TOPEKA—The Kansas Supreme Court announced the two cases it will hear in a special session Tuesday, April 11, in Concordia, the next destination in the court’s ongoing outreach to familiarize Kansans with the court, its work, and the overall role of the Kansas judiciary.
The court will be in session from 6:30 p.m. to about 8 p.m. at Concordia High School, 436 W 10th St. After the session concludes, justices will greet the public in an informal reception.
Cases on docket
The two cases on the April 11 docket are:
Appeal No. 124,348: Cathy L. Stroud v. Ozark National Insurance Co. and Stephen I. Guinn
Sedgwick County: (Petition for Review) Stroud appeals the trial court’s order granting Ozark National Life Insurance Co. and Guinn’s summary judgment motion, resulting in the dismissal of her breach of fiduciary duty, negligent misrepresentation, and vicarious liability claims. Stroud contends Guinn, her deceased husband’s former insurance agent, violated his fiduciary duty to her husband and her when advising about converting her husband’s term life insurance into whole life insurance. She also challenges the trial court’s ruling that she was not the real party in interest under K.S.A. 2020 Supp. 60-217(a)(l) to bring her claims. For these reasons, she argued the trial court erred by dismissing her vicarious liability claim.
Issues on review concern whether the Court of Appeals erred when it affirmed the trial court’s dismissal of Stroud’s claims.
Appeal No. 123,559: State of Kansas v. Frank Raymond Crudo
Geary County: (Petition for Review) A jury convicted Crudo of multiple drug charges after a traffic stop and a subsequent search of his pickup truck and attached fifth-wheel camper. The district court granted Crudo’s motion for a dispositional departure and sentenced him to 36 months’ probation with an underlying 108-month prison term.
Issues on review are whether: 1) the Court of Appeals improperly allowed the probable cause tied to the pickup to be the basis for searching the camper; 2) Lieutenant Ricard gave expert testimony concerning the drug trade and he was required to be disclosed under K.S.A. 22-3212(b)(l); 3) the improper inference instruction reduced the burden on the State to prove its case and is not harmless; 4) there was unity of conduct barring the State from bringing multiple charges against Crudo and retrying him after a conviction for simple possession at the first trial; and 5) cumulative error denied Crudo a fair trial.
Case information online
Briefs filed by the attorneys involved in these two cases are on the judicial branch website at www.kscourts.org/travel-docket. Briefs include details about the cases and the questions before the Supreme Court.
Attend the special session
Anyone who wants to attend the special session should plan to arrive early to allow time to get through security screening. The doors open at 5:30 p.m. Court security offers these guidelines to ease the process:
- Do not bring food or drink.
- Do not bring large bags, large purses, backpacks, computer cases, or briefcases; small handbags are permitted.
- Do not bring knives, pepper spray, firearms, or weapons.
- Do not bring electronic devices like laptop computers, handheld games, personal digital assistants, or tablets. If you must carry a cell phone, turn it off and store it out of sight while court is in session.
Decorum during oral argument
Audience members are prohibited from talking during oral argument because it interferes with the attorneys’ remarks and questions asked by justices. If someone arrives after proceedings start, or must leave the auditorium before it ends, they should be as quiet as possible entering and exiting the auditorium. Talking immediately outside the auditorium is also discouraged.
The special session will be broadcast live online at www.YouTube.com/KansasSupremeCourt.
The Supreme Court has conducted special sessions outside its Topeka courtroom since 2011, when it marked the state’s 150th anniversary by convening in the historic Supreme Court courtroom in the Kansas Statehouse. Since then, the court has conducted special sessions in Colby, El Dorado, Emporia, Garden City, Great Bend, Greensburg, Hays, Hiawatha, Hutchinson, Kansas City, Lawrence, Manhattan, Overland Park, Parsons, Pittsburg, Salina, Topeka, Wichita, and Winfield