Indiana Trial Courts

Marion County judicial selection now in lawmakers’ lap

January 13, 2016
Hayleigh Colombo, IBJ Staff
A federal appeals court rocked the Marion County court system last fall when it quashed its unusual judicial election process, saying it burdened the right to cast a meaningful vote. Now the court’s fate is in the hands of lawmakers, who will get a crack at replacing the election system the federal judges ruled unconstitutional.
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Muncie man gets 4 years for leaving 2 kids in crashed car

January 12, 2016
 Associated Press
A Muncie man has been sentenced to four years in prison for leaving two children in a partially submerged car after he drove the stolen vehicle into a creek.
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Eastern Indiana man gets 69 years for fatally shooting buddy

January 11, 2016
 Associated Press
A judge sentenced Bert McQueen III, 44, of Union County on Friday to 69 years in prison under a plea agreement in which he was convicted of murder and being a habitual offender in the September 2014 slaying of Brandon Wicker of Brownsville.
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Suit over courthouse ban of service dog proceeds

January 8, 2016
Dave Stafford
A man’s lawsuit alleging Tippecanoe County officials violated the Americans With Disabilities Act and the Rehabilitation Act by refusing to permit him to enter the courthouse with his service dog will proceed, a federal judge ruled.
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3 originally sentenced for murder face burglary sentences

January 7, 2016
 Associated Press
Three northern Indiana men sentenced to 50 or more years in prison before the Indiana Supreme Court overturned their murder convictions could be out of prison before the end of the year after being sentenced on felony burglary charges.
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Pretrial release project to test assessment tool

January 7, 2016
Marilyn Odendahl
The Indiana Supreme Court is preparing to test the viability of allowing certain offenders to be released pretrial without having to pay a bail.
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Gotsch will not seek third term as St. Joe Circuit judge

January 6, 2016
IL Staff
St. Joseph Circuit Judge Michael G. Gotsch announced Tuesday that he will not seek election for a third term in 2016.
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Allen County seeking magistrate for misdemeanor and traffic division

January 6, 2016
IL Staff
Allen Superior Court’s Criminal Division is now accepting applications for an upcoming magistrate vacancy to be created after the retirement of Magistrate Judge Robert Ross.
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DTCI: Where have all the jury trials gone?

December 30, 2015
Conceptually, attorneys (and especially perhaps members of organizations like DTCI and ITLA) embrace as inviolate the right to trial by jury. We cite the concept both as a goal and as the bedrock of our existence – and sometimes in responses opposing summary judgment motions. But the Indiana Supreme Court “2014 Indiana Judicial Service Report, Vol I: Judicial Year in Review” caused me to look more closely at how that right is being exercised as a practical matter.
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Man accused in death of pastor's wife charged in 2nd slaying

December 29, 2015
 Associated Press
An 18-year-old man accused of killing an Indianapolis pastor's pregnant wife during a home invasion faces another murder charge in a second fatal robbery that a prosecutor said Tuesday happened amid an "unprecedented" eight-day violent crime spree.
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6 counties next in line for trial court e-filing

December 28, 2015
 Associated Press
Six Indiana counties — Clark, Harrison, Henry, St. Joseph, Shelby and Wells — will be joining Hamilton County in implementing e-filing in the trial courts during the first half of 2016, with more to come later.
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Marion County residents mount court challenge to stop project

December 22, 2015
Scott Olson, IBJ Staff
Three Ransom Place residents in Indianapolis are challenging the city’s approval of a large residential project planned for the neighborhood and are asking a Marion County judge to stop the $10 million development.
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Judge: Indianapolis house blast defendant to keep lawyers

December 16, 2015
 Associated Press
A judge has rejected a request by a defendant in an Indianapolis house explosion that killed two people to dismiss his attorneys and represent himself one month before his trial is scheduled to begin.
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Indiana man's murder trial in wife's death ends in hung jury

November 20, 2015
 Associated Press
A murder trial for a northwestern Indiana man accused of killing his wife has ended with a hung jury.
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Suspected killer cancels request to represent himself

November 19, 2015
 Associated Press
A northwest Indiana man charged with strangling two women has decided not to represent himself during his upcoming trial.
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Jurists honored for longevity of service

October 30, 2015
IL Staff
Eight Indiana jurists were honored by Indiana Supreme Court Chief Justice Loretta Rush for 24 years of service on the bench at an annual judicial conference, the court announced Thursday.
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Evansville man gets 200 years for fire deaths of 3 people

October 27, 2015
 Associated Press
A judge on Monday sentenced an Evansville man to 200 years in prison after a jury found him guilty but mentally ill on three counts of murder for starting a fire that killed his ex-girlfriend, her grandfather and her daughter.
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Judge: Private Facebook messages fair game at arson trial

October 27, 2015
 Associated Press
A judge has declined to prevent private Facebook messages from being considered as evidence at the trial of two people charged in an Evansville marina fire.
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Trial courts saw 1.3M new cases in 2014

October 21, 2015
IL Staff
More than 1.3 million new cases were filed in Indiana trial courts last year, according to the Indiana Judicial Service report released Wednesday. The report details court operations at the county and appellate level for calendar year 2014.
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Judge Frances Gull receives national award for innovations in Allen County

October 21, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
For more than 10 years, Judge Frances Gull has spearheaded efforts in Allen County to make the jury process easier and more convenient. She made jury duty less burdensome by incorporating technological advances that help potential jurors feel more comfortable.
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Mediator appointed to Marion Superior Court

October 15, 2015
IL Staff
An Indianapolis mediator has been selected by Gov. Mike Pence to fill the vacancy in Marion Superior Court created when Judge Robert Altice Jr. was appointed to the Indiana Court of Appeals in July.
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Allen County judge recognized for jury operations improvements

October 7, 2015
IL Staff
Allen Superior Judge Frances C. Gull, who has spent the past 10 years to electronically upgrading the court’s jury management system, will receive the 2015 G. Thomas Munsterman Award for Jury Innovation from the National Center for State Courts for her efforts.
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Lawsuit takes on Indiana's right-to-farm laws

October 7, 2015
Jeff Newman, IBJ Staff
The Hoosier Environmental Council has filed a lawsuit on behalf of a pair of Hendricks County families who say they face “intolerable living conditions” created by odors coming from a nearby 8,000-hog farm that opened two years ago.
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Judges to join students in Constitution Day celebration

September 14, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
Indiana appellate and trial court judges along with Indiana Supreme Court attorneys will be celebrating Constitution Day by visiting with more than 2,500 students across the state.
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$5M bond set for man accused of plot to kill lawyer

July 14, 2015
 Associated Press
A $5 million bond has been set for a man accused of plotting with his mother to kill a Hamilton County divorce attorney seeking money from the mother's boyfriend.
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  1. Just an aside, but regardless of the outcome, I 'm proud of Judge William Hughes. He was the original magistrate on the Home place issue. He ruled for Home Place, and was primaried by Brainard for it. Their tool Poindexter failed to unseat Hughes, who won support for his honesty and courage throughout the county, and he was reelected Judge of Hamilton County's Superior Court. You can still stand for something and survive. Thanks, Judge Hughes!

  2. CCHP's real accomplishment is the 2015 law signed by Gov Pence that basically outlaws any annexation that is forced where a 65% majority of landowners in the affected area disagree. Regardless of whether HP wins or loses, the citizens of Indiana will not have another fiasco like this. The law Gov Pence signed is a direct result of this malgovernance.

  3. I gave tempparry guardship to a friend of my granddaughter in 2012. I went to prison. I had custody. My daughter went to prison to. We are out. My daughter gave me custody but can get her back. She was not order to give me custody . but now we want granddaughter back from friend. She's 14 now. What rights do we have

  4. This sure is not what most who value good governance consider the Rule of Law to entail: "In a letter dated March 2, which Brizzi forwarded to IBJ, the commission dismissed the grievance “on grounds that there is not reasonable cause to believe that you are guilty of misconduct.”" Yet two month later reasonable cause does exist? (Or is the commission forging ahead, the need for reasonable belief be damned? -- A seeming violation of the Rules of Profession Ethics on the part of the commission) Could the rule of law theory cause one to believe that an explanation is in order? Could it be that Hoosier attorneys live under Imperial Law (which is also a t-word that rhymes with infamy) in which the Platonic guardians can do no wrong and never owe the plebeian class any explanation for their powerful actions. (Might makes it right?) Could this be a case of politics directing the commission, as celebrated IU Mauer Professor (the late) Patrick Baude warned was happening 20 years ago in his controversial (whisteblowing) ethics lecture on a quite similar topic: http://www.repository.law.indiana.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1498&context=ilj

  5. I have a case presently pending cert review before the SCOTUS that reveals just how Indiana regulates the bar. I have been denied licensure for life for holding the wrong views and questioning the grand inquisitors as to their duties as to state and federal constitutional due process. True story: https://www.scribd.com/doc/299040839/2016Petitionforcert-to-SCOTUS Shorter, Amici brief serving to frame issue as misuse of govt licensure: https://www.scribd.com/doc/312841269/Thomas-More-Society-Amicus-Brown-v-Ind-Bd-of-Law-Examiners

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