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Opinions Oct. 8, 2010

October 8, 2010
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 Indiana Supreme Court had posted no opinions at IL deadline.

Indiana Court of Appeals
Richmond State Hospital, et al. v. Paula Brattain, et al.
49A02-0908-CV-718
Civil. Reverses finding that the merit employees, represented by Veregge and Strong, are entitled to 20 years of back pay and remands with instructions to recalculate the merit employees’ back pay based on the time period beginning 10 days before the July 29, 1993, complaint was filed and ending when the state abolished the split class system. Instructs the trial court to determine whether the state abolished the split class system on Sept. 12 or Sept. 19, 1993. Affirms in all other respects.

Earl Budd v. State of Indiana
31A01-0910-PC-504
Post conviction. Affirms denial of successive petition for post-conviction relief. The post-conviction court didn’t err by finding Indiana Code Section 35-50-6-3.3(h)(2)(B) doesn’t constitute a bill of attainder, an ex post facto law or a denial of equal protection.

R.R. F. v. L.L.F.
69A01-1001-DR-77
Domestic relation. Affirms order father pay retroactive child support to a date preceding the filing date of mother’s petition to modify. The provision in the parties’ agreed entry whereby father ceased child support payments upon E.F.’s 18th birthday was contrary to law and void. The dissolution court should have credited father for certain payments against the court’s order that he pay $2,961.75 for the period May 11 to Aug. 22, 2009. Remands to the dissolution court and instructs to first consider the reduction in the parents’ obligation toward E.F.’s college expenses realized by mother’s tax credit and then apportion the parents’ obligations accordingly.

Victor J. Bandini v. Joann M. Bandini
49A04-1001-DR-26
Domestic relation. The trial court correctly interpreted the parties’ settlement agreement as contemplating an equal division of Victor’s gross retirement pay. The trial court erred in ordering him to pay his ex-wife an amount equal to half of his gross retirement pay prior to any deductions for his Veterans Administration disability benefits waiver and Survivor Benefit Plan costs. Indiana trial courts lack authority to enforce even an agreed-upon division of property insofar as it divides amounts of gross military retirement pay that were, previous to the decree, waived to receive disability benefits or elected to be deducted from gross pay as SBP costs to benefit the former spouse. Holds that a military spouse may not, by a post-decree waiver of retirement pay in favor of disability benefits or Combat-Related Special Compensation, unilaterally and voluntarily reduce the benefits awarded the former spouse in a dissolution decree. Remands for further proceedings.

Ronald J. McGary v. State of Indiana (NFP)
87A01-1003-CR-129
Criminal. Affirms sentence following guilty plea to operating a motor vehicle as a habitual traffic offender as a Class D felony.

Jason D. Miller v. State of Indiana (NFP)
08A02-1002-CR-129
Criminal. Reverses determination of Miller’s credit time classification and remands for proceedings consistent with this opinion. Affirms convictions of and sentences for Class A felony child molesting and Class C felony child molesting.

Steven A. Reynolds v. State of Indiana (NFP)
29A02-1003-CR-471
Criminal. Affirms sentences for two counts of Class A misdemeanor battery.

Fraternal Order of Police, Evansville Lodge No. 73 v. City of Evansville, IN. (NFP)
82A04-1002-PL-94
Civil plenary. Affirms conclusion the city didn’t breach the collective bargaining agreement by reducing the number of patrol sergeants allowed to work on holidays.

Jeremy M. Frantzreb v. State of Indiana (NFP)
24A05-1002-CR-109
Criminal. Reverses convictions of Class C felony forgery and Class A misdemeanor possession of marijuana and remands for a new trial.

Indiana Parole Board v. Martin De La Torre (NFP)
72A01-1005-CR-254
Criminal. Reverses denial of the Indiana Parole Board’s motion to correct error.

S.T. v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A02-1002-JV-301
Juvenile. Affirms adjudication for committing what would be Class C felony robbery if committed by an adult.

Indiana Tax Court had posted no opinions at IL deadline.
 

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  1. I can understand a 10 yr suspension for drinking and driving and not following the rules,but don't you think the people who compleate their sentences and are trying to be good people of their community,and are on the right path should be able to obtain a drivers license to do as they please.We as a state should encourage good behavior instead of saying well you did all your time but we can't give you a license come on.When is a persons time served than cause from where I'm standing,its still a punishment,when u can't have the freedom to go where ever you want to in car,truck ,motorcycle,maybe their should be better programs for people instead of just throwing them away like daily trash,then expecting them to change because they we in jail or prison for x amount of yrs.Everyone should look around because we all pay each others bills,and keep each other in business..better knowledge equals better community equals better people...just my 2 cents

  2. I was wondering about the 6 million put aside for common attorney fees?does that mean that if you are a plaintiff your attorney fees will be partially covered?

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  4. I expressed my thought in the title, long as it was. I am shocked that there is ever immunity from accountability for ANY Government agency. That appears to violate every principle in the US Constitution, which exists to limit Government power and to ensure Government accountability. I don't know how many cases of legitimate child abuse exist, but in the few cases in which I knew the people involved, in every example an anonymous caller used DCS as their personal weapon to strike at innocent people over trivial disagreements that had no connection with any facts. Given that the system is vulnerable to abuse, and given the extreme harm any action by DCS causes to families, I would assume any degree of failure to comply with the smallest infraction of personal rights would result in mandatory review. Even one day of parent-child separation in the absence of reasonable cause for a felony arrest should result in severe penalties to those involved in the action. It appears to me, that like all bureaucracies, DCS is prone to interpret every case as legitimate. This is not an accusation against DCS. It is a statement about the nature of bureaucracies, and the need for ADDED scrutiny of all bureaucratic actions. Frankly, I question the constitutionality of bureaucracies in general, because their power is delegated, and therefore unaccountable. No Government action can be unaccountable if we want to avoid its eventual degeneration into irrelevance and lawlessness, and the law of the jungle. Our Constitution is the source of all Government power, and it is the contract that legitimizes all Government power. To the extent that its various protections against intrusion are set aside, so is the power afforded by that contract. Eventually overstepping the limits of power eliminates that power, as a law of nature. Even total tyranny eventually crumbles to nothing.

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