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Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Ind. Decisions - Court of Appeals issues 2 opinion(s) today (and 12 NFP memorandum decision(s))

For publication opinions today (2):

In C.V. v. C.R. , a 9-page opinion, Judge Pyle writes:

C.V. appeals the trial court’s issuance of a protective order against him in favor of C.R. He argues that the trial court erred because C.R. did not produce sufficient evidence that he stalked her and, therefore, that a protective order was warranted. We agree and reverse the trial court’s decision. We remand with instructions to vacate the protective order against C.V. * * *

Based on our decision in Maurer, we conclude that C.R. did not produce sufficient evidence that C.V.’s contact with her constituted stalking. Although her testimony regarding the number of times C.V. contacted her was not vague, it is clear that his contact with her was relatively insignificant. He left notes on her car on four occasions, and an interval of seven months passed between two of the notes. C.V.’s contact can hardly be considered frequent. More significantly, though, as in Maurer, C.R. did not produce any evidence that she asked C.V. to stop sending her the notes or that he persisted after she asked him to stop. To the contrary, Officer Trama testified that C.V. did not send any notes once he contacted him and asked him to stop. * * *

[B]ecause there was no evidence that the contents of the notes were threatening, we cannot conclude that there was sufficient evidence that a reasonable person would have felt terrorized, frightened, intimidated, or threatened by C.V.’s acts under these circumstances. Accordingly, we conclude that C.V. has presented a prima facie case that C.R. did not produce sufficient evidence that C.V. stalked her. As a result, we reverse the trial court and remand with instructions for the trial court to vacate the protective order.

In Wendell Brown a/k/a Menes Ankh El v. State of Indiana , a 30-page opinion, Judge Riley writes:

Appellant-Defendant, Wendell Brown, now known as Menes Ankh-El1 (AnkhEl), appeals his conviction for burglary, a Class C felony, Ind. Code § 35-43-2-1 (2011); forgery, a Class C felony, I.C. § 35-43-5-2(b) (2011); and driving while suspended, a Class A misdemeanor, I.C. § 9-24-19-2 (2012). [2] We affirm. ISSUES [3] Ankh-El raises five issues on appeal, which we restate as follows: (1) Whether the trial court had subject matter jurisdiction over this case; (2) Whether the trial court denied Ankh-El the right to counsel in violation of the Sixth Amendment to the United States Constitution; (3) Whether the State presented sufficient evidence to support Ankh-El’s conviction for burglary, forgery, and driving while suspended beyond a reasonable doubt; (4) Whether the charging Information was defective; and (5) Whether the trial court committed fundamental error by exhibiting prejudice. * * *

When Forcum exited his vehicle, one of the men on the balcony—Ankh-El— inquired into Forcum’s presence. Forcum explained that he is a real estate broker, and, in response, Ankh-El identified himself as the new owner of the Property. Knowing this could not be the case given his exclusive listing rights, Forcum returned to his vehicle and drove away from the Property while calling the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department (IMPD).

Forcum waited at the end of the long driveway until IMPD officers arrived. Forcum apprised the officers of his concern that there was an individual squatting on the Property, and he provided the officers with his credentials and a copy of the listing agreement which identified him as the agent responsible for selling the Property. Thereafter, the officers proceeded down the driveway and observed Ankh-El and another male standing outside. The officers identified themselves and explained the nature of their visit. Ankh-El informed the officers that he had recently purchased the property for $250,000, and he acted perplexed as to why there would be any indication that the Property was still listed for sale. When asked for proof of his ownership, Ankh-El stated that he had such documentation at another location, so he locked the doors to the house and drove away from the Property while the officers and Forcum waited for him to return. During Ankh-El’s absence, one of the officers contacted the Marion County Assessor’s Office, which reported that the current owner of record for the Property was Bank of New York Mellon. A short while later, Ankh-El drove up to the Property on a black Yamaha motorcycle. Ankh-El provided the officers with an identification card with his name and photograph, which identified him as a “Moorish National” and listed his birthplace as Marion County, Indiana. (State’s Exh. 13). Ankh-El admitted that he had created the identification card himself and explained some of the history of the Moorish people; specifically, he “talked about [how] the laws of [the] land [do not] apply to Moorish Nationals.” (Tr. p. 216).

In addition, Ankh-El tendered a document to the officers entitled “FREEHOLD IN DEED.” (State’s Exh. 1). According to Ankh-El, this deed, which he had also created himself, evidenced his ownership rights in the Property. * * *

Based on the foregoing, we conclude that the trial court had subject matter jurisdiction over this case; the trial court did not violate Ankh-El’s Sixth Amendment right to counsel; the State presented sufficient evidence to support Ankh-El’s conviction for burglary, forgery, and driving while suspended beyond a reasonable doubt; the charging Information was not defective; and the trial court did not commit fundamental error

NFP civil decisions today (2):

In re the Paternity of E.E., J.E. v. T.C. (mem. dec.)

Michelle Powell v. Timothy Powell (mem. dec.)

NFP criminal decisions today (10):

M.P. v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)

State of Indiana v. Terrence L. Hawkins (mem. dec.)

State of Indiana v. Kenneth R. Trisler (mem. dec.)

William W. Bunner v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)

Anthony Stansbury v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)

Bryant Johnson v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)

Demeko Bradley v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)

Brian Burns v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)

Brent D. Mullis v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)

Tonya R. Crump v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)

Posted by Marcia Oddi on November 22, 2016 11:15 AM
Posted to Ind. App.Ct. Decisions