Jurors

COA: Group voir dire did not violate right to impartial jury

July 19, 2017
Olivia Covington
An Indianapolis man who attempted to rob a pharmacy in a city more than an hour away was not denied his right to an impartial jury by the use of group voir dire, the Indiana Court of Appeals held Wednesday.
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High court rejects new trial request in Boston murder case

June 22, 2017
 Associated Press
The Supreme Court of the United States on Thursday ruled against a Boston man seeking to overturn his murder conviction because his lawyer failed to object when the trial judge closed the courtroom during jury selection.
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Court must revisit issue of prospective juror’s demeanor in Batson challenge

June 20, 2017
Olivia Covington
The Marion Superior Court must revisit the issue of whether a prospective juror’s body language made his dismissal appropriate after the Indiana Court of Appeals decided Tuesday it would be inappropriate to credit the state’s assertion without findings that the dismissal was not based on race.
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Judge vows to shield jurors in officer's murder retrial

May 18, 2017
 Associated Press
A county judge in Ohio vowed Thursday to shield jurors' identities and prevent distractions during the murder retrial of a white police officer who fatally shot an unarmed black motorist.
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Verdict slip in meningitis outbreak trial creates confusion

May 18, 2017
 Associated Press
People who lost loved ones in a fungal meningitis outbreak traced to tainted steroids were stunned when a pharmacy executive was acquitted of murder charges in 25 deaths, and some legal experts are questioning whether the vote by the jury was unanimous, as required in federal criminal trials.
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Kansas judges back off effort to keep jurors' names secret

May 1, 2017
 Associated Press
Indiana is one of several states where courts don't have to release jurors' names.
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Inside the Criminal Case: Race, talking to jurors and impeachment

March 22, 2017
James Bell
As is typical in these articles, nine years of hard work by attorneys is summarized in three paragraphs and some writer like me says, “eventually this case landed before the United States Supreme Court.”
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SCOTUS: Jury secrecy no bar to looking into race bias

March 6, 2017
 Associated Press
A juror's use of racial or ethnic slurs during deliberations over a defendant’s guilt can be a reason for breaching the centuries-old legal principle of secrecy in the jury room, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled Monday.
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Oregon case jury delivers blow to government in lands fight

October 28, 2016
 Associated Press
A jury delivered an extraordinary blow to the government in a long-running battle over the use of public lands when it acquitted all seven defendants involved in the armed occupation of a national wildlife refuge in rural southeastern Oregon.
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Court seems favorable to defendant claiming jury race bias

October 11, 2016
 Associated Press
The Supreme Court of the United States on Tuesday suggested that racial bias in the jury room may trump the centuries-old legal principle of secrecy in jury deliberations.
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Justices weigh dispute over racial bias in jury room

October 10, 2016
 Associated Press
There was nothing subtle about the ethnic slurs a juror in Colorado is reported to have made during deliberations over a Hispanic defendant charged with inappropriately touching teenage girls.
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Patterson: Trial by jury ensures justice for the people

August 24, 2016
As the state of Indiana celebrates its bicentennial year, we should all remember the importance of the right to trial by jury and commit to ensuring that this right remains inviolate.
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ABA calls for including implicit bias in jury instructions

August 12, 2016
Marilyn Odendahl
Over opposition from some attorneys including one from Indiana, the American Bar Association has adopted a resolution that calls for judges to instruct jurors on implicit bias.
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Judge reignites debate over researching jurors online

July 20, 2016
 Associated Press
Mining prospective jurors' Facebook, Twitter and other social media accounts is common practice for many attorneys looking to spot biases that might cost their clients a fair trial.
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SCOTUS says judges can recall discharged juries

June 9, 2016
 Associated Press
The Supreme Court of the United States said Thursday that judges may — in rare circumstances — call a jury back to the courtroom after it has delivered a verdict and been dismissed.
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Supreme Court rules judges can recall discharged juries

June 9, 2016
 Associated Press

The Supreme Court of the United States says judges may — in rare circumstances — call a jury back to the courtroom after it's delivered a verdict and been dismissed.

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Trial in IU student's death can stay in Brown County, judge rules

June 2, 2016
 Associated Press
A trial for a man accused of killing a 22-year-old Indiana University student likely will be held in Brown County despite his lawyer's concerns about a biased jury.
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Supreme Court throws out death sentence from all-white jury

May 23, 2016
 Associated Press
The U.S. Supreme Court ruled decisively in favor of a death-row inmate in Georgia on Monday, chastising state prosecutors for improperly keeping African-Americans off the jury that convicted him of killing a white woman.
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COA: Jury replay of 911 call within court’s discretion

April 26, 2016
Dave Stafford
A trial court was within its discretion to allow a jury to rehear a recording of a 911 call during deliberations, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled Tuesday in affirming a man’s convictions of intimidation and theft.
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Supreme Court will take up case about juror’s racial bias

April 4, 2016
 Associated Press
U.S. Supreme Court takes case over whether a juror's allegedly racially charged comments can open jury deliberations.
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Jury finds South Bend teen convicted of murder had gang ties

April 4, 2016
 Associated Press
South Bend jury finds teenager convicted of murder should have sentence enhanced for criminal gang activity.
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COA: Trial court did not follow Batson regulations when dismissing Hispanic juror

March 24, 2016
Scott Roberts
A trial court did not follow Batson regulations when dismissing a Hispanic juror before the trial of a man convicted of Class D felony intimidation and Class A misdemeanor domestic battery, and as such the Indiana Court of Appeals reversed his convictions, finding the evidence enough for him to stand trial again.
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Juror taint causes Supreme Court to reverse involuntary manslaughter convictions

March 16, 2016
Scott Roberts
The Indiana Supreme Court reversed a couple’s involuntary manslaughter convictions after it found an alternate juror improperly participated in the deliberations. The justices remanded the case to the trial court for a new trial.
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Jury selection scheduled in killing of Gary police officer

March 10, 2016
 Associated Press
Jury selection has been scheduled to begin in January in the trial of a man accused of killing of a Gary police officer.
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Indiana justices take case involving denied deposition request

January 25, 2016
IL Staff
The Indiana Supreme Court will decide whether a man on trial for a drug charge should have been allowed to depose two witnesses before trial. The issue divided the Indiana Court of Appeals in September.
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  1. The appellate court just said doctors can be sued for reporting child abuse. The most dangerous form of child abuse with the highest mortality rate of any form of child abuse (between 6% and 9% according to the below listed studies). Now doctors will be far less likely to report this form of dangerous child abuse in Indiana. If you want to know what this is, google the names Lacey Spears, Julie Conley (and look at what happened when uninformed judges returned that child against medical advice), Hope Ybarra, and Dixie Blanchard. Here is some really good reporting on what this allegation was: http://media.star-telegram.com/Munchausenmoms/ Here are the two research papers: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/0145213487900810 http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0145213403000309 25% of sibling are dead in that second study. 25%!!! Unbelievable ruling. Chilling. Wrong.

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  3. Mr. Levin says that the BMV engaged in misconduct--that the BMV (or, rather, someone in the BMV) knew Indiana motorists were being overcharged fees but did nothing to correct the situation. Such misconduct, whether engaged in by one individual or by a group, is called theft (defined as knowingly or intentionally exerting unauthorized control over the property of another person with the intent to deprive the other person of the property's value or use). Theft is a crime in Indiana (as it still is in most of the civilized world). One wonders, then, why there have been no criminal prosecutions of BMV officials for this theft? Government misconduct doesn't occur in a vacuum. An individual who works for or oversees a government agency is responsible for the misconduct. In this instance, somebody (or somebodies) with the BMV, at some time, knew Indiana motorists were being overcharged. What's more, this person (or these people), even after having the error of their ways pointed out to them, did nothing to fix the problem. Instead, the overcharges continued. Thus, the taxpayers of Indiana are also on the hook for the millions of dollars in attorneys fees (for both sides; the BMV didn't see fit to avail itself of the services of a lawyer employed by the state government) that had to be spent in order to finally convince the BMV that stealing money from Indiana motorists was a bad thing. Given that the BMV official(s) responsible for this crime continued their misconduct, covered it up, and never did anything until the agency reached an agreeable settlement, it seems the statute of limitations for prosecuting these folks has not yet run. I hope our Attorney General is paying attention to this fiasco and is seriously considering prosecution. Indiana, the state that works . . . for thieves.

  4. I'm glad that attorney Carl Hayes, who represented the BMV in this case, is able to say that his client "is pleased to have resolved the issue". Everyone makes mistakes, even bureaucratic behemoths like Indiana's BMV. So to some extent we need to be forgiving of such mistakes. But when those mistakes are going to cost Indiana taxpayers millions of dollars to rectify (because neither plaintiff's counsel nor Mr. Hayes gave freely of their services, and the BMV, being a state-funded agency, relies on taxpayer dollars to pay these attorneys their fees), the agency doesn't have a right to feel "pleased to have resolved the issue". One is left wondering why the BMV feels so pleased with this resolution? The magnitude of the agency's overcharges might suggest to some that, perhaps, these errors were more than mere oversight. Could this be why the agency is so "pleased" with this resolution? Will Indiana motorists ever be assured that the culture of incompetence (if not worse) that the BMV seems to have fostered is no longer the status quo? Or will even more "overcharges" and lawsuits result? It's fairly obvious who is really "pleased to have resolved the issue", and it's not Indiana's taxpayers who are on the hook for the legal fees generated in these cases.

  5. From the article's fourth paragraph: "Her work underscores the blurry lines in Russia between the government and businesses . . ." Obviously, the author of this piece doesn't pay much attention to the "blurry lines" between government and businesses that exist in the United States. And I'm not talking only about Trump's alleged conflicts of interest. When lobbyists for major industries (pharmaceutical, petroleum, insurance, etc) have greater access to this country's elected representatives than do everyday individuals (i.e., voters), then I would say that the lines between government and business in the United States are just as blurry, if not more so, than in Russia.

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