District Courts

Judges rule on lakefront land rights case

March 15, 2012
Michael Hoskins
The Indiana Court of Appeals has upheld a LaGrange Circuit judge’s decision granting summary judgment for a group of land owners caught up in a court dispute with neighbors about a portion of land situated between the plaintiffs’ homes and the shore of Big Long Lake.
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Union withdraws request for temporary restraining order

March 6, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
The union that filed a lawsuit last month in federal court challenging Indiana’s “right-to-work” law has withdrawn its emergency motion for a temporary restraining order.
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Liquids banned from Southern District courthouses

February 15, 2012
IL Staff
Beginning March 1, visitors to any courthouse in the Southern District of Indiana will not be permitted to bring in their own liquids or beverages. The change comes following a recommendation from the United States Marshals Service.
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7th Circuit affirms inmate has no property interest in fund

February 9, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals has upheld the decision in the Northern District of Indiana that an inmate has no property interest in prison recreation funds.
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Student sues over 'I (heart) BOOBIES' bracelet

February 6, 2012
IL Staff
The American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana has filed a lawsuit on behalf of a northern Indiana middle school student who believed he would be expelled if he didn’t cover up his bracelet that said “I (heart) BOOBIES.”
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Courtrooms shift in Southern District

February 2, 2012
IL Staff
With construction winding down at the Birch Bayh Federal Building and United States Courthouse in Indianapolis, there are two changes regarding bankruptcy judges’ courtrooms.
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New clerk appointed in Northern District

February 1, 2012
IL Staff
Robert N. Trgovich has been appointed clerk of the court by the judges of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Indiana, the court announced Tuesday.
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Bankruptcy filings down in 2011

January 18, 2012
Kathleen McLaughlin
Attorneys says the drop in mortgage foreclosures and sales impacted filings.
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Judge dismisses final MDL case

January 18, 2012
Michael Hoskins
The final lawsuit in a multi-district litigation case involving Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) claims against Indiana-based Zimmer Holdings has been resolved, with U.S. Judge Sarah Evans Barker in the Southern District of Indiana dismissing with prejudice the suit against the company on Dec. 23.
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U.S. District Court maintenance Jan. 7

January 6, 2012
IL Staff

Due to scheduled maintenance, e-filing and PACER access to case information for the U.S. District Court, Southern District of Indiana will be unavailable from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Jan. 7.

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7th Circuit to hear arguments in NCAA price-fixing lawsuit

January 5, 2012
Michael Hoskins
The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals hears arguments Monday in a case brought by two former NCAA athletes whose scholarships were revoked after injuries. The litigants claim that they were wrongly denied multi-year scholarships that would have covered the cost of their bachelor’s degrees.
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State Supreme Court's robo-calls ruling carries over to federal lawsuit

January 5, 2012
Michael Hoskins
A ruling by the Indiana Supreme Court upholding the state’s automated phone call ban has found its way into the briefing of a federal appeal challenging the same statute, and the attorneys disagree on whether the state justices adequately addressed a First Amendment issue.
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Justices to consider certified question on municipal reorganization

December 23, 2011
Michael Hoskins
The Indiana Supreme Court has accepted a certified question from a federal judge in Indianapolis that asks whether a township can reorganize into a city in a way that deprives some residents of their statutory rights to vote for mayor and city council.
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ACLU says DOC should be held in contempt over kosher meals

December 23, 2011
Michael Hoskins
The American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana is asking a federal judge to hold the state’s Department of Correction in contempt for not offering inmates kosher meals as it had been ordered to do a year ago.
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Ex-Dow Agro scientist receives 7 years for economic espionage

December 22, 2011
IBJ Staff
A federal judge on Wednesday sentenced a former Dow AgroSciences researcher to more than seven years in prison for sending trade secrets worth millions of dollars to China and Germany.
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Ex-Dow Agro scientist set to be sentenced in espionage case

December 21, 2011
Scott Olson
Federal prosecutors are recommending that a former Dow AgroSciences researcher be sentenced to more than seven years in prison for sending trade secrets worth millions to China and Germany.
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District Courts revise local rules

December 21, 2011
IL Staff
The U.S. District Courts for the Southern and Northern Districts of Indiana will be changing the style of Local Rules beginning Jan.1.
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Grand jury indicts 2 attorneys, real estate broker

December 14, 2011
Cory Schouten
A grand jury in South Bend has returned a 14-count criminal indictment against two attorneys and a real estate broker from central Indiana over a state lease deal in Elkhart.
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Judge won't allow auto-dialer statute enforcement during appeal

December 13, 2011
Michael Hoskins
Balancing free speech rights with the public interest in preventing automated political calls from out-of-state entities, U.S. Judge William Lawrence in Indianapolis denied the state’s request to continue enforcing Indiana’s auto-dialer statute while a higher court is considering his ruling from two months ago that blocked enforcement.
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Bankruptcy judge applications being accepted

December 8, 2011
IL Staff
The Judicial Council of the 7th Circuit is seeking applications for bankruptcy judge to fill a new position in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana.
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Man gets 326 months imprisonment, lifetime supervision for child pornography

December 6, 2011
Michael Hoskins
U.S. Judge Robert Miller Jr. sentenced an Elkhart man to 326 months in prison and a lifetime of supervised release after his guilty plea to sexually exploiting children.
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Former city-county councilor sentenced to 40 months

December 2, 2011
IL and IBJ Staff
U.S. Senior Judge Larry McKinney on Thursday sentenced former Indianapolis City-County Councilor Lincoln Plowman to 40 months in federal prison for attempted extortion and bribery.
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Court seeks comment on changes to civil local rules

December 1, 2011
IL Staff
The U.S. District Court, Southern District of Indiana, is seeking comment on proposed amendments to dozens of its local rules. If adopted, the amendments will become effective Jan. 1, 2012.
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Changes to federal courts effective Thursday

November 30, 2011
IL Staff
Several changes are coming to the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Indiana and the U.S. District Court in the Northern District of Indiana Thursday.
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Application process open for federal defense panel

November 30, 2011
IL Staff
The United States District Court for the Southern District of Indiana is accepting applications from attorneys interested in serving on the court’s Criminal Justice Act panel for the Indianapolis and Terre Haute divisions.
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  1. Where may I find an attorney working Pro Bono? Many issues with divorce, my Disability, distribution of IRA's, property, money's and pressured into agreement by my attorney. Leaving me far less than 5% of all after 15 years of marriage. No money to appeal, disabled living on disability income. Attorney's decision brought forward to judge, no evidence ever to finalize divorce. Just 2 weeks ago. Please help.

  2. For the record no one could answer the equal protection / substantive due process challenge I issued in the first post below. The lawless and accountable only to power bureaucrats never did either. All who interface with the Indiana law examiners or JLAP be warned.

  3. 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

  4. 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!!!

  5. 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.

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