Opinions Sept. 2, 2011

September 2, 2011
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7th Circuit Court of Appeals
Gary Williams and Nancy Meehan v. Rohm and Haas Pension Plan
10-1978, 10-2175, 10-3713
U.S. District Court, Southern District of Indiana, New Albany Division, Judge Sarah Evans Barker.
Civil. Affirms $180 million settlement and approval of $43.5 million in attorney fees. The District Court adequately addressed the expected value of the early retirees’ claims. The District Court did not abuse its discretion by not creating a separately represented subclass of early retirees. The 7th Circuit sees no reason to disturb the District Court’s assessment of attorney fees.

United States of America v. Jake Richardson III
U.S. District Court, Northern District of Indiana, South Bend Division, Judge Jon E. DeGuilio.
Criminal. Richardson has not shown that the District Court erred by admitting the physical evidence found on him after a traffic stop or by admitting evidence of the statements Richardson volunteered to police.

Indiana Supreme Court had posted no opinions at IL deadline.

Indiana Court of Appeals
James Daher v. Mark Sevier
Miscellaneous. Affirms dismissal of prisoner Daher’s request for a temporary restraining order. Daher’s complaint about the jumpsuits falls so far below the Eighth Amendment threshold of cruel and unusual punishment that it can be fairly characterized as a trivial complaint in that context.

Kirby D. Edwards v. State of Indiana
Criminal. Affirms determination that Edwards is a sexually violent predator. The trial court, after weighing the doctors’ reports and testimony, considering the presentence investigation report, and finding that Edwards also had a lack of remorse, did not abuse its discretion in determining he should be classified as a SVP. Also, Ind. Code 35-38-1-7.5(e) does not require that the doctors who evaluate a defendant conduct the evaluations separately.  

Visitation of P.V.D. and P.I.D.; P.M. v. K.B.
Juvenile. Reverses denial of mother P.M.’s request that the trial court set aside its previous order granting maternal grandmother K.B. visitation with P.M.’s minor children. The trial court erroneously denied P.M.’s request for relief from the default judgment. Lake County was not the proper venue for the grandmother’s petition. Remands with instructions to rescind the previous order granting K.B. visitation with the children under the Grandparent Visitation Act.

Anthony Wheeler v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Post conviction. Affirms denial of petition for post-conviction relief.

Anthony W. Dalton v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms sentence following guilty plea to Class C felony battery and Class B misdemeanor public intoxication.

Indiana Tax Court had posted no opinions at IL deadline.


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  1. If a class action suit or other manner of retribution is possible, count me in. I have email and voicemail from the man. He colluded with opposing counsel, I am certain. My case was damaged so severely it nearly lost me everything and I am still paying dearly.

  2. There's probably a lot of blame that can be cast around for Indiana Tech's abysmal bar passage rate this last February. The folks who decided that Indiana, a state with roughly 16,000 to 18,000 attorneys, needs a fifth law school need to question the motives that drove their support of this project. Others, who have been "strong supporters" of the law school, should likewise ask themselves why they believe this institution should be supported. Is it because it fills some real need in the state? Or is it, instead, nothing more than a resume builder for those who teach there part-time? And others who make excuses for the students' poor performance, especially those who offer nothing more than conspiracy theories to back up their claims--who are they helping? What evidence do they have to support their posturing? Ultimately, though, like most everything in life, whether one succeeds or fails is entirely within one's own hands. At least one student from Indiana Tech proved this when he/she took and passed the February bar. A second Indiana Tech student proved this when they took the bar in another state and passed. As for the remaining 9 who took the bar and didn't pass (apparently, one of the students successfully appealed his/her original score), it's now up to them (and nobody else) to ensure that they pass on their second attempt. These folks should feel no shame; many currently successful practicing attorneys failed the bar exam on their first try. These same attorneys picked themselves up, dusted themselves off, and got back to the rigorous study needed to ensure they would pass on their second go 'round. This is what the Indiana Tech students who didn't pass the first time need to do. Of course, none of this answers such questions as whether Indiana Tech should be accredited by the ABA, whether the school should keep its doors open, or, most importantly, whether it should have even opened its doors in the first place. Those who promoted the idea of a fifth law school in Indiana need to do a lot of soul-searching regarding their decisions. These same people should never be allowed, again, to have a say about the future of legal education in this state or anywhere else. Indiana already has four law schools. That's probably one more than it really needs. But it's more than enough.

  3. This man Steve Hubbard goes on any online post or forum he can find and tries to push his company. He said court reporters would be obsolete a few years ago, yet here we are. How does he have time to search out every single post about court reporters and even spy in private court reporting forums if his company is so successful???? Dude, get a life. And back to what this post was about, I agree that some national firms cause a huge problem.

  4. rensselaer imdiana is doing same thing to children from the judge to attorney and dfs staff they need to be investigated as well

  5. Sex offenders are victims twice, once when they are molested as kids, and again when they repeat the behavior, you never see money spent on helping them do you. That's why this circle continues