Opinions Sept. 23, 2014

September 23, 2014
KEYWORDS Opinions / neglect

Indiana Court of Appeals
The Branham Corporation v. Newland Resources, LLC; Samuel Sutphin; White River Funding Corp.; et al; Thomas N. Eckerle; Thomas N. Eckerle Prof. Corp. v. The Branham Corporation
Civil tort. Affirms the trial court’s summary judgment order in favor of the defendants. Reverses the order dismissing attorney Thomas Eckerle without prejudice and remands for entry of summary judgment in favor of Eckerle. Finds the trial court correctly determined the defendants were entitled to summary judgment because Branham filed its complaint for nonpayment of damages after the two-year statute of limitations had run.

James Bogner v. Teresa Bogner
Domestic relation. Reverses trial court modification of father’s child support obligation and elimination of father’s right to claim a child as a dependent every other year. The trial court erred in reaching its conclusions without assessing the financial ramifications of denying the tax benefit. The trial court abused its discretion in deviating from the amount of support father owed according to recommendations under the Child Support Guidelines. Remands for the trial court to modify father’s support obligations from $105 per week to $59 per week and to re-evaluate the parents’ tax exemption based on factors in the Child Support Guidelines.

In re the Estate of Ruth M. Rupley, Charles A. Rupley v. Michael L. Rupley
Estate. On rehearing, affirms original opinion reversing a trial court order that concluded a promissory note was an asset of the estate. The Transfer on Death Property Act of 2009 applies retroactively to the promissory note, and the note was not an asset of the state.

Dale Bulthuis III v. State of Indiana
Criminal. Affirms convictions and 18-year sentence for Class B felony dealing in methamphetamine and two counts of Class C felony neglect of a dependent. Evidence found during a search of the garage and home that led to Bulthuis’ conviction was not admitted in error, there was sufficient evidence to convict, and the trial court did not abuse its discretion in ordering restitution to the state to cover the cost of cleaning up a meth lab.

In the Matter of the Termination of the Parent-Child Relationship of A.S. and C.S. (Minor Children); K.W. (Mother) and B.S. (Father) v. The Indiana Department of Child Services
Termination. Affirms termination of parental rights. Even though the trial court made erroneous findings in terminating parental rights, DCS presented sufficient evidence to support termination.

Jessica Kishpaugh v. John Odegard and Miriam Odegard
Civil tort. Affirms trial court order awarding $85,889.36 to the Odegards, holding the trial court did not err in concluding Kishpaugh committed theft, breached a lease and violated the tenant statute. Grants the Odegards’ petition for appellate legal fees and remands to the trial court to determine the amount.

Forrest R. Ferguson v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms trial court denial of petition seeking permission to file a belated notice of appeal and dismisses appeal of order denying additional credit time.

Jesse Clements and Gersh Zavodnik v. The Honorable John Hanley and Marion Superior Court 11 (NFP)
Miscellaneous. Affirms denial of motion to correct error.

Heidemarie Garcia v. Cover-Rite, Inc., J.C. Builders, Inc. and Salvino Verta (NFP)
Small claims. Affirms judgments in favor of Garcia.

PaulaJean Skowronek v. Review Board of the Department of Workforce Development, and Aldi Indiana, LP (NFP)
Agency action. Affirms review board decision that Skowronek was ineligible for unemployment benefits.

Tony R. Shipley, II v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class A misdemeanor criminal trespass.

Richard L. Smart v. Kristina L. Smart (NFP)
Domestic. Vacates judgment and division of assets after dissolution of marriage and remands for entry of judgment consistent with the dissolution statute.

Darius Hardiman v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Affirms in part, reverses in part and remands judgment on convictions and 50-year aggregate sentence for Class A felony counts of attempted murder and robbery resulting in serious bodily injury and Class D felony dealing in marijuana. Vacates robbery conviction on double-jeopardy grounds and remands for reduction of the conviction to a Class B felony and resentencing.
Torrence L. Belcher v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms murder conviction.

Paul E. Matthews v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms Class A misdemeanor conviction of operating a vehicle while intoxicated.