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Electronic copies of warrants are equal to paper copies

January 17, 2017
Olivia Covington
An electronic version of a signed search warrant is legally considered the equivalent of a paper warrant, the Indiana Court of Appeals has held, so a man’s constitutional rights were not violated when an officer drew his blood after showing him only a photo of a warrant in an email.
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Courts cannot force contact with extended family members other than grandparents

January 17, 2017
Olivia Covington
Courts do not have the authority to force parents to allow their children to have contact with members of their extended family, aside from grandparents, the Indiana Court of Appeals decided Tuesday.
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Delaware County prosecutor changing how drug cases handled

January 17, 2017
 Associated Press
The top prosecutor in Delaware County says he's changing the way his office handles drug prosecutions.
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Indiana courthouse's murals, stained glass set for repairs

January 17, 2017
 Associated Press
A northeastern Indiana county's courthouse will soon be filled with scaffolding as workers repair water-damaged murals and its rotunda's stained glass dome.
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Zimmer Biomet to pay $30M in criminal and civil penalties

January 16, 2017
IL Staff
Medical device manufacturer Zimmer Biomet Holdings Inc. has reached a multimillion-dollar settlement with the Securities and Exchange Commission and the U.S. Department of Justice for repeat violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.
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Bankruptcy trustee appears poised to sue former ITT brass

January 16, 2017
Greg Andrews, IBJ Staff
ITT Educational Services Inc.’s bankruptcy trustee has launched a no-holds-barred investigation into the defunct company’s business practices—a move that appears likely to pave the way for her to sue former officers and directors, including CEO Kevin Modany and Chief Financial Officer Kevin Fitzpatrick.
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BLE members dismissed from suit challenging notice, bar exam constitutionality

January 16, 2017
Olivia Covington
A federal judge has declined to hear a recent law school graduate’s case against the members of the Indiana Board of Law Examiners, citing precedent that requires federal courts to abstain to from hearing certain ongoing state proceedings. But the judge did require the state to respond to the plaintiff’s claims that portions of the bar exam are unconstitutional.
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Supreme Court disciplines attorneys for noncompliance

January 16, 2017
IL Staff
Two Indiana attorneys are facing disciplinary measures after failing to comply with various court orders.
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Judge denies injunction to block VA's Crown Hill project

January 16, 2017
IBJ Staff
A federal judge on Friday shot down a legal effort by environmentalists to block development of a U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs cemetery on 15 wooded acres north of Crown Hill Cemetery in Indianapolis.
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Indiana gets $12.7M in Moody’s inflated-ratings settlement

January 16, 2017
 Associated Press, IL Staff
Indiana will receive $12.77 million from Moody’s Corp., which has agreed to pay nearly $864 million to settle federal and state claims it gave inflated ratings to risky mortgage investments in the years leading up to the financial crisis.
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GOP leaders pledge vape law overhaul, subject of FBI probe

January 16, 2017
 Associated Press
Republican legislative leaders say they want to unwind stiff regulations they imposed on Indiana’s vaping industry, which created a stranglehold on the burgeoning market for one company and prompted an FBI investigation.
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Southern Indiana courts see rise in heroin, meth sentences

January 16, 2017
 Associated Press
Recently released court statistics show a growing percentage of prisoners sentenced for federal drug crimes in southern Indiana are heroin offenders.
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Camm prosecutor reprimanded for book deal

January 13, 2017
IL Staff
The Indiana Supreme Court has imposed a public reprimand against a Floyd County prosecutor charged with violations of three Professional Conduct Rules after he failed to recuse himself from a case he planned to write a book about.
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Justices weigh confidentiality for unlicensed social workers

January 13, 2017
Olivia Covington
The justices of the Indiana Supreme Court are deciding whether they should answer the legal question of whether communications with an unlicensed social worker are considered privileged and confidential.
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6 hate crime bills introduced at Statehouse

January 13, 2017
Marilyn Odendahl
Once again, a handful of Indiana lawmakers and community organizations are trying to get hate-crime legislation through the Statehouse and onto the governor’s desk.
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COA affirms rulings in division of military pension

January 13, 2017
Dave Stafford
A man who sought to void trial court orders that granted his ex-wife a portion of his military pension lost his interlocutory appeal Friday.
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Delinquency affirmed as COA tosses timeliness appeal

January 13, 2017
Dave Stafford
The Indiana Court of Appeals Friday rejected an argument that a juvenile delinquency case should have been dismissed because a fact-finding hearing wasn’t conducted within 60 days of the delinquency petition.
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Divided COA: Man can't use RFRA to avoid taxes

January 13, 2017
Olivia Covington
A divided Indiana Court of Appeals ruled Friday that a Marion County man cannot avoid paying income taxes using a religious freedom defense, with the majority writing that the controversial Religious Freedom Restoration Act allows for the collection of taxes in the furtherance of a compelling government interest.
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Nearly 150 inmates not fingerprinted in Tippecanoe County

January 13, 2017
 Associated Press
Prosecutors in Tippecanoe County said they've determined nearly 150 former inmates need to be fingerprinted after glitches with the jail's fingerprint machine. The county now is trying to track those people to obtain the required prints.
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Man wanted in '99 abduction, sex assault caught in Oregon

January 13, 2017
 Associated Press
A man wanted in the 1999 abduction and sexual assault of a 10-year-old girl in southern Indiana has been arrested in Oregon.
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Policy: Mishawaka police can buy, use own body cameras

January 13, 2017
 Associated Press
The northern Indiana city of Mishawaka has a new policy that allows police officers to wear body cameras if they purchase the equipment themselves.
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Watchdog probe to bring new scrutiny for FBI's Comey

January 13, 2017
 Associated Press
FBI Director James Comey, already under fierce public scrutiny for his handling of the election-year probe of Hillary Clinton, faces a new internal investigation into whether he and the Justice Department followed established protocol in the email server case.
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Lilly shares rise after Alimta cancer drug patent upheld

January 13, 2017
 Bloomberg News
Eli Lilly and Co. won an appeals court ruling Thursday that upheld the validity of a patent for its lung cancer drug Alimta, helping shares rise by almost 3 percent.
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Link between addiction, criminal justice discussed with legislators

January 12, 2017
Olivia Covington
In Indianapolis, a person is more likely to die from a drug-related incident than a car crash. This and other drug-related facts where shared with the members of the Indiana House Courts and Criminal Code Committee at a meeting Wednesday. Representatives from the state’s judicial branch were invited to share progress and their concerns regarding Indiana criminal code reform with lawmakers.
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Justices consider PCR waiver in death penalty case

January 12, 2017
Olivia Covington
After a public defender failed to secure a statutorily required signature on Kevin Isom’s petition for post-conviction relief, Isom, a convicted murderer who has been sentenced to death, lost confidence in his legal team. He refused to provide his signature after the error was discovered, vowing not to sign unless he was appointed new counsel.
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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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