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Monday, March 04, 2013

Ind. Decisions - Court of Appeals issues 1 today (and 6 NFP)

For publication opinions today (1):

In Michael Williams, Jr. v. State of Indiana , a 16-page opinion, Judge Vaidik writes:

Michael Williams, Jr., appeals his convictions for Class B felony burglary, Class B felony conspiracy to commit burglary, and Class C felony carrying a handgun without a license. During his jury trial, a deluge of Williams’ prior criminal acts were admitted into evidence without objection and used by the State to argue Williams’ propensity to commit the crimes for which he was charged. Because of this, we find that Williams’ trial counsel’s performance was deficient. We also find that Williams was prejudiced by his counsel’s deficient performance, so we reverse and remand for a new trial. * * *

Williams argues that his trial counsel was deficient by failing to object under Indiana Evidence Rule 404(b) to the admission into evidence of his previous bad acts and convictions. We agree. * * *

The extent of the prior bad acts admitted into evidence at Williams’ trial was breathtaking. Evidence of his felony conviction for possession of cocaine and a firearm – a conviction not admissible for impeachment under Indiana Evidence Rule 609 – was disclosed. Evidence of his previous arrest for possession of marijuana, possession of a controlled substance, and carrying a handgun without a license was also admitted. State’s Ex 27-29. The jury learned that Williams had marijuana in his system and possessed heroin, guns, and a stolen IMPD taser while he was on home detention. Tr. p. 252-53, 260. And the jury learned of unspecified burglaries, robberies, and trafficking in weapons that Williams admitted to Officer Wolfe that he had committed. Id. at 260.

NFP civil opinions today (2):

In Re the Involuntary Termination of S.H. and E.H., N.H. v. The Indiana Department of Child Services and Lake County Court Appointed Special Advocate (NFP)

In Re the Involuntary Termination of the Parent-Child Relationship of T.J.: S.J. v. The Indiana Department of Child Services and Child Advocates, Inc. (NFP)

NFP criminal opinions today (4):

Antonio Highbaugh v. State of Indiana (NFP)

David S. Healey v. State of Indiana (NFP)

Anthoney D. Coveleski v. State of Indiana (NFP)

Glenda Howell v. State of Indiana (NFP)

Posted by Marcia Oddi on March 4, 2013 10:35 AM
Posted to Ind. App.Ct. Decisions