COA 2009 Minutes: November 25, 2009 (Nos. 1205-1224)

COA 2009 Minutes: November 25, 2009 (Nos. 1205-1224) – updated link!

  • 20 decisions
  • 3 published

Published Decisions with digest and link to full text decision at AOC

1206 – FAMILY LAW (OUT OF STATE ADOPTION VS. IN-STATE CUSTODY, DE FACTO CUSTODIAN, CASE OF FIRST IMPRESSION)
WILLIAMS VS. BITTEL

OPINION AFFIRMING
** ** ** ** ** BEFORE: ACREE AND CLAYTON, JUDGES; HARRIS,1 SENIOR JUDGE.

HARRIS, SENIOR JUDGE: Aimee and Matt Williams appeal from a Daviess Family Court order entered on December 6, 2007, denying their petition to modify custody and cross-appeal from an order entered May 5, 2008, denying their motion to reconsider the petition. Timothy Bittel appeals from an order entered on May 5, 2008, denying his petition to modify custody and to stay a foreign judgment. These appeals present our Court with three issues of first impression:2 (1) Whether an out-of-state adoption preempts Kentucky custody orders; (2) Whether a de facto custodian who is granted joint custody rights must continuously meet the de facto custodial requirements in order to maintain standing in custody proceedings; and (3) Whether the Daviess Circuit Court could properly condition its deference to the Georgia courts on M.K.’s custody and visitation by providing that its prior orders regarding Mr. Bittel’s joint custodianship and visitation with M.K. are not affected. After considering the record, the briefs, and counsels’ oral arguments, we conclude that the answer to the first two questions is “No” and the answer to the third question is “Yes.” Hence, we affirm the Daviess Circuit Court.

1211 – CRIMINAL – DUI, PBT
HOPPENJANS V. COMMONWEALTH OF KY
OPINION AFFIRMING
** ** ** ** ** BEFORE: STUMBO, THOMPSON, AND WINE, JUDGES.

WINE, JUDGE: Following a jury trial in the Carroll District Court, Thomas R. Hoppenjans (“Hoppenjans”) was convicted of one count of operating a motor vehicle under the influence of alcohol, first offense (“DUI”). He appealed to the circuit court, arguing that he was entitled to a mistrial after the arresting officer testified that Hoppenjans had refused to take a preliminary breath test (“PBT”). The circuit court affirmed, finding that the trial court’s admonishment to the jury was sufficient to cure the error. This Court granted discretionary review of the circuit court’s order. Finding no abuse of discretion, we affirm.

1222 – GOVERNMENT DISABILITY RETIREMENT BENEFITS
KENTUCKY RETIREMENT SYSTEMS VS. ROBB
OPINION AFFIRMING
** ** ** ** ** BEFORE: CLAYTON, DIXON, AND THOMPSON, JUDGES.

DIXON, JUDGE: Kentucky Retirement Systems (“KERS”) appeals a decision of the Franklin Circuit Court reversing KERS’s Board of Trustees’ (“the Board”) final order denying Linda Robb’s application for disability retirement benefits. We affirm.

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