Indiana Trial Courts

2 former day care workers ordered to pay $2.3M in boy's death

February 12, 2016
 Associated Press
Two former workers at a suburban Indianapolis day care where a 5-month-old boy died in 2013 have been order to pay the child's parents more than $2.3 million.
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Judge in power plant body case once represented suspect

February 3, 2016
 Associated Press
A southwestern Indiana judge who will preside over the murder trial of a man accused in a killing at a power plant has told attorneys that he once represented the suspect in an unrelated case.
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Indy judge selection bill set for Wednesday hearing

January 26, 2016
Dave Stafford
A proposed merit-selection plan giving state lawmakers a strong hand in the nomination and appointment of Marion Superior judges will be introduced Wednesday to the Senate Judiciary Committee.
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Jury seated in trial of man accused in fatal house explosion

January 20, 2016
 Associated Press
A jury of eight men and four women has been seated for the trial of a man accused of murder, arson and conspiracy charges.
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Clark County makes switch to e-filing

January 20, 2016
IL Staff
Clark County has become the second county to have its trial courts use electronic filing.
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Court decision paves way for displaced pizza shop's trial

January 18, 2016
Scott Olson, IBJ Staff
Enzo Pizza’s long-simmering legal battle with the Indianapolis City Market finally is headed to trial after the eatery won a partial court victory this month against its former landlord.
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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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  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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