Courts

7th Circuit reinstates suit to recoup environmental cleanup costs

December 19, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
Finding the District Court erred in dismissing several claims made by the trustees of a fund to oversee cleanup of a contaminated site, the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals is allowing the lawsuit to proceed.
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Judges reinstate administrative order to refund excessive title insurance premiums

December 19, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
After finding a trial court exceeded its authority when it reweighed evidence presented to a hearing officer regarding overcharging of title insurance premiums by several agencies, the Indiana Court of Appeals reinstated the administrative order issued by the Indiana commissioner of insurance to refund excessive premiums.
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COA orders continuation of insurer’s case against tenant

December 19, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
Because Indiana law does not currently preclude a landlord’s insurer from bringing a subrogation claim against a tenant and a landlord’s complaint established a set of circumstances under which it would be entitled to relief, the Court of Appeals reversed the grant of a tenant’s motion to dismiss. The landlord’s insurer filed a subrogation action against the tenant after a fire started on her patio.
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Justices reinstate 80-year sentence

December 19, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
Disagreeing with the Court of Appeals, which ordered a convicted child molester’s sentence cut in half, the Indiana Supreme Court reinstated John Kimbrough III’s 80-year aggregate sentence for molesting his former girlfriend’s two young daughters.
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Justices: summary judgment inappropriate on some claims in contaminated waste suit

December 19, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Supreme Court has affirmed in part and reversed in part the grant of summary judgment to various defendants involved in a landowner’s lawsuit seeking damages after a steel fabrication company deposited solid waste onto his property.
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Hospital wins on uninsured patients’ appeal of rates charged

December 19, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Supreme Court ruled in favor of a hospital’s motion to dismiss a complaint brought by uninsured patients regarding the rates charged by the hospital, finding the patients’ complaint failed to state facts on which the trial court could have granted relief.
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State could refile charges against Bunch

December 19, 2012
IL Staff
Although arson and murder charges were dismissed against Kristine Bunch Tuesday in Decatur County, prosecutors may decide to refile charges after further investigation.
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Applications being accepted for St. Joseph Superior Court

December 19, 2012
IL Staff
Those interested in joining the St. Joseph Superior bench have until Jan. 18 to apply to the court’s nominating commission. The applicant chosen will replace Judge Roland Chamblee Jr., who is retiring in March.
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Rush robing ceremony set

December 19, 2012
IL Staff
Indiana Supreme Court Justice Loretta Rush’s formal robing ceremony will take place at 10 a.m. Friday, Dec. 28 in the Supreme Court Courtroom at the Statehouse.
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Conour court filings reveal lavish lifestyle

December 19, 2012
Dave Stafford
The ex-attorney is still without counsel in his wire fraud case and is proceeding pro se in his divorce and foreclosure cases.
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Powers collide in utility rate case charged by ethics scandal

December 19, 2012
Dave Stafford
Undue influence is an undercurrent of Duke Energy v. Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission case.
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Disciplinary Actions - 12/21/12

December 19, 2012
IL Staff
Read who's been suspended by the Indiana Supreme Court.
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Former Clinton County judge dies

December 19, 2012
IL Staff
Everett N. Lucas, 90, who served three terms as Clinton Circuit judge beginning in 1958, died Nov. 4 at Wesley Manor Retirement Community
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State drops charges against mom whose murder, arson convictions were overturned

December 18, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
The state has dropped charges against Kristine Bunch, the Decatur County woman who claimed she was wrongfully convicted of killing her son in a fire in 1995. Bunch was convicted in 1996 of murder and arson, but the Court of Appeals ordered a new trial this year.
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Attempted ‘hybrid’ defense delay didn’t violate speedy trial rule

December 18, 2012
Dave Stafford
A criminal defendant who filed motions on his own behalf and who also had consented to appointment of a special public defender was not denied a speedy trial when a delay of more than 70 days occurred, the Court of Appeals ruled Tuesday.
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AG’s office sues 2 foreclosure consultants

December 18, 2012
IL Staff
The Office of the Indiana Attorney General has filed lawsuits against two foreclosure consultant companies that took more than $2,600 from Indiana homeowners without providing services or refunds.
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The Star asks Supreme Court to review order to name online commenter

December 18, 2012
Dave Stafford
The Indianapolis Star has asked the Indiana Supreme Court to hear its appeal of an order that it identify an anonymous commenter who posted messages on its website that became part of a defamation suit.
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Justices order modification of sentence of convicted child caseworker to comply with plea agreement

December 17, 2012
Dave Stafford
A former child protective services caseworker convicted of sex crimes in Hamilton and Elkhart counties should have his sentence modified to comport with his plea agreement, the Indiana Supreme Court ordered.
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Justices take 6 cases, reject 26

December 17, 2012
Dave Stafford
The Indiana Supreme Court granted transfer in six of 32 cases reviewed in the week ending Dec. 14, according to the transfer disposition list posted Monday on the court website.
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Durham files to appeal federal conviction

December 17, 2012
IBJ Staff
Tim Durham officially has filed to appeal his conviction on fraud charges after being sentenced to 50 years in prison in late November.
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Woman who invited abusive spouse did not violate no-contact protective order

December 14, 2012
Marilyn Odendahl
In a case of first impression, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled the Indiana General Assembly was deliberate when it did not criminalize the violation of a protective order by the protected person.
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Star seeks rehearing on order to identify online commenter

December 14, 2012
Dave Stafford
The Indianapolis Star is asking the Court of Appeals to reconsider its order issued Dec.7 that required the newspaper to release the name of an online commenter Friday to a plaintiff who claims the remarks defamed him.
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Split court upholds $3.9 million workplace injury judgment

December 14, 2012
Dave Stafford
Whether a general liability carrier could intervene in a workplace injury lawsuit that awarded a plaintiff $3.9 million is a question that divided the Indiana Court of Appeals, which affirmed the lower court ruling.
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COA reminds ex-spouse that turnips cannot bleed

December 14, 2012
Marilyn Odendahl
Calling her interpretation of Indiana law incorrect, the Court of Appeals rejected a woman’s argument against the decrease in her spousal support and reminded her that “one cannot bleed a turnip.”  
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Divided appeals court affirms denial of incapacity maintenance

December 14, 2012
Dave Stafford
A woman with longstanding disabilities denied incapacity maintenance in her divorce judgment convinced one appellate judge that the trial court abused its discretion, but the majority affirmed the lower court’s decision.
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