First District Friday Roundup! 5/6/22

Today marks the final day of the Well-Being Week in Law. If you haven't had a chance, check out the other blog posts to see how you can work on self-care in your Law career.

State v. Antrell Lyles
Quote from Judge Bergeron:
A fender bender led to defendant-appellant Antrell Lyles’s convictions for an assured-distance violation, driving under suspension, and a hit-skip violation. Mr. Lyles now appeals, asserting that his guilty plea for driving under suspension violated Traf.R. 10(D), that the admission of his confession to the hit-skip violation contravened the corpus delicti rule, and that his convictions ran against the manifest weight of the evidence. We sustain Mr. Lyles’s challenge to his guilty plea, but otherwise we affirm the judgment of the trial court.

The trial court violated Traf.R. 10(D) by accepting defendant’s guilty plea to driving under suspension without informing him that his plea was a complete admission of guilt. 
      Defendant’s confession to a hit-skip violation did not contravene the corpus delicti rule where the state established that a license plate was lodged in the rear bumper of a vehicle that was at the scene of the accident.
Defendant’s convictions for a hit-skip violation and an assured-distance violation were not against the manifest weight of the evidence where testimony established that a license plate was lodged in the rear bumper of a vehicle at the scene, defendant responded to an investigatory letter regarding the accident, and defendant confessed to being in the accident.

Deer Park Roofing, Inc. vs. Thomas Douglas, et. al
Quote from Judge Bergeron:
This residential construction dispute involves a web of parties and claims. After plaintiff-appellee Deer Park Roofing, Inc., (“DPR”) sued defendant-appellant Conrad Oppt, d.b.a. Oppt Architecture and Construction (“Mr. Oppt”), he responded by lodging a third-party complaint against the owners of the property, defendants-appellees Thomas R. Douglas and Judith W. Douglas (“the Douglases”), along with defendant-appellee A Step Above Flooring & Installation, Inc., (“ASAF”). ASAF subsequently filed a counterclaim against Mr. Oppt and a crossclaim against the Douglases.

Where defendant filed a notice of appeal from an interlocutory order granting summary judgment, which left third party defendant’s crossclaim and counterclaim pending, appellate jurisdiction was lacking under App.R. 4(C) because that rule does not apply to appeals from interlocutory orders that are subsequently rendered final. 

Crown Asset Management v. Alan Gaynor
Quote from Judge Bock:
In October 2016, Gaynor obtained a personal loan from WebBank, via Prosper Funding, LLC, (“Prosper”), an online credit platform. In July 2018, WebBank assigned the loan to Prosper, which then assigned the loan to Crown.
Gaynor had made payments from October 2015 through January 2018, but he then defaulted. In May 2020, Crown sued Gaynor, seeking $2,933.98. Gaynor’s loan documents were attached to the complaint. Crown redacted account information from the attached promissory note.
Gaynor filed a letter to Crown as his answer, attaching another letter that discussed Crown’s proposed settlement. He did not deny that he had borrowed the money and defaulted, nor did he assert any defenses. Gaynor later filed a letter requesting an out-of-court settlement.
            The trial court did not err by granting summary judgment in favor of plaintiff where defendant failed to deny the allegations contained within plaintiff’s complaint and failed to file an objection to plaintiff’s motion for summary judgment; and, by failing to object to the magistrate’s decision to grant summary judgment, defendant waived all issues on appeal.

Hamilton County Treasurer vs. Kenneth Shane Scott, et. al
Quote from Judge Zayas:
On May 19, 2016, Treasurer initiated a tax foreclosure action against Scott, the unknown spouse of Scott, and Huntington Bank. Huntington Bank filed an answer, asserting an interest in the property “by way of certain mortgages.” Neither Scott nor the unknown spouse answered the complaint.
Following the entry of judgment in favor of Treasurer, the trial court ordered that the property be sold, and the property was sold on April 27, 2017. A decree of confirmation of the sale was entered by the trial court on May 11, 2017, and an entry distributing the sale proceeds was entered on June 2, 2017. The sale proceeds amounted to $12,700. Per the order of distribution, $1,026.70 was to be paid to the clerk of courts for court costs, $6,600.23 was to be paid to Treasurer for real estate taxes, and $5,073.07 was to be paid to the clerk of courts “to be held until further order of the court.”
The excess proceeds were deposited with the clerk of courts on June 29, 2017. Notice of the excess proceeds was issued via certified mail to Scott and the unknown spouse the following day. On August 18, 2017, the certified mail notice to the unknown spouse was returned unclaimed and another notice was issued via regular mail. On September 11, 2017, the certified mail notice to Scott was returned unclaimed and another notice was issued via regular mail.

Based on the particular facts and circumstances of the case, the trial court did not err in ordering the distribution of excess funds in a tax-foreclosure action to the defendant-owner where the trial court found that due process required notice to the owner of the excess funds and found that the owner did not receive such notice.