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COA upholds denial of fugitive's request to file an appeal

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A woman convicted of murdering her husband in the 1970s who escaped from prison and remained a fugitive for 35 years isn’t entitled to file a petition for belated appeal because her willful act of fleeing prevented her attorney from pursuing the appeal.

Linda G. Darby was convicted of killing her husband in 1970 and sentenced to life imprisonment. She filed a motion to correct error Nov. 28, 1970, which was denied. She was appointed counsel but no appeal was ever filed. She escaped from prison in 1972 and was apprehended in Tennessee in 2007. In 2011, she filed a petition to file a belated notice of appeal, which the trial court denied without a hearing.

Darby claimed that even though she fled the state, that didn’t relinquish her right to appeal. The Court of Appeals disagreed, citing Evolga v. State, 519 N.E.2d 532, 533 (Ind. 1988), and Prater v. State, 459 N.E.2d 39, 41 (Ind. 1984). It’s well settled in Indiana that when someone escapes from lawful custody, he isn’t entitled during the period he remains a fugitive to prosecute his appeal, noted Judge Carr Darden.

“In short, Darby’s counsel was prevented from pursuing Darby’s appeal by her willful act of fleeing the jurisdiction,” he wrote in Linda G. Darby v. State of Indiana, No. 45A04-1106-CR-318.

 

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  1. 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

  2. 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

  3. 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

  4. Here's an idea...how about we MORE heavily regulate the law schools to reduce the surplus of graduates, driving starting salaries up for those new grads, so that we can all pay our insane amount of student loans off in a reasonable amount of time and then be able to afford to do pro bono & low-fee work? I've got friends in other industries, radiology for example, and their schools accept a very limited number of students so there will never be a glut of new grads and everyone's pay stays high. For example, my radiologist friend's school accepted just six new students per year.

  5. I totally agree with John Smith.

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