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Opinions Oct. 19, 2011

October 19, 2011
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7th Circuit Court of Appeals had posted no Indiana opinions at IL deadline.

Indiana Supreme Court had posted no opinions at IL deadline.


Indiana Court of Appeals
Alan Massey v. State of Indiana
49A05-1012-PC-808
Post conviction. Affirms denial of petition for post-conviction relief. Even though the jury was improperly instructed regarding the elements of voluntary manslaughter, Massey wasn’t entitled to the voluntary manslaughter instruction because his girlfriend’s words ending their relationship do not constitute sufficient provocation to induce sudden heat. He also failed to carry his burden to show that the sentencing issue was significant.

Mark S. Weinberger, M.D., Mark S. Weinberger, M.D., P.C., Merrillville Center for Advanced Surgery, LLC and Nose and Sinus Center, LLC v. William Boyer
45A03-1011-CT-598
Civil tort. Affirms award of $300,000 in damages to William Boyer following his complaint for medical malpractice. The trial court properly denied the Weinberger entities’ motion for change of judge; did not abuse its discretion when it failed to strike jurors for cause; the testimony on Weinberger’s breach of his standard of care, the result of Boyer’s EKG, and evidence of Weinberger’s flight and absence from the country were properly admitted; and the jury award was not excessive. Affirms in all other respects.

Carolyn S. Baird v. State of Indiana
82A01-1106-CR-185
Criminal. Affirms convictions of infractions for operating a motor vehicle without financial responsibility, failure to register and failure to have the proper license for operating a motorcycle. The evidence was sufficient to support these convictions. Reverses her conviction of Class A misdemeanor driving while suspended with a prior conviction because there was insufficient evidence. Remands with instructions to enter a conviction of the lesser included offense of driving while suspended, a Class A infraction.

Barker Industrial Park, Inc., Clara Barker and Charles E. Barker v. Ken Cut Lawn Service, Inc. (NFP)
49A05-1104-PL-201
Civil plenary. Reverses attorney fee award to the Bakers and remands for recalculation. Also on remand, the trial court should explain its prejudgment interest calculation and correct its total judgment calculation.

Marquinn McGruder v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A04-1102-CR-29
Criminal. Affirms convictions of Class A misdemeanors carrying a handgun without a license and possession of marijuana.

Zachary Thomas v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A02-1009-CR-1143
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class D felony residential entry.

Remy Inc. v. Ice Miller LLP and Kathy S. Kiefer (NFP)
49A02-1012-CT-1419
Civil tort. Affirms summary judgment for Ice Miller and Kiefer on Remy’s legal malpractice claim.

Jeffrey J. Whitmer v. Nancy J. Whitmer (NFP)
85A02-1103-DR-283
Domestic relation. Affirms in part and reverses in part the order that set aside substantial sums to Nancy following the sale of property at auction for expenses she claimed to have incurred, as most of the expenses she requested were either untimely raised or were an improper attempt to relitigate the equal property distribution. Remands with instructions.

Danny L. Slaven v. State of Indiana (NFP)
18A02-1101-PC-116
Post conviction. Affirms in part and reverses in part the denial of petition for post-conviction relief. Remands for resentencing.

Darren B. Stone v. State of Indiana (NFP)
51A01-1103-PC-154
Post conviction. Affirms denial of petition for post-conviction relief.

K.B.S. v. State of Indiana (NFP)
71A04-1104-JV-251
Juvenile. Affirms order placing K.B.S. at a private residential facility after the juvenile court found she committed what would be Class A misdemeanor criminal conversion if committed by an adult.

Christopher Davies v. State of Indiana (NFP)
34A05-1103-CR-136
Criminal. Affirms order Davies serve the 18-month balance of his suspended sentence following a probation violation.

Kevin Legg v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A02-1102-CR-76
Criminal. Affirms convictions of Class B felony rape, Class B felony criminal deviate conduct and Class D felony criminal confinement.

James Lee v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A04-1103-PC-152
Post conviction. Affirms denial of petition for post-conviction relief.

Sergio Esqueda v. Alfredo and Maria Ponce (NFP)
93A02-1105-EX-476
Agency appeal. Affirms denial of application for adjustment of claim.

Valentin Jaramillo v. State of Indiana (NFP)
76A03-1103-PC-125
Post conviction. Affirms denial of petition for post-conviction relief.

Rumero Ziebell v. State of Indiana (NFP)
82A01-1012-PC-694
Post conviction. Affirms in part and reverses in part the denial of Ziebell’s petition for post-conviction relief. Remands for the post-conviction court to order the habitual offender enhancement in the murder case to be served concurrent with the habitual offender enhancement in the drug case.

Ayron Saylors v. State of Indiana (NFP)
27A05-1102-PC-99
Post conviction. Affirms denial of petition for post-conviction relief.

Indiana Tax Court had posted no opinions at IL deadline.
 

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  1. Applause, applause, applause ..... but, is this duty to serve the constitutional order not much more incumbent upon the State, whose only aim is to be pure and unadulterated justice, than defense counsel, who is also charged with gaining a result for a client? I agree both are responsible, but it seems to me that the government attorneys bear a burden much heavier than defense counsel .... "“I note, much as we did in Mechling v. State, 16 N.E.3d 1015 (Ind. Ct. App. 2014), trans. denied, that the attorneys representing the State and the defendant are both officers of the court and have a responsibility to correct any obvious errors at the time they are committed."

  2. Do I have to hire an attorney to get co-guardianship of my brother? My father has guardianship and my older sister was his co-guardian until this Dec 2014 when she passed and my father was me to go on as the co-guardian, but funds are limit and we need to get this process taken care of quickly as our fathers health isn't the greatest. So please advise me if there is anyway to do this our self or if it requires a lawyer? Thank you

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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)

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