District Courts

ACLU says DOC should be held in contempt over kosher meals

December 23, 2011
Michael Hoskins
The American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana is asking a federal judge to hold the state’s Department of Correction in contempt for not offering inmates kosher meals as it had been ordered to do a year ago.
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Ex-Dow Agro scientist receives 7 years for economic espionage

December 22, 2011
IBJ Staff
A federal judge on Wednesday sentenced a former Dow AgroSciences researcher to more than seven years in prison for sending trade secrets worth millions of dollars to China and Germany.
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Ex-Dow Agro scientist set to be sentenced in espionage case

December 21, 2011
Scott Olson
Federal prosecutors are recommending that a former Dow AgroSciences researcher be sentenced to more than seven years in prison for sending trade secrets worth millions to China and Germany.
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District Courts revise local rules

December 21, 2011
IL Staff
The U.S. District Courts for the Southern and Northern Districts of Indiana will be changing the style of Local Rules beginning Jan.1.
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Grand jury indicts 2 attorneys, real estate broker

December 14, 2011
Cory Schouten
A grand jury in South Bend has returned a 14-count criminal indictment against two attorneys and a real estate broker from central Indiana over a state lease deal in Elkhart.
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Judge won't allow auto-dialer statute enforcement during appeal

December 13, 2011
Michael Hoskins
Balancing free speech rights with the public interest in preventing automated political calls from out-of-state entities, U.S. Judge William Lawrence in Indianapolis denied the state’s request to continue enforcing Indiana’s auto-dialer statute while a higher court is considering his ruling from two months ago that blocked enforcement.
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Bankruptcy judge applications being accepted

December 8, 2011
IL Staff
The Judicial Council of the 7th Circuit is seeking applications for bankruptcy judge to fill a new position in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana.
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Man gets 326 months imprisonment, lifetime supervision for child pornography

December 6, 2011
Michael Hoskins
U.S. Judge Robert Miller Jr. sentenced an Elkhart man to 326 months in prison and a lifetime of supervised release after his guilty plea to sexually exploiting children.
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Former city-county councilor sentenced to 40 months

December 2, 2011
IL and IBJ Staff
U.S. Senior Judge Larry McKinney on Thursday sentenced former Indianapolis City-County Councilor Lincoln Plowman to 40 months in federal prison for attempted extortion and bribery.
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Court seeks comment on changes to civil local rules

December 1, 2011
IL Staff
The U.S. District Court, Southern District of Indiana, is seeking comment on proposed amendments to dozens of its local rules. If adopted, the amendments will become effective Jan. 1, 2012.
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Changes to federal courts effective Thursday

November 30, 2011
IL Staff
Several changes are coming to the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Indiana and the U.S. District Court in the Northern District of Indiana Thursday.
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Application process open for federal defense panel

November 30, 2011
IL Staff
The United States District Court for the Southern District of Indiana is accepting applications from attorneys interested in serving on the court’s Criminal Justice Act panel for the Indianapolis and Terre Haute divisions.
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Judge grants limited class certification in stage collapse lawsuit

November 28, 2011
Michael Hoskins
While she said she doubts the plaintiffs can win their case, U.S. Judge Sarah Evans Barker is allowing limited class certification in a lawsuit challenging the state’s $5 million damage liability cap. Plaintiffs incurred injuries in the Indiana State Fair stage collapse Aug. 13.
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Holiday court closures, bankruptcy court changes

November 23, 2011
IL Staff
Indiana’s courts will be closed Thursday in honor of Thanksgiving. However, some court offices will be available to handle emergencies on Friday.
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Judge rejects dental coverage cap

November 23, 2011
Michael Hoskins
Ruling puts Medicaid dental program in jeopardy.
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South Bend attorney sentenced for fraud

November 9, 2011
Jennifer Nelson
Thomas F. “Chip” Lewis III will spend more than three years in prison following his guilty plea to aiding and abetting wire fraud stemming from an advance fee scam.
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Federal Bar Update: Comments sought for changes to local rulesRestricted Content

November 9, 2011
John Maley
John Maley writes about changes coming to local rules in each District Court.
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Indiana bankruptcy filings decrease in 2011

November 8, 2011
Michael Hoskins
Indiana saw fewer bankruptcies for the fiscal year ending Sept. 30, 2011, than it did the year before, with the state improving its national ranking based on case filings.
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4th annual symposium to look at civil rights

November 8, 2011
IL Staff
Civil rights in the Southern District will be the topic of the fourth annual Court History Symposium presented by the Historical Society for the Southern District of Indiana Nov. 18.
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Northern District seeks comment on revising, restyling rules

November 3, 2011
IL Staff
The U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Indiana is now taking comments on proposed changes to its local rules.
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Bankruptcy courts amend local rules

November 2, 2011
IL Staff
The United States Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of Indiana has adopted revisions to Local Rule B-1009-1. The United States Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Indiana has amended its Local Rule B-3007-1.
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Brief filed in NCAA scholarship appeal

October 28, 2011
Michael Hoskins
Two former college athletes who lost their scholarships because of injuries are now arguing to the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals that they would have received multi-year athletic scholarships covering the costs of their bachelor’s degrees if it wasn’t for the “anti-competitive” National Collegiate Athletic Association Division I bylaws.
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Southern District bankruptcy court issues order on installment fees

October 26, 2011
IL Staff
The United States Bankruptcy Court in the Southern District of Indiana issued an order Oct. 25 outlining the payment schedule for installment fees.
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Courts limiting workers' online conductRestricted Content

October 26, 2011
Michael Hoskins
Workplace Internet policies go up against free speech concerns.
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Federal court addresses resentencing issue

October 25, 2011
Michael Hoskins
A federal appellate court’s general remand for resentencing doesn’t necessarily mean a defendant will receive a lesser penalty or be able to introduce new arguments, the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Tuesday.
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  1. I grew up on a farm and live in the county and it's interesting that the big industrial farmers like Jeff Shoaf don't live next to their industrial operations...

  2. So that none are misinformed by my posting wihtout a non de plume here, please allow me to state that I am NOT an Indiana licensed attorney, although I am an Indiana resident approved to practice law and represent clients in Indiana's fed court of Nth Dist and before the 7th circuit. I remain licensed in KS, since 1996, no discipline. This must be clarified since the IN court records will reveal that I did sit for and pass the Indiana bar last February. Yet be not confused by the fact that I was so allowed to be tested .... I am not, to be clear in the service of my duty to be absolutely candid about this, I AM NOT a member of the Indiana bar, and might never be so licensed given my unrepented from errors of thought documented in this opinion, at fn2, which likely supports Mr Smith's initial post in this thread: http://caselaw.findlaw.com/us-7th-circuit/1592921.html

  3. When I served the State of Kansas as Deputy AG over Consumer Protection & Antitrust for four years, supervising 20 special agents and assistant attorneys general (back before the IBLE denied me the right to practice law in Indiana for not having the right stuff and pretty much crushed my legal career) we had a saying around the office: Resist the lure of the ring!!! It was a take off on Tolkiem, the idea that absolute power (I signed investigative subpoenas as a judge would in many other contexts, no need to show probable cause)could corrupt absolutely. We feared that we would overreach constitutional limits if not reminded, over and over, to be mindful to not do so. Our approach in so challenging one another was Madisonian, as the following quotes from the Father of our Constitution reveal: The essence of Government is power; and power, lodged as it must be in human hands, will ever be liable to abuse. We are right to take alarm at the first experiment upon our liberties. I believe there are more instances of the abridgement of freedom of the people by gradual and silent encroachments by those in power than by violent and sudden usurpations. Liberty may be endangered by the abuse of liberty, but also by the abuse of power. All men having power ought to be mistrusted. -- James Madison, Federalist Papers and other sources: http://www.constitution.org/jm/jm_quotes.htm RESIST THE LURE OF THE RING ALL YE WITH POLITICAL OR JUDICIAL POWER!

  4. My dear Mr Smith, I respect your opinions and much enjoy your posts here. We do differ on our view of the benefits and viability of the American Experiment in Ordered Liberty. While I do agree that it could be better, and that your points in criticism are well taken, Utopia does indeed mean nowhere. I think Madison, Jefferson, Adams and company got it about as good as it gets in a fallen post-Enlightenment social order. That said, a constitution only protects the citizens if it is followed. We currently have a bevy of public officials and judicial agents who believe that their subjectivism, their personal ideology, their elitist fears and concerns and cause celebs trump the constitutions of our forefathers. This is most troubling. More to follow in the next post on that subject.

  5. Yep I am not Bryan Brown. Bryan you appear to be a bigger believer in the Constitution than I am. Were I still a big believer then I might be using my real name like you. Personally, I am no longer a fan of secularism. I favor the confessional state. In religious mattes, it seems to me that social diversity is chaos and conflict, while uniformity is order and peace.... secularism has been imposed by America on other nations now by force and that has not exactly worked out very well.... I think the American historical experiment with disestablishmentarianism is withering on the vine before our eyes..... Since I do not know if that is OK for an officially licensed lawyer to say, I keep the nom de plume.

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