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Justices adopt appellate court findings

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The Indiana Supreme Court issued a pair of short per curiam opinions on Thursday afternoon that adopt what the Indiana Court of Appeals decided on two criminal appeals.

Those opinions came in the cases of Curtis Outlaw v. State, No. 49S02-1006-CR-328; and Steven Marbley-El v. State, No. 71S03-1006-PC-329.

In Outlaw, the justices agreed with the appellate panel in reversing an Indianapolis man’s conviction for a Class A misdemeanor of operating a vehicle while intoxicated “in a manner that endangers a person.” The state had argued that evidence of intoxication should be sufficient to prove “endangerment,” which was the case before the General Assembly revised Indiana Code §9-30-5-2 in 2001. But the appellate court disagreed and rejected that argument and the conviction, which Curtis Outlaw had received a 365-day sentence for.

In Marbley-El, the court granted the transfer petition and summarily affirmed the Court of Appeals on a post-conviction case from St. Joseph Superior. Steven Marbley-El argued that he should have received a jury trial because his sentence was enhanced beyond the four year advisory to six years, based on Blakey v. Washington, 542 U.S. 296, 124 S. Ct. 2531 (2004) and Smylie v. State, 823 N.E.2d 679 (Ind. 2005). But the justices said those rulings don’t apply here because Marbley-El committed the robbery after lawmakers enacted the present “advisory” sentencing scheme.
 

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  1. Frankly, it is tragic that you are even considering going to an expensive, unaccredited "law school." It is extremely difficult to get a job with a degree from a real school. If you are going to make the investment of time, money, and tears into law school, it should not be to a place that won't actually enable you to practice law when you graduate.

  2. As a lawyer who grew up in Fort Wayne (but went to a real law school), it is not that hard to find a mentor in the legal community without your school's assistance. One does not need to pay tens of thousands of dollars to go to an unaccredited legal diploma mill to get a mentor. Having a mentor means precisely nothing if you cannot get a job upon graduation, and considering that the legal job market is utterly terrible, these students from Indiana Tech are going to be adrift after graduation.

  3. 700,000 to 800,000 Americans are arrested for marijuana possession each year in the US. Do we need a new justice center if we decriminalize marijuana by having the City Council enact a $100 fine for marijuana possession and have the money go towards road repair?

  4. I am sorry to hear this.

  5. I tried a case in Judge Barker's court many years ago and I recall it vividly as a highlight of my career. I don't get in federal court very often but found myself back there again last Summer. We had both aged a bit but I must say she was just as I had remembered her. Authoritative, organized and yes, human ...with a good sense of humor. I also appreciated that even though we were dealing with difficult criminal cases, she treated my clients with dignity and understanding. My clients certainly respected her. Thanks for this nice article. Congratulations to Judge Barker for reaching another milestone in a remarkable career.

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