UPDATES & ANALYSIS

4.06

A dozen cases to be submitted to Iowa Supreme Court this week without oral argument

by Rox Laird | April 6, 2020

Twelve cases will be submitted to the Iowa Supreme Court this week without oral argument. The Supreme Court and Court of Appeals are not hearing oral arguments through July 13 under a supervisory order issued by Chief Justice Susan Christensen on April 2 in response to the coronavirus pandemic. The appellate courts may, at their discretion, conduct oral arguments via video- or teleconferences.

Following are brief descriptions of the 12 cases to be submitted to the Supreme Court this week. Go to On Brief’s Cases in the Pipeline page to read the parties’ briefs.

State v. Beres

Criminal judgment

Chance Ryan Beres appeals Poweshiek District Court denial of his motion to dismiss four counts of arson because prosecution is barred by an earlier plea agreement.

Gries v. Ames Ecumenical Housing

Premises liability

Debra Gries appeals Story County District Court dismissal on summary judgment of her injury claims from a fall on ice on defendant’s apartment property. District Court erred in applying the continuing storm doctrine. The Iowa Defense Counsel Association, Iowa Insurance Institute and Iowa Association of Business and industry filed a brief in support of defendant-appellee.

Logan v. Bon Ton Stores and Liberty Mutual

Workers’ compensation

Christy Logan appeals Johnson County District Court dismissal of her petition for review of an adverse Workers’ Compensation Commissioner ruling regarding her claim for workers’ compensation benefits.

State v. Damme

Criminal sentencing

Mercedes JoJean Damme challenges her sentence following a guilty plea in Grundy County District Court to third degree theft, and she asserts the trial court erred in failing to advise her of the right to file a motion in arrest of judgment.

Breese v. City of Burlington

Negligence

Kathryn Marie Breese and her daughter E.B. appeal Des Moines County District Court summary judgment dismissal of their negligence claim against the City of Burlington for injuries from a fall from a box sewer on defendant’s bike path because plaintiffs’ claims were barred by the public-duty doctrine, and defendant was immune from liability under a state-of-the-art defense.

State v. Henderson

Criminal sentencing

Bryan Dwight Henderson appeals Linn County District Court prison sentence following his Alford plea to indecent contact with a child because trial court failed to make sufficient findings on the record to support the sentence.

State v. Chapman

Criminal sentencing

Chad Richard Chapman seeks further review of Court of Appeals decision affirming in part and vacating in part his appeal of Polk County judgment and sentence following his guilty plea to child endangerment.

State v. Jane Doe

Records expungement

Appellant appeals Polk County District Court denial of her application for expungement of dismissed forgery charges due to Doe’s court-ordered obligations in other cases.

State v. John Doe

Records expungement

Appellant appeals Polk County District Court’s denial of his motion for expungement of dismissed escape-from-custody charges because he had unpaid court-ordered financial obligations in other cases.

State v. Jane Doe

Records expungement

Appellant appeals Polk County District Court denial of Doe’s motion of expungement of dismissed assault, domestic abuse, and OWI charges because she had unpaid court-ordered financial obligations in other cases.

In re the marriage of Mann

Divorce

Andrea Mann seeks further review of Court of Appeals decision modifying the divorce decree awarding Steven Mann monthly spousal support for three years and affirming the Dickinson County District Court’s division of property.

Christensen v. Iowa Department of Revenue

Tax assessment

John and Lila Christensen appeal Winneshiek County District Court decision affirming Iowa Department of Revenue assessment of the Christensens’ farm income based on the extent of their participation in the farming activity under the department’s cash-rent rule. Appellants challenge the department’s application of the rule and argue the rule violates their right to equal protection.

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