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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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  2. Hail to our Constitutional Law Expert in the Executive Office! “What you’re not paying attention to is the fact that I just took an action to change the law,” Obama said.

  3. What is this, the Ind Supreme Court thinking that there is a separation of powers and limited enumerated powers as delegated by a dusty old document? Such eighteen century thinking, so rare and unwanted by the elites in this modern age. Dictate to us, dictate over us, the massess are chanting! George Soros agrees. Time to change with times Ind Supreme Court, says all President Snows. Rule by executive decree is the new black.

  4. I made the same argument before a commission of the Indiana Supreme Court and then to the fedeal district and federal appellate courts. Fell flat. So very glad to read that some judges still beleive that evidentiary foundations matter.

  5. KUDOS to the Indiana Supreme Court for realizing that some bureacracies need to go to the stake. Recall what RWR said: "No government ever voluntarily reduces itself in size. Government programs, once launched, never disappear. Actually, a government bureau is the nearest thing to eternal life we'll ever see on this earth!" NOW ... what next to this rare and inspiring chopping block? Well, the Commission on Gender and Race (but not religion!?!) is way overdue. And some other Board's could be cut with a positive for State and the reputation of the Indiana judiciary.

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