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Opinions Sept. 4, 2012

September 4, 2012
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7th Circuit Court of Appeals posted no Indiana opinions at IL deadline.

Indiana Supreme Court and Indiana Tax Court posted no opinions at IL deadline.

Indiana Court of Appeals

Nathan S. Berkman v. State of Indiana
45A04-1111-CR-583
Criminal. Affirms conviction of and sentence for murder. The trial court did not abuse its discretion in declaring a witness unavailable or in admitting the deposition testimony of another unavailable witness. Berkman’s sentence is not inappropriate as he had argued.

Hood's Gardens, Inc. v. Jason Young, Craig Mead d/b/a Discount Tree Excavation a/k/a D & E Tree Extraction
29A04-1201-PL-8
Civil plenary. Reverses dismissal of Hood’s Gardens’ declaratory judgment action involving Craig Mead, Jason Young and D&E Tree Extraction seeking to not have to pay workers’ compensation benefits to Young. The exclusivity provisions of the Worker’s Compensation Act did not give the board exclusive jurisdiction to decide the simple contract construction issue raised in the trial court by HG. Remands for further proceedings.
 
Tommi Emerson Winn v. State of Indiana
42A04-1201-CR-49
Criminal. Reverses denial of Winn’s motion for bail bond reduction. While the severity of the 13 charges supports setting the bail at $25,000, the absence of any other factors to suggest Winn is a flight risk means the court should have granted his request to deposit an amount not less than 10 percent of bail under I.C. 35-33-8-3.2(a). Judge Brown concurs in part.

Heather N. Kesling v. Hubler Nissan, Inc.
49A02-1111-CT-1031
Civil tort. Reverses summary judgment to Hubler Nissan on Kesling’s Indiana Deceptive Consumer Sales Act, Indiana Crime Victims Relief Act, and fraud claims. There is a genuine issue of material fact as to whether Hubler made a representation that the car was safe to operate. Judge Friedlander dissents.

Dennis J. Rodenberg v. State of Indiana (NFP)
82A01-1201-CR-10
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class B felony rape.

Damon T. Payne, Sr. v. State of Indiana (NFP)
02A04-1204-CR-190
Criminal. Affirms sentence imposed for three counts of Class D felony theft.

Charles B. Dietzen v. State of Indiana (NFP)
29A02-1112-CR-1104
Criminal. Affirms order reinstating suspended sentence.

Victoria Yates v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A02-1202-CR-126
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class A misdemeanor battery.

Olympia Shellman v. State of Indiana (NFP)
02A04-1201-CR-34
Criminal. Affirms denial of motion to withdraw guilty plea.

James W. Manhart v. State of Indiana (NFP)
16A04-1203-CR-131
Criminal. Affirms denial of petition to convert convictions from Class D felonies resisting law enforcement and operating a vehicle while intoxicated to Class A misdemeanors.

Artrece D. Patterson v. State of Indiana (NFP)
48A05-1112-CR-693
Criminal. Affirms finding of violation and revocation of probation.

Noble Potter v. State of Indiana (NFP)
10A01-1112-CR-619
Criminal. Affirms sentence for Class B felony residential burglary and being a habitual offender.
 

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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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