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Breaking News: Judge, commissioner face charges

Michael W. Hoskins
January 1, 2008
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Breaking News: April 4, 2008

A Marion County judge and his part-time commissioner face nearly a dozen judicial misconduct charges each for delays and dereliction of duty that resulted in an Indianapolis man staying in prison for almost two years after DNA testing cleared him of a 1984 rape. The Indiana Judicial Qualifications Commission late Wednesday afternoon filed charges against Marion Superior Judge Grant W. Hawkins and Commissioner Nancy L. Broyles, relating to their involvement in a post-conviction case for Harold D. Buntin. Judge Hawkins faces 11 counts and Commissioner Broyles 10 counts. The charges allege Judge Hawkins did not adequately supervise his staff and commissioner, committed conduct prejudicial to the administration of justice, and did not uphold the integrity and public confidence of the judiciary by allowing the delays in at least one case. Both have been assigned to Marion Superior Criminal Division 5 since January 2001, which is when Judge Hawkins assigned Commissioner Broyles to handle post-conviction matters for his court. The concurrent filings from the commission deal mostly with Buntin's case, but the investigation reveals that Commissioner Broyles may have at least seven other post-conviction proceedings that were delayed between sixth months and 28 months, and some were backdated once they were ultimately decided.
The investigation shows that the part-time commissioner routinely issued final orders in post-conviction
cases without obtaining Judge Hawkins' approval and signature, contrary to Indiana
Codes 33-33-49-16 and 33-23-5-8. Each has 20 days to respond to the charges. This story will be updated.
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  1. The sad thing is that no fish were thrown overboard The "greenhorn" who had never fished before those 5 days was interrogated for over 4 hours by 5 officers until his statement was illicited, "I don't want to go to prison....." The truth is that these fish were measured frozen off shore and thawed on shore. The FWC (state) officer did not know fish shrink, so the only reason that these fish could be bigger was a swap. There is no difference between a 19 1/2 fish or 19 3/4 fish, short fish is short fish, the ticket was written. In addition the FWC officer testified at trial, he does not measure fish in accordance with federal law. There was a document prepared by the FWC expert that said yes, fish shrink and if these had been measured correctly they averaged over 20 inches (offshore frozen). This was a smoke and mirror prosecution.

  2. I love this, Dave! Many congrats to you! We've come a long way from studying for the bar together! :)

  3. This outbreak illustrates the absurdity of the extreme positions taken by today's liberalism, specifically individualism and the modern cult of endless personal "freedom." Ebola reminds us that at some point the person's own "freedom" to do this and that comes into contact with the needs of the common good and "freedom" must be curtailed. This is not rocket science, except, today there is nonstop propaganda elevating individual preferences over the common good, so some pundits have a hard time fathoming the obvious necessity of quarantine in some situations....or even NATIONAL BORDERS...propagandists have also amazingly used this as another chance to accuse Western nations of "racism" which is preposterous and offensive. So one the one hand the idolatry of individualism has to stop and on the other hand facts people don't like that intersect with race-- remain facts nonetheless. People who respond to facts over propaganda do better in the long run. We call it Truth. Sometimes it seems hard to find.

  4. It would be hard not to feel the Kramers' anguish. But Catholic Charities, by definition, performed due diligence and held to the statutory standard of care. No good can come from punishing them for doing their duty. Should Indiana wish to change its laws regarding adoption agreements and or putative fathers, the place for that is the legislature and can only apply to future cases. We do not apply new laws to past actions, as the Kramers seem intent on doing, to no helpful end.

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