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Opinions Sept. 30, 2010

September 30, 2010
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The following opinion was posted after IL deadline Wednesday.
Indiana Supreme Court

James A. Carr v. State of Indiana
25S04-1004-CR-219
Criminal. Reverses conviction of murder and remands for a new trial. Carr’s custodial statements, taken by police in disregard of his invocation of his right to counsel, were erroneously admitted and that error wasn’t harmless beyond a reasonable doubt.

Today’s opinions
Indiana Supreme Court posted no opinions before IL deadline.


Indiana Court of Appeals
State of Indiana v. James G. Lucas
91A05-1003-CR-247
Criminal. Reverses and remands Lucas’s motion to suppress results from a Datamaster chemical breath test in jail, following two failed portable breath tests in the field. Rules a portable breath test mouthpiece is not a foreign substance that will act to invalidate the results of a Datamaster.

In Re: The General Power of Attorney of Xenia S. Miller, et al. v. William Irwin Miller and Sarla Kalsi
03A01-0912-CV-586
Civil. Affirms the trial court in most of its findings: that it properly accepted the accountings, released the attorneys-in-fact from all liability, and declined Hugh Miller’s attorney-fee request. Concludes the attorneys-in-fact are not entitled to their attorney fees, and reverses the judgment to that extent only.
 
Cincinnati Insurance Co. v. Anita G. Adkins and Wayne Adkins
29A02-0912-CV-1270
Civil. Reverses trial court’s grant of summary judgment for Anita and Wayne Adkins. Cincinnati argues the trial court erred in determining Adkins did not breach the terms of her insurance policy when she settled with a tortfeasor without notice to or consent of Cincinnati.
 
Joshua Konopasek v. State of Indiana
25A03-1003-CR-155
Criminal. Affirms conviction of battery causing serious bodily injury, a Class C felony. Rules that while evidence about Konopasek’s criminal record should not have been admitted, any error was harmless, and the state’s evidence was sufficient to prove battery and disprove Konopasek’s claim of self-defense.
 
William Long v. State of Indiana
41A04-0912-CR-743
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class D felony theft.
 
Anthony E. Neukam v. State of Indiana
16A01-1002-CR-50
Criminal. Affirms convictions of Class C felony battery resulting in serious bodily injury and Class D felony criminal mischief. Rules witness’s pre-trial identification of Neukam was not impermissibly suggestive and that there was sufficient evidence to support the convictions.

Thomas Williams and Sanford Kelsey v. Kelly Eugene Tharp and Papa John’s U.S.A., Inc.
29A02-1003-CT-283
Civil. Reverses and remands trial court’s denial of appellants‘ motion for relief from judgment. Concludes that the injustice suffered by appellants far outweighs any interests that appellees and society might have in the finality of litigation.
 
Leon Williams v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A02-1003-CR-306
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class A misdemeanor resisting law enforcement.
 
Daniel R. Fuquay, Sr. v. State of Indiana (NFP)
82A01-0906-PC-270
Post-conviction. Reverses and remands denial of post-conviction motion to set aside guilty plea to Class D felony possession of cocaine on grounds that the plea was involuntary and that he was denied the effective assistance of counsel.
 
Joseph M. Shortridge v. Alice Shortridge (NFP)
55A01-0912-CV-595
Civil. Affirms ex parte protective order Alice Shortridge obtained while Alice and Joseph Shortridge were in the process of dissolving their marriage.
 
Chad Delphia v. State of Indiana (NFP)
48A02-1002-CR-149
Criminal. Affirms revocation of probation and trial court’s decision to terminate Delphia’s in-house detention.
 
Bonnie Elaine Rock v. Easterday Construction Co., Inc. (NFP)
50A03-0911-CV-534
Civil. Affirms judgment awarding damages to Easterday Construction Co., Inc. and trial court’s determination that a contract existed between the parties.
 
Marc Stults v. State of Indiana (NFP)
48A02-0902-PC-166
Post-conviction. Affirms denial of petition for post-conviction relief.
 
Karl J. Griffin v. State of Indiana (NFP)
79A04-1002-CR-154
Criminal. Affirms sentence for Class A felony attempted child molesting.

Robert Hrezo, et al. v. City of Lawrenceburg, et al.
15A01-0907-CV-338
Civil. Affirms trial court’s grant of the city’s motion for summary judgment on Hrezo’s breach-of-contract claim, and reverses the trial court’s denial of the city’s motion for summary judgment on Hrezo’s promissory estoppel claim.
 
Carmelita Woods v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A02-1002-CR-387
Criminal. Affirms convictions of battery and criminal trespass, both as Class A misdemeanors.
 
Craig Britt v. State of Indiana (NFP)
37A04-1001-CR-86
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class B battery.
 
T.K. v. Indiana Dept. of Workforce Development, Unemployment Insurance Review Board, and Tippecanoe County (NFP)
93A02-1003-EX-404
Civil. Affirms Indiana Department of Workforce Development Unemployment Insurance Review Board’s denial of unemployment benefits.
 
Jennifer Bealmear v. State of Indiana (NFP)
84A01-1003-CR-101
Criminal. Affirms sentence for Class C felony battery by means of a deadly weapon.
 
Calcar Quarries v. Dennis Bledsoe (NFP)
93A02-1004-EX-397
Civil. Affirms decision of the Worker’s Compensation Board to award Bledsoe worker’s compensation benefits and remands because Bledsoe is entitled only to the statutory 5 percent increase in his award.
 
Jacobo Sanchez-Venegas v. State of Indiana (NFP)
09A05-1001-CR-107
Criminal. Affirms trial court’s revocation of probation.
 
Shawn Davis v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A05-1002-CR-70
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class A misdemeanor invasion of privacy.
 
Paternity of R.W.B. IV; K.K. v. R.W.B. III (NFP)
78A01-1001-JP-79
Juvenile. Affirms trial court’s judgment granting father’s petition for custody modification.
 
The Osler Institute, Inc. v. Richard C. Miller, et al. (NFP)
84A05-1003-PL-237
Civil. Affirms trial court’s dismissal of Osler’s complaint.

Indiana Tax Court posted no opinions before IL deadline.

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  1. I have been on this program while on parole from 2011-2013. No person should be forced mentally to share private details of their personal life with total strangers. Also giving permission for a mental therapist to report to your parole agent that your not participating in group therapy because you don't have the financial mean to be in the group therapy. I was personally singled out and sent back three times for not having money and also sent back within the six month when you aren't to be sent according to state law. I will work to het this INSOMM's removed from this state. I also had twelve or thirteen parole agents with a fifteen month period. Thanks for your time.

  2. Our nation produces very few jurists of the caliber of Justice DOUGLAS and his peers these days. Here is that great civil libertarian, who recognized government as both a blessing and, when corrupted by ideological interests, a curse: "Once the investigator has only the conscience of government as a guide, the conscience can become ‘ravenous,’ as Cromwell, bent on destroying Thomas More, said in Bolt, A Man For All Seasons (1960), p. 120. The First Amendment mirrors many episodes where men, harried and harassed by government, sought refuge in their conscience, as these lines of Thomas More show: ‘MORE: And when we stand before God, and you are sent to Paradise for doing according to your conscience, *575 and I am damned for not doing according to mine, will you come with me, for fellowship? ‘CRANMER: So those of us whose names are there are damned, Sir Thomas? ‘MORE: I don't know, Your Grace. I have no window to look into another man's conscience. I condemn no one. ‘CRANMER: Then the matter is capable of question? ‘MORE: Certainly. ‘CRANMER: But that you owe obedience to your King is not capable of question. So weigh a doubt against a certainty—and sign. ‘MORE: Some men think the Earth is round, others think it flat; it is a matter capable of question. But if it is flat, will the King's command make it round? And if it is round, will the King's command flatten it? No, I will not sign.’ Id., pp. 132—133. DOUGLAS THEN WROTE: Where government is the Big Brother,11 privacy gives way to surveillance. **909 But our commitment is otherwise. *576 By the First Amendment we have staked our security on freedom to promote a multiplicity of ideas, to associate at will with kindred spirits, and to defy governmental intrusion into these precincts" Gibson v. Florida Legislative Investigation Comm., 372 U.S. 539, 574-76, 83 S. Ct. 889, 908-09, 9 L. Ed. 2d 929 (1963) Mr. Justice DOUGLAS, concurring. I write: Happy Memorial Day to all -- God please bless our fallen who lived and died to preserve constitutional governance in our wonderful series of Republics. And God open the eyes of those government officials who denounce the constitutions of these Republics by arbitrary actions arising out capricious motives.

  3. From back in the day before secularism got a stranglehold on Hoosier jurists comes this great excerpt via Indiana federal court judge Allan Sharp, dedicated to those many Indiana government attorneys (with whom I have dealt) who count the law as a mere tool, an optional tool that is not to be used when political correctness compels a more acceptable result than merely following the path that the law directs: ALLEN SHARP, District Judge. I. In a scene following a visit by Henry VIII to the home of Sir Thomas More, playwriter Robert Bolt puts the following words into the mouths of his characters: Margaret: Father, that man's bad. MORE: There is no law against that. ROPER: There is! God's law! MORE: Then God can arrest him. ROPER: Sophistication upon sophistication! MORE: No, sheer simplicity. The law, Roper, the law. I know what's legal not what's right. And I'll stick to what's legal. ROPER: Then you set man's law above God's! MORE: No, far below; but let me draw your attention to a fact I'm not God. The currents and eddies of right and wrong, which you find such plain sailing, I can't navigate. I'm no voyager. But in the thickets of law, oh, there I'm a forester. I doubt if there's a man alive who could follow me there, thank God... ALICE: (Exasperated, pointing after Rich) While you talk, he's gone! MORE: And go he should, if he was the Devil himself, until he broke the law! ROPER: So now you'd give the Devil benefit of law! MORE: Yes. What would you do? Cut a great road through the law to get after the Devil? ROPER: I'd cut down every law in England to do that! MORE: (Roused and excited) Oh? (Advances on Roper) And when the last law was down, and the Devil turned round on you where would you hide, Roper, the laws being flat? (He leaves *1257 him) This country's planted thick with laws from coast to coast man's laws, not God's and if you cut them down and you're just the man to do it d'you really think you would stand upright in the winds that would blow then? (Quietly) Yes, I'd give the Devil benefit of law, for my own safety's sake. ROPER: I have long suspected this; this is the golden calf; the law's your god. MORE: (Wearily) Oh, Roper, you're a fool, God's my god... (Rather bitterly) But I find him rather too (Very bitterly) subtle... I don't know where he is nor what he wants. ROPER: My God wants service, to the end and unremitting; nothing else! MORE: (Dryly) Are you sure that's God! He sounds like Moloch. But indeed it may be God And whoever hunts for me, Roper, God or Devil, will find me hiding in the thickets of the law! And I'll hide my daughter with me! Not hoist her up the mainmast of your seagoing principles! They put about too nimbly! (Exit More. They all look after him). Pgs. 65-67, A MAN FOR ALL SEASONS A Play in Two Acts, Robert Bolt, Random House, New York, 1960. Linley E. Pearson, Atty. Gen. of Indiana, Indianapolis, for defendants. Childs v. Duckworth, 509 F. Supp. 1254, 1256 (N.D. Ind. 1981) aff'd, 705 F.2d 915 (7th Cir. 1983)

  4. "Meanwhile small- and mid-size firms are getting squeezed and likely will not survive unless they become a boutique firm." I've been a business attorney in small, and now mid-size firm for over 30 years, and for over 30 years legal consultants have been preaching this exact same mantra of impending doom for small and mid-sized firms -- verbatim. This claim apparently helps them gin up merger opportunities from smaller firms who become convinced that they need to become larger overnight. The claim that large corporations are interested in cost-saving and efficiency has likewise been preached for decades, and is likewise bunk. If large corporations had any real interest in saving money they wouldn't use large law firms whose rates are substantially higher than those of high-quality mid-sized firms.

  5. The family is the foundation of all human government. That is the Grand Design. Modern governments throw off this Design and make bureaucratic war against the family, as does Hollywood and cultural elitists such as third wave feminists. Since WWII we have been on a ship of fools that way, with both the elite and government and their social engineering hacks relentlessly attacking the very foundation of social order. And their success? See it in the streets of Fergusson, on the food stamp doles (mostly broken families)and in the above article. Reject the Grand Design for true social function, enter the Glorious State to manage social dysfunction. Our Brave New World will be a prison camp, and we will welcome it as the only way to manage given the anarchy without it.

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