OPINIONS ARE POSTED DAILY BETWEEN 10:00 and 11:00 a.m. Today is: [ Monday March 25, 2019 ] - - - - - NO OPINIONS HAVE BEEN POSTED TODAY The most recent opinions are for: [ 03/22/2019 ]  
DISCLAIMER:  The following unofficial case summaries are prepared by the clerk's office                            as a courtesy to the reader. They are not part of the opinion of the court.
172111P.pdf  03/22/2019  Dennis Thomas Thompson  v.  Nancy A. Berryhill
   U.S. Court of Appeals Case No:   17-2111
   U.S. District Court for the District of Minnesota - Minneapolis   
[PUBLISHED] [Colloton, Author, with Wollman and Benton, Circuit Judges] Civil case - Social Security. The district court did not err in dismissing claimant's action as the complaint was untimely and he failed to establish grounds for equitable tolling.
172492P.pdf  03/22/2019  Walter Engelhardt  v.  Qwest Corporation
   U.S. Court of Appeals Case No:   17-2492
   U.S. District Court for the District of Minnesota - Minneapolis   
[PUBLISHED] [Smith, Author, with Loken and Gruender, Circuit Judges] Civil case - Fair Labor Standards Act. In action alleging a FLSA retaliation claim, defendant provided a legitimate, non-retaliatory ground - lack of productivity - for terminating plaintiff, and he failed to show the stated ground was a pretext for retaliation for his participation in an earlier FLSA law suit; with respect to plaintiff's Minnesota Whistleblower's Act claim, the district court did not err in determining he was an independent contractor and lacked standing to bring the claim; claim for tortious interference was properly dismissed as neither defendant had violated federal or state law or committed an act that was independently tortious.
172567P.pdf  03/22/2019  Ronald Buckler  v.  United States
   U.S. Court of Appeals Case No:   17-2567
   U.S. District Court for the Western District of Missouri - St. Joseph   
[PUBLISHED] [Melloy, Author, with Benton and Grasz, Circuit Judges] Civil case - Federal Tort Claims Act. In suit alleging plaintiff's injuries were caused in part by a federal mine inspector's inadequate inspection of the mine where he worked, Missouri law provides that a negligent inspection can give rise to liability under Missouri's Good Samaritan doctrine; while this court has not dealt with the issue, the circuit courts which have addressed the claim have concluded that MSHA inspectors' duties involve elements of judgment, discretion and choice for purposes of the discretionary-function exception to FTCA liablity; with respect to the duties plaintiff alleges the inspector breached - disseminating safety information, inspecting equipment and observing all mining cycles, and reviewing worker training documentation - the discretionary-function exception applied to all of them with the exception of the inspector's duty to carry out a non-discretionary and mandatory review of training records; the case is remanded on this limited exception.
173658U.pdf  03/22/2019  United States  v.  Thomas Robert Page
   U.S. Court of Appeals Case No:   17-3658
   U.S. District Court for the District of Minnesota - St. Paul   
[UNPUBLISHED] [Per Curiam - Before Smith, Chief Judge, and Loken and Gruender, Circuit Judges] Criminal case - Sentencing. The district court's restitution order under the Mandatory Victims Restitution Act is affirmed as the decision to award restitution was not an abuse of discretion and the calculation of the award amount was not clearly erroneous.
173734U.pdf  03/22/2019  Darren Holter  v.  United States
   U.S. Court of Appeals Case No:   17-3734
   U.S. District Court for the District of North Dakota - Fargo   
[UNPUBLISHED] [Per Curiam - Before Wollman, Arnold and Benton, Circuit Judges] Prisoner case - Habeas. Denial of Section 2255 motion is vacated, and the matter is remanded to the district court to determine whether Holter has shown he was more likely than not sentenced as an armed career criminal under the residual clause. See Walker v. U.S., 900 F.3d 1012 (8th Cir. 2018). If Holter makes this showing, the court should determine if the error is harmless. If he fails to carry his burden, the Sec. 2255 motion should be denied.
181439P.pdf  03/22/2019  Corrie Nelson  v.  USAble Mutual Insurance Co.
   U.S. Court of Appeals Case No:   18-1439
   U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Arkansas - Pine Bluff   
[PUBLISHED] [Melloy, Author, with Benton and Kelly, Circuit Judges] Civil case - Civil rights. In this action alleging the defendant employer failed to promote plaintiff because of her race, the employer articulated a legitimate, non-discriminatory basis for its hiring selection and plaintiff failed to demonstrate that the stated reason was a pretext for discrimination.
181564U.pdf  03/22/2019  United States  v.  Martin Avalos-Rico
   U.S. Court of Appeals Case No:   18-1564
   U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Arkansas - Little Rock   
[UNPUBLISHED] [Per Curiam - Before Benton, Melloy and Kelly, Circuit Judges] Criminal case - Sentencing. In this prosecution for illegal reentry after deportation, the district court did not abuse its discretion in imposing a term of supervised release in order to provide an added measure of deterrence and protection based on the facts and circumstances of the case - see Guidelines Sec. 5D1.1(c); district court adequately explained its sentencing decision; bottom-of-the-guidelines sentence was not substantively unreasonable given defendant's extensive criminal record.
182183P.pdf  03/22/2019  United States  v.  Dashown Keys
   U.S. Court of Appeals Case No:   18-2183
   U.S. District Court for the District of South Dakota - Aberdeen   
[PUBLISHED] [Loken, Author, with Erickson, Circuit Judge, and Magnuson, District Judge] Criminal case - Criminal law and Sentencing. In this prosecution for aggravated sexual abuse of a child and two counts of abusive sexual contact of a child, the district court did not abuse its discretion in admitting evidence of another sexual assault of a minor as the act was committed in a similar manner and during the same time period as the charges; the probative value of the testimony outweighed the danger of unfair prejudice and the evidence was properly admitted under Rules 403 and 413; the district court's comment to the child witness "to try to answer the questions so that you can get off the stand" did not deprive defendant of his right to a fair trial before a neutral and impartial judicial officer; the court interjected itself only when the victim was struggling to deal with the situation and no reasonable juror would interpret the court's comment as favoring the prosecution; no error in limiting the testimony of a defense witness regarding a financial dispute between defendant and one victim's parents and his beliefs regarding defendant's reasons for giving gifts to the victim; district court adequately explained why it was denying defendant's motion for a variance to avoid sentencing disparities; the court has repeatedly refused to require district court judges to compare and contrast the defendant being sentencing with allegedly similar prior offenders; here, the court's justification for a 540-month sentence rests precisely on the kind of defendant-specific determinations which are within the special competence of sentencing courts.
182684U.pdf  03/22/2019  United States  v.  Robert Odell
   U.S. Court of Appeals Case No:   18-2684
   U.S. District Court for the Western District of Missouri - St. Joseph   
[UNPUBLISHED] [Per Curiam - Before Erickson, Wollman and Kobes, Circuit Judges] Criminal case - Criminal law. Anders case. Court would not consider claims of ineffective assistance of counsel in this direct appeal; defendant's other issues fell within the scope of his knowing and voluntary appeal waiver, and the appeal is dismissed.