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Tuesday, February 15, 2005

Ind. Decisions - 7th Circuit posts five today

In re: v. USA (ND Ill.) [8 pp.]

Before EASTERBROOK, MANION, and KANNE, Circuit Judges.
PER CURIAM. * * * The petition for a writ of mandamus is granted, and the district court is directed to close its investigation into the proceedings that occurred before Chief Judge Kocoras in December 2003. The Office of Professional Responsibility is free to proceed as it chooses, but it need not investigate at the behest of the Judicial Branch—nor are its findings (if it conducts an investigation voluntarily) to be reported to the Judicial Branch. This is a matter for the Executive Branch to handle internally using its own judgment. Because we have halted the district court’s inquest, we need not discuss any of the other issues on which the U.S. Attorney, the civil litigants, and the district judge have exchanged opposing views.

[Update 2/16/05 - The Chicago Tribune has an article today on the ruling. The lead: " Saying a federal judge overstepped his authority, an appeals court in Chicago on Tuesday ordered a halt to the judge's inquiry into whether a federal prosecutor committed a crime by violating grand jury secrecy rules."]

Fenje, Paul v. Feld, James (ND Ill.) [15 pp.]

Before COFFEY, WILLIAMS, and SYKES, Circuit Judges.
SYKES, Circuit Judge. Dr. Paul Fenje was accepted into the anesthesiology residency program at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC). Shortly thereafter, but before the residency began, the program’s director learned that Dr. Fenje had been terminated from a previous residency because of questions about his competency. Based on his lack of candor in the application process (he had not disclosed his dismissal from the prior residency), Dr. Fenje was dismissed from the UIC program. Fenje responded with this lawsuit against the program’s director, Dr. James Feld, alleging that the termination of his residency violated his due process and equal protection rights under the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution. The district court granted summary judgment to the defendant and Fenje appeals. We affirm.

Kupstas, Rodney v. City of Greenwood (SD Ind., Richard L. Young, Judge) [12 pp.]

Before FLAUM, Chief Judge, and EASTERBROOK and WILLIAMS, Circuit Judges.
FLAUM, Chief Judge. Plaintiff-appellant Rodney Kupstas filed suit alleging that defendant-appellee City of Greenwood violated the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”), 42 U.S.C. § 12101 et seq., in terminating his employment. Following the district court’s grant of summary judgment in favor of Greenwood, Kupstas appealed. For the reasons stated herein, we affirm.

Solon, James D. v. Kaplan, Larry S. (ND Ill.) [11 pp.]

Before FLAUM, Chief Judge, and BAUER and WILLIAMS, Circuit Judges.
FLAUM, Chief Judge. James Solon filed this suit under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42 U.S.C. § 2000e et seq., alleging that his former law partners Larry Kaplan, Robert von Ohlen, and Fred Begy terminated his interest in their firm in retaliation for his opposition to sexual harassment. The district court granted summary judgment in favor of defendants, concluding inter alia that Kaplan was not an “employee” as defined by 42 U.S.C. § 2000e-3(a) and therefore not protected by Title VII. For the reasons stated herein, we affirm.

Barrow, Ronald v. Hinsley, Charles (ND Ill.) [21 pp.]

Before CUDAHY, ROVNER and WOOD, Circuit Judges.
PER CURIAM. Petitioner Ronald Barrow, serving a life sentence for murder in an Illinois correctional facility, appeals the district court’s denial of his habeas corpus petition under 28 U.S.C. § 2254. Barrow alleges, inter alia, that since his trial counsel failed to present any evidence in defense and committed several other errors during state proceedings, he was denied effective assistance of counsel in violation of his rights under the Sixth Amendment to the United States Constitution. Barrow claims that the Illinois Supreme Court’s determination that his trial counsel’s performance (1) was not objectively deficient and (2) did not prejudice Barrow constituted an unreasonable application of Supreme Court precedent. The district court found these contentions unpersuasive. We affirm.

Posted by Marcia Oddi on February 15, 2005 02:00 PM
Posted to Ind. (7th Cir.) Decisions