ILNews

Supreme Court takes 4 cases

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The Indiana Supreme Court granted transfer to four cases Sept. 17, including one involving translated transcripts presented to a jury in a drug case.

The Indiana Court of Appeals found in Noe Romo v. State of Indiana, No. 49S04-1009-CR-499, a third example of when transcripts “may” be necessary – when an audio recording isn’t the best evidence of a conversation because it features a language that a jury can’t understand.

Romo had challenged the admission of English transcripts of drug transactions he participated in with a confidential informant in Spanish. The appellate court found the state laid the proper foundation to establish the accuracy of the transcripts and that Romo wasn’t prejudiced by their admission.

The justices also granted transfer to Jeffrey L. Sloan v. State of Indiana, No. 18S04-1009-CR-502, in which the Court of Appeals decided that the statute of limitations on felony child molesting begins once the actions stop and the victim is no longer prevented from telling authorities. The issue had been litigated for more than 20 years and produced conflicting opinions on the matter. Because the judges found the statute of limitations had expired, preventing the state from filing charges because the victim – who said the molestation began in 1984 – didn’t report the abuse until 2007, long after the molestation had stopped.

The high court also took:

- Elmer D. Baker v. State of Indiana, No. 17S04-1009-CR-500, in which the lower appellate court affirmed Elmer Baker’s felony child molesting convictions. The Court of Appeals held the trial court didn’t violate Baker’s constitutional protection against ex post facto laws in granting the state’s motion to amend the charging information, the trial court didn’t commit fundamental error by giving certain jury instructions, nor did it abuse its discretion in denying his motion to correct error on the issue of unanimity of the jury verdict. They also held he wasn’t denied effective assistance of counsel. The Court of Appeals affirmed their original opinion on rehearing.

- Clifton Mauricio v. State of Indiana, No. 02S03-1009-PC-501, in which the Court of Appeals affirmed the denial of Clifton Mauricio’s petition for post-conviction relief in a not-for-publication opinion. They found he didn’t show he was prejudiced by the counsel’s alleged errors or that his sentence would have been different on remand.
 

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  1. Whether you support "gay marriage" or not is not the issue. The issue is whether the SCOTUS can extract from an unmentionable somewhere the notion that the Constitution forbids government "interference" in the "right" to marry. Just imagine time-traveling to Philadelphia in 1787. Ask James Madison if the document he and his fellows just wrote allowed him- or forbade government to "interfere" with- his "right" to marry George Washington? He would have immediately- and justly- summoned the Sergeant-at-Arms to throw your sorry self out into the street. Far from being a day of liberation, this is a day of capitulation by the Rule of Law to the Rule of What's Happening Now.

  2. With today's ruling, AG Zoeller's arguments in the cases of Obamacare and Same-sex Marriage can be relegated to the ash heap of history. 0-fer

  3. She must be a great lawyer

  4. Ind. Courts - "Illinois ranks 49th for how court system serves disadvantaged" What about Indiana? A story today from Dave Collins of the AP, here published in the Benton Illinois Evening News, begins: Illinois' court system had the third-worst score in the nation among state judiciaries in serving poor, disabled and other disadvantaged members of the public, according to new rankings. Illinois' "Justice Index" score of 34.5 out of 100, determined by the nonprofit National Center for Access to Justice, is based on how states serve people with disabilities and limited English proficiency, how much free legal help is available and how states help increasing numbers of people representing themselves in court, among other issues. Connecticut led all states with a score of 73.4 and was followed by Hawaii, Minnesota, New York and Delaware, respectively. Local courts in Washington, D.C., had the highest overall score at 80.9. At the bottom was Oklahoma at 23.7, followed by Kentucky, Illinois, South Dakota and Indiana. ILB: That puts Indiana at 46th worse. More from the story: Connecticut, Hawaii, Minnesota, Colorado, Tennessee and Maine had perfect 100 scores in serving people with disabilities, while Indiana, Georgia, Wyoming, Missouri and Idaho had the lowest scores. Those rankings were based on issues such as whether interpretation services are offered free to the deaf and hearing-impaired and whether there are laws or rules allowing service animals in courthouses. The index also reviewed how many civil legal aid lawyers were available to provide free legal help. Washington, D.C., had nearly nine civil legal aid lawyers per 10,000 people in poverty, the highest rate in the country. Texas had the lowest rate, 0.43 legal aid lawyers per 10,000 people in poverty. http://indianalawblog.com/archives/2014/11/ind_courts_illi_1.html

  5. A very thorough opinion by the federal court. The Rooker-Feldman analysis, in particular, helps clear up muddy water as to the entanglement issue. Looks like the Seventh Circuit is willing to let its district courts cruise much closer to the Indiana Supreme Court's shorelines than most thought likely, at least when the ADA on the docket. Some could argue that this case and Praekel, taken together, paint a rather unflattering picture of how the lower courts are being advised as to their duties under the ADA. A read of the DOJ amicus in Praekel seems to demonstrate a less-than-congenial view toward the higher echelons in the bureaucracy.

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