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Opinions June 9, 2017

June 9, 2017

Indiana Court of Appeals
Lawrence Benton Roper v. State of Indiana
53A04-1607-CR-1691
Criminal. Affirms Lawrence Benton Roper’s convictions of two counts of Level 4 felony dealing cocaine and one count each of Level 5 felonies dealing cocaine and dealing a narcotic drug. Finds Roper waived his request for a speedy trial by conduct inconsistent with seeking a speedy trial.

Charlie L. Spencer, Jr. v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)
20A03-1612-PC-2845
Post conviction. Affirms the denial of Charlie L. Spencer Jr.’s petition for post-conviction relief. Finds Spencer failed to prove he suffered ineffective assistance of trial counsel.

In the Matter of the Termination of the Parent-Child Relationship of M.W. (Child) and E.W. (Mother); E.W. (Mother) v. The Indiana Department of Child Services (mem. dec.)
23A04-1611-JT-2517
Juvenile termination of parental rights. Affirms the termination of E.W.’s parental rights to M.W. Finds the Fountain Circuit Court’s unchallenged findings support its judgment.

In re the Marriage of Christine A. Milcherska and Douglas R. Biggs (mem. dec.)
71A03-1605-DR-1203
Domestic relation. Affirms the St. Joseph Superior Court’s consent judgment keeping G.B. with Douglas Biggs in South Bend and ordering Christine Milcherska to pay a part of Biggs’ attorneys’ fees and a part of the guardian ad litem’s fees. Finds Milcherska’s consent to judgment was not the product of fraud, mistake or duress and her consent precluded her appellate challenges to the judgment itself and to the trial court’s rulings antecedent to it. Also finds the trial court did not abuse its discretion in ordering Milcherska to pay 75 percent of Biggs’ attorneys’ fees and 75 percent of the GAL’s fees. Finally, finds Biggs is not entitled to appellate sanctions.

Cecil Alexander Hall v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)
71A03-1610-CR-2281
Criminal. Affirms Cecil Alexander Hall’s convictions for Level 6 felonies domestic battery and criminal confinement. Finds the state presented sufficient evidence to support his convictions.

In the Matter of the Involuntary Termination of the Parent-Child Relationship of Jy.K. and J.K. (Minor Children), and K.H. (Mother), et al. v. The Indiana Department of Child Services (mem. dec.)
91A04-1612-JT-2832
Juvenile termination of parental rights. Affirms the White Circuit Court’s orders involuntarily terminating K.H. and J.K.’s parental rights to their minor children Jy.K. and J.K. Finds sufficient evidence supports the trial court’s conclusion that there is a reasonable probability that the conditions that led to the children’s removal and continued placement outside the home will not be remedied and that the termination of K.H. and J.K.’s parental rights is in the children’s best interests.

Contrell Hambright v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)
02A03-1612-CR-2947
Criminal. Affirms Contrell Hambright’s sentence to 12 years in the Indiana Department of Correction for Level 4 felony child molesting. Finds Hambright’s sentence is not inappropriate in light of the nature of the offense and his character.

Anthony T. Orr v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)
05A04-1608-CR-1791
Criminal. Reverses Anthony T. Orr’s conviction of Class B felony child molesting. Finds it is unclear which act or acts the jurors may have relied on to find Orr guilty of one of the 10 counts charged. Remands for a new trial.

In re the Paternity of M.D.; Maria Leyvand v. Jesse Dickerson (mem. dec.)
49A02-1609-JP-2193
Juvenile paternity. Affirms the Marion Superior Court’s order granting Jesse Dickerson primary physical custody of his child with Maria Leyvand. Finds the trial court did not abuse its discretion in granting Dickerson’s petition to change custody. Also finds the trial court’s child support calculation is not clearly erroneous. Finally, finds Leyvand’s contractual and due process rights were not violated when the trial court apportioned school expenses.

Johnathan M. Evans v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)
20A03-1609-CR-2259
Criminal. Affirms Johnathan M. Evans’ conviction of Level 2 felony robbery and his sentence to an aggregate of 28 years. Finds the state presented sufficient evidence to sustain Evans’ conviction and his sentence is not inappropriate.  

Kurt R. Duncan v. Betsy J. Duncan (mem. dec.)
30A01-1611-DR-2608
Domestic relation. Affirms the Hancock Circuit Court’s determination that Kurt Duncan’s children, Brittany and Nattalee, had not repudiated him. Vacates the trial court’s finding Kurt Duncan is currently in indirect contempt of court for failing to pay college expenses and a portion of Betsy Duncan’s attorney fees. Finds Kurt Duncan failed to establish the trial court erred in finding the children have not repudiated him, but established the trial court erred in concluding he had any current obligation to pay the children’s post-secondary educational expenses. Remands for further proceedings.

Nathan E. Mylet v. Santander Bank, N.A. (mem. dec.)
29A02-1608-MF-2004
Mortgage foreclosure. Affirms the dismissal of six of Nathan E. Mylet’s counterclaims against Santander Bank N.A. Finds the Hamilton Superior Court did not err in dismissing Mylet’s negligence-related counterclaims. Judge Patricia Riley concurs in result with separate opinion.

Antonio D. Townsend v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)
02A03-1611-CR-2630
Criminal. Affirms Antonio D. Townsend’s four-year sentence imposed after he pleaded guilty to criminal recklessness as a Level 5 felony and carrying a handgun without a license as a Class A misdemeanor. Finds Townsend has failed to demonstrate his sentence is inappropriate.

Dana Dodson v. Board of Trustees of Indiana University, d/b/a Indiana University and Indiana University Northwest; William J. Lowe, et al. (mem. dec.)
45A03-1611-CT-2703
Civil tort. Affirms the Lake Superior Court’s entry of summary judgment in favor of the Indiana University board of trustees, William Lowe as chancellor of Indiana University Northwest and Michael McRobbie as president of Indiana University. Finds the trial court did not err in entering judgment in favor of the defendants as to Dana Dodson’s claims for breach of contract and due process violations.

Anthony D. Thomas v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)
02A03-1701-CR-66
Criminal. Affirms Anthony Thomas’ sentence to an aggregate of 18 years in the Indiana Department of Correction for his convictions of three counts of sexual misconduct with a minor as Level 4 felonies and one count as a Level 5 felony, and one count of contributing to the delinquency of a minor as a Class A misdemeanor, as well as his admission to being a repeat sexual offender. Finds Thomas’ sentence is not inappropriate in light of the nature of the offenses and his character.

$3,941 in US Currency, and, Deonta Anderson, Korjonta Anderson, and Beonica Johnson-Grant v. Rodney Cummings, Prosecuting Attorney for the 50th Judicial Circuit for the State of Indiana (mem. dec.)
48A02-1607-MI-1564
Miscellaneous. Affirms the Madison Circuit Court’s judgment granting the state’s complaint for civil forfeiture of money seized from Deonta Anderson after his arrest. Finds there was sufficient evidence to support the trial court’s judgment. Also finds that because the amount seized falls well short of the statutory maximum that could be imposed for the criminal activity, it is not excessive. Finally, find no error in the trial court’s distribution of the seized funds.

James L. Hochgesang v. Stanley McLain, Sr. (mem. dec.)
13A01-1608-PL-1944
Civil plenary. Affirms the Crawford Circuit Court’s judgment that James Hochgesang failed to establish the existence of a prescriptive easement by clear and convincing evidence. Finds the trial court’s judgment is not clearly erroneous.

Juma Haywood v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)
02A03-1701-CR-165
Criminal. Affirms Juma Haywood’s sentence to an aggregate of two years for his convictions of four counts of Level 6 felony invasion of privacy. Finds the sentence imposed by the Allen Superior Court was not inappropriate in light of the nature of the offense and Haywood’s character.

Pamela McBride v. Midwest Estate Buyers, LLC (mem. dec.)
93A02-1612-EX-2920
Agency. Reverses the Indiana Worker’s Compensation Board’s denial of Pamela McBride’s claim for workers’ compensation benefits. Finds the facts of this case lead inescapably to the conclusion that McBride’s injury arose out of her employment with Midwest Jewelers & Estate Buyers, a decision contrary to the board’s. Remands for further proceedings.
 

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