Opinions April 2, 2019

Keywords Opinions

Indiana Supreme Court 
Nathaniel Bennett v. State of Indiana

18S-CR-538
Criminal. Reverses the Marion Superior Court’s finding that Nathaniel Bennett violated a term of his community corrections placement. Finds the trial court made factual findings that negate one part of the statutory definition to prove the violation. Remands for the trial court to change the record accordingly. Justices Mark Massa and Geoffrey Slaughter dissent without separate opinion, believing transfer should have been denied. 

Indiana Court of Appeals  
State of Indiana v. J.T.

18A-JV-1491
Juvenile. Affirms the Elkhart Circuit Court’s denial of the state’s motion to waive J.T. into adult court for committing an act that would be murder if committed by an adult. Finds the juvenile court’s decision was not against the logic and effects of the facts and circumstances. Also finds the juvenile court did not abuse its discretion in denying the state’s motion to waive jurisdiction. Finally, finds there were grounds for interlocutory appeal. 

Braden Winters v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)
18A-CR-2463
Criminal. Affirms Braden Winters’ 16-year sentence for conviction of Level 3 felony aggravated battery. Finds the sentence is not inappropriate. 

In the Matter of: J.W. and Ja.W., Children in Need of Services: Z.W. (Father) v. The Indiana Department of Child Services (mem. dec.)
18A-JC-1655
Juvenile CHINS. Affirms the finding that Z.W. and H.W.’s children, J.W. and Ja.W., were children in need of services. Finds the Department of Child Services met its burden of proving that both children are CHINS. 

Eloy Salinas, Jr. v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)
18A-CR-2558
Criminal. Affirms Eloy Salinas Jr.’s 10-year sentence for conviction of Level 4 felony unlawful possession of a firearm by a serious violent felon. Finds Salinas’ sentence is not inappropriate in light of the nature of the offense and his character.

Gregory Wilkerson v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)
18A-CR-2650
Criminal. Affirms Gregory Wilkerson’s convictions for Level 6 felony unlawful possession of a syringe and Level 6 felony possession of a narcotic drug. Finds his convictions do not violate the Double Jeopardy Clause of the Indiana Constitution. 

In the Matter of the Termination of the Parent-Child Relationship of A.F. (Minor Child) and J.B. (Mother) v. Indiana Department of Child Services (mem. dec.)
18A-JT-1647
Juvenile termination of parental rights. Affirms the termination of J.B.’s parental rights to A.F. Finds the Department of Child Services presented evidence supporting the Montgomery Circuit findings, which support the trial court’s conclusion that the involuntary termination of J.B.’s parental rights was in A.F.’s best interests. 

Darianna Hamblin v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)
18A-CR-1132
Criminal. Affirms Darianna Hamblin’s convictions for felony murder while committing robbery and Level 3 felony attempted armed robbery. Finds the Lake Superior Court did not abuse its discretion in admitting evidence of a photo array and the victims’ subsequent testimony. Also finds there is sufficient evidence to support the conviction. 

In re the Termination of the Parent-Child Relationship of M.C. (Minor Child) and M.A.C. (Father) v. Indiana Department of Child Services (mem. dec.)
18A-JT-2612
Juvenile termination of parental rights. Affirms the termination of M.A.C.’s parental rights to his daughter, M.C. Find the Marion Superior Court did not err when it concluded there is a reasonable probability that the conditions resulting in M.C.’s removal and continued placement outside the home will not be remedied.

Nicole L. (Nichter) Nolot v. Christopher M. Nichter (mem. dec.)
18A-DR-1201
Domestic relation. Affirms the Allen Superior Court’s order granting Christopher M. Nichter’s motion to modify child support. Finds the trial court was within its discretion to decide not to assign potential income to Christopher. Also finds the trial court did not abuse its discretion in determining Christopher’s weekly gross income and the accompanying calculation of child support. 

Larry Hoover d/b/a Quality Electric, Inc. v. John Schuler (mem. dec.)
18A-SC-2293
Small claims. Affirms denial of Larry Hoover’s motion correct error. Finds the Wabash Superior Court did not err in denying Hoover’s claim. 

Douglas Alan Dyson v. Indiana Department of Environmental Management (mem. dec.)
18A-MI-1752
Miscellaneous.  Affirms the denial of Douglas Dyson’s motion to correct error challenging a writ of attachment, permanent injunction and civil penalty stemming from his violation of an injunction issued in favor of the Indiana Department of Environmental Management. Finds all of Dyson’s arguments are waived, and waiver notwithstanding, the Wabash Circuit Court did not abuse its discretion in denying Dyson’s post-judgment motions. Also finds the trial court’s underlying judgments against Dyson were proper. 

Ben J. Kendrick v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)
18A-CR-967
Criminal. Affirms Ben Kendrick’s conviction for three counts of Level 1 felony child molesting. Finds the Marion Superior Court did not abuse its discretion by admitting into evidence a medical doctor’s testimony regarding a diagnosis of the victim. Chief Judge Nancy Vaidik concurs in result without separate opinion. 

Jason Spears v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)
18A-CR-2091
Criminal. Affirms Jason Spears’ conviction for Level 3 felony aggravated battery. Finds there is sufficient evidence to support his convictions. Finds the jury acted reasonably in rejecting Spears’s argument regarding accomplice liability.

In the Matter of the Involuntary Termination of the Parent-Child Relationship of: J.B. and E.B. (Minor Children) and P.B. (Mother) v. Indiana Department of Child Services, et al. (mem. dec.)
18A-JT-2431
Juvenile termination of parental rights. Affirms the termination of P.B.’s parental rights to two of her minor children. Finds the termination order is supported by sufficient evidence. 

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