U.S. Tenth Circuit - The FindLaw 10th Circuit Court of Appeals Opinion Summaries Blog

March 2013 Archives

FCRA, FDCPA Plaintiff Left With Diarrhea, One Claim Standing

Younger generations are going to look back at these mortgage foreclosure cases with nothing but utter confusion. It seems in every case, a mortgage is passed around more than a certain illicit substance at Snoop Lion concert.

In this case, Glen Llewellyn was a bit miffed after a series of mortgage holders and services reported naughty things to the credit agencies regarding his defaulted/not-defaulted loan. (He refinanced while the loan was being sold to someone else, the money got lost for a bit ... it happens).

No Immunity for Social Worker When Inaction 'Shocked Conscience'

The Crosettos are the grandparents of two minors, BIC and CSC. Their son, the father of the children, lived with a methamphetamine-addicted girlfriend. When the grandparents began to notice signs of abuse, they contacted social services. The school also took notice, and reported its suspicions. Even the babysitter contacted the child services hotline after noticing a busted lip with stitches, a black eye, and random bruising on BIC.

Linda Gillen was the social worker assigned to the case. She had history with the family, including negative events that happened in the early-1980s, when the Crosettos adopted their daughter Angela. Gillen allegedly ignored the problem, dismissed the grandparents' complaints by stating that this was a "police matter," and generally did nothing whatsoever to help the children. Over the following year, there were even more attempts to force action by Gillen, but alas, her inaction continued.

Pleadings, Paperwork Doom Mortgage Foreclosure Lawsuit

We'll never know if the Toones' claims were valid. Well, we have a pretty good idea, actually, thanks to the court's dicta on the matter, but we can't help but wonder if they would've had a chance to adduce additional evidence that would've supported their claims had they made it to discovery. Instead, their case becomes another reminder as to the importance of proper pleading and paperwork.

The Toones' mortgage, like many others in this historic recession, went into foreclosure. It was passed around between banks, like children playing "hot potato." They attempted to save their home through a "Home Affordable Modification Program Loan Trial Period (HAMP) Agreement and by suing every bank and lawyer that ever came into contact with the mortgage. The lawsuit was eventually transferred to federal court and dismissed via 12(b)(6).

The Wire: Is Cell Phone GPS Tapping a Search?

Samuel Barajas is an unhappy drug smuggler. He was sentenced to multiple life sentences, followed by more prison time and supervised release (stand guard at the mausoleum!), after getting caught up in an investigation of Jesus Dominguez, the leader of the drug ring. Though the ring initially targeted and tapped the phones of Dominguez, the investigators eventually learned about a mysterious figure named "Samy," later identified as Samuel Barajas.

The investigators sought wiretaps on Barajas' phone. Though the requested wiretaps for Barajas did not ask for GPS (the ones for Dominguez did), the court's orders authorized the use of GPS pinging, which uses cell phone signals and GPS chips to locate the phone. The GPS technique eventually led investigators to drugs and money in Kansas City, as well as Barajas, who was in San Diego.

Will 10th's Concealed Carry Ruling, Circuit Split, Lead to SCOTUS?

The Tenth Circuit’s ruling in Peterson v. Martinez that the right to bear arms does not extend to concealed carry places it squarely in conflict with the Seventh Circuit, who released an update to their own concealed carry decision last week as well.

As a national trend, concealed carry permits have gone from heavily restricted to extremely permissive (Illinois was the last “no issue” state standing until the 7th Circuit intervened). As the number of states with loosening laws have exploded, and moderate “may issue” laws have been challenged in New York and Maryland, with varying results, the Circuit Courts themselves have come to conflicting conclusions.

It’s all pointing to one thing: Supreme Court Showdown.