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Opinions Sept. 20, 2011

September 20, 2011
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7th Circuit Court of Appeals had posted no opinions from Indiana courts at IL deadline.

Indiana Supreme Court
Rod L. Avery and Marshall K. Avery v. Trina R. Avery
49S05-1102-PL-76
Civil plenary. Affirms default judgment entered against Rod and Marshall Avery. The Indiana Trial Rules apply to will contest actions, and the failure to file an answer or responsive pleading in accordance with Trial Rule 7 may result in a default judgment.

Richard L. Barnes v. State of Indiana

82S05-1007-CR-343
Criminal. Grants rehearing and affirms original opinion that residents don’t have a common law right to resist police entering a person’s home. The castle doctrine is not a defense to battery or any violence against a police officer who is acting in his or her duties. Justice Rucker dissents.

Indiana Court of Appeals
Thomas Temple v. State of Indiana
27A05-1101-CR-31
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class A misdemeanor contributing to the delinquency of a minor. Rejects Temple’s proposed definition of “induce,” and rejects his claims, premised upon that definition, that there was insufficient evidence and that there was a fatal variance between the charging information and the evidence adduced at trial.

State of Indiana v. Jonathon McDonald
32A05-1102-CR-56
Criminal. Reverses dismissal of charges against McDonald. The trial court erred by dismissing the charges based on the successive prosecution statute. Remands for further proceedings.

David L. McDaniel v. State of Indiana (NFP)

45A03-1102-CR-72
Criminal. Affirms sentence for Class C felony criminal recklessness.

Darnell Kelly, Jr. v. State of Indiana (NFP)
71A04-1101-CR-67
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class C felony burglary and finding that Kelly is a habitual offender.

Richard West v. Elizabeth West (now Smith) (NFP)
22A01-1102-DR-45
Domestic relation. Affirms denial of Richard West’s petition to modify child custody and the award of $5,000 in attorney fees to Elizabeth West.

Daniel Zunica v. Zuncor, Inc., Steven A. Coppolillo, Jared Tomich, et al. (NFP)
45A04-1009-PL-700
Civil plenary. Affirms denial of motion to correct error brought by Zunica, which challenged a jury verdict finding him liable for breach of fiduciary duty in an action brought by Zuncor Inc. and shareholders.

Jon Dalton Gates v. State of Indiana (NFP)

12A02-1102-CR-160
Criminal. Affirms convictions of and sentence for Class D felony maintaining a common nuisance.

Indiana Tax Court had posted no opinions at IL deadline.

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  1. Number one, only $1 was earmarked as punitives. Most of the $1,950,000 was earmarked as pain and suffering. But I will give you, JS, that sure does sound punitive! Number two, remittitur, for certain, but how does one unring the dinner bell that has now been sounded? Catholic school blood is in the sharktank.

  2. Hi, I had an auto accident on 12/26/2012 on I-65 near Lafayette, IN. I rear hit a semi truck. Meanwhile, I got a traffic ticket. I went to White Superior Court to have a hearing. I thought that I could win the case. I lost. I am not sure if you will be able to reverse the judgment in the White Superior Court. Meanwhile, I will try to let the insurance agency for the truck driver to pay the damages to my car. I wonder if your office is willing to handle the case. Thanks.

  3. Putting aside the question of how they got past the pastoral purpose/ 1st Amendment/ MSJ hurdle-- let me ask this: a million bucks in punitive damages? are you kidding me? absolutely ridiculous. Remittitur.

  4. Compromising precious constitutional rights in order to protect them? Rather like the military intelligence slogan that the town had to be destroyed in order to save it. Looks like Joseph, Mary and Baby Jesus will have quite the eventful Boxing Day this year. Wise men will arrive to find no one to accept their gifts? Oh well, wisdom not all that desired this xmas anyway. Maybe the ACLU and Christian attorneys can work out a "three days every third year" visitation compromise and all of this messy litigation stuff can just be boxed up as well? It is an art form, now isn't it? Thomas More, a man of manifold compromises is undoubtedly cheering on wildly.

  5. From the MCBA: “This situation is not just about the death of Michael Brown, but the thousands of other African-Americans who are disproportionately targeted and killed by police officers.” The association said it was “saddened and disappointed” by the decision not to indict Ferguson police officer. HOPING that the MCBA will denouce the execution style killig of two NYC police officers this day, seemingly the act of one who likewise believes that the police are targeting blacks for murder and getting away with it. http://www.mediaite.com/online/two-nypd-cops-fatally-shot-in-ambush-in-brooklyn/ Pray this violence soon ends, and pray it stays far away from Indiana.

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