Indiana Court of Appeals finalists chosen

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Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels will appoint the next member of the Indiana Court of Appeals from a list of three finalists comprised of two judges and a public defender.

Marion Superior Judge Robert R. Altice Jr., public defender Patricia Caress McMath and Madison Circuit Judge Rudolph R. Pyle III were named finalists June 4 by the Indiana Judicial Nominating Commission.

The three are vying to replace Judge Carr Darden, who is retiring in July.

altice-robert-mug Altice
McMath McMath
Pyle Pyle

The commission narrowed the field from five to the three finalists after a second round of interviews on June 4. Each candidate was asked what he or she might change about the court if selected as a judge.

McMath said she would like to see the court consider methods for assisting pro se litigants and also find ways to try to shorten the 90-day period allowed for court personnel to file court records for appeal.

Altice said he would like to see appeals court panels permit more oral arguments, noting that fewer than 10 percent of appeals court cases involve oral argument, while the majority of Supreme Court cases do.

Pyle said he wouldn’t propose many changes but would consider exploring ways to compress the time allowed for filing court transcripts, and he would embrace technology to assist court proceedings.

Abigail Lawlis Kuzma, who works in the Office of the Indiana Attorney General Consumer Protection Division, and Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law professor Joel M. Schumm were the other semi-finalists for the judgeship.

The Judicial Nominating Commission sent its letter with the names of the three finalists to Daniels June 11. The governor has 60 calendar days from the date he receives the letter to make the appointment.•


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  1. Great observation Smith. By my lights, speaking personally, they already have. They counted my religious perspective in a pro-life context as a symptom of mental illness and then violated all semblance of due process to banish me for life from the Indiana bar. The headline reveals the truth of the Hoosier elite's animus. Details here: Denied 2016 petition for cert (this time around): (“2016Pet”) Amicus brief 2016: (“2016Amici”) As many may recall, I was banned for five years for failing to "repent" of my religious views on life and the law when a bar examiner demanded it of me, resulting in a time out to reconsider my "clinging." The time out did not work, so now I am banned for life. Here is the five year time out order: Denied 2010 petition for cert (from the 2009 denial and five year banishment): (“2010Pet”) Read this quickly if you are going to read it, the elites will likely demand it be pulled down or pile comments on to bury it. (As they have buried me.)

  2. if the proabortion zealots and intolerant secularist anti-religious bigots keep on shutting down every hint of religious observance in american society, or attacking every ounce of respect that the state may have left for it, they may just break off their teeth.

  3. "drug dealers and traffickers need to be locked up". "we cannot afford just to continue to build prisons". "drug abuse is strangling many families and communities". "establishing more treatment and prevention programs will also be priorities". Seems to be what politicians have been saying for at least three decades now. If these are the most original thoughts these two have on the issues of drug trafficking and drug abuse, then we're no closer to solving the problem than we were back in the 90s when crack cocaine was the epidemic. We really need to begin demanding more original thought from those we elect to office. We also need to begin to accept that each of us is part of the solution to a problem that government cannot solve.

  4. What is with the bias exclusion of the only candidate that made sense, Rex Bell? The Democrat and Republican Party have created this problem, why on earth would anyone believe they are able to fix it without pushing government into matters it doesn't belong?

  5. This is what happens when daddy hands over a business to his moron son and thinks that everything will be ok. this bankruptcy is nothing more than Gary pulling the strings to never pay the creditors that he and his son have ripped off. they are scum and they know it.