Legal News

State can’t prove teen stole television he owned with his mother

July 7, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
In an issue of first impression involving the statutes defining Class D felony theft, the Indiana Court of Appeals reversed a teen’s adjudication of theft for removing a television that he and his mother purchased together from his mother’s home over her objection.
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Judges uphold man’s resisting law enforcement conviction

July 7, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
Finding the evidence to be sufficient to support a man’s conviction of misdemeanor resisting law enforcement, the Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed his conviction Monday. The judges also found no error in the trial court’s instructions to the jury.
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Nonprofits' contraceptive cases next for justices

July 7, 2014
 Associated Press
How much distance from an immoral act is enough? That's the difficult question behind the next legal dispute over religion, birth control and the health law that is likely to be resolved by the Supreme Court of the United States.
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'0INK' vanity plate fight could go to Legislature

July 7, 2014
 Associated Press
A fuss over a police officer's vanity plate has blown up into a constitutional debate that could lead to the Indiana General Assembly deciding whether to rewrite the law or stop selling personalized license plates altogether.
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Kentucky gay marriage ban nixed, but no weddings yet

July 3, 2014
 Associated Press
Gay marriage advocates nationwide heralded the ruling striking down deeply conservative Kentucky's ban on same-sex marriage as a significant milestone, though matrimonies won't begin in earnest there anytime soon.
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Property conveyed by the entirety includes presumption of right of survivorship

July 3, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
In a question of first impression, the Indiana Court of Appeals Thursday held that when a property is conveyed by the entirety, there is a presumption the grantor intended to convey the property with the right of survivorship. It does not matter if the individuals are not husband and wife.
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Judges order SSA to determine if father is entitled to daughter’s disability benefits

July 3, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals Wednesday sent a case back to the Social Security Administration after finding an administrative law judge’s decision that a woman was not totally disabled until Nov. 1, 2008, “deeply flawed.”
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Divided 7th Circuit revives Marion County Small Claims suit

July 3, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
More than eight months after Judge Richard Posner argued in a dissent that Newsom v. Friedman needs to be overruled, the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals did just that in an en banc decision involving Marion County’s Township courts.
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Counties worry about cost of criminal code changes

July 2, 2014
 Associated Press
Sweeping changes to Indiana's criminal code took effect Tuesday that will send more low-level, nonviolent criminals to community corrections programs and jails instead of state prisons, causing concern by some about the financial burden it will put on counties.
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Justices suspend 2 attorneys, concerned whether one is fit to practice

July 2, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Supreme Court issued two disciplinary opinions Wednesday, including a decision in which the justices suspended an Indianapolis attorney for at least 18 months, citing his “serious deficiencies in representing clients and himself.”
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Car dealer responsible for buyer’s unauthorized purchases at auction

July 2, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
After finding that a trial court did not err in reinstating an action after initially dismissing it with prejudice, the Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed summary judgment in favor of Automotive Finance Corp. on its action seeking repayment of loans made to purchase cars.
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Indiana to raise attorney registration fees

July 2, 2014
Dave Stafford
Annual registration fees for Indiana attorneys will increase nearly 25 percent, the Indiana Supreme Court announced in an order issued Monday.
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IU Maurer to begin offering scholarships to Wabash College grads

July 2, 2014
IL Staff
Indiana University Maurer School of Law and Wabash College have entered into an agreement establishing a scholarship and mentorship program for Wabash students interested in going to law school.
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ACLU sues 2 Indy police officers over car sticker

July 2, 2014
 Associated Press
An Indiana woman intended her bumper sticker reading "unmarked police car" as a joke, but two police officers didn't think it was funny. Now, they're being sued in federal court for allegedly violating the woman's free speech rights, and officials aren't laughing.
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US Justices act in other health law mandate cases

July 2, 2014
The Supreme Court of the United States on Tuesday confirmed that its decision a day earlier extending religious rights to closely held corporations applies broadly to the contraceptive coverage requirement in the new health care law, not just the handful of methods the justices considered in their ruling.
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Couples rush to marry after ruling makes same-sex marriage legal in Indiana

July 2, 2014
Marilyn Odendahl, Dave Stafford
The race to the courthouse began for many couples shortly after Richard Young, chief judge of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana, issued a ruling that declared Indiana’s ban on same-sex marriage unconstitutional and permanently enjoined the state defendants from enforcing the laws barring same-sex marriage.
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Judge says no to Love but yes to marriage

July 2, 2014
Marilyn Odendahl
Two days after a judge overturns Indiana's ban on same-sex marriage, the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals granted the state’s request to stay the ruling pending an appeal.
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Financial picture worsens for Marion County courts

July 2, 2014
Dave Stafford
In Marion County, the funding shortfall is projected to be $4.6 million for 2015. Courts are routinely dealing with persistent shortfalls to support guardians ad litem appointed to represent juveniles in child in need of services cases.
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Mastering the law without a J.D.

July 2, 2014
Marilyn Odendahl
The move by two Indiana law schools to follow a national trend and offer master’s degrees to non-lawyers has many practicing lawyers asking where the graduates of these programs will fit into the legal profession.
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7th Circuit grants motion recognizing marriage of same-sex couple in Indiana

July 1, 2014
Marilyn Odendahl
The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals has issued an order compelling the state of Indiana to recognize the marriage of one same-sex couple.
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Transition period starting as new criminal code takes effect

July 1, 2014
Marilyn Odendahl
Criminal court judges in Indiana have now begun instituting the most comprehensive overhaul to the state’s criminal code in more than 30 years.
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Valparaiso law school welcomes new dean

July 1, 2014
Marilyn Odendahl
Andrea Lyon, the first woman to lead the Valparaiso University Law School, began her tenure July 1 as the dean.
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Drunk man who ran into woman rightfully convicted

July 1, 2014
Dave Stafford
The Indiana Court of Appeals Tuesday affirmed the public intoxication conviction of a man who showed signs of being drunk and walked into a woman as he left an Indianapolis nightclub, prompting a response from nearby police.
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Former Daviess Judge Judith Hayes Dwyer dies

July 1, 2014
IL Staff
The fourth woman to be appointed a state court judge in Indiana, Judith Hayes Dwyer died Saturday at her home in Washington, Ind. She was 75.
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AG offers county clerks guidance on same-sex marriage questions

July 1, 2014
Marilyn Odendahl
Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller’s office issued a memo to county clerks July 1 attempting to clear the confusion lingering from the several days when same-sex marriage was legal in Indiana.
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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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