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Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Ind. Decisions - Court of Appeals issues 1 today (and 8 NFP)

For publication opinions today (1):

In Cynthia Sugg v. State of Indiana, an 18-page opinion, Judge Kirsch concludes:

In sum, the police officers had compelling evidence that Sugg and her residence were involved in the manufacture of methamphetamine. They approached Sugg outside her residence and asked her questions about her recent pseudoephedrine purchase. The officers developed probable cause from Sugg’s untruthful and contradictory answers and the observation of two precursors in plain view on the back porch. At that time, the officers decided to obtain a search warrant and needed to secure the scene while they waited for the warrant. The fact that Detective Smith would not allow Sugg to enter the residence without an escort before the warrant could be obtained was not unreasonable. This conduct was a minimal intrusion upon Sugg’s ordinary activities in light of the risk of destruction of evidence or obtaining a weapon. Law enforcement officials had substantial need to protect themselves during their investigation and to prevent the destruction of evidence while they secured a search warrant. In short, the police officers’ conduct was reasonable throughout the investigation, and we conclude that the trial court properly admitted the evidence at trial. * * *

[Some facts from the beginning of the opinion] In 2012, Sugg and her husband, Gary Wynn (“Wynn”), lived in a rented farm house that was located in a rural area in Harrison County, Indiana. * * * On February 16, 2012, Sugg and Wynn each purchased a forty-eight count box of pseudoephedrine pills from the same Walgreen’s store in New Albany, Indiana within five minutes of each other. * * * On February 17, 2012, Indiana State Police Detective Katrina Smith (“Detective Smith”), with the methamphetamine suppression unit, obtained information from the National Pseudoephedrine Log Exchange (“NPLEx”) that Suggs and Wynn had made the pseudoephedrine purchases the previous day. When she saw these transactions, she remembered her participation in a prior investigation in June 2011, where Sugg and Wynn had been charged with manufacturing methamphetamine. Detective Smith and her supervisor, Sergeant Paul Andry (“Sergeant Andry”) decided to conduct a “knock and talk” at Sugg’s residence based on this information.

NFP civil opinions today (2):

In Re the Termination of the Parent-Child Relationship of K.C. (Minor Child) and J.P. (Father) v. Indiana Department of Child Services (NFP)

Hubbard Hill Estates, Inc., v. R. Wyatt Mick, Jr., individually and, as personal representative of the Estate of Harriet M. Seilon, Deceased (NFP)

NFP criminal opinions today (6):

Michael Simpson v. State of Indiana (NFP)

Zane Payton v. State of Indiana (NFP)

Christopher Battishill v. State of Indiana (NFP)

Robert P. Benavides v. State of Indiana (NFP)

Donte Carter v. State of Indiana (NFP)

Robert L. Pickens v. State of Indiana (NFP)

Posted by Marcia Oddi on July 24, 2013 10:08 AM
Posted to Ind. App.Ct. Decisions