Courts

Reporter may need to testify, interview notes remain private

May 6, 2015
 Associated Press
A northern Indiana judge has ruled a newspaper reporter does not have to turn over notes and recordings from an interview she conducted with a man accused of murder and the suspect's mother. But Elkhart Circuit Judge Terry Shewmaker said she does have to be available to testify as a rebuttal witness.
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Do-over expected to bring same result in contraception case

May 6, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
In a second round of oral arguments regarding the University of Notre Dame’s challenge to the Affordable Care Act’s contraception mandate, the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals not only remained dubious of the school’s assertions but also seemed perplexed as to why the case came back to the court.
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Jury is out on Indiana Tax Court

May 6, 2015
Dave Stafford
The Indiana Supreme Court on April 20 appointed a task force to study the work volume, operations and performance of Indiana’s Tax Court, created in 1986 by the Legislature to remove the intricate tax cases from state trial courts.
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Indiana attorney disbarred by Supreme Court for 'profoundly disturbing' behavior

May 6, 2015
Dave Stafford
R. Mark Keaton lost his license to practice law recently, but that hasn’t stopped him from continuing his vendetta against a woman who ended what the Indiana Supreme Court called “a tempestuous long-distance relationship.”
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Mediation Assistance Program appoints counsel to help litigants settle cases

May 6, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
The program, started in 2009, matches attorney volunteers with pro se litigants as they enter settlement talks. In its inaugural year, MAP appointed legal counsel to two settlement conferences. By 2013, MAP attorneys assisted in 43 conferences.
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Johnson County ADR program sees uptick in caseload

May 6, 2015
 Associated Press, Dave Stafford
Every day, a program in Franklin works with families struggling with divorce, custody battles and child support disputes. The goal is to help resolve arguments, get cases through the court system faster, and help families move on.
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Parents of autistic children gird for showdown with Anthem

May 6, 2015
IBJ Staff, J.K. Wall
A showdown is brewing over autism therapy in Indiana. After an Elkhart couple with an autistic son sued Indianapolis-based health insurer Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield in April, autism families around the state have started a campaign to get Anthem to change its policy for covering therapy for school-age children.
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Graham takes oath

May 6, 2015
IL Staff
Bankruptcy Judge Jeffrey Graham recently took the oath.
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7th Circuit wants rationale for sentence

May 5, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
A defendant was unable to get his revocation of probation overturned, but he is heading back to court for another sentencing after the District judge failed to give reasons for imposing a two-year jail term.
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Deaf litigant’s ADA case proceeds, minus state defendants

May 5, 2015
Dave Stafford
A judge has dismissed state defendants from a lawsuit brought by a deaf man who was denied a court-appointed interpreter during a mediation, but his lawsuit against the Marion Circuit Court will proceed.
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Pence signs bill tightening Indiana's state ethics laws

May 5, 2015
 Associated Press
Indiana Gov. Mike Pence has endorsed an overhaul of state ethics laws that requires greater financial disclosure by lawmakers and expressly prohibits elected officials from using state resources for political purposes.
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Website domain dispute pulled from justices’ calendar

May 5, 2015
Dave Stafford
A dispute over a website address that had been scheduled for oral arguments Wednesday before the Indiana Supreme Court has been settled, an attorney involved in the case said.
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New law will give immunity to volunteer medical workers

May 5, 2015
 Associated Press
Doctors, nurses and other health care providers will have civil immunity for their volunteer work under a new Indiana law.
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Indiana Supreme Court approves amended pro bono reporting rule

May 4, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
The Indiana Supreme Court has amended the state’s new pro bono reporting rule, narrowing the focus to measuring only the direct representation given to indigent litigants.
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Justices to review ruling for father of fatally injured moped rider

May 4, 2015
Dave Stafford
The Indiana Supreme Court will hear a case, stemming from a fatal crash, in which the trial court and Court of Appeals reached different results.
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Judge allows woman's suit over jail miscarriage to proceed

May 4, 2015
 Associated Press
A federal judge has ruled that a northern Indiana woman can proceed with her lawsuit alleging negligence in a miscarriage she suffered while in custody.
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Central Indiana county seeks to develop work release program

May 4, 2015
 Associated Press
Officials in a central Indiana county are seeking to develop a community work release program that would keep the jail from becoming overcrowded and could save taxpayers the expense of having to expand or eventually build a new jail.
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Split 7th Circuit allows death penalty challenge asserting intellectual disability

May 4, 2015
Dave Stafford
A killer sentenced in Texas and awaiting execution on federal death row in Terre Haute will be allowed to proceed with efforts to present new evidence of intellectual disability that would make him ineligible for capital punishment, a 7th Circuit Court of Appeals en banc review determined in a 6-5 opinion.
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Judge, attorney credited for robust recovery for victims of securities fraud

May 1, 2015
Greg Andrews, IBJ Staff
The more than 90 investors who lost $9.7 million in a securities fraud perpetrated by Fishers hedge fund manager Keenan Hauke will recover about 33 percent of their losses - a far better outcome than is typical in cases of its kind.
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Fort Wayne attorney named new Allen Superior magistrate

May 1, 2015
IL Staff
A private practice attorney and former Indiana Department of Child Services attorney has been chosen as magistrate judge in Allen Superior Court Family Relations Division.
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COA orders judgment in favor of woman on adverse possession claim

April 30, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
Because there is evidence that both the woman who purchased land from a trust and the trustee paid taxes on a disputed 1.8 acres of land for at least 10 years, the woman’s claim for adverse possession of the land should be granted, the Indiana Court of Appeals held.
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Court OKs admission of tweets, reverses criminal gang activity conviction

April 30, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
In a case of first impression regarding the authentication of social media posts, the Indiana Court of Appeals held that the testimony from the defendant's girlfriend that the Twitter account belonged to her boyfriend, as well as content from that account, sufficiently showed the defendant was the author of its tweets.
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Man’s conviction from controlled drug buy upheld

April 30, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
An Anderson man who was criminally convicted for selling drugs to a confidential informant waived both his arguments on appeal, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled Thursday. And, the judges found no fundamental error in a jury instruction given or the admission of cash found on the defendant by police.
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COA orders woman’s sentence revised to include credit time

April 30, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals found Thursday that a trial court incorrectly calculated the sentence a woman should serve in the Department of Correction after she had her probation revoked.
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Revised sentence modification statute not applicable in defendant’s case

April 30, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
A trial court did not err in denying a man’s petition to modify his sentence after finding that the current version of the sentencing modification statute is not applicable to his sentence, which he began serving in 1989. The Indiana Court of Appeals panel relied on a January decision by its colleagues to affirm the denial of Mitchell Swallows’ petition.
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  1. Diocese of Fort Wayne-South Bend in December, but U.S. District Judge Robert Miller later reduced that to about $540,000 to put the damages for suffering under the statutory cap of $300,000.

  2. I was trying to remember, how did marriage get gay in Kentucky, did the people vote for it? Ah no, of course not. It was imposed by judicial fiat. The voted-for official actually represents the will of the majority in the face of an unelected federal judiciary. But democracy only is just a slogan for the powerful, they trot it out when they want and call it bigotry etc when they don't.

  3. Ah yes... Echoes of 1963 as a ghostly George Wallace makes his stand at the Schoolhouse door. We now know about the stand of personal belief over service to all constituents at the Carter County Clerk door. The results are the same, bigotry unable to follow the directions of the courts and the courts win. Interesting to watch the personal belief take a back seat rather than resign from a perception of local power to make the statement.

  4. An oath of office, does it override the conscience? That is the defense of overall soldier who violates higher laws, isnt it? "I was just following orders" and "I swore an oath of loyalty to der Fuhrer" etc. So this is an interesting case of swearing a false oath and then knowing that it was wrong and doing the right thing. Maybe they should chop her head off too like the "king's good servant-- but God's first" like St Thomas More. ...... We wont hold our breath waiting for the aclu or other "civil liberterians" to come to her defense since they are all arrayed on the gay side, to a man or should I say to a man and womyn?

  5. Perhaps we should also convene a panel of independent anthropological experts to study the issues surrounding this little-known branch of human sacrifice?

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