Opinions Oct. 5, 2018

Keywords Opinions

The following Indiana Supreme Court opinion was posted after IL deadline on Thursday:
David Wright v. State of Indiana

Criminal. Affirms David Wright’s convictions of four counts of Level 1 felony child molestation and his 60-year sentence. Finds the attenuation doctrine can apply under the Indiana Constitution, and Wright’s statements to law enforcement were amply attenuated from the illegal search of his apartment. Also finds Wright’s sentence is not inappropriate. 

Friday opinions
Indiana Court of Appeals 
Umesh Kaushal v. State of Indiana

Criminal. Affirms the Marion Superior Court’s denial of Umesh Kaushal’s motion to withdraw his guilty plea for Level 4 felony child molesting. Finds Kaushal did not establish that he was prejudiced by his counsel’s performance in light of Jae Lee v. United States. Also finds Kaushal did not establish a reasonable probability that he would not have pled guilty and would have insisted on going to trial if not for his counsel’s errors. 

Christopher L. Figgs v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)
Criminal. Affirms Christopher Figgs’ conviction of Level 5 felony carrying a handgun without a license, his 80-year sentence and the enhancement of his sentence for using a firearm in the commission of a felony resulting in death. Finds the Allen Superior Court did not err in denying Figgs’ motion for a mistrial or in admitting Evidence Rule 404(B) evidence. Also finds no error in the trial court’s failure to hold a bifurcated hearing regarding the sentence enhancement. Finally, finds Figgs’ sentence is not inappropriate in light of the nature of his offenses and his character. 

In the Matter of the Termination of the Parent-Child Relationship of M.B. (Child) and C.B. (Mother); C.B. (Mother) v. The Indiana Department of Child Services
Juvenile termination of parental rights. Affirms the termination of C.B.’s parental rights to her child, M.B. Finds the Allen Superior Court’s findings support its conclusion that the conditions under which M.B. was removed from C.B.’s care would not be remedied, and that termination was in M.B.’s best interests.

Jacquese Andrew Chaney v. State of Indiana
Criminal. Affirms Jacquese Andrew Chaney’s 75-year sentence for his conviction of one count of rape and two counts of attempted rape, all as Level 1 felonies. Finds the Marion Superior Court did not abuse its discretion in imposing consecutive sentences for Chaney’s convictions. 

Rusty Allen Reesor v. State of Indiana
Criminal. Affirms Rusty Reesor’s conviction of Level 4 felony attempted child molesting and his aggregate 30-year sentence. Finds the Clark Circuit Court did not admit improper vouching testimony. Also finds the trial court erred in identifying the victim’s, age as an aggravator, but declines resentencing based on that error. 

Clayton Wright v. State of Indiana
Criminal. Affirms Clayton Wright’s three-year sentence for his conviction of Level 5 felony attempted battery. Finds Wright’s sentence and placement in the Department of Correction are not inappropriate.  

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