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High court to hear 3 arguments Thursday

January 1, 2008
The Indiana Supreme Court will hear arguments Thursday in three cases involving different issues - the cleanup of hazardous material, a defendant sentenced to death, and a child-custody dispute.

In the arguments scheduled at 9 a.m., the justices will hear The Indiana Department of Environmental Management v. Raybestos Products Co., No. 49A02-0609-CV-782, in which the Indiana Court of Appeals reversed a Marion Superior Court decision granting summary judgment for Raybestos on the issue of breach of contract against IDEM. Raybestos filed a complaint against the government entity alleging it breached an agreed order for cleanup of hazardous substances and sought as damages the higher costs of an Environmental Protection Agency-imposed cleanup. The cleanup originally proposed by Raybestos and based on IDEM-approved risk management didn't meet the applicable federal standards. The appellate court reversed the decision based on public-policy grounds, saying it wouldn't enforce an agreement that may injure the public in some way or be contrary to declared Indiana public policy.

The high court will hear on direct appeal a case in which defendant Roy Lee Ward argues his convictions and death sentence by the Spencer Circuit Court should be reversed. The appeal of Roy Lee Ward v. State of Indiana, No. 74S00-0707-DP-00263, begins at 9:45 a.m.

Finally, the court will hear arguments at 10:45 a.m. in Juanita Ivers v. Jeremy Hensley, No. 13A05-0706-JV-329, in which the Crawford Circuit Court granted Hensley's petition to modify custody of the child from the maternal grandmother, Ivers, back to Hensley and grant Ivers visitation. The Court of Appeals reversed the trial court's decision and remanded the case to determine whether the parental presumption had been overcome and whether a modification is in the best interest of the child.
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