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Justices order mandate writ against court

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The Indiana Supreme Court has granted a relator's verified petition for writ of mandamus and prohibition against a Grant Superior judge and the clerk.

In the order dated Feb. 23 and posted today, State of Indiana ex rel. John L. Smith, Relator v. The Grant Superior Court No. 2, et al., No. 27S00-0812-OR-765,
Smith sought relief, alleging Grant Superior Judge Randall L. Johnson heard certain motions but failed to rule within the 30-day time limit in Ind. Trial Rule 53.1(A). Smith also alleged he filed a praecipe for withdrawal and clerk J. Mark Florence failed in his duty to determine a delay in ruling and withdraw the case from Judge Johnson.

Grant Superior Court No. 2 heard certain motions June 10, 2008, but failed to rule on those motions within 30 days, according to the order. On Aug. 15, the trial court suspended operations in the Grant County Courthouse because of health concerns related to mold and other conditions of the courthouse, but the court, Judge Johnson and Florence don't argue the emergency conditions or the Administrative Rule 17 Order issued by the Supreme Court in September relieves the trial court of its obligation to rule in a timely manner.

The high court unanimously directed Judge Johnson to vacate any orders issued after Smith's filing of praecipe Oct. 21, 2008, and to cease exercising jurisdiction over the case except for administrative duties to effectuate the writ. Florence is directed to give written notice to Judge Johnson and the Supreme Court that submission of the cause has been withdrawn in accordance to T.R. 53.1(E)(2). Judge Johnson also has to file a written report once an order appointing a special judge has been issued.

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  1. KUDOS to the Indiana Supreme Court for realizing that some bureacracies need to go to the stake. Recall what RWR said: "No government ever voluntarily reduces itself in size. Government programs, once launched, never disappear. Actually, a government bureau is the nearest thing to eternal life we'll ever see on this earth!" NOW ... what next to this rare and inspiring chopping block? Well, the Commission on Gender and Race (but not religion!?!) is way overdue. And some other Board's could be cut with a positive for State and the reputation of the Indiana judiciary.

  2. During a visit where an informant with police wears audio and video, does the video necessary have to show hand to hand transaction of money and narcotics?

  3. I will agree with that as soon as law schools stop lying to prospective students about salaries and employment opportunities in the legal profession. There is no defense to the fraudulent numbers first year salaries they post to mislead people into going to law school.

  4. 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.

  5. I love this, Dave! Many congrats to you! We've come a long way from studying for the bar together! :)

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