State of Indiana v. David Lott Hardy - 3/31/14

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Monday  March 31, 2014 
10:00 AM  EST

10 a.m. 49A02-1309-CR-756. The State appeals the trial court’s dismissal of its four charges of Class D felony official misconduct against David Lott Hardy (“Hardy”), the former Chairman of the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission.  The bases for the charges were four of Hardy’s actions between 2008 and 2010 that allegedly violated Indiana law, including a violation of Indiana ethics laws, a civil law infraction, and two violations of administrative regulations.  Under a previous version of Indiana’s official misconduct statute, Ind. Code § 35-44-1-2 (2010), the State could charge a public servant with official misconduct for “knowingly or intentionally perform[ing] an act that the public servant [was] forbidden by law to perform.”  Historically, the phrase “forbidden by law” included administrative and civil violations such as the ones for which the State charged Hardy.  However, in 2011, the Indiana Legislature amended I.C. § 35-44-1-2 so that a public servant could only be charged for “an offense” committed “in the performance of the public servant’s official duties.”  Pursuant to I.C. § 35-31.5-2-215 and I.C. § 35-31.5-2-75, the term “offense” only encompasses felonies or misdemeanors.  The trial court dismissed the charges against Hardy because it determined that this amendment was remedial in nature and applied to Hardy retroactively, even though his alleged violations occurred before the amendment.  On appeal, the State disputes the trial court’s interpretation of the amendment as remedial and its dismissal of the State’s charges based on a retroactive application of the amendment.

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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.

  5. I am saddened to hear about the loss of Zeff Weiss. He was an outstanding member of the Indianapolis legal community. My thoughts are with his family.

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