District Courts

Southern Indiana courts see rise in heroin, meth sentences

January 16, 2017
 Associated Press
Recently released court statistics show a growing percentage of prisoners sentenced for federal drug crimes in southern Indiana are heroin offenders.
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Lilly shares rise after Alimta cancer drug patent upheld

January 13, 2017
 Bloomberg News
Eli Lilly and Co. won an appeals court ruling Thursday that upheld the validity of a patent for its lung cancer drug Alimta, helping shares rise by almost 3 percent.
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IU fraternity chapter suspended after hazing problems

January 10, 2017
 Associated Press, IL Staff
The governing body of Delta Tau Delta has suspended the charter for the fraternity's chapter at Indiana University Bloomington following problems with hazing. The fraternity also faces a lawsuit alleging sexual assault.
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Magistrate recommends dismissal of woman’s dog-mauling suit

January 10, 2017
Olivia Covington
Despite “horrendous injuries” incurred as a result of “a grievous lack of discretion” by Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department officers, a district court magistrate recommends an Indianapolis woman’s federal claim against IMPD and the city of Indianapolis be dismissed because she did not state a legitimate constitutional claim.
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Sentencing hearing continues for Charleston church shooter

January 9, 2017
 Associated Press
Final testimony is expected as prosecutors wrap up their argument that Dylann Roof should be sentenced to death for the Charleston, South Carolina church shootings.
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Lake County sheriff's official pleads guilty to wire fraud

December 19, 2016
 Associated Press
The second-in-command at the Lake County Sheriff’s Department pleaded guilty to wire fraud Friday in a bribery case in which the sheriff and a tow truck operator also are charged.
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ACLU challenges Clarksville yard-inspection ordinance

December 13, 2016
Olivia Covington
A Clarksville resident is suing the southern Indiana town for entering her yard without her permission or warrant, an action she says violates her Fourth Amendment rights.
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ACLU suing Knightstown over illuminated cross display

December 12, 2016
 Associated Press
The American Civil Liberties Union is suing a central Indiana town over the display of a cross as part of its Christmas decorations.
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Forest Alliance sues to stop Crown Hill cemetery project

December 8, 2016
IBJ Staff
The controversy over the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs’ plans to develop a military cemetery with a series of above-ground columbariums on 15 wooded acres north of Crown Hill Cemetery in Indianapolis has ended up in court.
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7th Circuit rules Duke Energy must pay for wind-generated power

December 6, 2016
Olivia Covington
The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals reversed a district court decision Tuesday requiring Duke Energy to pay for power generated by a local wind farm only if it passes to a lower grid, deciding instead that the energy company is contractually obligated to pay for any generated power regardless of transmission issues.
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New resource gives access to troves of data measures on district court judges’ orders

November 16, 2016
Dave Stafford
Litigation Analytics, a product of Bloomberg Law, will tell you how long, on average, a judge takes to rule in an employment matter, what firms frequently appear in his or her courtroom, and his or her appeal outcomes.
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Indianapolis federal courthouse gets national award

November 15, 2016
IL Staff
The Birch Bayh Federal Building and U.S. Courthouse has received national recognition for a refurbishment project that ushered the infrastructure of the 100-year-old building into the 21st century while preserving the structure’s distinguished spirit.
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District court fees to increase Dec. 1

November 11, 2016
IL Staff
Several fees included on the U.S. District Court’s Miscellaneous Fee Schedule will soon increase after the Judicial Conference approved fee changes at its September 2016 session.
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Judge initially dismisses ticket broker suit against Colts

November 10, 2016
Olivia Covington
A district court has dismissed a lawsuit against the Indianapolis Colts after deciding the team had the legal right not to renew an out-of-state ticket broker’s season tickets, but the court left the case open for further action by inviting the broker to file an amended claim on stronger legal ground.
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Ong still has path to Southern District seat

November 9, 2016
Marilyn Odendahl
With Republicans set to control the White House, U.S. Senate and House of Representatives, the fate of Indiana’s judicial nominees to the federal bench is even more uncertain, but one court-watcher believes Winfield Ong might be confirmed.
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Judge to hear bid to block Indiana abortion ultrasound law

November 9, 2016
 Associated Press, IL Staff
A federal judge is set to hear arguments in Planned Parenthood’s bid to block a new Indiana mandate that women undergo an ultrasound at least 18 hours before having an abortion.
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Plaintiffs in Carmel class-action traffic lawsuit file appeal

November 7, 2016
Lindsey Erdody, IBJ Staff
The plaintiffs in a federal class-action lawsuit filed against the city of Carmel for its enforcement of a local traffic ordinance are appealing the dismissal of the case in early October.
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Child porn accuser drops lawsuit against ex-Subway pitchman

October 21, 2016
 Associated Press
The family of a girl who accused Jared Fogle in a child pornography case that led to the former Subway pitchman's imprisonment is dropping a lawsuit against him.
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Judge limits expert testimony in Simon antitrust suit

October 20, 2016
Dave Stafford

Expert witnesses for Indianapolis-based Simon Property Group and a competing shopping center developer will be barred from testifying on certain subjects in an antitrust lawsuit against Simon, a federal judge ruled Wednesday.

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Victims to collect money soon in Veros case

October 19, 2016
Jared Council
Efforts to clean up what the Securities and Exchange Commission alleged was an $8.6 million Ponzi scheme perpetrated by Indianapolis-based Veros Partners Inc. are entering their final stages, with all but one defendant having reached a settlement and the company’s receiver preparing to make his first distribution to affected investors.
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Pence mum on continuing anti-Syrian refugee fight gubernatorial candidates reject

October 19, 2016
Dave Stafford
Gov. Mike Pence’s fight to keep Syrian refugees out of Indiana may continue — as his term is expiring, he hasn’t said whether he will appeal federal court rulings that his position is discriminatory. Nevertheless, the candidates vying to succeed him as governor oppose the stance he’s unsuccessfully fought for.
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Judge: Give Florida voters chance to fix vote-by-mail ballots

October 17, 2016
 Associated Press
Calling the state's current law "illogical" and "bizarre," a federal judge late Sunday ordered the state of Florida to give thousands of voters a chance to make sure their vote-by-mail ballots are counted.
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Dozens of judge nominees wait on Senate as time dwindles

October 17, 2016
 Associated Press, IL Staff
Senate confirmation of President Barack Obama's nominees slowed to a halt this election year, a common political occurrence for the final months of divided government with a Democratic president and a Republican-controlled Senate. But more than 90 vacancies in the federal judiciary are taking a toll on judges, the courts and Americans seeking recourse.
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Ex-Lake Station mayor begins serving federal sentence

October 17, 2016
 Associated Press
Former Lake Station mayor Keith Soderquist has begun serving a four-year federal prison term for public corruption.
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Judge denies summary judgment for jailers accused of excessive force

October 14, 2016
Olivia Covington
The U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana, Terre Haute decision, denied a motion for summary judgment brought by four Terre Haute jail officers who have been accused of using excessive force against a former inmate.
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  1. Hi there I really need help with getting my old divorce case back into court - I am still paying support on a 24 year old who has not been in school since age 16 - now living independent. My visitation with my 14 year old has never been modified; however, when convenient for her I can have him... I am paying past balance from over due support, yet earn several thousand dollars less. I would contact my original attorney but he basically molest me multiple times in Indy when I would visit.. Todd Woodmansee - I had just came out and had know idea what to do... I have heard he no longer practices. Please help1

  2. Yes diversity is so very important. With justice Rucker off ... the court is too white. Still too male. No Hispanic justice. No LGBT justice. And there are other checkboxes missing as well. This will not do. I say hold the seat until a physically handicapped Black Lesbian of Hispanic heritage and eastern religious creed with bipolar issues can be located. Perhaps an international search, with a preference for third world candidates, is indicated. A non English speaker would surely increase our diversity quotient!!!

  3. First, I want to thank Justice Rucker for his many years of public service, not just at the appellate court level for over 25 years, but also when he served the people of Lake County as a Deputy Prosecutor, City Attorney for Gary, IN, and in private practice in a smaller, highly diverse community with a history of serious economic challenges, ethnic tensions, and recently publicized but apparently long-standing environmental health risks to some of its poorest residents. Congratulations for having the dedication & courage to practice law in areas many in our state might have considered too dangerous or too poor at different points in time. It was also courageous to step into a prominent and highly visible position of public service & respect in the early 1990's, remaining in a position that left you open to state-wide public scrutiny (without any glitches) for over 25 years. Yes, Hoosiers of all backgrounds can take pride in your many years of public service. But people of color who watched your ascent to the highest levels of state government no doubt felt even more as you transcended some real & perhaps some perceived social, economic, academic and professional barriers. You were living proof that, with hard work, dedication & a spirit of public service, a person who shared their same skin tone or came from the same county they grew up in could achieve great success. At the same time, perhaps unknowingly, you helped fellow members of the judiciary, court staff, litigants and the public better understand that differences that are only skin-deep neither define nor limit a person's character, abilities or prospects in life. You also helped others appreciate that people of different races & backgrounds can live and work together peacefully & productively for the greater good of all. Those are truths that didn't have to be written down in court opinions. Anyone paying attention could see that truth lived out every day you devoted to public service. I believe you have been a "trailblazer" in Indiana's legal community and its judiciary. I also embrace your belief that society's needs can be better served when people in positions of governmental power reflect the many complexions of the population that they serve. Whether through greater understanding across the existing racial spectrum or through the removal of some real and some perceived color-based, hope-crushing barriers to life opportunities & success, movement toward a more reflective representation of the population being governed will lead to greater and uninterrupted respect for laws designed to protect all peoples' rights to life, liberty & the pursuit of happiness. Thanks again for a job well-done & for the inevitable positive impact your service has had - and will continue to have - on countless Hoosiers of all backgrounds & colors.

  4. Diversity is important, but with some limitations. For instance, diversity of experience is a great thing that can be very helpful in certain jobs or roles. Diversity of skin color is never important, ever, under any circumstance. To think that skin color changes one single thing about a person is patently racist and offensive. Likewise, diversity of values is useless. Some values are better than others. In the case of a supreme court justice, I actually think diversity is unimportant. The justices are not to impose their own beliefs on rulings, but need to apply the law to the facts in an objective manner.

  5. Have been seeing this wonderful physician for a few years and was one of his patients who told him about what we were being told at CVS. Multiple ones. This was a witch hunt and they shold be ashamed of how patients were treated. Most of all, CVS should be ashamed for what they put this physician through. So thankful he fought back. His office is no "pill mill'. He does drug testing multiple times a year and sees patients a minimum of four times a year.

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