Alaska Supreme Court Decisions 2019

Alaska Public Defender Agency v. Superior Court  
Date: October 11, 2019
Docket Number: S-16983

Justia Opinion Summary: A juvenile from a small village could not afford to travel to the site of his juvenile delinquency proceeding. His attorney with the Public Defender Agency (the Agency) filed a motion asking the superior court to require...

Collins v. Hall  
Date: September 27, 2019
Docket Number: S-16795

Justia Opinion Summary: This case arose from a boundary dispute between the Collinses and the Halls, who were adjoining property owners in a recreational subdivision on an island near Juneau, Alaska. The Collinses alleged that structures on the...

Taffe v. First National Bank of Alaska  
Date: September 27, 2019
Docket Number: S-16854

Justia Opinion Summary: Borrowers brought suit alleging that their lending bank had engaged in fraudulent real estate lending practices. The bank responded that statutes of limitations barred the borrowers’ fraud claims. Following an evidentiar...

In the Matter of the Necessity for the Hospitalization of G.L.  
Date: September 27, 2019
Docket Number: S-16928

Justia Opinion Summary: In 2015, then-21-year-old G.L. was arrested after allegedly firing a loaded shotgun at buildings and people in his village. G.L. faced criminal charges related to the shooting, but the superior court ultimately ruled him...

Perry v. Perry  
Date: September 27, 2019
Docket Number: S-17184

Justia Opinion Summary: Adam and Kyoko Perry married in November 2005 and had two minor children. For the latter part of their marriage, Kyoko handled the couple’s finances. Kyoko continued her education while married, obtaining a bachelor’s de...

Anthony V. Bennett v. Eugenia Bennett (Unpublished)
Date: September 25, 2019
Docket Number: S-17323
In the Matter of the Necessity of the Hospitalization of Lucy G.  
Date: September 13, 2019
Docket Number: S-16697

Justia Opinion Summary: In a case of first impression for the Alaska Supreme Court, at issue was the use of electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) to a catatonic, non-consenting patient. In March 2017, police officers found Lucy G. in an Anchorage par...

Farthest North Girl Scout Council v. Girl Scouts of the United States of America  
Date: September 13, 2019
Docket Number: S-17144

Justia Opinion Summary: The Board of Directors of the Girl Scouts of the United States of America increased the amount of annual membership dues. Farthest North Girl Scout Council, its executive director, and the chair of its board of directors...

Haight,v. City & Borough of Juneau  
Date: September 6, 2019
Docket Number: S-16903

Justia Opinion Summary: A minor died in a motorized watercraft accident on a lake managed in part by a municipality: the State owned the lake but shared management authority with the City. State law at the relevant time allowed motorized waterc...

Jeremy L. Engeberg v. Amy M. Engeberg (Unpublished)
Date: September 4, 2019
Docket Number: S-17244
Smith v. Alaska, Department of Corrections  
Date: August 30, 2019
Docket Number: S-16711

Justia Opinion Summary: Two prisoners in Alaska Department of Corrections’ (DOC) custody were placed in administrative segregation pending an investigation and disciplinary proceedings related to an alleged escape attempt. The disciplinary deci...

Ross v. Alaska Human Rights Commission  
Date: August 30, 2019
Docket Number: S-16961

Justia Opinion Summary: After 36 years of service with the Alaska Railroad Corporation, most of those years as a conductor, Harry Ross, an African-American man, applied for a newly created managerial trainmaster position, but he was not chosen....

Tobar v. Remington Holdings LP  
Date: August 30, 2019
Docket Number: S-17027

Justia Opinion Summary: A hotel housekeeper injured her back while lifting a pile of linens. Her employer challenged her application for benefits based on an examining doctor’s opinion that she was medically stable and that the job injury was n...

Annette H. v. Alaska, Department of Health & Social Services, Office of Children's Services  
Date: August 30, 2019
Docket Number: S-17290

Justia Opinion Summary: Mother, Anette H., appealed the termination of her parental rights to her son, who was found to be a child in need of aid based on a hair follicle test positive for controlled substances. She argued that without proof th...

D.C. (Father) v State of Alaska, DHSS, OCS (Unpublished)
Date: August 28, 2019
Docket Number: S-17230
McCavit v. Lacher  
Date: August 16, 2019
Docket Number: S-16715

Justia Opinion Summary: Jerry and Brenda McCavit built a dock extending into Wasilla Lake from their upland property. Their neighbors, Barbara and Louis Lacher, sued the McCavits claiming the dock unreasonably interfered with their riparian rig...

Leahy v. Conant  
Date: August 16, 2019
Docket Number: S-16866

Justia Opinion Summary: An inmate representing himself sued the prison superintendent and chaplain for violating his religious rights by providing an inadequate halal diet, banning scented prayer oils, and not allowing him to have additional re...

Hall v. Hall  
Date: August 16, 2019
Citation: 446 P.3d 781
Docket Number: S-16973

Justia Opinion Summary: In a divorce case, the superior court divided the marital estate equally. The estate included the marital home and an adjoining lot, which the spouses agreed should be sold. The husband remained in the home after the wif...

Black v. Whitestone Estates Condominium HOA, et al.  
Date: August 16, 2019
Citation: 446 P.3d 786
Docket Number: S-16986

Justia Opinion Summary: For several years two condominium owners withheld a portion of their dues in protest. Then beginning in 2014, they sent the condominium association several payments, with instructions to apply them to recent debts and cu...

Darryl W. (Father) v. State of Alaska DHSS, OCS (Unpublished)
Date: August 14, 2019
Docket Number: S-17186
Sirpa Gorman v. Michael Gorman (Unpublished)
Date: August 14, 2019
Docket Number: S-17300
Graham v. Municipality of Anchorage  
Date: August 9, 2019
Citation: 446 P.3d 349
Docket Number: S-16905

Justia Opinion Summary: Jeff Graham was employed as a firefighter/EMT by the Anchorage Fire Department (AFD). He worked for AFD since 1995 and has held his then-current position since 2003. After taking AFD’s engineer promotional exam in 2010,...

Diamond III v. Platinum Jaxx, Inc.  
Date: August 9, 2019
Citation: 446 P.3d 341
Docket Number: S-16908

Justia Opinion Summary: John Diamond, III was assaulted and sustained severe injuries while a patron at Platinum Jaxx, a restaurant and bar. He filed suit against Platinum Jaxx, Inc., its landlord, and his assailant, Noel Bungay. A default was...

Fantasies on 5th Avenue, LLC. v. Alaska Alcoholic Beverage Control Board  
Date: August 9, 2019
Citation: 446 P.3d 360
Docket Number: S-16981

Justia Opinion Summary: After an Anchorage strip club applied to have its liquor license renewed the Alcohol and Beverage Control Board received multiple objections to the renewal. Former employees, the Department of Labor, and the Municipality...

In re: Cook Inlet Energy, LLC, Gebhardt, v. Inman  
Date: August 9, 2019
Docket Number: S-17043

Justia Opinion Summary: Two federal district courts certified questions of law to the Alaska Supreme Court involving the state’s “mineral dump lien” statute. In 1910, the United States Congress passed Alaska’s first mineral dump lien statute, g...

Schwier v. Schwier  
Date: August 9, 2019
Citation: 446 P.3d 354
Docket Number: S-17138

Justia Opinion Summary: A father appealed a superior court’s denial of his motion to modify child support, arguing his house arrest while awaiting trial on federal charges should have been considered involuntary unemployment for purposes of cal...

Andrea Lee Rosenberg v Fred Rosenberg (Unpublished)
Date: August 7, 2019
Docket Number: S-16968
J.B. (Mother) v State of Alaska, DHSS, OCS (Unpublished)
Date: August 7, 2019
Docket Number: S-17176
Weston v AKHappytime, LLC, d/b/a Alex Hotel & Suites  
Date: August 2, 2019
Citation: 445 P.3d 1015
Docket Number: S-16529

Justia Opinion Summary: Petitioner Lorna Weston was seriously injured when she slipped and fell on ice in a hotel parking lot. Medicare covered her medical expenses, settling the providers’ bills by paying less than one-fifth of the amounts bil...

Williams v. Baker  
Date: August 2, 2019
Citation: 446 P.3d 336
Docket Number: S-16951

Justia Opinion Summary: Johnny Williams worked for Violeta Baker and her home healthcare services company, Last Frontier Assisted Living, LLC (Last Frontier), from 2004 to 2009. Baker hired Johnny to provide payroll, tax-preparation, bookkeepin...

Club Sinrock, LLC v Municipality of Anchorage  
Date: August 2, 2019
Citation: 445 P.3d 1031
Docket Number: S-17068

Justia Opinion Summary: In this case, an adult cabaret featuring nude dancing challenged a municipal code provision prohibiting adult-oriented establishments from operating during early morning hours, arguing that if the provision applied to ad...

Brett M. v. Amber M.  
Date: August 2, 2019
Citation: 445 P.3d 1005
Docket Number: S-17162

Justia Opinion Summary: A Juneau couple with three children separated, and the mother filed for divorce. Wishing to relocate with the children to Oregon for work, she requested primary physical custody. The superior court concluded that it was...

Mitchell v. Mitchell  
Date: July 19, 2019
Citation: 445 P.3d 660
Docket Number: S-16877

Justia Opinion Summary: A husband was granted a 20-day domestic violence protective order against his wife. During a brief extension of the 20-day order, the wife sent the husband a text message about the couple’s dog. This text message, a viol...

John E. and Sally E., a Minor v. Andrea E.  
Date: July 19, 2019
Citation: 445 P.3d 649
Docket Number: S-16912

Justia Opinion Summary: A divorced mother had sole legal and physical custody of her two daughters. Their father sought a protective order against the mother and a modification of custody after she repeatedly hit the older daughter with a belt....

A.B. (Father) v State of Alaska, DHSS, OCS (Unpublished)
Date: July 17, 2019
Docket Number: S-17116
Addy S. (Mother) v. State of Alaska, DHSS, OCS (Unpublished)
Date: July 17, 2019
Docket Number: S-17257
Faris v. Taylor  
Date: July 12, 2019
Citation: 444 P.3d 180
Docket Number: S-16762

Justia Opinion Summary: Gordon Taylor and Tamra Faris were married in 1973. For most of their marriage, they lived in Juneau, Alaska. Faris spent her entire career working for the federal government, earning a Civil Service Retirement System (C...

Maxim Healthcare Services, Inc. v. Collens  
Date: July 12, 2019
Citation: 444 P.3d 187
Docket Number: S-16930

Justia Opinion Summary: In May 2009 Jesse Collens, then 21 years old, was permanently injured in a bicycle accident that left him a C-1 quadriplegic, paralyzed from the neck down, and dependent on a ventilator to breathe. In December 2009 he co...

D&D Services, LLC d/b/a Novus Auto Glass & Ohio v. Cavitt  
Date: July 5, 2019
Citation: 444 P.3d 165
Docket Number: S-17143

Justia Opinion Summary: An employer disputed liability for attorney’s fees the Alaska Workers’ Compensation Appeals Commission awarded an employee, contending that the employee was not a successful party in the appeal and that the amount awarde...

L.B. (Mother) v Alaska, DHSS, OCS  
Date: July 5, 2019
Docket Number: S-17158

Justia Opinion Summary: In these separate but consolidated appeals, the issue common to both cases presented to the Alaska Supreme Court for review centered on whether new federal regulations materially changed the qualifications required of an...

LeBon v. Meyer  
Date: July 5, 2019
Docket Number: S-17311

Justia Opinion Summary: This recount appeal arose out of the 2018 Alaska House of Representatives race for District 1. Following a recount the election was certified, with Kathryn Dodge receiving 2,662 votes and Barton LeBon receiving 2,663. Do...

Jason Walrath v Bobbi Walrath (Unpublished)
Date: July 3, 2019
Docket Number: S-17091
Emily B. (Mother) v. State of Alaska, DHSS, OCS (Unpublished)
Date: July 3, 2019
Docket Number: S-17180
Alaska v. Tofelogo  
Date: June 28, 2019
Citation: 444 P.3d 151
Docket Number: S-16931

Justia Opinion Summary: A man accidentally killed his roommate with a large knife while demonstrating martial arts moves. He pled guilty to criminally negligent homicide and stipulated to the applicability of a statutory aggravator that allowed...

Megan Armstrong v Frank Woods III (Unpublished)
Date: June 26, 2019
Docket Number: S-16864
Buckley v. American Fast Freight, Inc.  
Date: June 21, 2019
Citation: 444 P.3d 139
Docket Number: S-16693

Justia Opinion Summary: John Buckley started working for Labor Ready, Inc., a temporary employment service, in 2009. He was injured on assignment for a shipping company. At the time of injury he was performing a task prohibited by the contract...

Katherine Eldemar v Thomas Weissmuller (Unpublished)
Date: June 19, 2019
Docket Number: S-17214
John Doe v. Alaska, Department of Public Safety  
Date: June 14, 2019
Citation: 444 P.3d 116
Docket Number: S-16748

Justia Opinion Summary: In 2000 John Doe was convicted of aggravated sexual battery in Virginia. He was sentenced to five years imprisonment, with all time suspended, and a five-year term of probation. Under Virginia law Doe was required to reg...

Robinson v Alaska Housing Finance Corporation  
Date: June 14, 2019
Citation: 442 P.3d 763
Docket Number: S-17055

Justia Opinion Summary: A self-represented litigant appeals from the dismissal of his complaint against Alaska Housing Finance Corporation (AHFC) for failure to state a claim upon which relief could be granted. Because the superior court gave t...

Steve H. v. Alaska, DHSS, OCS  
Date: June 14, 2019
Citation: 444 P.3d 109
Docket Number: S-17133

Justia Opinion Summary: Steve H. and Lucy A. were the parents of Donald, an Indian child2 born in April 2013. By the time Donald was born, Steve and Lucy were no longer in a relationship and Steve no longer lived in Anchorage. Donald lived with...

Marian V. v. Alaska, DHSS, OCS  
Date: June 14, 2019
Citation: 442 P.3d 780
Docket Number: S-17135

Justia Opinion Summary: In 2015 the Office of Children’s Services (OCS) took custody of three children due to the father’s substance abuse issues and the mother’s mental health issues. Both parents failed to make any meaningful progress on thei...

Dustin V. v. Alaska, DHSS, OCS  
Date: June 14, 2019
Citation: 442 P.3d 755
Docket Number: S-17178

Justia Opinion Summary: After a mother’s and father’s lengthy involvement with the Office of Children’s Services (OCS), based primarily on alcohol abuse, their parental rights to their two minor children were terminated. Both parents appealed,...

Jessica J. v. Alaska  
Date: June 14, 2019
Citation: 442 P.3d 771
Docket Number: S-17246

Justia Opinion Summary: In late April 2018, 15-year-old Jessica J. traveled from Iowa to Alaska to spend the summer with family friends. Jessica’s divorced parents shared legal custody; her mother, who retained primary physical custody, gave Je...

Pasley v Pasley  
Date: June 7, 2019
Citation: 442 P.3d 738
Docket Number: S-16612

Justia Opinion Summary: A husband appealed his divorce order, raising multiple issues. The issues considered by the Alaska Supreme Court were: (1) whether the wife’s bank accounts, personal leave from her job, and the house should have been tre...

Sam S. v. Alaska, Department of Health & Social Services, Office of Children’s Services  
Date: June 7, 2019
Citation: 442 P.3d 731
Docket Number: S-17130

Justia Opinion Summary: The father in this case had not been a substantial part of his daughter’s life when the Office of Children’s Services (OCS) took custody of her from her mother. The father was coping with his own mental health, substance...

Doan v. Banner Health, Inc.  
Date: May 31, 2019
Citation: 442 P.3d 706
Docket Number: S-16322

Justia Opinion Summary: One morning in March 2011, Nixola Doan went to Fairbanks Memorial Hospital with her adult daughter, Tristana, who was coughing and having trouble breathing. Doan stayed with Tristana for much of the day. Around 7:00 p.m....

Kelley v. Municipality of Anchorage, Board of Equalization  
Date: May 31, 2019
Citation: 442 P.3d 725
Docket Number: S-16980

Justia Opinion Summary: The superior court affirmed a municipality’s tax valuation of a landowner’s property. The landowner argued on appeal the municipality’s valuation review board abused its discretion by excluding certain evidence of value...

S.V. (Mother) v. Alaska, DHSS, OCS  
Date: May 31, 2019
Citation: 442 P.3d 717
Docket Number: S-17188

Justia Opinion Summary: Sabrina V. was the mother of Kaleb D., born 2005. By 2016 Kaleb was living in Wasilla with his father, now deceased. Sabrina had been living outside of Alaska for some years; the parents did not have a court order regard...

Kelly D. v. Anthony K. (Unpublished)
Date: May 29, 2019
Docket Number: S-16726
D.B. (Mother) v State of Alaska, DHSS, OCS (Unpublished)
Date: May 29, 2019
Docket Number: S-17028
Markham v. Kodiak Island Borough Board of Equalization  
Date: May 24, 2019
Citation: 441 P.3d 943
Docket Number: S-15853

Justia Opinion Summary: In 2013 and 2014 attorney Gerald Markham applied for a senior citizen tax exemption on his residential property in Kodiak, Alaska. The Borough assessor denied the applications due to Markham’s prolonged absences from Ala...

Kenai Landing, Inc. v Cook Inlet Natural Gas Storage, et al.  
Date: May 24, 2019
Citation: 441 P.3d 954
Docket Number: S-16737

Justia Opinion Summary: A public utility filed a condemnation action seeking the land use rights necessary to construct a natural gas storage facility in an underground formation of porous rock. The utility held some rights already by assignmen...

Keeton v. Alaska, Department of Transportation and Public Facilities  
Date: May 24, 2019
Citation: 441 P.3d 933
Docket Number: S-16803

Justia Opinion Summary: The Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities (DOT or the State) condemned a strip of property along the Parks Highway. DOT filed a declaration of taking, allowing it to take title immediately, and deposi...

Jones v. Alaska, Department of Revenue  
Date: May 24, 2019
Citation: 441 P.3d 966
Docket Number: S-16860

Justia Opinion Summary: A husband and wife appealed denials of their Permanent Fund Dividends (PFDs) for 2014 and 2015. The husband’s 2014 PFD application was denied because he had been absent from the state for more than five years, creating a...

Jackson v. Borough of Haines, et al.  
Date: May 24, 2019
Citation: 441 P.3d 925
Docket Number: S-16991

Justia Opinion Summary: Randell Jackson was charged with disorderly conduct, assault, and resisting arrest after a 2012 interaction with three police officers in Haines, Alaska. Amy Williams, an assistant district attorney, first prosecuted Jac...

Jill O., v. Gary D., Jill O., v. Gary D. (Unpublished)
Date: May 22, 2019
Docket Number: S-16766
Baker v. Duffus  
Date: May 17, 2019
Citation: 441 P.3d 432
Docket Number: S-16427

Justia Opinion Summary: After a limited liability company and its individual members failed to make payments on a real estate loan, the lender sued. One member, Kenneth Duffus, cross-claimed against a second member, Lee Baker, Jr., alleging bre...

Wahl v. Alaska  
Date: May 17, 2019
Citation: 441 P.3d 424
Docket Number: S-16805

Justia Opinion Summary: At trial, petitioner Kenneth Wahl offered an acquaintance’s testimony given during grand jury proceedings, invoking the former-testimony exception to the hearsay rule. The superior court excluded the evidence, reasoning...

Crowley, et al. v Northern Aviation, LLC, et al.  
Date: May 10, 2019
Citation: 441 P.3d 407
Docket Number: S-16587

Justia Opinion Summary: Two debtor limited liability companies (LLCs) executed security agreements in favor of two creditor LLCs, giving the creditor LLCs security interests in three airplanes. Disputes arose when the creditor LLCs, considering...

Downs v. Downs  
Date: May 3, 2019
Citation: 440 P.3d 294
Docket Number: S-16532

Justia Opinion Summary: A husband appealed the superior court’s unequal property division in a divorce proceeding that gave the wife the majority of the marital estate. He argued the superior court abused its discretion when dividing the proper...

In the Matter of the Estate of Alexina Rodman (Unpublished)
Date: May 1, 2019
Docket Number: S-16999
In the Matter of the Estate of Jerry Hatten  
Date: April 26, 2019
Citation: 440 P.3d 256
Docket Number: S-16402

Justia Opinion Summary: Jerry Hatten lived with Beverly Toland for 20 years. He died intestate. Hatten had named Toland as the sole beneficiary to his individual retirement account, but did not provide for her to inherit any of his other assets...

Warnke-Green v. Pro-West Contractors, LLC  
Date: April 26, 2019
Citation: 440 P.3d 283
Docket Number: S-16821

Justia Opinion Summary: The Alaska Workers’ Compensation Board denied a Bryce Warnke-Green's request that his employer pay for a van modified to accommodate his work-related disability. On appeal, the Alaska Workers’ Compensation Appeals Commis...

Berry v. Coulman  
Date: April 26, 2019
Citation: 440 P.3d 264
Docket Number: S-16868

Justia Opinion Summary: Guy Berry and Colleen Coulman had a daughter, born in May 2010. Berry and Coulman never married. Berry was a soldier stationed at Fort Wainwright until shortly before their daughter was born, when he was transferred to F...

Amy S. v. State of Alaska, DHSS, OCS  
Date: April 26, 2019
Citation: 440 P.3d 273
Docket Number: S-17008

Justia Opinion Summary: A mother appealed the superior court’s decision adjudicating her child as a child in need of aid, contending the court relied in part on the record from her previous custody proceeding without giving her prior notice. Th...

Griswold v Homer Board of Adjustment, et al.  
Date: April 19, 2019
Citation: 440 P.3d 248
Docket Number: S-16267

Justia Opinion Summary: Frank Griswold appealed a decision of the Homer, Alaska Advisory Planning Commission to the Homer Board of Adjustment. Griswold was a Homer resident who owned several lots within the Business District, one of which is ap...

Nelson v. Alaska  
Date: April 19, 2019
Citation: 440 P.3d 240
Docket Number: S-16719

Justia Opinion Summary: In 2011 Justin Nelson was indicted on three felony counts of sexual abuse of a minor. He was initially represented by two attorneys from the Dillingham office of the Alaska Public Defender Agency. On the day of sentencin...

Anderson v. State of Alaska, Alaska Department of Administration, Division of Motor Vehicles  
Date: April 19, 2019
Citation: 440 P.3d 217
Docket Number: S-16872

Justia Opinion Summary: Thomas Anderson, Sr. appealed the superior court’s dismissal of his claim that the Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV) failed to properly transfer a motorcycle endorsement from his California driver’s license to his new Ala...

Morrison v. Alaska Interstate Construction Inc.  
Date: April 19, 2019
Citation: 440 P.3d 224
Docket Number: S-16978

Justia Opinion Summary: Petitioner Theodore Morrison had surgery on his right knee in 2004 after injuring it at work. He returned to work after the surgery and did not consult a doctor about that knee for almost ten years, until he again injure...

SMJ General Construction, Inc., v. Jet Commercial Construction, LLC  
Date: April 12, 2019
Citation: 440 P.3d 210
Docket Numbers: S-16985, S-16785

Justia Opinion Summary: In early 2016 Jet Commercial Construction, LLC (Jet), an Oklahoma corporation, entered into a contract with Kona Grill, Inc., for the construction of a restaurant in Honolulu, Hawaii. In May, Jet entered into a subcontra...

Luke G. (Father) v. State of Alaska, DHSS, OCS (Unpublished)
Date: April 10, 2019
Docket Number: S-16972
Regina C., n/k/a Regina S. v. Michael C.  
Date: April 5, 2019
Citation: 440 P.3d 199
Docket Number: S-16421

Justia Opinion Summary: Regina S. and Michael C. married in 2000, and had two children, both boys, from the marriage. Regina filed for divorce in late 2014, alleging Michael had engaged in domestic violence against her. The court thus awarded t...

Wilkins v. Wilkins  
Date: March 29, 2019
Citation: 440 P.3d 194
Docket Number: S-16618

Justia Opinion Summary: A wife with serious medical conditions filed for divorce, but during trial, the parties agreed to a legal separation to ensure the wife’s continued access to her husband’s employer-sponsored health insurance. The separat...

Alaska Spine Center, LLC v. Mat-Su Valley Medical Center, LLC  
Date: March 29, 2019
Citation: 440 P.3d 176
Docket Number: S-16917

Justia Opinion Summary: The Alaska Department of Health and Social Services required most healthcare facilities to document the need for proposed services before the state approves construction of a new facility. The agency determined that an a...

Gambini v. Hamilton  
Date: March 29, 2019
Citation: 440 P.3d 184
Docket Number: S-16945

Justia Opinion Summary: Yvonne Gambini appeals the superior court’s property division order for her divorce from Perry Hamilton. Gambini argues that she is entitled to more than half of the marital estate and that the superior court erroneously...

In Re Hospitalization of Linda M.  
Date: March 22, 2019
Citation: 440 P.3d 168
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
Citation: 440 P.3d 149
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
Citation: 436 P.3d 469
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
Citation: 440 P.3d 145
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
Citation: 436 P.3d 1039
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
Citation: 436 P.3d 1050
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
Citation: 436 P.3d 1032
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
Citation: 436 P.3d 1015
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
Citation: 436 P.3d 1009
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
Citation: 436 P.3d 984
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
Citation: 436 P.3d 962
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
Citation: 436 P.3d 976
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
Citation: 436 P.3d 956
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
Citation: 435 P.3d 961
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
Citation: 435 P.3d 938
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
Citation: 435 P.3d 947
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
Citation: 435 P.3d 918
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
Citation: 435 P.3d 887
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
Citation: 435 P.3d 908
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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