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Opinions Oct. 9, 2012

October 9, 2012
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7th Circuit Court of Appeals released no Indiana opinions by IL deadline.

Indiana Supreme Court and Indiana Tax Court released no opinions by IL deadline.

Indiana Court of Appeals

Ralph Jennings d/b/a A Cut Above Tree Service v. Terrance Kinnard (NFP)
49A05-1203-CC-117
Collections. Reverses and remands trial court’s grant of relief to Kinnard from a default judgment of $4,189.22 for the plaintiff.
 
Jeffrey Allen Rowe v. Bruce Lemon, et al
49A02-1204-PL-344
Civil Plenary. Court of Appeals affirms in part, reverses in part and remands the summary judgment denying an Indiana Department of Correction inmate kosher meals. The court ruled the DOC did not establish either that the vegan meal plan is kosher or that the inmate lacked sincere religious reasons for requesting a kosher diet.    

Paul R. Semenick v. State of Indiana
49A02-1111-CR-1035
Criminal. Court of Appeals reverses conviction for criminal trespass finding insufficient evidence to sustain the conviction. The court ruled that the state failed in its burden to prove material elements of criminal trespass because it did not present evidence disavowing the individual’s contractual interest in being on the property and did not establish the breadth of an occasional part-time contract employee’s authority.

Jon E. Garcia v. State of Indiana
20A04-1202-CR-257
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class C felony criminal recklessness, holding that the trial court properly denied Garcia’s motion for a directed verdict. The court held that a car meets the definition of “a place where people are likely to gather” under I.C. 35-42-2-2(c)(3)(A), the criminal recklessness statute involving discharge of a firearm that creates a risk of bodily injury.  

American Cold Storage, et al v. The City of Boonville
87A01-1112-PL-610
Civil plenary/annexation. Divided court reverses annexation and remands to the trial court, holding that the trial court erred in counting separate state-owned parcels that were purchased to build State Road 62 rather than counting the road as a single parcel under the remonstrance statute, thereby making it impossible for remonstrators to satisfy the 65 percent rule.

Thomson, Inc. n/k/a Technicolor USA, Inc., Technicolor Inc., and Technicolor Limited v. Continental Casualty Co., Travelers Casualty & Surety Co., et al.
49A02-1202-PL-80
Civil tort. Affirms trial court’s judgment in favor of defendants, holding that the trial court did not err in basing its judgment on comity in deference to a California decision on the matter, but the court did not address the plaintiff’s other arguments.

Travis Koontz v. State of Indiana
29A05-1202-CR-77
Criminal. Divided court affirms trial court denial of motion to correct error for misdemeanor sentences that exceeded the statutory authority, finding that Koontz waived any error in his sentence by consenting to it as part of a plea agreement.
 
Indiana Public Employee Retirement Fund v. Paul Bryson
49A04-1201-MI-2
Miscellaneous/disability. Divided court affirms a trial court decision setting aside a PERF ruling that Bryson was entitled to Class 2 impairment disability benefits and finding Bryson instead entitled to Class 1 benefits. The appeals court held that the trial court did not err because a pre-existing condition did not impair his abilities to perform job duties as a firefighter and that his covered impairment is a direct result of three on-duty personal injuries.

Theothus Carter v. State of Indiana (NFP)
30A05-1203-CR-137
Criminal. Affirms trial court’s 65-year aggregate resentence on Class A felony convictions of attempted murder and attempted robbery and Class B felony convictions of burglary and being a habitual offender.

Marion Spencer v. State of Indiana (NFP)
32A01-1204-CR-137
Criminal. Affirms Class A misdemeanor conviction of criminal recklessness while using a vehicle and remands to the trial court for correction of the judgment of conviction and CCS.

Norman Trent v. State of Indiana (NFP)
54A01-1202-CR-51
Criminal. Affirms trial court denial of motion to correct erroneous sentence.

Bobbie Buckles v. State of Indiana (NFP)
17A05-1206-CR-300
Criminal. Affirms sentences for Class C felony possession of precursors and Class B felony possession of methamphetamine.

John Ray Henry v. State of Indiana (NFP)
45A03-1111-CR-533
Criminal. Affirms sentence for two counts of Class C felony child molesting.

Carl L. Johnson v. Review Board of the Indiana Department of Workforce Development and Williams Systems LLC (NFP)
93A02-1203-EX-205
Executive administration/unemployment. Affirms determination of the Department of Workforce Development that Johnson was not entitled to unemployment benefits.

Victor Smith v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A02-1109-CR-860
Criminal. Affirms trial court convictions of robbery and attempted robbery as Class B felonies.
 

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  2. The practitioners and judges who hail E-filing as the Saviour of the West need to contain their respective excitements. E-filing is federal court requires the practitioner to cram his motion practice into pigeonholes created by IT people. Compound motions or those seeking alternative relief are effectively barred, unless the practitioner wants to receive a tart note from some functionary admonishing about the "problem". E-filing is just another method by which courts and judges transfer their burden to practitioners, who are the really the only powerless components of the system. Of COURSE it is easier for the court to require all of its imput to conform to certain formats, but this imposition does NOT improve the quality of the practice of law and does NOT improve the ability of the practitioner to advocate for his client or to fashion pleadings that exactly conform to his client's best interests. And we should be very wary of the disingenuous pablum about the costs. The courts will find a way to stick it to the practitioner. Lake County is a VERY good example of this rapaciousness. Any one who does not believe this is invited to review the various special fees that system imposes upon practitioners- as practitioners- and upon each case ON TOP of the court costs normal in every case manually filed. Jurisprudence according to Aldous Huxley.

  3. Any attorneys who practice in federal court should be able to say the same as I can ... efiling is great. I have been doing it in fed court since it started way back. Pacer has its drawbacks, but the ability to hit an e-docket and pull up anything and everything onscreen is a huge plus for a litigator, eps the sole practitioner, who lacks a filing clerk and the paralegal support of large firms. Were I an Indiana attorney I would welcome this great step forward.

  4. Can we get full disclosure on lobbyist's payments to legislatures such as Mr Buck? AS long as there are idiots that are disrespectful of neighbors and intent on shooting fireworks every night, some kind of regulations are needed.

  5. I am the mother of the child in this case. My silence on the matter was due to the fact that I filed, both in Illinois and Indiana, child support cases. I even filed supporting documentation with the Indiana family law court. Not sure whether this information was provided to the court of appeals or not. Wish the case was done before moving to Indiana, because no matter what, there is NO WAY the state of Illinois would have allowed an appeal on a child support case!

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