Opinions March 28, 2017

Keywords Opinions

Indiana Supreme Court
State of Indiana v. Wallace Irvin Smith, III
Criminal. Reverses the Lake Superior Court’s grant of Wallace Irvin Smith III’s petition to convert his Class D felony conviction of theft to a Class A misdemeanor pursuant to the amendment to Indiana Code 35-50-2-7. Finds the subsequent legislative amendment did not alter the unambiguous terms of Smith’s plea agreement, which held that he would be “precluded from asking for Misdemeanor treatment.”

Indiana Court of Appeals
Walsh Construction Company v. Zurich American Insurance Company, et al.
Civil plenary. Affirms the Lake Superior Court’s entry of summary judgment in favor of Zurich American Insurance Co. on Walsh Construction Co.’s complaint for declaratory judgment. Finds the self-insured retention endorsement to a commercial general liability insurance policy requires the named insured to satisfy the amount of the endorsement, whether on its own behalf or on behalf of an additional insured, before the additional insured may seek to enforce the policy against the insurer.

Cathy Byrd v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)
Criminal. Affirms Cathy Byrd’s conviction for criminal mischief as a Class A misdemeanor. Finds the state presented sufficient evidence to support Byrd’s conviction.

Billy Guyton v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)
Criminal. Affirms Billy Guyton’s convictions for Level 3 felony robbery and Level 5 felony intimidation. Finds the Marion Superior Court did not abuse its discretion in refusing to play Guyton’s proffered video regarding eyewitness identification to the jury.

Arlana McDade v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)
Criminal. Affirms Arlana McDade’s conviction for Class A misdemeanor criminal recklessness with a deadly weapon. Finds there is sufficient evidence to sustain McDade’s conviction.

Termination: S. J.-T., et al. v. Indiana Department of Child Services (mem. dec.)
Juvenile termination of parental rights. Affirms the termination of S.J.-T. and K.T.’s parental rights over their minor children, T.T., K.T. and L.T. Finds the parents’ challenge to the adjudication of their children as children in need of services is waived. Also finds the Posey Circuit Court did not commit clear error in terminating their parental rights rather than establishing a permanent guardianship.

John Browning, Jr. v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)
Criminal. Affirms John Browning Jr.’s conviction for patronizing a prostitute as a Class A misdemeanor. Finds a reasonable trier of fact could have found that Browning knowingly offered to pay money to S.M. with the understanding that she would engage in sexual intercourse or other sexual conduct with him, and that sufficient evidence exists from which the trier of fact could find him guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.

Paternity: Amanda Newcomer v. John McQueary (mem. dec.)
Juvenile paternity. Affirms the Whitley Circuit Court’s denial of Amanda Newcomer’s request to change her son’s name. Finds it is in C.M.’s best interests to retain the last name McQueary. Also finds the trial court did not abuse its discretion when it denied Newcomer’s petition to restore C.M.’s name.

Tara Jean Davies v. Guy Albert P. Davies (mem. dec.)
Domestic relation. Affirms the dissolution court’s final decree ending Tara Jean Davies’ marriage to Guy Albert Pierce Davies. Any error in the calculation of Guy Davies’ child support obligation was invited. Tara Davies has not demonstrated the dissolution court abused its discretion when it did not order retroactive child support or when it did not order Guy Davies to share in the college expenses. The dissolution erred when it did not order Guy Davies fulfill his child support obligation by way of an income withholding order. Finds the child support order does not comply with Indiana Code 31-16-6-1.5. Remands with instructions to the dissolution court to issue an income withholding order, to amend the child support order to comply with Indiana Code and to determine an appropriate amount for Guy Davies to pay with respect to the children’s uninsured medical expenses.

CHINS: J.B. v. Indiana Department of Child Services (mem. dec.)
Juvenile CHINS. Affirms the adjudication of J.B.’s minor child, B.B., as a child in need of services. Finds the Hamilton Circuit Court did not err.

Earl Beem v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)
Criminal. Affirms Earl Beem’s convictions for Level 6 felony possession of methamphetamine, Level 6 felony maintaining a common nuisance and Class C misdemeanor possession of paraphernalia. Finds the evidence is sufficient to support Beem’s convictions.

CHINS: J.S. v. Indiana Department of Child Services, et al. (mem. dec.)
Juvenile CHINS. Affirms the Marion Superior Court’s order adjudication J.S.’s minor children, K.D. and J.T., as children in need of services. Finds the trial court’s CHINS adjudication order is not clearly erroneous.

Willie Edward Williams v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)
Criminal. Affirms Willie Edward Williams’ conviction for Level 1 felony child molesting. Reverses Williams’ conviction for Level 4 felony child molesting. Finds the state presented sufficient evidence to support Williams’ conviction, but his convictions violate the prohibition against double jeopardy.

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