ILNews

Plea agreement, child support issues granted transfer

Jennifer Nelson
January 1, 2008
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The Indiana Supreme Court granted transfer to one case dealing with child support, and two cases dealing post-conviction relief. The court also granted transfer to three cases involving sex offenders.

In the case Marla K. Young v. Timothy S. Young, No. 09A05-0701-CV-52, the Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed in part and reversed in part the trial court's calculation of Timothy's child support obligation. The appellate court found the trial court erroneously calculated Timothy's weekly gross income, and remanded the trial court to add $100 to his weekly gross income and recalculate the amount of income to be imputed to Marla; the COA also ordered Timothy's child support obligation to be recalculated.

Two of the transferred cases - Anthony A. Hopkins v. State, No. 49A05-0705-PC-279, and State v. Michael A. Cozart, No. 22A01-0704-PC-183 - deal with plea agreements. Hopkins appealed the post-conviction court's denial of one of his claims for post-conviction relief, contending the court erred in failing to advise him of his Boykin rights, which caused his guilty plea to be involuntary and unintelligent. The Court of Appeals ordered his guilty plea vacated because the trial court only advised him of his right to trial by jury; because Hopkins admitted to the habitual offender enhancement, the COA ruled he did plead guilty to being a habitual offender.

In Cozart, the Court of Appeals affirmed the post-conviction court's order granting Cozart's petition for post-conviction relief, ruling Cozart didn't plead guilty knowingly and voluntarily. The state argued the trial court was not required to advise Cozart regarding the effect his prior felony convictions would have on the court's authority to suspend a portion of the minimum sentence he faced after pleading guilty. Cozart claimed he didn't understand the trial court was without discretion to suspend any of the minimum sentence he faced because of his prior convictions.

The three other cases granted transfer involve sex offenders - In the Matter of J.C.C., No. 49A02-0403-JV-266; Richard P. Wallace v. State of Indiana, No. 49A02-0706-CR-498; and Todd L. Jensen v. State of Indiana. All three ask the high court to decide on matters regarding registering as a sex offender. (A story in today's Indiana Lawyer Daily includes more information about these cases.)
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  1. Linda, I sure hope you are not seeking a law license, for such eighteenth century sentiments could result in your denial in some jurisdictions minting attorneys for our tolerant and inclusive profession.

  2. Mazel Tov to the newlyweds. And to those bakers, photographers, printers, clerks, judges and others who will lose careers and social standing for not saluting the New World (Dis)Order, we can all direct our Two Minutes of Hate as Big Brother asks of us. Progress! Onward!

  3. My daughter was taken from my home at the end of June/2014. I said I would sign the safety plan but my husband would not. My husband said he would leave the house so my daughter could stay with me but the case worker said no her mind is made up she is taking my daughter. My daughter went to a friends and then the friend filed a restraining order which she was told by dcs if she did not then they would take my daughter away from her. The restraining order was not in effect until we were to go to court. Eventually it was dropped but for 2 months DCS refused to allow me to have any contact and was using the restraining order as the reason but it was not in effect. This was Dcs violating my rights. Please help me I don't have the money for an attorney. Can anyone take this case Pro Bono?

  4. If justice is not found in a court room, it's time to clean house!!! Even judges are accountable to a higher Judge!!!

  5. The small claims system, based on my recent and current usage of it, is not exactly a shining example of justice prevailing. The system appears slow and clunky and people involved seem uninterested in actually serving justice within a reasonable time frame. Any improvement in accountability and performance would gain a vote from me. Speaking of voting, what do the people know about judges and justice from the bench perspective. I think they have a tendency to "vote" for judges based on party affiliation or name coolness factor (like Stoner, for example!). I don't know what to do in my current situation other than grin and bear it, but my case is an example of things working neither smoothly, effectively nor expeditiously. After this experience I'd pay more to have the higher courts hear the case -- if I had the money. Oh the conundrum.

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