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Criminal code and expungement bills signed by governor

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Indiana Gov. Mike Pence signed two bills today that could significantly transform Indiana’s criminal judicial system.

The governor signed House Enrolled Act 1006, which reforms the state’s criminal code, and HEA 1482, which enables the courts to expunge the criminal records of certain offenders.

“Indiana should be the worst place in America to commit a serious crime and the best place, once you’ve done your time, to get a second chance,” Pence said.

HEA 1006, authored by Rep. Greg Steuerwald, R-Avon, mandates that individuals convicted of a felony serve at least 75 percent of their sentence. It also provides for alternative sentencing for lower-level felonies.

The legislation was the product of the Criminal Code Evaluation Commission which sought to add proportionality to the criminal code and certainty in sentencing. Among the recommended changes: Felonies will be expanded from four classes to six.

With an effective date of July 1, 2014, the new law will return to summer study committee to tweak the language and take a closer look at funding for community corrections.

“HEA 1006 lays the foundation for the revision of Indiana’s criminal code for the first time in 30-plus years,” Steuerwald said. “It provides for certainty in sentencing as we must provide that the most violent offenders are sentenced for a more definite period. Victims will be fully informed of how long the offender’s sentence will actually be.”

HEA 1482, authored by Rep. Jud McMillin, R-Brookville, provides an opportunity for certain individuals with felony convictions to have their records expunged.

 

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  • HEA 1482 - How to apply?
    Hi, My son was mistakenly arrested for breaking and entering, all charges have been dropped by the prosecutor, and we're trying to find out more about HEA 1482 and how to get his record expunged. He's a recent high school graduate, Eagle Scout, Lions Club member...a good kid. Prosecutor dropped all charges once he heard both sides of what happened, but police officers wouldn't believe the two young men...they were given keys to a vacant house, asked to clear items out for razing. Other family members didn't know anything about it, called police, and pressed charges. He was arrested as a Class C felony. Will he be eligible for HEA 1482, and how do we apply?
  • Marijuana penalties too harsh
    The marijuana penalties are too harsh. We need to tax and legalize marijuana. If the state can tax gambling and alcohol that can destroy families we can surely make money off marijuana too. Marijuana has certain health benefits.

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  1. You can put your photos anywhere you like... When someone steals it they know it doesn't belong to them. And, a man getting a divorce is automatically not a nice guy...? That's ridiculous. Since when is need of money a conflict of interest? That would mean that no one should have a job unless they are already financially solvent without a job... A photographer is also under no obligation to use a watermark (again, people know when a photo doesn't belong to them) or provide contact information. Hey, he didn't make it easy for me to pay him so I'll just take it! Well heck, might as well walk out of the grocery store with a cart full of food because the lines are too long and you don't find that convenient. "Only in Indiana." Oh, now you're passing judgement on an entire state... What state do you live in? I need to characterize everyone in your state as ignorant and opinionated. And the final bit of ignorance; assuming a photo anyone would want is lucky and then how much does your camera have to cost to make it a good photo, in your obviously relevant opinion?

  2. Seventh Circuit Court Judge Diane Wood has stated in “The Rule of Law in Times of Stress” (2003), “that neither laws nor the procedures used to create or implement them should be secret; and . . . the laws must not be arbitrary.” According to the American Bar Association, Wood’s quote drives home this point: The rule of law also requires that people can expect predictable results from the legal system; this is what Judge Wood implies when she says that “the laws must not be arbitrary.” Predictable results mean that people who act in the same way can expect the law to treat them in the same way. If similar actions do not produce similar legal outcomes, people cannot use the law to guide their actions, and a “rule of law” does not exist.

  3. Linda, I sure hope you are not seeking a law license, for such eighteenth century sentiments could result in your denial in some jurisdictions minting attorneys for our tolerant and inclusive profession.

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  5. My daughter was taken from my home at the end of June/2014. I said I would sign the safety plan but my husband would not. My husband said he would leave the house so my daughter could stay with me but the case worker said no her mind is made up she is taking my daughter. My daughter went to a friends and then the friend filed a restraining order which she was told by dcs if she did not then they would take my daughter away from her. The restraining order was not in effect until we were to go to court. Eventually it was dropped but for 2 months DCS refused to allow me to have any contact and was using the restraining order as the reason but it was not in effect. This was Dcs violating my rights. Please help me I don't have the money for an attorney. Can anyone take this case Pro Bono?

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