Courts

High court transfer filed in early-voting case

October 24, 2008
Jennifer Nelson
The plaintiffs in a suit challenging Lake County early-voting satellite locations are appealing a special judge's order to keep the locations open to the Indiana Supreme Court.
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New St. Joseph Superior judge appointed

October 24, 2008
IL Staff
Gov. Mitch Daniels has appointed South Bend attorney Margot Fisher Reagan to St. Joseph Superior Court to replace the retired Judge William T. Means.
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Update: Transfer denied in early-voting case

October 24, 2008
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Supreme Court has denied a request from two Lake County Republicans to hear an appeal challenging an order to keep early-voting satellite locations open.
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Court finds fax to be a contract

October 24, 2008
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed summary judgment in favor of a landlord in his breach of lease claims against the Indiana Bureau of Motor Vehicles, finding a faxed agreement amending the original terms of the lease constituted a contract.
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EBA members affirm all judicial candidates

October 24, 2008
IL Staff
The Evansville Bar Association has released the results of the survey of its members regarding the retention of three Vanderburgh Superior judges running for re-election in November.
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COA revises child molesting sentence

October 23, 2008
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals upheld a man's convictions of child molesting, but reduced his sentence because he can't be considered among the worst offenders to justify the maximum sentence.
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Special judge: Keep early-voting sites open

October 22, 2008
Jennifer Nelson
A special judge has ordered satellite early-voting sites in East Chicago, Gary, and Hammond to remain open over the objections of two Lake County Republicans.
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Attorney faces charges of mail, wire fraud

October 22, 2008
Jennifer Nelson
A federal grand jury in Hammond has indicted a Schererville attorney with two counts of wire fraud and one count of mail fraud after being accused of stealing money from two clients.
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High court to hear riverboat receipts arguments

October 22, 2008
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Supreme Court will hear arguments Thursday in two cases involving the dispersion of a percentage of riverboat casino revenues in East Chicago.
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Judge declines to interfere with voter ID law

October 22, 2008
Michael Hoskins
A federal judge in Indianapolis won't interfere with the state law requiring voters to show photo identification at the election polls.
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Economic presence meets taxing requirement

October 21, 2008
Jennifer Nelson
In a matter of first impression, the Indiana Tax Court has ruled that a bank didn't need to have a physical presence in the state to be subject to Indiana's Financial Institutions Tax.
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Justices disagree about jury instruction

October 21, 2008
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Supreme Court was split in its ruling that a trial court properly instructed a jury regarding a habitual offender finding, with the dissenters arguing the court's instruction was inadequate as compared to the defendant's proposed jury instruction.
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Special judge invalidates local impact fee

October 21, 2008
Michael Hoskins
In the first court decision of its kind in Indiana, a special judge has invalidated Zionsville's parks impact fee because it violates state statute.
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Court rules on media access to CHINS cases

October 21, 2008
Jennifer Nelson
For the second time this month, the Indiana Court of Appeals has ruled on media access of CHINS records in a high-profile case involving the death of a child.
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Judges disagree on punitive damages award

October 20, 2008
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals upheld a compensatory damage award today for a couple that was attacked, but the majority remanded the trial court's punitive damage award because it was excessive.
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Justices tap special judge in Lake County case

October 16, 2008
IL Staff
The Indiana Supreme Court has appointed Lake Superior Judge Diane Kavadias Schneider, Civil Division 1, as a special judge in the consolidated Lake County cases involving the operations of early-voting sites in East Chicago, Gary, and Hammond, according to Kathryn Dolan, Indiana Supreme Court spokesperson.
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COA opts for judicial restraint

October 16, 2008
Michael Hoskins
The Indiana Court of Appeals has opted for judicial restraint in not deciding whether state statutes involving the Commerce Clause and the use of clean coal technology are unconstitutional.
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High court rules in favor of insurers in silica case

October 16, 2008
Jennifer Nelson
Companies that owned the assets of an industrial blast machine can't seek coverage from the insurers who issued liability policies for previous owners of the machine, the Indiana Supreme Court ruled yesterday.
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Court grants transfer to uninsured motorist case

October 16, 2008
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Supreme Court has granted transfer to a case about whether an insurance company's automobile policy violates the state's uninsured motorist statute.
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St. Joseph Bar releases judicial evaluation

October 16, 2008
IL Staff
St. Joseph County Bar Association members have evaluated the five St. Joseph Superior judges up for retention this year - Judges Roland W. Chamblee Jr., David C. Chapleau, Jerome Frese, Jenny Pitts Manier, John M. Marnocha, Jane Woodward Miller, and Michael P. Scopelitis. All of the judges received a combined average score of either average/acceptable or above average.
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ISBA members approve judges up for retention

October 15, 2008
IL Staff
The five Indiana judges up for retention this November have received overwhelming support from Indiana State Bar Association members. The ISBA poll shows no judge or justice received less than 83 percent of "yes" votes for retention.
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COA: Second amended complaint allowed

October 15, 2008
Jennifer Nelson
A former Steak 'n Shake employee appealed the trial court's dismissal of his claims of defamation and invasion of privacy against the company, which the Indiana Court of Appeals reversed and remanded today.
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Court consolidates Lake County voter cases

October 15, 2008
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Supreme Court has stepped in to settle conflicting rulings from two Lake County courts regarding early-voting sites in East Chicago, Gary, and Hammond, deciding that consolidating the cases to proceed in Lake Superior Court is the "most orderly approach."
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Attorneys scrutinize ad ruling

October 15, 2008
Michael Hoskins
Two Indianapolis law firm partners wonder why they were not given a chance to prevent potential lawyer advertising violations as colleagues have been given off and on through the years.
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7th Circuit: taxpayer suit for restitution is mootRestricted Content

October 14, 2008
Jennifer Nelson
The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed the District Court's dismissal of a taxpayer suit against the secretary of the U.S. Department of Education as moot, finding the taxpayers didn't have standing to sue for violations of the Establishment Clause based on a ruling from the U.S. Supreme Court.
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  1. Louis D. Brandeis was born in 1856. At 9 years of age it would have been 1865. The Brandeis family did not own slaves. My source Louis D. Brandeis: A Life, by Melvin L. Urofsky.

  2. My name is Matthew Lucas Major, I recently went through a jury trial in Bloomington , In. It was the week of Feb 19-21. Although I have been incarcerated since August 5, 2014. The reason I 'am writing to you sir is on the 21 of February the jury came in with a very excessive and wrongful verdict of guilty on 6 child molesting charges against my daughter who was 9 at the time I was accused. I also had 2 other Felonies one of Intimidation and 1 of Sexual Vicarious Gratification. Judge Marc Kellam on the second day of trial gave me a not guilty on those 2 felonies. The jury was sent out during that time and when brought back Judge Kellam told them to not concern themselves with the 2 Felonies that he ruled on them. They were told to not let evidence they had already heard influence there verdicts. I never in my life touched any child sexually and definitely not with my own daughter. When I was arrested Detective Shawn Karr told me I would be convicted guilty just on my daughters word even without evidence. That's just what happened. my public defender did me so wrong he never once proved to the court and jury all the lies the child told, and Jeremy Noel my public defender could of proven the lies easily. The stories in Serenity's depositions and Forensic interview changed and were not consistent as Prosecutor Darcie Fawcett claimed they were. Yet my attorney never mentioned that. The facts that the child accused me of full penetration in her vagina and rectum was proven lies. Doctor Roberta Hibbard of Riley hospital in Indianapolis confirmed Serenity's hymen intact, no scars, no tearing, no signs of rape to her. Yet my attorney didn't use that knowledge . the DNA was all in my favor. I tell you I will spend my entire life in prison going through rape and beatings etc. even Judge Kellam abused his authority by telling the jurors to listen and believe what the prosecutors side in evidence like my daughters testimony. In one interview with the detectives my daughter got flustered with her mom and said on camera " I'm saying what you told me to mom"!! Yet Mr. Noel said nor did anything to even resemble a defense attorney. Judge Kellam allowed edited version of a taped conversation between the child and her mother. Also Judge Kellam allowed the Prosecutor too bring in to my case a knife found under my seat, the knife wasn't part of my case. She was allowed by my attorney and the judge to put a huge picture of it on the screen and huge picture of my naked privates in a full courtroom and open court. Ms. Fawcett says to jury see how easy Mr. Major could reach the knife and cut his Childs throat. Even though I had no weapons charge against these cases. This gave the jurors prejudice thought against me thinking I threatened her with that knife and how scared she would of been knowing i could get it and kill her. On my sentencing court March 19, 2014 my public defender told Judge Kellam he wish to resign from being my attorney and wished for the court to give me outside council to file a error to trial or appeal. We were denied. Now after openly knowing my public defender don't want to represent me he has to. Well when as parents we make our kids clean a room when they really don't wish to, well the child will but don't mean she will do a good job, that's where I'm at with Mr. Noel. please dont ignore mine and my families pleas for your help . we have all the legal proof you could need to prove Im innocent. Please dont make my spend years in prison innocent when you can fix this wrong. Im not saying Im a perfect man or that I was a perfect dad to my 2 children none of us are. Ive made some bad choices in life and I paid for them. But I didnt ever touch or rape my daughter . I love my children with all my heart. And now through needing attention and a ex-wife who told my granny several times she wish she could put me in prison to get me out of their lives. Well my ex finally accomplished her goal. Sad part is she is destroying our daughter with all this horrific lies and things she taught my daughter to say. My daughter will need therapist to ever hope for a chance of a normal life after what she had done to her by her mom and their side of the family. My daughter told everyone even on stand she had a dream months before i supposedly molested her in this dream I was molesting her and when I finally did it matched her dream perfectly. She admitted to watching movies about little girls being molested and watching U-Tube videos about child molesting all before it happened supposedly to her. Doesn't that sound very unusual that a non molested 9 yr old would need to know so much about being molested? The only reason I could think a 9 year old would need so much information is to be prepared to know what to say and be able to say how it felt what took place etc.. So when questioned by authorities she would be prepared. And there again sir if a parent is pre grooming a 9 year old child she would need intimate details . Like telling her daughter about a couple moles on my private area. The child admitted to sneaking my cell and looking many many times at nudes of me and my girlfriend even one where my penis was entering my girlfriends vagina. In that picture my moles are obvious. Yet when prosecutor showed everyone in court my privates and pictures of the moles she said the only way the child would know about them is if she saw them for herself. My attorney once again said nothing about the pictures my child saw. Or could a ex-wife be able to describe my moles to help her case against getting rid of me? I beg you help me. This is my very existence. Ive lost everything , a good job, a wonderful girlfriend, my freedom, but worse thing Ive lost is my children. They were my reason to get up every morning and strive to be better. The wonderful bond I had with my Serenity is gone. After this I would be afraid to even hug her for fear of what next can they do to me. I'm not afraid to tell you I sit here in this cell and try to hold back my tears. Everyone knows you cant show weakness in prison. My life has already been threatened here at Wabash Valley Prison. After only 3 days of arrival. I was tricked into signing a waiver now Im in G Block General Population with 6 child molesting felony charges. Mrs. Hart as a 18 year old I almost died hooked to machines in hospital almost 1 month and now I know that fear was childish compared to this . I cant help but put emotions in this, after all Mrs. Hart Im human and God help Me I never been more afraid in my life. I didnt hurt my little girl I didnt touch her sexually. As much as it shreds me and fills my mind what Im facing I worry more about my mom and granny because of their great love for me mam they are suffering so deeply. I aint done this things but my loved ones suffering right along beside me and If you take my case you will be in essence freeing them also. I sent momma this letter and asked her to email it to you. I'm scared I have been done so unjustly by our legal system and I need you to fix this and give me freedom. I ask you please don't just ignore my pleas. Here in America its nice to be able to trust our legal justice system, well they destroyed my and my loved ones trust in our justice system . And I'm trusting in You !!! My entire family is suffering this nightmare with me. My 77 year old granny had a stroke and isn't doing so well. My single mother that raised 3 kids alone is dying from Lupus and since my arrest has stayed so sick and weary. Our lives torn to peices by a government I was taught I could trust in. my momma has tried so many innocent project and wrongfully accused and cant get anywhere. please please help me. A quote from the late Nelson Mandela: To be free is not merely to cast off ones chains, But to live in a way that respects and enhances The Freedom Of Others. I have Faith in you and your clinic to cast my chains off and give me freedom I do deserve as a wrongfully accused Man, son, brother, father, friend. Matthew Major DOC# 246179 Cause # : 53c02-1308-FA-000779 God Bless you. Please contact me with your decision so I know you made a life changing decision for me , just please at least write me so I know you care enough about your citizens to respond to cries for your help. You can speak openly with my mother Charlotte Spain (828) 476-0406: 71 Lakeview Dr. Canton, NC 28716 Thank You Matthew Major I know yall get thousands of request and inmates claiming innocence, and each person who are innocent deserve to have organizations like yours willing to fight for them and I give yall so much Thanks and I thank God everyday yall are out there caring enough to help free the innocents. Since discovering firsthand how easily lives and families can be destroyed by Poor Defense attorneys not doing their job . And Prosecutors allowed to do as they please in court

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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?

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