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Rehearing sidesteps state’s claims in battery case

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On a petition for rehearing, the state claimed a recent decision by the Indiana Court of Appeals held that “a social worker would always be a declarant in child abuse cases, even when the social worker is merely a scribe.” But the judges disagreed and decided that this particular case is not the proper one to make such a blanket determination.

In Verdyer Clark v. State of Indiana, 49A04-1202-CR-66, in addition to a social worker always being a declarant, the state argued that the Court of Appeals’ previous decision held “the age of the perpetrator is never pertinent to the medical diagnosis or treatment.”

The COA reversed Verdyer Clark’s Class D felony conviction of battery last year because the state was unable to prove that Clark was over 18 years old when he battered a child younger than 14. The state presented two documents from a social worker which both listed Clark as 23 years old.

The state claimed that the hearsay statements by the social worker were admissible because they were related to medical diagnosis or treatment. The Court of Appeals, however, found them inadmissible because the social worker was the declarant, not the person seeking diagnosis or treatment, and Clark’s age wasn’t pertinent to the diagnosis or treatment of the infant victim.

“Here, the record and argument did not permit us to decide whether a social worker would ‘always’ be a declarant in child abuse cases, and we did not so hold. We leave for another day the determination whether or when a social worker is a declarant in a child abuse case,” Judge Melissa May wrote.

“In our original decision we said only that the information in the record before us about Clark’s age had no ‘apparent relevance to a diagnosis of the child’s injuries.’ The relevance was not apparent because on appeal, the State offered no ‘explanation why information about Clark’s age might be relevant to a diagnosis of the child’s injuries,’” she continued.  “Again, a determination whether the age of a perpetrator is relevant to a child victim’s medical diagnosis or treatment is best left to another case.”
 

 

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  1. It is amazing how selectively courts can read cases and how two very similar factpatterns can result in quite different renderings. I cited this very same argument in Brown v. Bowman, lost. I guess it is panel, panel, panel when one is on appeal. Sad thing is, I had Sykes. Same argument, she went the opposite. Her Rooker-Feldman jurisprudence is now decidedly unintelligible.

  2. November, 2014, I was charged with OWI/Endangering a person. I was not given a Breathalyzer test and the arresting officer did not believe that alcohol was in any way involved. I was self-overmedicated with prescription medications. I was taken to local hospital for blood draw to be sent to State Tox Lab. My attorney gave me a cookie-cutter plea which amounts to an ALCOHOL-related charge. Totally unacceptable!! HOW can I get my TOX report from the state lab???

  3. My mother got temporary guardianship of my children in 2012. my husband and I got divorced 2015 the judge ordered me to have full custody of all my children. Does this mean the temporary guardianship is over? I'm confused because my divorce papers say I have custody and he gets visits and i get to claim the kids every year on my taxes. So just wondered since I have in black and white that I have custody if I can go get my kids from my moms and not go to jail?

  4. Someone off their meds? C'mon John, it is called the politics of Empire. Get with the program, will ya? How can we build one world under secularist ideals without breaking a few eggs? Of course, once it is fully built, is the American public who will feel the deadly grip of the velvet glove. One cannot lay down with dogs without getting fleas. The cup of wrath is nearly full, John Smith, nearly full. Oops, there I go, almost sounding as alarmist as Smith. Guess he and I both need to listen to this again: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CRnQ65J02XA

  5. Charles Rice was one of the greatest of the so-called great generation in America. I was privileged to count him among my mentors. He stood firm for Christ and Christ's Church in the Spirit of Thomas More, always quick to be a good servant of the King, but always God's first. I had Rice come speak to 700 in Fort Wayne as Obama took office. Rice was concerned that this rise of aggressive secularism and militant Islam were dual threats to Christendom,er, please forgive, I meant to say "Western Civilization". RIP Charlie. You are safe at home.

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