Opinions Oct. 28, 2010

October 28, 2010
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Indiana Supreme Court had posted no opinions at IL deadline.

Indiana Court of Appeals
Robert D. Davis v. State of Indiana
Criminal. Affirms denial of Davis’ motion for leave to amend his motion to correct erroneous sentence. The information before the appellate court doesn’t allow it to decide whether he was erroneously sentenced.  

Quincy and Shannon Branham v. Rodney Varble and Norman Chastain
Small claims. Affirms order the Branhams pay $50 a month toward a small-claims judgment. The burden is upon the debtor to assert an exemption. Reverses the part of the court’s order that Quincy seek alternative employment by submitting five applications a week. There’s no court authority that supports this order. Judge Crone dissents in part.

Quincy and Shannon Branham v. Rodney and Carol Varble
Small claims. Affirms order the Branhams pay $50 a month toward a small claims judgment. Based on the evidence before the court, it concluded that exemptions aside, they had sufficient funds to pay the judgment. Reverses the part of the court’s order that Quincy seek alternative employment by submitting five applications a week. There’s no court authority that supports this order. Judge Crone dissents in part.

Kelvin Heyen v. State of Indiana
Criminal. Affirms conviction of and sentence for Class B felony dealing in methamphetamine and being a habitual offender. Heyen’s claim the evidence was stale fails; he didn’t show that the confidential informant’s identity was unknown to him, the evidence is sufficient to show he dealt methamphetamine and that he is an habitual offender, and his trial counsel didn’t render ineffective assistance.

Marvin G. Jerro v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms convictions of two counts of Class A felony dealing in cocaine, one count of Class C felony possession of cocaine, and finding Jerro is a habitual offender.

Donald A. Pierce v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms convictions of three counts of Class A felony child molesting and one count of Class C felony child molesting. Remands with instructions to attach Pierce’s fixed 10-year term for being a repeat sexual offender to one of his Class A felony sentences for an aggregate sentence of 134 years.

Dion Alexander Walker v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Post conviction. Affirms denial of petition for post-conviction relief.

Richard D. Stewart v. State of Indiana (NFP)

Criminal. Affirms convictions of Class B felony dealing in methamphetamine, Class D felony possession of methamphetamine, and Class D felony maintaining a common nuisance.

Joseph Hoskins v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms conviction of possession of marijuana as a Class A misdemeanor.

Micah Potter v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms execution of Potter’s previously suspended sentence upon the revocation of her probation.

Paternity of C.W.R.; C.W. v. F.R. (NFP)
Juvenile. Affirms order denying mother C.W.’s petition to modify custody of C.W.R.

Samuel Johnson v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms sentence following guilty plea to Class A felony rape, Class A felony criminal deviate conduct, Class B felony robbery, and Class C felony intimidation.

Donald K. Wilburn v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms convictions of Class B felony rape and Class B felony criminal deviate conduct.

Anthony R. Helton v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms convictions of eight counts of Class D felony theft.

Martin A. Stanley v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms sentence following guilty plea to Class B felony arson.

William Greenwood v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms sentence following guilty plea to Class C felonies child molesting and child exploitation and remands for correction of clerical errors.

Antoine R. Bird v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms sentence following guilty plea to Class B felony robbery and felony murder.

Clarence Davis v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms six-year sentence imposed following probation violation.

Randy A. Cummings v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class A felony attempted murder.

Walter Archer, III v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms convictions of Class C felony carrying a handgun without a license.

Indiana Tax Court had posted no opinions at IL deadline.


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  1. I grew up on a farm and live in the county and it's interesting that the big industrial farmers like Jeff Shoaf don't live next to their industrial operations...

  2. So that none are misinformed by my posting wihtout a non de plume here, please allow me to state that I am NOT an Indiana licensed attorney, although I am an Indiana resident approved to practice law and represent clients in Indiana's fed court of Nth Dist and before the 7th circuit. I remain licensed in KS, since 1996, no discipline. This must be clarified since the IN court records will reveal that I did sit for and pass the Indiana bar last February. Yet be not confused by the fact that I was so allowed to be tested .... I am not, to be clear in the service of my duty to be absolutely candid about this, I AM NOT a member of the Indiana bar, and might never be so licensed given my unrepented from errors of thought documented in this opinion, at fn2, which likely supports Mr Smith's initial post in this thread:

  3. When I served the State of Kansas as Deputy AG over Consumer Protection & Antitrust for four years, supervising 20 special agents and assistant attorneys general (back before the IBLE denied me the right to practice law in Indiana for not having the right stuff and pretty much crushed my legal career) we had a saying around the office: Resist the lure of the ring!!! It was a take off on Tolkiem, the idea that absolute power (I signed investigative subpoenas as a judge would in many other contexts, no need to show probable cause)could corrupt absolutely. We feared that we would overreach constitutional limits if not reminded, over and over, to be mindful to not do so. Our approach in so challenging one another was Madisonian, as the following quotes from the Father of our Constitution reveal: The essence of Government is power; and power, lodged as it must be in human hands, will ever be liable to abuse. We are right to take alarm at the first experiment upon our liberties. I believe there are more instances of the abridgement of freedom of the people by gradual and silent encroachments by those in power than by violent and sudden usurpations. Liberty may be endangered by the abuse of liberty, but also by the abuse of power. All men having power ought to be mistrusted. -- James Madison, Federalist Papers and other sources: RESIST THE LURE OF THE RING ALL YE WITH POLITICAL OR JUDICIAL POWER!

  4. My dear Mr Smith, I respect your opinions and much enjoy your posts here. We do differ on our view of the benefits and viability of the American Experiment in Ordered Liberty. While I do agree that it could be better, and that your points in criticism are well taken, Utopia does indeed mean nowhere. I think Madison, Jefferson, Adams and company got it about as good as it gets in a fallen post-Enlightenment social order. That said, a constitution only protects the citizens if it is followed. We currently have a bevy of public officials and judicial agents who believe that their subjectivism, their personal ideology, their elitist fears and concerns and cause celebs trump the constitutions of our forefathers. This is most troubling. More to follow in the next post on that subject.

  5. Yep I am not Bryan Brown. Bryan you appear to be a bigger believer in the Constitution than I am. Were I still a big believer then I might be using my real name like you. Personally, I am no longer a fan of secularism. I favor the confessional state. In religious mattes, it seems to me that social diversity is chaos and conflict, while uniformity is order and peace.... secularism has been imposed by America on other nations now by force and that has not exactly worked out very well.... I think the American historical experiment with disestablishmentarianism is withering on the vine before our eyes..... Since I do not know if that is OK for an officially licensed lawyer to say, I keep the nom de plume.