Legal News

Indianapolis man sues Chipotle, others over sign collapse

September 30, 2016
Susan Orr, IBJ Staff
An Indianapolis man who gained national attention after his car was crushed by a Chipotle sign on the north side has filed a lawsuit against the restaurant company as well as the property owner and manager.
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Man who attacked officers not insane during incident

September 30, 2016
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals rejected a defendant’s claim that he was insane when he charged at, bit and spit at officers while he was in jail, but that his behavior was a result of his drug withdrawal.
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Posey County man’s convictions for rape, confinement of woman affirmed

September 30, 2016
Jennifer Nelson
The past drug use of the woman who was held against her will for nearly two months and repeatedly raped was not relevant to the criminal trial of the man who abducted her, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled Friday.
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Hot dog vendor who stabbed man in head loses appeal

September 30, 2016
Dave StaffordMore

Lake Circuit Judge Paras resigning early

September 30, 2016
Dave Stafford
Lake Circuit Court Judge George Paras will leave the bench early after being unseated in May’s Democratic primary by Highland lawyer Marissa McDermott.
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Charge under wrong part of statute reverses conviction

September 30, 2016
Dave Stafford
A man’s conviction of attempted obstruction of justice was reversed Friday by the Indiana Court of Appeals because the state charged him under the wrong part of the statute.
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ISBA House of Delegates rejects non-lawyer equity investments

September 30, 2016
Olivia Covington
The Indiana State Bar Association House of Delegates on Friday overwhelmingly rejected a recommendation to allow non-lawyer equity investments in law firms, saying that the issue needed further study.
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Tax Court dismisses case against Department of Revenue due to petitioner inaction

September 30, 2016
Olivia Covington
The Indiana Tax Court dismissed a gasoline and convenience store company’s case against the state Department of Revenue Thursday, writing that the company failed to respond to discovery requests or take any action in the case for a period of more than two months.
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Inmate death a challenge for states: How to tell victims?

September 30, 2016
 Associated Press
States have struggled to meet a 2004 federal mandate to notify crime victims of certain events, including an offender's death: Most notifications that an inmate has been released from custody don't mention the inmate's death.
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Ex-IU running back pleads not guilty to molestation

September 30, 2016
 Associated Press
Former Indiana University running back Kiante Enis has pleaded not guilty to two counts of felony child molestation for allegedly having an illegal relationship with a girl under age 13.
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Supreme Court upholds man's murder, robbery convictions

September 29, 2016
Olivia Covington
The Indiana Supreme Court has upheld a man’s convictions and life sentence for murder and robbery after the justices rejected each of his arguments alleging error on the part of the Grant Superior Court.
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Supreme Court vacates order to require restitution as part of woman’s probation

September 29, 2016
Olivia Covington
The Indiana Supreme Court has vacated an order a defendant pay restitution as a condition of probation after finding that the trial court failed to determine that the defendant did not have the ability to pay.
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Former Lake Station mayor, wife sentenced in gambling scheme

September 29, 2016
 Associated Press
The former mayor of Lake Station will serve four years in prison and pay tens of thousands of dollars in fines for using campaign money and city food pantry funds to gamble.
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Monarch affiliate gets OK to sell liquor after judge denies stay

September 29, 2016
Hayleigh Colombo, IBJ Staff
The Indiana Alcohol and Tobacco Commission granted Spirited a temporary permit to sell liquor on a wholesale basis this week after a Marion County Special Court judge denied the state of Indiana’s request for a stay on an August ruling that found the state agency was “arbitrary and capricious” in its decision to deny the company a liquor wholesaling permit back in 2014.
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ILS launches new project to help abused seniors

September 29, 2016
IL Staff
Indiana Legal Services Inc. has been awarded a two-year grant to help abused senior citizens across the state recover from or reduce the negative impact of abuse.
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COA rejects ex-teacher’s appeal for lighter sentence for seduction of student

September 29, 2016
Olivia Covington
A former Indiana teacher and coach convicted of child seduction with a student cannot have his sentence reduced after the Indiana Court of Appeals decided Wednesday that his character and the nature of his offense do not warrant a lighter sentence.
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Report: Just 37 percent facing deportation have lawyers

September 29, 2016
Dave Stafford
Fewer than four in 10 people facing deportation proceedings in the United States are represented by legal counsel. Among the majority of those immigrants who are in government detention, just 14 percent had lawyers, according to a new study.
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Attorneys differ by more than $100M in latest BMV lawsuit

September 29, 2016
 Associated Press
Attorneys for the Indiana Bureau of Motor Vehicles and for plaintiffs in a class-action lawsuit against the agency differ by more than $100 million in how much it should repay motorists for overcharged license and title fees.
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Indianapolis attorney named managing partner at Faegre Baker Daniels

September 28, 2016
IBJ Staff
Faegre Baker Daniels LLP has named longtime Indianapolis attorney Tom Froehle as chairman and managing partner of the international law firm, it announced Wednesday.
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COA finds electrician can sue companies after mesothelioma diagnosis

September 28, 2016
Olivia Covington
The Indiana Court of Appeals held Wednesday that an electrician can sue the companies where he previously worked as an independent contractor for negligence and liability after he was exposed to asbestos.
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COA says attempted murder is not an exception to voluntary intoxication statute

September 28, 2016
Olivia Covington
The Indiana Court of Appeals found Wednesday that a man cannot have his attempted murder charge overturned because he was drunk at the time of the incident, writing that voluntary intoxication does not negate the specific intent to kill requirement of an attempted murder charge.
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COA finds no evidence of severe mental illness to prohibit pro se proceedings

September 28, 2016
Olivia Covington
A woman’s convictions for possession of controlled substances and operating a vehicle while intoxicated will stand after the Indiana Court of Appeals found Wednesday that she did not suffer from a severe mental illness that should have precluded her from proceeding pro se.
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Barker courtroom naming ceremony Thursday

September 28, 2016
IL Staff
Veteran jurist and now Senior Judge Sarah Evans Barker will be honored Thursday when Courtroom 216 is named in her honor at the Birch Bayh Federal Building and United States Courthouse in Indianapolis. A ceremony will take place at 4 p.m. in the courtroom.
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David: Odyssey carrying 65 percent of state case data

September 28, 2016
Dave Stafford
The Supreme Court-sponsored Odyssey case management system contains 65 percent of Indiana’s trial court caseload, Justice Steven David told a gathering of about 100 lawyers Tuesday.
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Commercial court cases increase; dockets now accessible online

September 28, 2016
Dave Stafford
Five of six judges of Indiana’s new commercial courts spoke to about 100 lawyers and corporate counsel Tuesday, urging them to make use of the venues that emphasize collaboration and prompt resolutions.
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  1. Call it unauthorized law if you must, a regulatory wrong, but it was fraud and theft well beyond that, a seeming crime! "In three specific cases, the hearing officer found that Westerfield did little to no work for her clients but only issued a partial refund or no refund at all." That is theft by deception, folks. "In its decision to suspend Westerfield, the Supreme Court noted that she already had a long disciplinary history dating back to 1996 and had previously been suspended in 2004 and indefinitely suspended in 2005. She was reinstated in 2009 after finally giving the commission a response to the grievance for which she was suspended in 2004." WOW -- was the Indiana Supreme Court complicit in her fraud? Talk about being on notice of a real bad actor .... "Further, the justices noted that during her testimony, Westerfield was “disingenuous and evasive” about her relationship with Tope and attempted to distance herself from him. They also wrote that other aggravating factors existed in Westerfield’s case, such as her lack of remorse." WOW, and yet she only got 18 months on the bench, and if she shows up and cries for them in a year and a half, and pays money to JLAP for group therapy ... back in to ride roughshod over hapless clients (or are they "marks") once again! Aint Hoosier lawyering a great money making adventure!!! Just live for the bucks, even if filthy lucre, and come out a-ok. ME on the other hand??? Lifetime banishment for blowing the whistle on unconstitutional governance. Yes, had I ripped off clients or had ANY disciplinary history for doing that I would have fared better, most likely, as that it would have revealed me motivated by Mammon and not Faith. Check it out if you doubt my reading of this, compare and contrast the above 18 months with my lifetime banishment from court, see appendix for Bar Examiners report which the ISC adopted without substantive review: https://www.scribd.com/doc/299040839/2016Petitionforcert-to-SCOTUS

  2. Wow, over a quarter million dollars? That is a a lot of commissary money! Over what time frame? Years I would guess. Anyone ever try to blow the whistle? Probably not, since most Hoosiers who take notice of such things realize that Hoosier whistleblowers are almost always pilloried. If someone did blow the whistle, they were likely fired. The persecution of whistleblowers is a sure sign of far too much government corruption. Details of my own personal experience at the top of Hoosier governance available upon request ... maybe a "fake news" media outlet will have the courage to tell the stories of Hoosier whistleblowers that the "real" Hoosier media (cough) will not deign to touch. (They are part of the problem.)

  3. So if I am reading it right, only if and when African American college students agree to receive checks labeling them as "Negroes" do they receive aid from the UNCF or the Quaker's Educational Fund? In other words, to borrow from the Indiana Appellate Court, "the [nonprofit] supposed to be [their] advocate, refers to [students] in a racially offensive manner. While there is no evidence that [the nonprofits] intended harm to [African American students], the harm was nonetheless inflicted. [Black students are] presented to [academia and future employers] in a racially offensive manner. For these reasons, [such] performance [is] deficient and also prejudice[ial]." Maybe even DEPLORABLE???

  4. I'm the poor soul who spent over 10 years in prison with many many other prisoners trying to kill me for being charged with a sex offense THAT I DID NOT COMMIT i was in jail for a battery charge for helping a friend leave a boyfriend who beat her I've been saying for over 28 years that i did not and would never hurt a child like that mine or anybody's child but NOBODY wants to believe that i might not be guilty of this horrible crime or think that when i say that ALL the paperwork concerning my conviction has strangely DISAPPEARED or even when the long beach judge re-sentenced me over 14 months on a already filed plea bargain out of another districts court then had it filed under a fake name so i could not find while trying to fight my conviction on appeal in a nut shell people are ALWAYS quick to believe the worst about some one well I DID NOT HURT ANY CHILD EVER IN MY LIFE AND HAVE SAID THIS FOR ALMOST 30 YEARS please if anybody can me get some kind of justice it would be greatly appreciated respectfully written wrongly accused Brian Valenti

  5. A high ranking Indiana supreme Court operative caught red handed leading a group using the uber offensive N word! She must denounce or be denounced! (Or not since she is an insider ... rules do not apply to them). Evidence here: http://m.indianacompanies.us/friends-educational-fund-for-negroes.364110.company.v2#top_info

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