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Building named in honor of retiring judge

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Taking the bench on Jan. 1, 1975, Montgomery Circuit Judge Thomas K. Milligan is the second-longest serving trial judge in the state.

But as this year comes to a close, Judge Milligan is officially hanging up his robe and marking the end of his 36-year judicial career. He is one of 18 trial and appellate judges leaving the bench this year, and one of only two trial judges in the state who are now finding their names attached to a courthouse or legal services building.

County commissioners in October passed a resolution honoring the longtime judge by dedicating the Montgomery County Court Services Building at 307 Binford St. in Crawfordsville in his honor. The historic and newly renovated building that houses the probation department, some classrooms, and the soon-to-be started drug court offices will be named the Thomas K. Milligan Justice Center.

The resolution honoring him says the Waveland native has served county residents “honorably and well, while maintaining the highest standards of fairness and impartiality in the administration of justice for 36 years… (and) has demonstrated through the administration of his Court that he is one of the preeminent trial judges in the State of Indiana.” It also points out he’s particularly known for “fair and just treatment for children and their families who are most in need or in harm’s way, and that he has dutifully followed the Gentleman's Rule of his alma mater, Wabash College.”

Admitted to practice in 1967 and first elected in November 1974, Judge Milligan has been on the bench longer than any other sitting judge except for Marion Superior Judge Gerald Zore – who was appointed just before Christmas 1974 and as a result beats out his colleague in Montgomery County by just a week.

Through the years, Judge Milligan has been an advocate for youth and has worked in close contact with the Youth Service Bureau in the training of CASA workers, Teen Court, and with the schools and out-of-school suspension program. He is a member of the Indiana Juvenile Judges Association and has also held leadership officer roles with the Indiana Judges Association and served as past president of the Montgomery County Bar Association.

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  1. Ah yes... Echoes of 1963 as a ghostly George Wallace makes his stand at the Schoolhouse door. We now know about the stand of personal belief over service to all constituents at the Carter County Clerk door. The results are the same, bigotry unable to follow the directions of the courts and the courts win. Interesting to watch the personal belief take a back seat rather than resign from a perception of local power to make the statement.

  2. An oath of office, does it override the conscience? That is the defense of overall soldier who violates higher laws, isnt it? "I was just following orders" and "I swore an oath of loyalty to der Fuhrer" etc. So this is an interesting case of swearing a false oath and then knowing that it was wrong and doing the right thing. Maybe they should chop her head off too like the "king's good servant-- but God's first" like St Thomas More. ...... We wont hold our breath waiting for the aclu or other "civil liberterians" to come to her defense since they are all arrayed on the gay side, to a man or should I say to a man and womyn?

  3. Perhaps we should also convene a panel of independent anthropological experts to study the issues surrounding this little-known branch of human sacrifice?

  4. I'm going to court the beginning of Oct. 2015 to establish visitation and request my daughters visits while she is in jail. I raised my grandchild for the first two and half years. She was born out of wedlock and the father and his adopted mother wantwd her aborted, they went as far as sueing my daughter for abortion money back 5mo. After my grandchild was born. Now because of depression and drug abuse my daughter lost custody 2 and a half years ago. Everyting went wrong in court when i went for custody my lawyer was thrown out and a replacment could only stay 45 min. The judge would not allow a postponement. So the father won. Now he is aleinating me and my daughter. No matter the amount of time spent getting help for my daughter and her doing better he runs her in the ground to the point of suicide because he wants her to be in a relationship with him. It is a sick game of using my grandchild as a pawn to make my daughter suffer for not wanting to be with him. I became the intervener in the case when my daughter first got into trouble. Because of this they gave me her visitation. Im hoping to get it again there is questions of abuse on his part and I want to make sure my grandchild is doing alright. I really dont understand how the parents have rights to walk in and do whatever they want when the refuse to stand up and raise the child at first . Why should it take two and a half years to decide you want to raise your child.The father used me so he could finish college get a job and stop paying support by getting custody. Support he was paying my daughter that I never saw.

  5. Pence said when he ordered the investigation that Indiana residents should be troubled by the allegations after the video went viral. Planned Parenthood has asked the government s top health scientists at the National Institutes of Health to convene a panel of independent experts to study the issues surrounding the little-known branch of medicine.

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