Legal News

Judges rule in favor of state in contract dispute

July 17, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals reversed a trial court judgment against the state in a lawsuit filed by a subcontractor working on an airport project in Gary, holding the lower court erroneously determined the state had breached a contract between it and the subcontractor.
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Sex offender’s home ownership doesn’t impact residency restriction

July 17, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
A convicted sex offender who argued that a probation condition prohibiting him from living within 1,000 feet of a school is unduly restrictive on his property interest in a home he owns lost his appeal before the Indiana Court of Appeals.
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COA upholds child exploitation convictions

July 17, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals found that the state presented sufficient evidence to support a Marion County man’s five convictions of child exploitation.
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Court launches 2012 retention site

July 17, 2012
IL Staff
The Indiana Supreme Court’s Division of State Court Administration has designed a retention website for voters to learn about the six appellate judges up for retention this November.
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Candidates answer questions about qualifications to be justice

July 17, 2012
Dave Stafford
The Indiana Judicial Nominating Commission began interviews with 22 candidates vying to replace retiring Justice Frank Sullivan Jr. The interviews are taking place Tuesday and Wednesday, and the commission will narrow the list Wednesday to those who will be interviewed a second time in August.
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Roberts to step down as McKinney dean in 2013

July 17, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law Dean Gary Roberts will retire as dean June 30, 2013, Indiana University Purdue University-Indianapolis announced Tuesday. He will remain on the law school faculty after he steps down as dean.
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Attorney staged his own shooting, authorities say

July 16, 2012
Dave Stafford
A southern Indiana attorney who reported he was shot at McCormick’s Creek State Park on June 25 staged his own shooting, authorities say.
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US complaint: Plymouth reservist deprived of benefits

July 16, 2012
IL Staff
A U.S. Air Force reservist was illegally denied longevity pay when he returned to his job as a police officer in Plymouth, according to a federal complaint.
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Appeals court affirms tax sale notice statute unconstitutional

July 16, 2012
Dave Stafford
The Indiana Court of Appeals on Monday affirmed a trial court ruling denying a petition for a tax deed after a Bartholomew County tax sale, finding that the court was correct in ruling that the state’s statutory notice violated the 14th Amendment guarantee of due process.
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In-court marijuana field test ruled error, but not reversible

July 16, 2012
Dave Stafford
An appeals court panel ruled that a deputy’s in-court field test to prove a substance was marijuana should not have been allowed, but it declined to use the error as a basis to reverse a man’s misdemeanor conviction.
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Justices deny transfer in 16 cases

July 16, 2012
Dave Stafford
The Indiana Supreme Court denied transfer in 16 cases it reviewed in the week ending July 13, according to the transfer list released Monday.
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Appeals court upholds rape conviction

July 13, 2012
Dave Stafford
A man convicted of rape based on DNA evidence and his admission that he had sex with the victim failed to prove to the Indiana Court of Appeals that he was denied a fair trial due to the admission of hearsay testimony and a sustained objection to an attempt to refresh the victim’s memory.
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Divided appeals court affirms summary judgment for community action program

July 13, 2012
Dave Stafford
A divided Indiana Court of Appeals panel on Friday affirmed a Marion Superior Court ruling that dismissed a case against a government-funded agency because the victims in a vehicle accident failed to provide notice under the Indiana Tort Claims Act.
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Court reverses ruling in Plymouth church insurer's suit against contractors

July 13, 2012
Dave Stafford
The Indiana Court of Appeals reinstated an insurer’s case against contractors who built a Plymouth church gymnasium addition in 2008 in which the basketball court floor was ruined when a frozen sprinkler burst eight months later.
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BrightPoint settles 2 suits against rival Brightstar

July 13, 2012
Scott Olson
Indianapolis-based BrightPoint Inc. has agreed to settle two lawsuits it brought against similarly named rival Brightstar Corp.
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Justices order new trial for Ripley County man

July 12, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
A Ripley County man convicted of conspiring to commit burglary is entitled to a new trial due to ineffective assistance of his trial counsel and prosecutorial misconduct, the Indiana Supreme Court held.
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Payment changes for appellate filing fees in Northern District

July 12, 2012
IL Staff
Beginning Monday, the U.S. District Court in the Northern District of Indiana will require online credit card payments, via CM/ECF, for filing fees associated with civil and criminal notices of appeal.
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7th Circuit certifies questions for Kansas Supreme Court

July 12, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals was unable to determine under Kansas law how that state’s Supreme Court would rule on whether FedEx drivers are employees or independent contractors, so the court sent two certified questions to the Kansas justices.
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Man who killed girlfriend may be retried for reckless homicide

July 12, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
The post-conviction court erred in denying Andrew McWhorter relief when he challenged his conviction of voluntary manslaughter in connection to the death of his girlfriend, the Indiana Court of Appeals concluded. McWhorter may not be retried on the same charge, but may face retrial for reckless homicide.
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42 members of Indianapolis motorcycle club indicted

July 11, 2012
IL Staff
In what has been described by Southern District U.S. Attorney Joseph Hogsett as the largest federal organized crime prosecution in Indianapolis history, 42 members of the Outlaws Motorcycle Club in Indianapolis have been indicted on various offenses, including extortion and drug charges.
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Supreme Court Justice Rucker to run for retention

July 11, 2012
Dave Stafford
Indiana Supreme Court Justice Robert Rucker will stand for retention, ending speculation that he might become the fourth justice to step down in the last two years.
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Deadline to accept State Fair settlement extended

July 11, 2012
IL Staff
The Office of the Indiana Attorney General, at the request of attorneys representing claimants in lawsuits stemming from the stage collapse at the Indiana State Fair in August 2011, has moved the deadline to respond to a settlement offer to Aug. 1. The original deadline was Friday.
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Lake County local rule requires e-filing of certain cases, fee increase implemented

July 11, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
Beginning July 16, all civil collection, civil tort, civil plenary and miscellaneous cases filed in the County Division Courts Room 2 or 3 in Lake County will have to be filed electronically using the county’s new e-filing system. The change is a result of an amendment to Local Rule 45-A.R.16-17.
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Judges disagree over impact of mental illness label at sentencing

July 11, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
7th Circuit Court of Appeals Judge Diane Wood believed that Michael Dean Overstreet, who was convicted of killing Franklin College student Kelly Eckart in 1997, was prejudiced by his attorneys’ decisions at sentencing regarding which experts should testify about his mental illness.
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COA rules trial court should have allowed DCS to withdraw adoption consent

July 10, 2012
Dave Stafford
The Department of Child Services’ failure to investigate a child’s aunt as a possible adoptive parent – and a trial court’s refusal to allow DCS to withdraw consent for foster parents to adopt after acknowledging its failure – prompted the Indiana Court of Appeals to reverse a trial court order granting the foster parents’ petition to adopt.
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  3. The practitioners and judges who hail E-filing as the Saviour of the West need to contain their respective excitements. E-filing is federal court requires the practitioner to cram his motion practice into pigeonholes created by IT people. Compound motions or those seeking alternative relief are effectively barred, unless the practitioner wants to receive a tart note from some functionary admonishing about the "problem". E-filing is just another method by which courts and judges transfer their burden to practitioners, who are the really the only powerless components of the system. Of COURSE it is easier for the court to require all of its imput to conform to certain formats, but this imposition does NOT improve the quality of the practice of law and does NOT improve the ability of the practitioner to advocate for his client or to fashion pleadings that exactly conform to his client's best interests. And we should be very wary of the disingenuous pablum about the costs. The courts will find a way to stick it to the practitioner. Lake County is a VERY good example of this rapaciousness. Any one who does not believe this is invited to review the various special fees that system imposes upon practitioners- as practitioners- and upon each case ON TOP of the court costs normal in every case manually filed. Jurisprudence according to Aldous Huxley.

  4. Any attorneys who practice in federal court should be able to say the same as I can ... efiling is great. I have been doing it in fed court since it started way back. Pacer has its drawbacks, but the ability to hit an e-docket and pull up anything and everything onscreen is a huge plus for a litigator, eps the sole practitioner, who lacks a filing clerk and the paralegal support of large firms. Were I an Indiana attorney I would welcome this great step forward.

  5. Can we get full disclosure on lobbyist's payments to legislatures such as Mr Buck? AS long as there are idiots that are disrespectful of neighbors and intent on shooting fireworks every night, some kind of regulations are needed.

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