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Longtime Marion County judge set to retire

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One of the first women elected as a trial judge in Indiana is preparing to leave the bench after 30 years.

At the end of this year, Marion Superior Judge Patricia Gifford will hang up the robe she's worn for three decades in presiding over a court that's handled mostly felony cases. One of her most nationally recognized cases came in 1992 when she presided over the rape trial of former boxing champion Mike Tyson.

The 1968 Indiana University School of Law - Indianapolis graduate has been a pioneer for women lawyers, according to her colleagues. She worked as a deputy attorney general and Marion County deputy prosecutor after law school, and she became one of the first women in the U.S. assigned to prosecute only sex offense cases. Judge Gifford became a referee for the Marion Juvenile Court in 1975 and then ran successfully for Superior Judge, taking the bench Jan. 1, 1979, and becoming the sixth woman to be elected to a Hoosier trial court.

A retirement reception is planned for Judge Gifford from 6-9 p.m. Nov. 24, at the Columbia Club in downtown Indianapolis. The event is open to the public and attendees can RSVP at (317) 327-4520. Contributions are encouraged at the door and donations also can be mailed to the Patricia Gifford Retirement Party courtesy of attorney James C. Clark of the law firm Clark Quinn Moses Scott & Grahn, One Indiana Square, Suite 2200, Indianapolis, IN 46204.

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  1. Bob Leonard killed two people named Jennifer and Dion Longworth. There were no Smiths involved.

  2. Being on this journey from the beginning has convinced me the justice system really doesn't care about the welfare of the child. The trial court judge knew the child belonged with the mother. The father having total disregard for the rules of the court. Not only did this cost the mother and child valuable time together but thousands in legal fees. When the child was with the father the mother paid her child support. When the child was finally with the right parent somehow the father got away without having to pay one penny of child support. He had to be in control. Since he withheld all information regarding the child's welfare he put her in harms way. Mother took the child to the doctor when she got sick and was totally embarrassed she knew nothing regarding the medical information especially the allergies, The mother texted the father (from the doctors office) and he replied call his attorney. To me this doesn't seem like a concerned father. Seeing the child upset when she had to go back to the father. What upset me the most was finding out the child sleeps with him. Sometimes in the nude. Maybe I don't understand all the rules of the law but I thought this was also morally wrong. A concerned parent would allow the child to finish the school year. Say goodbye to her friends. It saddens me to know the child will not have contact with the sisters, aunts, uncles and the 87 year old grandfather. He didn't allow it before. Only the mother is allowed to talk to the child. I don't think now will be any different. I hope the decision the courts made would've been the same one if this was a member of their family. Someday this child will end up in therapy if allowed to remain with the father.

  3. Ok attorney Straw ... if that be a good idea ... And I am not saying it is ... but if it were ... would that be ripe prior to her suffering an embarrassing remand from the Seventh? Seems more than a tad premature here soldier. One putting on the armor should not boast liked one taking it off.

  4. The judge thinks that she is so cute to deny jurisdiction, but without jurisdiction, she loses her immunity. She did not give me any due process hearing or any discovery, like the Middlesex case provided for that lawyer. Because she has refused to protect me and she has no immunity because she rejected jurisdiction, I am now suing her in her district.

  5. Sam Bradbury was never a resident of Lafayette he lived in rural Tippecanoe County, Thats an error.

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