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Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Ind. Decisions - Supreme Court decides two today

In A.T. v. State of Indiana, a 3-page per curiam opinion concludes:

Transfer having been granted by separate order, we reverse the trial court’s dispositional order and remand to the trial court with instructions to vacate that portion of its order committing A.T. to the Department of Correction until his eighteenth birthday.
In Rickey D. Whitaker v. Travis M. Becker, an 11-page opinion, Chief Justice Shepard writes:
After an automobile collision in which Travis Becker struck Rickey Whitaker from behind, Whitaker filed suit for personal injuries.

Over the next year, Whitaker’s lawyer ignored repeated requests to provide information about his client’s medical treatment, finally responded only after the trial court ordered him to do so, and then supplied false and misleading information, and did so in a way that palpably damaged the defendant’s ability to ascertain the facts necessary to litigate the only real issue in the case.

Becker filed a motion for sanctions, seeking dismissal of Whitaker’s suit. The trial court found that both Whitaker and his lawyer had acted in bad faith and concluded that dismissal was the only realistic and effective remedy. It dismissed the case. We affirm. * * *

Magistrate Bobay and Judge Felts acted within the range of their discretion in making it clear to counsel that this type of behavior is unacceptable. We affirm the trial court.

Dickson and David, JJ., concur.
Sullivan, J., dissents, believing the analysis and conclusion of the Court of Appeals in this case to have been correct.
Rucker, J., dissents.

Posted by Marcia Oddi on January 18, 2012 03:38 PM
Posted to Ind. Sup.Ct. Decisions