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Justices take sex offender case

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The Indiana Supreme Court granted transfer to a case filed by a convicted felon who refuses to register as a sex offender for life.

The justices accepted Edwin G. Buss, et al. v. Michael L. Harris, No. 52S02-1011-CV-642. Michael Harris pleaded guilty to felony child molesting in 1999 and was re-incarcerated twice for parole violations. He learned in 2007 that he’d be designated as a sexually violent predator and would have to register for life after state statutes had been revised. He refused to sign the forms and sued in late 2007.

The trial court granted Harris’ requests for declaratory and injunctive relief, relying on Wallace v. State, 905 N.E.2d 371, 374-377 (Ind. 2009), and Jensen v. State, 905 N.E.2d 384 (Ind. 2009).

The Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed the trial court in May 2010, ruling the Indiana Department of Correction isn’t authorized to determine whether an offender is a sexually violent predator. They rejected the state’s construction of the statutory provisions, ruling the legislature didn’t intend that an offender could have completed his sentence and reporting requirement and, without notice, be found in violation of lifetime reporting requirements because of amendments to statute.

The appellate judges cited Jones v. State, 885 N.E.2d 1286 (Ind. 2008), to support their ruling.
 

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  1. Don't we have bigger issues to concern ourselves with?

  2. Anyone who takes the time to study disciplinary and bar admission cases in Indiana ... much of which is, as a matter of course and by intent, off the record, would have a very difficult time drawing lines that did not take into account things which are not supposed to matter, such as affiliations, associations, associates and the like. Justice Hoosier style is a far departure than what issues in most other parts of North America. (More like Central America, in fact.) See, e.g., http://www.theindianalawyer.com/indiana-attorney-illegally-practicing-in-florida-suspended-for-18-months/PARAMS/article/42200 When while the Indiana court system end the cruel practice of killing prophets of due process and those advocating for blind justice?

  3. Wouldn't this call for an investigation of Government corruption? Chief Justice Loretta Rush, wrote that the case warranted the high court’s review because the method the Indiana Court of Appeals used to reach its decision was “a significant departure from the law.” Specifically, David wrote that the appellate panel ruled after reweighing of the evidence, which is NOT permissible at the appellate level. **But yet, they look the other way while an innocent child was taken by a loving mother who did nothing wrong"

  4. Different rules for different folks....

  5. I would strongly suggest anyone seeking mediation check the experience of the mediator. There are retired judges who decide to become mediators. Their training and experience is in making rulings which is not the point of mediation.

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