ILNews

COA rules in favor of DOC employee

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The Indiana Court of Appeals has found the trial court should have granted summary judgment to a Department of Correction employee on a man's claim that he was personally deprived a liberty interest when the DOC refused to remove his name from the sex offender registry.

In Brent Myers v. Jarod Coats, No. 49A04-1104-PL-208, Jarod Coats had tried unsuccessfully to have his name removed from Indiana’s sex offender registry. Coats pleaded guilty but mentally ill in 1999 to two counts of battery, one count of intimidation, and one count of criminal confinement. Although no children were involved in any of the charges and Coats has never been convicted of a sex offense, the DOC told him he had to register as a sex offender. The DOC maintains the registry; Brent Myers is the director of registration and victim services.

Coats kept his registration current, while disputing the requirement and unsuccessfully attempting to have his name removed from the list. After filing suit in federal court in 2009, Coats was removed from the registry and the case was dismissed. He then filed a complaint for declaratory relief and damages in state court against Myers under 42 U.S.C. Section 1983, alleging Myers failed to provide Coats with a procedure to challenge his erroneous listing.

The trial court concluded that Coats had a liberty interest in not being mistakenly labeled as a sex offender and that the process to challenge the erroneous listening was inadequate, which the COA affirmed. The trial court found that there was a genuine issue of material fact as to whether Myers personally deprived Coats of a constitutional right, which the judges reversed. Any policy Myers contributed to or produced was subject to input from supervisors and the DOC’s legal counsel, which undercuts Coats’ argument that Myers was the driving force behind the failure to provide a policy, ruled the COA. The judges entered summary judgment for Myers on this issue.

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  1. Just an aside, but regardless of the outcome, I 'm proud of Judge William Hughes. He was the original magistrate on the Home place issue. He ruled for Home Place, and was primaried by Brainard for it. Their tool Poindexter failed to unseat Hughes, who won support for his honesty and courage throughout the county, and he was reelected Judge of Hamilton County's Superior Court. You can still stand for something and survive. Thanks, Judge Hughes!

  2. CCHP's real accomplishment is the 2015 law signed by Gov Pence that basically outlaws any annexation that is forced where a 65% majority of landowners in the affected area disagree. Regardless of whether HP wins or loses, the citizens of Indiana will not have another fiasco like this. The law Gov Pence signed is a direct result of this malgovernance.

  3. I gave tempparry guardship to a friend of my granddaughter in 2012. I went to prison. I had custody. My daughter went to prison to. We are out. My daughter gave me custody but can get her back. She was not order to give me custody . but now we want granddaughter back from friend. She's 14 now. What rights do we have

  4. This sure is not what most who value good governance consider the Rule of Law to entail: "In a letter dated March 2, which Brizzi forwarded to IBJ, the commission dismissed the grievance “on grounds that there is not reasonable cause to believe that you are guilty of misconduct.”" Yet two month later reasonable cause does exist? (Or is the commission forging ahead, the need for reasonable belief be damned? -- A seeming violation of the Rules of Profession Ethics on the part of the commission) Could the rule of law theory cause one to believe that an explanation is in order? Could it be that Hoosier attorneys live under Imperial Law (which is also a t-word that rhymes with infamy) in which the Platonic guardians can do no wrong and never owe the plebeian class any explanation for their powerful actions. (Might makes it right?) Could this be a case of politics directing the commission, as celebrated IU Mauer Professor (the late) Patrick Baude warned was happening 20 years ago in his controversial (whisteblowing) ethics lecture on a quite similar topic: http://www.repository.law.indiana.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1498&context=ilj

  5. I have a case presently pending cert review before the SCOTUS that reveals just how Indiana regulates the bar. I have been denied licensure for life for holding the wrong views and questioning the grand inquisitors as to their duties as to state and federal constitutional due process. True story: https://www.scribd.com/doc/299040839/2016Petitionforcert-to-SCOTUS Shorter, Amici brief serving to frame issue as misuse of govt licensure: https://www.scribd.com/doc/312841269/Thomas-More-Society-Amicus-Brown-v-Ind-Bd-of-Law-Examiners

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