Opinions Nov. 26, 2018

November 26, 2018

Indiana Court of Appeals
Trey A. Smith v. State of Indiana

Criminal. Affirms Trey Smith’s conviction of Level 6 felony theft. Finds the hearsay testimony offered by a Columbus police officer was a harmless error because the conviction was supported by independent evidence of guilt. Reverses sua sponte Smith’s conviction of Class B misdemeanor criminal mischief. Holds the conviction violates the rule against double jeopardy. Remands to the Bartholomew Superior Court with instructions to vacate the criminal mischief conviction.

Dino Orville French v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)
Criminal. Affirms Dino French’s conviction of a Class A felony child molesting and executed 40-year sentence. Finds the Lake Superior Court did not err in granting the state’s motion to amend the charging information at trial. Concludes the victim’s testimony was not incredibly dubious and was sufficient to support French’s conviction. Rules the court did not abuse its discretion in the identification of aggravating and mitigating factors when determining French’s sentence and, even if the trial court did, holds French’s sentence is not inappropriate.  

Ronald M. Marshall v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)
Criminal. Affirms Ronald Marshall’s convictions of three counts of Level 5 felony child exploitation and two counts of Level 6 felony voyeurism. Finds the Boone Superior Court did not abuse its discretion when it admitted evidence of Marshall’s prior bad acts. Holds Marshall was not denied the effective assistance of trial counsel.

Victoria Marie Tidwell v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)
Criminal. Remands for the Hendricks Superior Court to issue an order regarding the state’s request for restitution against Victoria Marie Tidwell after her convictions of three counts of dog bite liability resulting in injury, with one count a Class A misdemeanor and two counts Class C misdemeanors, as well as three counts of harboring a non-immunized dog as Class B misdemeanors. Holds it will address Tidwell’s issues on the merits after the trial court issues its order on restitution.

Leslie J. Vickers v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)
Criminal. Affirms the Dearborn Superior Court’s revocation of Leslie Vickers’ probation, ordering him to serve six years of his previously suspended sentence. Finds that Vickers’ arguments that there are several factors mitigating his probation violations amount to a request to reweigh the evidence, which is not the role of appellate review.  

James W. Adams v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)
Criminal. Affirms James Adams’ sentence to concurrent terms of four years executed in the Indiana Department of Correction on his conviction of Level 5 felony failure to register as a sex or violent offender, and one year for his conviction of Level 6 felony illegal sex offender residency. Concludes Adams did not sustain his burden of establishing his sentence imposed by the LaPorte Superior Court is inappropriate in light of the nature of the offenses and his character.  

Michael Francis and Carmen Francis v. Fannie Mae, Fannie Mae as Trustee for Securitized Trust Fannie Mae Guaranteed Remic Pass-Through Certifications 1995-16 Trust, et al. (mem. dec.)
Civil Tort. Affirms dismissal by the Marion Superior Court of Michael and Carmen Francis’ complaint against Fannie Mae, Fannie Mae as trustee, EMC Mortgage LLC, JP Morgan Chase Bank N.A., and Homesales, LLC. Concludes the Francises are barred from raising the claims they have raised in these proceedings under the doctrine of res judicata.

In the Matter of the Termination of the Parent-Child Relationship of: S.K., Minor Child, D.K., Father v. The Indiana Department of Child Services (mem. dec.)
Juvenile Termination. Affirms the Lake Superior Court’s involuntary termination of the parental rights of D.K. (father) to his child, S.K. Finds the trial court’s judgment terminating the father’s parental rights is supported by clear and convincing evidence.