Opinions March 13, 2018

March 13, 2018

The following 7th Circuit Court of Appeals opinion was issued after IL deadline Monday.

Indiana Electrical Workers Pension Benefit Fund, et al. v. ManWeb Services, Inc.
Appeal from the United States District Court for the Southern District of Indiana, Indianapolis Division. Senior Judge Sarah Evans Barker.
Reverses grant of summary judgment in favor of ManWeb. Vacates and remands for further consideration of the equitable determination of whether ManWeb bears successor liability for its predecessor’s withdrawal of pension benefit money. Judge Daniel Manion concurs with separate opinion.

Indiana Court of Appeals

Mark Blacklidge v. Kent Blacklidge
Civil plenary. Affirms the trial court’s $40,623.55 judgment against Mark Blacklidge in favor of his father, Kent Blacklidge, in past due appraisal fees from a real estate appraisal company in which they were partners. Finds Mark is personally liable to Kent under the parties’ oral appraisal fee agreements, though under a different legal theory. The trial court did not err in applying a six-year statute of limitations to the parties’ oral agreements.

Mainstreet Property Group, LLC; Mainstreet Realty, LLC; and 7105 E SR 334, LLC v. Pam Pontones, in her official capacity as Interim Commissioner of the Indiana State Department of Health; et al.
Miscellaneous. Affirms a retroactive moratorium on nursing home construction passed by the Indiana General Assembly in 2015, holding that the moratorium did not impair any contractual obligations or vested rights.

Matthew Davis v. Lippert Components Manufacturing, Inc.
Civil tort. Affirms trial court grant of summary judgment to Lippert, finding that injured RV worker Matthew Davis was not a “user” or “consumer” entitled to relief under the Indiana Product Liability Act.

Michael Damien Howell v. State of Indiana
Criminal. Affirms Michael Damien Howell’s 57-year sentence for his conviction of Level 2 felony voluntary manslaughter, Level 6 felony criminal recklessness while armed with a deadly weapon, Level 3 felony attempted robbery while armed with a deadly weapon, and Level 6 felony auto theft. Remands for the trial court to vacate his criminal recklessness conviction, which runs afoul of the constitutional protection against double jeopardy because of his robbery conviction, but otherwise affirms the convictions and sentence.

T.M. v. L.D. and J.D. (mem. dec.)
Adoption. Affirms in part, reverses in part and remands a petition by L.D. and J.D. to adopt father T.M.’s minor daughter, J.J. Affirms adoption court’s conclusion that father’s consent to the adoption is not required. Reverses grant of petition and remands with instructions to set aside the adoption decree, order the period of supervision and report of the investigation and recommendation by a licensed child placing agency as required by statute, and consolidate the paternity action with the adoption.

In re the Paternity of G.A.M. and G.A.M. (Minor Children): Whitney McCreary v. Raphael Ramirez (mem. dec.)
Juvenile paternity. Affirms trial court’s grant of father Raphael Ramirez’s petition to modify custody, finding the court did not clearly err in so doing.

Treyone Devon Johnston v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class B misdemeanor disorderly conduct, finding there was sufficient evidence from which a reasonable trier of fact could reject Treyone Devon Johnston’s claim of self-defense and find him guilty.

In the Matter of the Termination of the Parent-Child Relationship of M.D., E.M.D., E.J.D., and G.D. (Minor Children) and J.D. (Father) v. Indiana Department of Child Services (mem. dec.)
Juvenile termination of parental rights. Affirms termination of father J.D.’s parental rights to his four children. J.D. failed to establish that he was prejudiced when the trial court failed to continue a fact-finding hearing.

David J. Harman v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)
Post-conviction. Affirms denial of David J. Harman’s petition for post-conviction relief. The court did not abuse its discretion when it refused to subpoena the jury foreman and a detective who testified at his trial, and Harman did not receive ineffective assistance of trial or appellate counsel.

Jeremiah I. Moore v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)
Criminal. Affirms six-year sentenced, with three years executed in the Department of Correction, for Jeremiah I. Moore’s conviction of Level 4 felony possession of a narcotic drug. The sentence is inappropriate in light of the nature of the offense and the character of the offender.

Ellington Jeffrey, a minor by his mother and father, Victor Jeffrey and Lynell Jeffrey and Victor and Lynell Jeffrey, individually v. Stephen Robertson, Insurance Commissioner, et al. (mem. dec.)
Civil tort. Reverses the trial court’s grant of summary judgment in favor of the commissioner on the Jeffreys’ claims against the Indiana Patient’s Compensation Fund. A genuine issue of material fact exists as to whether the Jeffreys have met the statutory minimum amount necessary to seek additional compensation from the fund. Remands for further proceedings.

Oluwaseyi Ojo v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)
Criminal. Affirms Class A misdemeanor conviction of resisting law enforcement by force, finding there is sufficient evidence to support the conviction.

Unity Non-Denominational Church v. Vincennes Corporation (mem. dec.)
Miscellaneous. Affirms trial court order granting Vincennes Corp.’s motion for relief from judgment in a tax sale case pursuant to Indiana Trial Rule 60(B).