Alaska Supreme Court Decisions 2019

In Re Hospitalization of Linda M.  
Date: March 22, 2019
Docket Number: S-16841

Justia Opinion Summary: The district court found that a woman, "Linda M.," charged with several misdemeanors was incompetent to stand trial and committed her to a state hospital. The hospital later brought petitions in the superior court for ci...

In Re Hospitalization of Connor J.  
Date: March 22, 2019
Docket Number: S-16847

Justia Opinion Summary: Connor J. was living at a shelter for homeless youth, when his psychiatric condition allegedly began to deteriorate. A social worker filed a petition in superior court seeking authority to hospitalize Connor for evaluati...

Schacht v. Kunimune  
Date: March 15, 2019
Docket Number: S-16964

Justia Opinion Summary: A son opened joint checking and savings accounts with his father. A few years later the son was injured in a car accident, settled his claim against the other driver, and deposited the settlement check into his joint sav...

Reynolds-Rogers v. Alaska, Dept. of Health & Social Services  
Date: March 8, 2019
Docket Number: S-16409

Justia Opinion Summary: A former employee of the Department of Health and Social Services (DHSS), Terri Reynolds-Rogers, brought a wrongful discharge suit against the State. At the time of her termination she had four union grievances pending a...

Rosauer v. Manos  
Date: March 8, 2019
Docket Number: S-16678

Justia Opinion Summary: Chris and Jeanne Rosauer owned a home and underlying property in Girdwood across the municipal roadway from a home and underlying property owned by Thomas Manos and Jody Liddicoat (collectively, Manos). The Municipality...

Leahy v. Conant  
Date: March 8, 2019
Docket Number: S-16781

Justia Opinion Summary: Raymond Leahy was a prisoner at Goose Creek Correctional Center (Goose Creek). He was a practicing Muslim and identified himself as the Imam of the “Ummah of Incarcerated Alaskan Muslims.” He sued two prison superintende...

Eva H. v. Alaska, Dept. of Health & Social Services, Office of Children's Services  
Date: March 8, 2019
Docket Numbers: S-16796, S-16816

Justia Opinion Summary: The Office of Children’s Services (OCS) took custody of a three-month-old child after he was found outside alone on a cold winter day. The child’s mother had an alcohol abuse problem and had failed repeated attempts at t...

Violet C. v. State, Dept. of Health & Social Services, Office of Children's Services  
Date: March 1, 2019
Docket Numbers: S-17038, S-17066

Justia Opinion Summary: The superior court terminated a mother’s and father’s parental rights, finding their two children were in need of aid based on abandonment, incarceration, risk of domestic violence, and substance abuse. The court also de...

Regulatory Commission of Alaska v. Matanuska Electric Association, Inc.  
Date: February 22, 2019
Docket Numbers: S-15944, S-15973

Justia Opinion Summary: Electrical utilities entered into agreements for the purchase and transmission of energy from a hydroelectric project to utilities in distant service areas. Legislation exempted the agreements from the review or approval...

Saffir v. Wheeler  
Date: February 22, 2019
Docket Number: S-17012

Justia Opinion Summary: A mother wanted to relocate with her daughter from Alaska to New York. She sought primary custody, alleging that the father’s drinking and busy schedule made him an improper guardian for their two-year-old. The superior...

Alaska v. Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest  
Date: February 15, 2019
Docket Number: S-16123

Justia Opinion Summary: A 2014 statute and 2013 regulation re-defined which abortions qualified as “medically necessary” for the purposes of Medicaid funding. The statute defined medically necessary abortions as those that “must be performed to...

Bjorn-Roli v. Mulligan  
Date: February 15, 2019
Docket Numbers: S-16607, S-16897

Justia Opinion Summary: Two sisters were beneficiaries of their late parents trusts: one was trustee of the trusts and president of the family corporation; the other sister was a shareholder of the family corporation. The latter sister dispu...

Bill S. v. State, Dept. of Health & Social Services, Office of Children's Services  
Date: February 15, 2019
Docket Numbers: S-16998, S-17002

Justia Opinion Summary: Bill and Clara are the parents of Noah and Olwen, ages 12 and 5 at the time of the termination trial. Noah and Olwen were Indian children within the meaning of the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) based on their affiliati...

Fannon v. Polo  
Date: February 8, 2019
Docket Number: S-16724

Justia Opinion Summary: In April 2014 Link Fannon acquired the property at issue in this appeal, along with a well and water system, from an owner subsequent to June Scheele’s 1998 transaction. The deed to Fannon made no mention of a Greenbelt...

Unisea, Inc. v. Morales  
Date: February 8, 2019
Docket Numbers: S-16851, S-16861

Justia Opinion Summary: An employer asked medical specialists to evaluate a worker with injuries to different body systems arising out of one work-related accident. The doctors gave two separate opinions, almost a year apart, about final medica...

Allstate Insurance Company v. Kenick  
Date: January 25, 2019
Docket Number: S-16509

Justia Opinion Summary: In 2002, Charles Herron, who was under the influence of alcohol and not old enough to legally possess or consume it, was involved in a single-vehicle accident in Bethel, Alaska A 15-year-old passenger in Herron’s vehicle...

Alaska v. Thompson  
Date: January 25, 2019
Docket Numbers: S-16624, S-16643

Justia Opinion Summary: Dana Thompson was convicted of 13 counts of first degree sexual abuse of a minor and 4 counts of second degree sexual abuse of a minor stemming from a 4-year sexual relationship with the daughter of a family friend. The...

In Re Hospitalization of Connor J.  
Date: January 18, 2019
Docket Number: S-16847

Justia Opinion Summary: The superior court issued a 30-day involuntary commitment order after finding that respondent Connor J was gravely disabled and there were no less restrictive alternatives to hospitalization. The respondent appealed, arg...

In Re Hospitalization of Naomi B.  
Date: January 11, 2019
Docket Numbers: S-15859, S-16467

Justia Opinion Summary: Two separate appeals from involuntary commitment orders, brought by two appellants, one of whom also appealed a related involuntary medication order were consolidated for the Alaska Supreme Court's review. The challenged...

Alaska v. Sharpe  
Date: January 4, 2019
Docket Numbers: S-16191, S-16193, S-16214, S-16449

Justia Opinion Summary: In three criminal cases consolidated for appeal, each defendant sought to introduce expert testimony by a polygraph examiner that the defendant was truthful when he made exculpatory statements relating to the charges aga...

Bravo v. Aker  
Date: January 4, 2019
Docket Number: S-16914

Justia Opinion Summary: Plaintiffs-appellants were an adult daughter (believed to be incompetent) and her mother. After retaining counsel, the mother brought a tort action as the daughter’s next friend for in utero injuries to the daughter, whi...

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