21st Amendment chain blocked from federal cold-beer suit

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A magistrate judge has blocked a retail liquor store chain’s bid to join a federal lawsuit filed by convenience stores challenging an Indiana law that forbids them from selling cold beer.

Magistrate Judge Debra McVicker Lynch of the U.S. Court for the Southern District of Indiana on Wednesday issued a 13-page order denying Indianapolis-based 21st Amendment Inc.’s motion to intervene. The suit claims Indiana’s prohibition on groceries and convenience stores selling cold beer violates the equal protection clause of the U.S Constitution and Article 1, Section 1 of the Indiana Constitution.

The 21st Amendment chain of 19 stores sought to intervene on the basis that the statute permitting cold beer sales in package stores is a benefit given in exchange for the limits imposed on them. State laws forbid liquor stores from selling many grocery items or cold bottled water, for example.

Lynch ruled that 21st Amendment was not entitled to intervene in the case because it failed to satisfy the final element of a four-pronged test under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 24(a)(2): that no existing party represented 21st Amendment’s interest.

Lynch wrote that 21st Amendment “has no right to intervene because Indiana’s Attorney General is actively defending the constitutionality of the laws challenged by the plaintiffs.” Attorney General Greg Zoeller has said his office will defend the statutes and that any changes in the state’s liquor laws should be up to the Legislature.

Allowing 21st Amendment’s intervention in the case would unnecessarily complicate the litigation and delay its resolution, she wrote. She said 21st Amendment may later seek to file an amicus brief.

The case is Indiana Petroleum Marketers and Convenience Store Association, et al. v. Huskey, et al., 1:13-CV-0784.


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  1. If a class action suit or other manner of retribution is possible, count me in. I have email and voicemail from the man. He colluded with opposing counsel, I am certain. My case was damaged so severely it nearly lost me everything and I am still paying dearly.

  2. There's probably a lot of blame that can be cast around for Indiana Tech's abysmal bar passage rate this last February. The folks who decided that Indiana, a state with roughly 16,000 to 18,000 attorneys, needs a fifth law school need to question the motives that drove their support of this project. Others, who have been "strong supporters" of the law school, should likewise ask themselves why they believe this institution should be supported. Is it because it fills some real need in the state? Or is it, instead, nothing more than a resume builder for those who teach there part-time? And others who make excuses for the students' poor performance, especially those who offer nothing more than conspiracy theories to back up their claims--who are they helping? What evidence do they have to support their posturing? Ultimately, though, like most everything in life, whether one succeeds or fails is entirely within one's own hands. At least one student from Indiana Tech proved this when he/she took and passed the February bar. A second Indiana Tech student proved this when they took the bar in another state and passed. As for the remaining 9 who took the bar and didn't pass (apparently, one of the students successfully appealed his/her original score), it's now up to them (and nobody else) to ensure that they pass on their second attempt. These folks should feel no shame; many currently successful practicing attorneys failed the bar exam on their first try. These same attorneys picked themselves up, dusted themselves off, and got back to the rigorous study needed to ensure they would pass on their second go 'round. This is what the Indiana Tech students who didn't pass the first time need to do. Of course, none of this answers such questions as whether Indiana Tech should be accredited by the ABA, whether the school should keep its doors open, or, most importantly, whether it should have even opened its doors in the first place. Those who promoted the idea of a fifth law school in Indiana need to do a lot of soul-searching regarding their decisions. These same people should never be allowed, again, to have a say about the future of legal education in this state or anywhere else. Indiana already has four law schools. That's probably one more than it really needs. But it's more than enough.

  3. This man Steve Hubbard goes on any online post or forum he can find and tries to push his company. He said court reporters would be obsolete a few years ago, yet here we are. How does he have time to search out every single post about court reporters and even spy in private court reporting forums if his company is so successful???? Dude, get a life. And back to what this post was about, I agree that some national firms cause a huge problem.

  4. rensselaer imdiana is doing same thing to children from the judge to attorney and dfs staff they need to be investigated as well

  5. Sex offenders are victims twice, once when they are molested as kids, and again when they repeat the behavior, you never see money spent on helping them do you. That's why this circle continues