Opinions March 9, 2023

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The following Indiana Supreme Court opinion was posted after IL deadline on Wednesday:

In the Matter of Robert McMahon
Attorney discipline. Suspends Robert McMahon from the practice of law in Indiana for at least two years without automatic reinstatement. Finds McMahon committed attorney misconduct by possessing child pornography. Chief Justice Loretta Rush and Justice Mark Massa dissent without separate opinion, believe disbarment is warranted.

Thursday opinions

Court of Appeals of Indiana

Indiana Office of Utility Consumer Counselor, Duke Industrial Group, and Citizens Action Coalition of Indiana, Inc. v. Duke Energy Indiana, LLC, and Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission
Agency action. Affirms the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission’s grant of Duke Energy Indiana LLC’s petition for approval of a six-year plan for transmission, distribution and storage system improvements pursuant to Indiana Code § 8-1-39-10(a). Finds the IURC neither misapplied the challenged section of the TDSIC statute nor failed to make necessary factual findings.

Jordan Brewer, Mark Timmons, and Josh Uitts, in Their Official Capacities as Commissioners of Clinton County v. Clinton County Sheriff’s Office and Richard Kelly, in his Official Capacity as Sheriff of Clinton County
Civil plenary. Affirms the denial of Jordan Brewer, Mark Timmons and Josh Uitts’ motion to correct error filed following the Montgomery Superior Court’s grant of summary judgment in favor of the Clinton County Sheriff’s Office and Richard Kelly, in his official capacity as sheriff of Clinton County. Finds Order 2021-05 does not apply to the activity of prisoners in the county jail, so the trial court did not err when it granted summary judgment in favor of the sheriff’s office and did not abuse its discretion when it denied the commissioners’ motion to correct error.

Lucy Chindia, Firstaround Consulting, LLC, Galaxy Healthcare Services, LLC, Daouda (David) Ganiou, and Bolaji Gbadamosi v. Uniquehab Solutions, LLC (mem. dec.)
Civil plenary. Affirms the order determining Allen County was the appropriate venue for UniqueHabe Solutions LLC’s cause of action. Finds the Allen Superior Court did not abuse its discretion by denying a motion to transfer venue.

Demarcus D. Bush v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)
Criminal. Reverses Demarcus Bush’s conviction of Level 3 felony rape. Finds Bush has shown that the Marion Superior Court committed fundamental error when it excluded him from the proceedings during which the jury was instructed. Remands with instructions to vacate the conviction and hold a new trial.

Joseph Alford v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)
Criminal. Affirms Joseph Alford’s convictions of Level 4 felony possession of a firearm by a serious violent felon, Class A misdemeanor resisting law enforcement and Class B misdemeanor leaving the scene of an accident. Finds the St. Joseph Superior Courts did not commit fundamental error when it answered the jury’s questions or when it refused to define “possession.”

In re the Termination of the Parent-Child Relationship of: B.H. (Minor Child), and J.D. (Mother) v. Indiana Department of Child Services (mem. dec.)
Juvenile termination of parental rights. Affirms the termination of mother J.D.’s parental rights to B.H. Finds that even if J.D. had not waived her due process argument, she has not established that the Department of Child Services violated her due process rights. Also finds the record supports the Marion Superior Court’s findings that the conditions that resulted in B.H.’s removal will not be remedied, and that termination is in B.H.’s best interest. Finally, finds the trial court did not err in concluding that DCS had a satisfactory plan in place for the care and treatment of B.H.

Anita Bryant v. Delaware County Auditor and Delaware County Treasurer (mem. dec.)
Tax sale. Dismisses Anita Bryant’s appeal of the denial of her objection to the tax sale of certain real estate in favor of the Delaware County auditor and treasurer. Finds Bryant has no standing to bring the appeal.

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