ILNews

Court grants 1 transfer, denies 36

Michael W. Hoskins
January 1, 2007
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The Indiana Supreme Court will decide whether counsel can inspect police reports that are already used by the state to refresh the recollection of a witness at trial.

Last week, the high court granted one transfer out of more than three dozen cases considered for review by the state's high court. The case Thabit Gault v. State of Indiana , 27A02-0603-CR-224, involves a Grant County man's appeal of his 2004 arrest relating to felony possession of cocaine with intent to deliver.

At trial, defense attorney Shane Beal cross-examined an officer who'd arrested Gault and, after the officer expressed uncertainty, the prosecutor gave him a copy of the police report to read before testifying. Beal asked for time to read the report, but the prosecutor invoked the work product privilege and the trial court determined it was not discoverable evidence and denied the request.

On appeal, Gault contended that he and his attorney should have been permitted to review the report pursuant to Indiana Evidence Rule 612. The Court of Appeals affirmed that in a 2-1 decision Feb. 13, holding that the trial court should have allowed Gault to see the report but that the denial did not constitute reversible error. Judge Nancy Vaidik dissented.

Arguments have not been set for this case. Along with this transfer, the justices denied transfer of 36 cases - including John Doe v. Town of Plainfield (http://www.in.gov/judiciary/opinions/pdf/02060701jts.pdf), which the Court of Appeals decided in February that a resident can sue the city anonymously in opposition of an ordinance banning sex offenders from parks and recreational areas.
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  1. File under the Sociology of Hoosier Discipline ... “We will be answering the complaint in due course and defending against the commission’s allegations,” said Indianapolis attorney Don Lundberg, who’s representing Hudson in her disciplinary case. FOR THOSE WHO DO NOT KNOW ... Lundberg ran the statist attorney disciplinary machinery in Indy for decades, and is now the "go to guy" for those who can afford him .... the ultimate insider for the well-to-do and/or connected who find themselves in the crosshairs. It would appear that this former prosecutor knows how the game is played in Circle City ... and is sacrificing accordingly. See more on that here ... http://www.theindianalawyer.com/supreme-court-reprimands-attorney-for-falsifying-hours-worked/PARAMS/article/43757 Legal sociologists could have a field day here ... I wonder why such things are never studied? Is a sacrifice to the well connected former regulators a de facto bribe? Such questions, if probed, could bring about a more just world, a more equal playing field, less Stalinist governance. All of the things that our preambles tell us to value could be advanced if only sunshine reached into such dark worlds. As a great jurist once wrote: "Publicity is justly commended as a remedy for social and industrial diseases. Sunlight is said to be the best of disinfectants; electric light the most efficient policeman." Other People's Money—and How Bankers Use It (1914). Ah, but I am certifiable, according to the Indiana authorities, according to the ISC it can be read, for believing such trite things and for advancing such unwanted thoughts. As a great albeit fictional and broken resistance leaders once wrote: "I am the dead." Winston Smith Let us all be dead to the idea of maintaining a patently unjust legal order.

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