Opinions Oct. 27, 2017

October 27, 2017

Indiana Court of Appeals
Tony Petrovski v. Robert Neiswinger
Civil tort. Reverses the Lake Circuit Court dismissal of Tony Petrovski’s complaint after a car crash for failure to prosecute. Finds that under the unique facts of the case, including attorney Samuel G. Vazanellis’ “complete abdication of his duties,” dismissal was not warranted. Remands.

T.H. v. State of Indiana
Juvenile. Affirms T.H.’s adjudication as a delinquent child. Reverses the trial court’s finding that T.H. committed more than $750 in damage. Finds the state failed to prove an essential element of Class A misdemeanor mischief when it failed to provide any credible evidence of the damage T.H. caused to Maria Castro’s car. Remands for the Marion Superior Court to modify its records to indicate T.H. committed an act that would be Class B misdemeanor criminal mischief if committed by an adult. Judge Cale Bradford dissents with separate opinion.

In re the Matter of J.D., Minor Child, and J.H., Mother v. The Indiana Department of Child Services (mem. dec.)
Juvenile CHINS. Affirms the Marion Superior Court’s determination that J.D. is a child in need of services. Finds the evidence supported the conclusion that J.D. is a CHINS.

In the Matter of S.C., A Minor Child, A Child In Need Of Services, M. L., Father v. The Indiana Department of Child Services and Child Advocates, Inc. (mem. dec.)
Juvenile CHINS. Reverses the Marion Superior Court’s determination that S.C. is a child in need of services. Finds the trial court’s order finding that S.C. was a CHINS was clearly erroneous. Remands.

The Termination of the Parent-Child Relationship of E.H. (Child) and R.H. (Father) and K.G. (Mother); R.H. (Father), and K.G. (Mother) v. The Indiana Department of Child Services (mem. dec.)
Juvenile termination of parental rights. Affirms the involuntary termination of K.G. and R.H.’s parental rights to E.H. Finds the Department of Child Services provided sufficient evidence the conditions under which E.H. was removed from the parents’ care would not be remedied.

Damon Nelson v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)
Criminal. Affirms the denial of Damon Nelson’s motion to correct erroneous sentence. Finds the Marion Superior Court did not abuse its discretion in denying Nelson’s motion.

Lisa Haynes Whorley v. John F. Whorley, Jr. (mem. dec.)
Domestic relation. Affirms and reverses in part the Hamilton Superior Court’s dissolution decree issued to Lisa and John Whorley. Finds the trial court did not clearly err in awarding the Whorleys joint legal custody of their children while designating John Whorley as the ultimate decision-maker, in determining the opportunity for additional parenting time need only be extended if a party needs child care overnight, or in valuing certain items of marital property. Also finds the trial court did err in determining the opportunity for additional parenting time need not be extended to Lisa Whorley if John Whorley’s housekeeper is available to care for the children, in failing to account for John Whorley’s irregular income in the child support calculation, and in supporting an unequal division of marital property. Remands.