrew Kohler v. State of Indiana (NFP)
35A02-1002-CR-175
Criminal. Affirms convictions of Class A felony child molesting and two counts of Class C felony child molesting.

Sabrina Wright v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A04-1002-CR-57
Criminal. Affirms conviction of battery on a law enforcement officer as a Class A misdemeanor.

Willard Bolton v. Nanette Bolton (NFP)
34A05-1002-DR-59
Domestic relation. Reverses the valuation of certain marital assets and finding Willard in contempt of the court’s Dec. 7, 2009, order. Affirms denial of his request for permanent spousal maintenance, ordering of an unequal division of marital assets, and not awarding Willard attorney’s fees.

M.B. v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A02-1002-JV-241
Juvenile. Reverses modification of probation to the Department of Correction and remands for an evidentiary hearing.

Jessica Haylett v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A04-1002-CR-64
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class A misdemeanor criminal mischief.

Indiana Tax Court had posted no opinions at IL deadline.
 

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  1. This law is troubling in two respects: First, why wasn't the law reviewed "with the intention of getting all the facts surrounding the legislation and its actual impact on the marketplace" BEFORE it was passed and signed? Seems a bit backwards to me (even acknowledging that this is the Indiana state legislature we're talking about. Second, what is it with the laws in this state that seem to create artificial monopolies in various industries? Besides this one, the other law that comes to mind is the legislation that governed the granting of licenses to firms that wanted to set up craft distilleries. The licensing was limited to only those entities that were already in the craft beer brewing business. Republicans in this state talk a big game when it comes to being "business friendly". They're friendly alright . . . to certain businesses.

  2. Gretchen, Asia, Roberto, Tonia, Shannon, Cheri, Nicholas, Sondra, Carey, Laura ... my heart breaks for you, reaching out in a forum in which you are ignored by a professional suffering through both compassion fatigue and the love of filthy lucre. Most if not all of you seek a warm blooded Hoosier attorney unafraid to take on the government and plead that government officials have acted unconstitutionally to try to save a family and/or rescue children in need and/or press individual rights against the Leviathan state. I know an attorney from Kansas who has taken such cases across the country, arguing before half of the federal courts of appeal and presenting cases to the US S.Ct. numerous times seeking cert. Unfortunately, due to his zeal for the constitutional rights of peasants and willingness to confront powerful government bureaucrats seemingly violating the same ... he was denied character and fitness certification to join the Indiana bar, even after he was cleared to sit for, and passed, both the bar exam and ethics exam. And was even admitted to the Indiana federal bar! NOW KNOW THIS .... you will face headwinds and difficulties in locating a zealously motivated Hoosier attorney to face off against powerful government agents who violate the constitution, for those who do so tend to end up as marginalized as Paul Odgen, who was driven from the profession. So beware, many are mere expensive lapdogs, the kind of breed who will gladly take a large retainer, but then fail to press against the status quo and powers that be when told to heel to. It is a common belief among some in Indiana that those attorneys who truly fight the power and rigorously confront corruption often end up, actually or metaphorically, in real life or at least as to their careers, as dead as the late, great Gary Welch. All of that said, I wish you the very best in finding a Hoosier attorney with a fighting spirit to press your rights as far as you can, for you do have rights against government actors, no matter what said actors may tell you otherwise. Attorneys outside the elitist camp are often better fighters that those owing the powers that be for their salaries, corner offices and end of year bonuses. So do not be afraid to retain a green horn or unconnected lawyer, many of them are fine men and woman who are yet untainted by the "unique" Hoosier system.

  3. I am not the John below. He is a journalist and talk show host who knows me through my years working in Kansas government. I did no ask John to post the note below ...

  4. "...not those committed in the heat of an argument." If I ever see a man physically abusing a woman or a child and I'm close enough to intercede I will not ask him why he is abusing her/him. I will give him a split second to cease his attack and put his hands in the air while I call the police. If he continues, I will still call the police but to report, "Man down with a gunshot wound,"instead.

  5. And so the therapeutic state is weaonized. How soon until those with ideologies opposing the elite are disarmed in the name of mental health? If it can start anywhere it can start in the hoosiers' slavishly politically correct capital city.

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