Opinions Jan. 18, 2023

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The following 7th Circuit Court of Appeals opinion was posted after IL deadline on Tuesday:
Catrina Bragg v. Munster Medical Research Foundation Inc., d/b/a Community Hospital
Appeal from the United States District Court for the Northern District of Indiana, Hammond Division.
Senior Judge James T. Moody
Civil. Affirms the Indiana Northern District Court’s grant of summary judgment in favor of Community Hospital on Catrina Bragg’s employment discrimination and retaliation complaint. Finds Bragg failed to proffer evidence that would allow a trier of fact to conclude that Community denied her a full-time position and transferred her for impermissible reasons, rather than for its stated concern about deficiencies in her performance.

Wednesday opinions
Court of Appeals of Indiana
Bernard Lash v. Fred Kreigh, d/b/a Urnest Construction, LLC
Civil collections. Affirms the award of damages to Fred Kreigh for unpaid construction costs owed by Bernard Lash. Finds Noble Superior Court didn’t commit clear error by calculating damages based upon the value of Kreigh’s services. Also finds the trial court did not err in denying Kreigh’s request for prejudgment interest.

Expert Pool Builders, LLC v. Paul Vangundy
Civil plenary. Dismisses Expert Pool Builders LLC’s appeal of the denial of its motion to correct error following the St. Joseph Superior Court’s entry of default judgment in favor of Paul Vangundy. Finds EPB did not properly preserve the issue on appeal by failing to file a Trial Rule 60(B) motion to set aside the default judgment. Judge Nancy Vaidik dissents with separate opinion.

Dwight P. Shotts v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)
Criminal. Affirms Dwight Shotts’ conviction of felony murder. Finds the Marion Superior Court’s evidentiary ruling regarding evidence of prior bad acts was within its discretion. Also finds Shotts’ constitutional rights were not curtailed where he presented his self-defense theory within the confines of the Indiana Rules of Evidence. Judge Nancy Vaidik concurs in result with separate opinion.

Darren R. Amick v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)
Criminal. Affirms Darren R. Amick’s 25-year sentence for Level 2 felony placing a destructive device or explosive to kill, injure or intimidate or to destroy property. Finds Amick’s sentence is not inappropriate in light of the nature of the offense and the character of the offender.

Deandre Dixon v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)
Criminal. Affirms Deandre Dixon’s conviction of Level 6 felony battery by bodily waste on a public safety official. Finds the state proved beyond a reasonable doubt that Dixon knowingly or intentionally threw urine on officer Jacob Pratt sufficient to sustain his conviction.

Jason Scott Palmer v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)
Criminal. Reverses Jason Scott Palmer’s conviction of possession of marijuana as a Class b misdemeanor. Finds the evidence was insufficient to prove that the substance found in Palmer’s vehicle was marijuana.

Erick Ayala and Diana Gutierrez v. JJD Rental Group, LLC (mem. dec.)
Eviction. Affirms the denial of Erick Ayala and Diana Gutierrez’s motion to correct error in favor of JJD Rental Group LLC. Finds the small claims court did not abuse its discretion in denying Ayala and Gutierrez’s motion to correct error where they had not shown that the dismissal of JJD’s evicton action was required.

Brian Meyer v. Thomas Meyer, Personal Representative of the Estate of Laverne Meyer (mem. dec.)
Civil plenary. Reverses the entry of judgment against Brian Meyer for $27,828.81. Finds Meyer owes the estate of Laverne Meyer only $5,292.12. Also finds Thomas Meyer failed to establish that he had promised to repay the balance of Brian’s debts to Laverne. Remands with instructions to reduce the judgment against Brian to $5,292.12, which is the uncontested amount owed on the promissory note.

Patrick H. McDonald v. Mike Royer (mem. dec.)
Civil plenary. Affirms the entry of summary judgment in favor of Mike Royer in a dispute with Patrick H. McDonald. Finds McDonald violated numerous provisions of Indiana Appellate Rule 46, including the obligation to present cogent argument, so he has waived all issues for appeal. Also finds McDonald acted in procedural bad faith and, thus, grants Royer’s request for appellate attorney fees. Remands to the Allen Superior Court for a determination of appellate attorney fees owed to Royer.

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