Panel to choose appeals court semifinalists

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Fourteen candidates for an Indiana Court of Appeals vacancy are being interviewed Wednesday, seven of whom are expected to make the initial cut this afternoon.

The Judicial Nominating Commission is meeting with the seven men and seven women who aspire to fill the vacancy that will occur when Judge Carr Darden retires from the 15-member court this summer.

The commission, chaired by Chief Justice Brent Dickson, is interviewing applicants from a district that includes Indianapolis and counties north. The district extends northwest to White County and northeast to Adams County.

Dickson opened each candidate’s 20-minute interview by asking them what they most admired about the court of appeals and what qualities they would bring if selected. The applicants include four judges, several attorneys who work in private practice, current and former prosecutors, public servants and academics.

Applicants were being interviewed in the following order: Marion Superior Judge Cynthia J. Ayers of Indianapolis; Jeffrey D. Wehmueller of Fishers; Ms. Carol Nemeth Joven of  Indianapolis; Bryce D. Owens of Pendleton; Abigail Lawlis Kuzma of Indianapolis; Brenda A. Roper of Indianapolis; Rebecca A. Trent of West Lafayette; Howard Superior Judge William C. Menges Jr., of Kokomo; Chris M. Teagle of Albany; Patricia Caress McMath of Indianapolis; Madison Circuit Judge Rudolph R. Pyle III of Anderson; Kari Evans Bennett of Noblesville; Joel M. Schumm of Indianapolis; and Marion Superior Judge Robert R. Altice Jr. of Indianapolis.

The commission will interview the seven semifinalists June 4-5. Three finalists then will be selected and their names forwarded to Gov. Mitch Daniels, who will make the appointment.



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  1. This is ridiculous. Most JDs not practicing law don't know squat to justify calling themselves a lawyer. Maybe they should try visiting the inside of a courtroom before they go around calling themselves lawyers. This kind of promotional BS just increases the volume of people with JDs that are underqualified thereby dragging all the rest of us down likewise.

  2. I think it is safe to say that those Hoosier's with the most confidence in the Indiana judicial system are those Hoosier's who have never had the displeasure of dealing with the Hoosier court system.

  3. I have an open CHINS case I failed a urine screen I have since got clean completed IOP classes now in after care passed home inspection my x sister in law has my children I still don't even have unsupervised when I have been clean for over 4 months my x sister wants to keep the lids for good n has my case working with her I just discovered n have proof that at one of my hearing dcs case worker stated in court to the judge that a screen was dirty which caused me not to have unsupervised this was at the beginning two weeks after my initial screen I thought the weed could have still been in my system was upset because they were suppose to check levels n see if it was going down since this was only a few weeks after initial instead they said dirty I recently requested all of my screens from redwood because I take prescriptions that will show up n I was having my doctor look at levels to verify that matched what I was prescripted because dcs case worker accused me of abuseing when I got my screens I found out that screen I took that dcs case worker stated in court to judge that caused me to not get granted unsupervised was actually negative what can I do about this this is a serious issue saying a parent failed a screen in court to judge when they didn't please advise

  4. I have a degree at law, recent MS in regulatory studies. Licensed in KS, admitted b4 S& 7th circuit, but not to Indiana bar due to political correctness. Blacklisted, nearly unemployable due to hostile state action. Big Idea: Headwinds can overcome, esp for those not within the contours of the bell curve, the Lego Movie happiness set forth above. That said, even without the blacklisting for holding ideas unacceptable to the Glorious State, I think the idea presented above that a law degree open many vistas other than being a galley slave to elitist lawyers is pretty much laughable. (Did the law professors of Indiana pay for this to be published?)

  5. Joe, you might want to do some reading on the fate of Hoosier whistleblowers before you get your expectations raised up.