Opinions Oct. 1, 2010

October 1, 2010
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The following opinions were posted after IL deadline Thursday.
Indiana Supreme Court
Caesars Riverboat Casino, LLC v. Genevieve M. Kephart
Civil. Reverses trial court denial of Caesar’s motion to dismiss Kephart’s counterclaim under Trial Rule 12 (B)(6) for failure to state a claim upon which relief can be granted. Holds that no common law right exists for patrons to recover damages for casino gambling losses. Justice Boehm concurs in result and Justice Dickson dissents.

Sheehan Construction Co., Inc., et al. v. Continental Casualty Co., et al.
Civil. Reverses trial court grant of summary judgment in favor of the insurers on grounds that there was no damage to the property and thus there was no “occurrence” or “property damage” and remands for further proceedings. Faulty workmanship may constitute an accident and thus an occurrence depending on the facts under a standard commercial general liability insurance policy. Chief Justice Shepard and Justice Sullivan dissent.

State of Indiana v. James S. Hobbs, IV
Criminal. Reverses trial court finding that the search violated the Fourth Amendment and Article I, Section 11 of the Indiana Constitution and the consequent suppression of the fruits of the search. Hobbs’ car was an operational vehicle in a public place, the dog sniff wasn’t conducted under circumstances where Hobbs was unconstitutionally seized and the dog  sniff provided probable cause that the car contained evidence of a crime. Justice Sullivan dissents in which Justice Rucker joins.

Thomas P. Donovan v. Grant Victoria Casino & Resort, L.P.
Civil. Affirms summary judgment for the casino on Donovan’s breach-of-contract claim and declaratory judgment that the casino can’t exclude him for counting cards. The long-standing common law right of private property owners extends to the operator of a riverboat casino that wishes to exclude a patron for employing strategies designed to give the patron a statistical advantage over the casino. The Riverboat Gambling Act, which gives the Indiana Gaming Commission exclusive authority to set the rules of licensed casino games, does not abrogate this common law right. Justice Dickson dissents.

Today’s opinions
7th Circuit Court of Appeals
Annex Books, Inc., et al. v. City of Indianapolis, Ind.
U.S. District Court, Southern District of Indiana, Indianapolis Division, Judge Sarah Evans Barker.
Civil. Affirms preliminary injunction of ordinance requiring adult bookstores to be closed certain hours. The single article introduced by Indianapolis didn’t support its argument and the evidence of arrest data near the plaintiffs’ store appears to support the plaintiffs.

United States of America v. Charles Suggs
U.S. District Court, Southern District of Indiana, Indianapolis Division, Judge David F. Hamilton.
Criminal.  Affirms District Court’s application at sentencing of a four-level increase for using or possessing a firearm in connection with another felony offense after Suggs pleaded guilty to being a felon in possession of a firearm. The District Court could reasonably conclude that Suggs grasped the handgun while resisting officers, ignored their orders, and that his grasp on the handgun without telling officers about his gun implied an intent to bring it forth and use it in some manner.

Indiana Supreme Court had posted no opinions at IL deadline.

Indiana Court of Appeals
Lawrence Terrell Davis v. State of Indiana
Criminal. Affirms sentence for Class C felony auto theft, Class D felony resisting law enforcement, Class A misdemeanor resisting law enforcement, and for being a habitual offender. Davis failed to show that the trial court failed to give him the required advisement that by waiving his right to a jury trial on the underlying offenses that he also waived his right to a jury trial in the habitual offender phase. Remands with instructions to enter a habitual offender enhancement that is consistent with the opinion.

Gary S. Moore v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms sentence following guilty plea to Class B felony dealing in methamphetamine.

Cory A. Waltmire v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms sentences following guilty plea to two counts of Class C felony reckless homicide.

Daniel L. Lannen v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms sentence following guilty plea to Class B felony manufacturing methamphetamine.

Corey Stewart v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class A misdemeanor carrying a handgun without a license.

Indiana Tax Court had posted no opinions at IL deadline.


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  1. Great observation Smith. By my lights, speaking personally, they already have. They counted my religious perspective in a pro-life context as a symptom of mental illness and then violated all semblance of due process to banish me for life from the Indiana bar. The headline reveals the truth of the Hoosier elite's animus. Details here: Denied 2016 petition for cert (this time around): (“2016Pet”) Amicus brief 2016: (“2016Amici”) As many may recall, I was banned for five years for failing to "repent" of my religious views on life and the law when a bar examiner demanded it of me, resulting in a time out to reconsider my "clinging." The time out did not work, so now I am banned for life. Here is the five year time out order: Denied 2010 petition for cert (from the 2009 denial and five year banishment): (“2010Pet”) Read this quickly if you are going to read it, the elites will likely demand it be pulled down or pile comments on to bury it. (As they have buried me.)

  2. if the proabortion zealots and intolerant secularist anti-religious bigots keep on shutting down every hint of religious observance in american society, or attacking every ounce of respect that the state may have left for it, they may just break off their teeth.

  3. "drug dealers and traffickers need to be locked up". "we cannot afford just to continue to build prisons". "drug abuse is strangling many families and communities". "establishing more treatment and prevention programs will also be priorities". Seems to be what politicians have been saying for at least three decades now. If these are the most original thoughts these two have on the issues of drug trafficking and drug abuse, then we're no closer to solving the problem than we were back in the 90s when crack cocaine was the epidemic. We really need to begin demanding more original thought from those we elect to office. We also need to begin to accept that each of us is part of the solution to a problem that government cannot solve.

  4. What is with the bias exclusion of the only candidate that made sense, Rex Bell? The Democrat and Republican Party have created this problem, why on earth would anyone believe they are able to fix it without pushing government into matters it doesn't belong?

  5. This is what happens when daddy hands over a business to his moron son and thinks that everything will be ok. this bankruptcy is nothing more than Gary pulling the strings to never pay the creditors that he and his son have ripped off. they are scum and they know it.