District Courts

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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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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Bird settles French Lick lawsuit

October 8, 2008
IBJ Staff
Larry Bird has settled a lawsuit against a bed-and-breakfast that operates from his boyhood home in the southern Indiana town of French Lick.
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Agency sues DOC over mentally ill prisoners

October 2, 2008
Michael Hoskins
A state agency created in response to a federal mandate is suing the Indiana Department of Correction for what it claims is poor treatment of mentally ill prisoners.
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Northern District amends magistrate local rule

October 1, 2008
IL Staff
The United States District Court for the Northern District of Indiana has amended its Local Rule 72.1 - Authority of United States Magistrate Judges.
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Judge allows transgender suit to proceed

September 26, 2008
Michael Hoskins
A transgender former high school student who was barred from his senior prom in Gary because he was wearing a pink dress for the occasion will have his day in court.
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Federal death penalty trial still possible

September 25, 2008
Michael Hoskins
The first-ever federal death penalty trial in the Southern District of Indiana may still happen, even though the defendant has signed a plea agreement in connection with a violent killing spree almost three years ago.
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President signs new Federal Rule of Evidence

September 25, 2008
IL Staff
The Federal Rules of Evidence have been amended in hopes of lessening the skyrocketing costs of discovery.
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Plainfield political sign ordinance challenged

September 16, 2008
Michael Hoskins
The American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana has filed a federal lawsuit challenging a Plainfield ordinance restricting political lawn signs.
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District judge's robing ceremony Friday

September 11, 2008
IL Staff
Hon. William T. Lawrence, the newest judge in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana, will be formally sworn in tomorrow at the federal courthouse in Indianapolis.
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Judge clears way for $4.5 million settlement

September 5, 2008
Jennifer Nelson
A U.S. District magistrate judge granted a joint motion Sept. 2 to vacate a jury verdict in favor of a man wrongfully imprisoned for rape, allowing a settlement reached between the man and the city of Hammond to be approved.
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Federal court names new chief probation officer

September 4, 2008
IL Staff
The United States District Court for the Southern District of Indiana has appointed - effective immediately - a new chief probation officer, who also is the first African-American to serve in that capacity in the district.
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President nominates federal judge for 7th Circuit

August 29, 2008
Michael Hoskins
President George W. Bush has nominated U.S. District Judge Philip P. Simon to the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals in Chicago.
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Former Schererville judge sentenced

July 23, 2008
Michael Hoskins
A former judge in Lake County received a 15-month federal prison sentence on Thursday, four years after being indicted for extortion and fraud, and two years after she pleaded guilty to getting kickbacks from more than 1,000 defendants that she'd sentenced to driving school and counseling classes she secretly owned and personally profited from.
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Wanted: new federal magistrate

May 29, 2008
Michael Hoskins
Attorneys who want to be a magistrate judge in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana can now apply.
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  1. So that none are misinformed by my posting wihtout a non de plume here, please allow me to state that I am NOT an Indiana licensed attorney, although I am an Indiana resident approved to practice law and represent clients in Indiana's fed court of Nth Dist and before the 7th circuit. I remain licensed in KS, since 1996, no discipline. This must be clarified since the IN court records will reveal that I did sit for and pass the Indiana bar last February. Yet be not confused by the fact that I was so allowed to be tested .... I am not, to be clear in the service of my duty to be absolutely candid about this, I AM NOT a member of the Indiana bar, and might never be so licensed given my unrepented from errors of thought documented in this opinion, at fn2, which likely supports Mr Smith's initial post in this thread: http://caselaw.findlaw.com/us-7th-circuit/1592921.html

  2. When I served the State of Kansas as Deputy AG over Consumer Protection & Antitrust for four years, supervising 20 special agents and assistant attorneys general (back before the IBLE denied me the right to practice law in Indiana for not having the right stuff and pretty much crushed my legal career) we had a saying around the office: Resist the lure of the ring!!! It was a take off on Tolkiem, the idea that absolute power (I signed investigative subpoenas as a judge would in many other contexts, no need to show probable cause)could corrupt absolutely. We feared that we would overreach constitutional limits if not reminded, over and over, to be mindful to not do so. Our approach in so challenging one another was Madisonian, as the following quotes from the Father of our Constitution reveal: The essence of Government is power; and power, lodged as it must be in human hands, will ever be liable to abuse. We are right to take alarm at the first experiment upon our liberties. I believe there are more instances of the abridgement of freedom of the people by gradual and silent encroachments by those in power than by violent and sudden usurpations. Liberty may be endangered by the abuse of liberty, but also by the abuse of power. All men having power ought to be mistrusted. -- James Madison, Federalist Papers and other sources: http://www.constitution.org/jm/jm_quotes.htm RESIST THE LURE OF THE RING ALL YE WITH POLITICAL OR JUDICIAL POWER!

  3. My dear Mr Smith, I respect your opinions and much enjoy your posts here. We do differ on our view of the benefits and viability of the American Experiment in Ordered Liberty. While I do agree that it could be better, and that your points in criticism are well taken, Utopia does indeed mean nowhere. I think Madison, Jefferson, Adams and company got it about as good as it gets in a fallen post-Enlightenment social order. That said, a constitution only protects the citizens if it is followed. We currently have a bevy of public officials and judicial agents who believe that their subjectivism, their personal ideology, their elitist fears and concerns and cause celebs trump the constitutions of our forefathers. This is most troubling. More to follow in the next post on that subject.

  4. Yep I am not Bryan Brown. Bryan you appear to be a bigger believer in the Constitution than I am. Were I still a big believer then I might be using my real name like you. Personally, I am no longer a fan of secularism. I favor the confessional state. In religious mattes, it seems to me that social diversity is chaos and conflict, while uniformity is order and peace.... secularism has been imposed by America on other nations now by force and that has not exactly worked out very well.... I think the American historical experiment with disestablishmentarianism is withering on the vine before our eyes..... Since I do not know if that is OK for an officially licensed lawyer to say, I keep the nom de plume.

  5. I am compelled to announce that I am not posting under any Smith monikers here. That said, the post below does have a certain ring to it that sounds familiar to me: http://www.catholicnewworld.com/cnwonline/2014/0907/cardinal.aspx

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