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Delaware County's first public defender dies

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A former Delaware County Circuit judge and the first public defender in that county died Monday.

Judge James Joseph Jordan, 77, served as a public defender, prosecutor, and judge during his legal career. He was Delaware County's first public defender from 1960 to 1961. He worked as a deputy prosecutor before leaving for private practice, and returned to the prosecutor's office when he was elected Delaware County Prosecutor in 1974. He served as prosecutor until 1979, when he opened his own private law practice.

Judge Jordan served as a master commissioner under Delaware Circuit Judge Richard Dailey for 19 years. In 1998, then-Gov. Frank O'Bannon named him to complete the term of a Circuit judge who had died. Judge Jordan was on the bench of Circuit Court 4 through December 2002. He then worked as a senior judge until his death.

The judge was a member of the Indiana Trial Lawyers Association, Indiana State Bar Association and Muncie Bar Association.

He is survived by his wife, Elizabeth M. Jordan; children, Eleanor M. Jordan, Naperville, Ill.; Eric R. (Marian) Jordan, South Elgin, Ill.; Mark W. (Brenda) Jordan, Westfield, Ind.; Margaret R. (John) Ridenour, South Bend; John M. (Carrie) Jordan, Indianapolis; Joseph P. (Don Diforio) Jordan, Stamford, Conn.; Martha K. (Lee) Jarvis, St. Cloud, Fla.; Perry T. (Jeannie) Jordan, Albion. He is also survived by his sister, JoAnn Phillips, nine grandchildren, and many nieces and nephews.

A calling will be held from 5 to 8 p.m. Wednesday and one hour before services at 11:30 a.m. Thursday at the Meeks Mortuary and Crematory, Washington St. Chapel, 415 E. Washington St., Muncie. Burial will follow in Elm Ridge Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made in his name to the Salvation Army, Muncie Mission, the American Cancer Society, and the American Heart Association.

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  1. CCHP's real accomplishment is the 2015 law signed by Gov Pence that basically outlaws any annexation that is forced where a 65% majority of landowners in the affected area disagree. Regardless of whether HP wins or loses, the citizens of Indiana will not have another fiasco like this. The law Gov Pence signed is a direct result of this malgovernance.

  2. I gave tempparry guardship to a friend of my granddaughter in 2012. I went to prison. I had custody. My daughter went to prison to. We are out. My daughter gave me custody but can get her back. She was not order to give me custody . but now we want granddaughter back from friend. She's 14 now. What rights do we have

  3. This sure is not what most who value good governance consider the Rule of Law to entail: "In a letter dated March 2, which Brizzi forwarded to IBJ, the commission dismissed the grievance “on grounds that there is not reasonable cause to believe that you are guilty of misconduct.”" Yet two month later reasonable cause does exist? (Or is the commission forging ahead, the need for reasonable belief be damned? -- A seeming violation of the Rules of Profession Ethics on the part of the commission) Could the rule of law theory cause one to believe that an explanation is in order? Could it be that Hoosier attorneys live under Imperial Law (which is also a t-word that rhymes with infamy) in which the Platonic guardians can do no wrong and never owe the plebeian class any explanation for their powerful actions. (Might makes it right?) Could this be a case of politics directing the commission, as celebrated IU Mauer Professor (the late) Patrick Baude warned was happening 20 years ago in his controversial (whisteblowing) ethics lecture on a quite similar topic: http://www.repository.law.indiana.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1498&context=ilj

  4. I have a case presently pending cert review before the SCOTUS that reveals just how Indiana regulates the bar. I have been denied licensure for life for holding the wrong views and questioning the grand inquisitors as to their duties as to state and federal constitutional due process. True story: https://www.scribd.com/doc/299040839/2016Petitionforcert-to-SCOTUS Shorter, Amici brief serving to frame issue as misuse of govt licensure: https://www.scribd.com/doc/312841269/Thomas-More-Society-Amicus-Brown-v-Ind-Bd-of-Law-Examiners

  5. Here's an idea...how about we MORE heavily regulate the law schools to reduce the surplus of graduates, driving starting salaries up for those new grads, so that we can all pay our insane amount of student loans off in a reasonable amount of time and then be able to afford to do pro bono & low-fee work? I've got friends in other industries, radiology for example, and their schools accept a very limited number of students so there will never be a glut of new grads and everyone's pay stays high. For example, my radiologist friend's school accepted just six new students per year.

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