Legal News

Man pleads guilty in slayings of southern Indiana couple

September 7, 2016
 Associated Press
One of two men charged in the brutal 2013 slayings of a rural southern Indiana couple pleaded guilty to two murder charges Tuesday and was sentenced to life in prison without parole.
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Senior judge program’s promise to assist judiciary faces challenges

September 7, 2016
Dave Stafford
The Indiana Supreme Court charged a seven-member committee with promoting the effective use of senior judges in trial and appellate courts, increasing participation of senior judges, and recommending expanded opportunities and uses for them.
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'Small-town' Shelbyville firm expanding around the state

September 7, 2016
Marilyn Odendahl
As merger fever continues to spread through the legal community, a Shelbyville-based firm is spreading out.
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Female corporate lawyers at Anthem find opportunity, no glass ceiling

September 7, 2016
Marilyn Odendahl
At Anthem Inc., the billion-dollar health insurance provider, women comprise 76 percent of its workforce and 63 percent managerial leadership.
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Finding funds to support Indiana legal aid

September 7, 2016
Marilyn Odendahl
Legal aid groups seek private donors as the Indiana Supreme Court requests $500,000 more for indigent representation from the Legislature.
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Justices weigh gun store's liability in policeman's shooting

September 7, 2016
Dave Stafford
A gun store’s possible liability for making a straw sale of a handgun that wounded an Indianapolis police officer is a matter of first impression for Indiana and a case watched closely for legal and policy implications nationwide.
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Fight to protect Indiana bat from wind farm renders mixed ruling

September 7, 2016
Marilyn Odendahl
The Indiana bat has been part of a long-running battle against a proposed 100-turbine wind farm in Ohio. A lawsuit filed in 2013 by the Bloomington-based Conservation Law Center sought to block a permit issued by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service that would have allowed the Buckeye Wind Project to kill the protected species.
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Indiana attorneys join effort to end judicial backlog

September 6, 2016
Marilyn Odendahl
An assistant clinical professor at Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law and a board member of the Marion County Bar Association will join elected officials and judicial clerks in Washington, D.C., Wednesday in calling upon the U.S. Senate to vote on the backlog of nominees to the federal bench.
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Justices take case on DCS caller confidentiality

September 6, 2016
Dave Stafford
The Indiana Supreme Court will decide whether the Indiana Department of Child Services may be sued for failing to maintain the confidentiality of a caller who reported suspected child neglect.
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EPA objects to Vertellus Specialties acquisition plan

September 6, 2016
Susan Orr, IBJ Staff
Indianapolis-based chemical company Vertellus Specialties Inc. is at odds with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency over whether its proposed sale would provide adequate resources to address environmental cleanup needs at Vertellus-owned sites in Indiana and elsewhere.
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Symposium to look at commercial courts and e-filing

September 6, 2016
IL Staff
A symposium later this month highlighting the Indiana Supreme Court’s work to modernize the judicial branch will provide information about the state’s new commercial courts and e-filing project.
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Lawyer’s fee tally exceeds $100k for dubious Indy skyline photo suits

September 6, 2016
Dave Stafford
An Indiana lawyer and photographer who’s sued hundreds of people alleging copyright infringement has been ordered to pay more than $100,000 in fees and costs — most recently in a ruling where a judge essentially described his legal motivation as a shakedown.
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Carlson settles harassment suit against Ailes for $20 million

September 6, 2016
 Associated Press
Former Fox News Channel anchor Gretchen Carlson has settled her sexual harassment lawsuit against Roger Ailes, the case that led to the downfall of Fox's chief executive with stunning swiftness this summer.
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Indiana driver accused of hitting horse-drawn buggy, fleeing

September 6, 2016
 Associated Press
A Yorktown man is accused of hitting a horse-drawn buggy with his pickup truck and then fleeing the scene.
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Indiana sees Syrian refugee stream since Pence order blocked

September 6, 2016
 Associated Press, IL Staff
About 150 Syrian refugees have arrived in Indiana in the months since a federal judge scuttled Republican Gov. Mike Pence's order blocking state agencies from helping their resettlement. Refugee assistance groups expect more this year, even as lawyers for the state go before the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals in Chicago on Sept. 14 to try to have the judge's decision overturned.
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South Bend family questions $18 award for police abuse

September 6, 2016
 Associated Press
The family of a black teenager who was punched and handcuffed by three South Bend police officers then subdued with a stun gun in a case of mistaken identity is questioning why jurors awarded them just $18 in a lawsuit accusing the officers of violating his constitutional rights.
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Late appeal moves NFL concussion case to Supreme Court

September 2, 2016
 Associated Press
A last-minute appeal in the NFL concussion case, filed by the son of an all-star and civil rights activist, has sent the proposed settlement to the U.S. Supreme Court and delays payouts for at least several months.
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Ex-Subway pitchman in suit: Victim's parents to blame

September 2, 2016
Subway's former pitchman imprisoned for child pornography and sex abuse is arguing in a court filing that the parents of one of his female victims are to blame for what he describes as her "destructive behaviors."
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Justices rule expungements can’t erase civil forfeitures

September 2, 2016
Dave Stafford
The Indiana Supreme Court held Thursday that Indiana’s second-chance laws that allow expungement of certain criminal convictions do not permit erasure of records of civil forfeitures connected to expunged charges.
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Anderson woman pleads guilty in 12-year-old girl's death

September 2, 2016
 Associated Press
An Anderson woman has pleaded guilty in connection with the death of a 12-year-old girl who was fatally injured by a lawnmower.
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Supreme Court disbars former clerk-treasurer who stole town funds

September 1, 2016
Even though the attorney who stole town funds while serving as elected clerk-treasurer of the town of Warren Park in Marion County has attempted to address his gambling addiction that caused the theft, the Indiana Supreme Court disbarred the attorney based on his misconduct.
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Indianapolis couple convicted in toddler’s death

September 1, 2016
IL Staff
A Marion County jury convicted a mother and her boyfriend in the death of the mother’s 1-year-old son.
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Court battle heats up between state, Monarch Beverage affiliate

September 1, 2016
Hayleigh Colombo, IBJ Staff
The legal battle between the Indiana Alcohol & Tobacco Commission and Spirited Sales LLC — an affiliate of Monarch Beverage Co. — is escalating, despite a Marion County judge’s ruling last week that Spirit is entitled to become a liquor wholesaler in the state.
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Order: Strip searches violate religious rights of ‘American Taliban’

September 1, 2016
Dave Stafford
A federal judge has ruled strip searches prior to non-contact visits are a violation of the religious rights of Yahya (John Walker) Lindh, the so-called “American Taliban” who’s housed in the federal prison at Terre Haute. The judge also chided federal authorities who ignored Supreme Court precedent that was on point in the case.
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7 counties now require e-filing

September 1, 2016
IL Staff
E-filing is now mandatory in seven Indiana counties that introduced the practice in their courts earlier this year. Courts in Clark, Floyd, Harrison, Hendricks, Henry, Madison and Shelby counties now require attorneys file electronically.
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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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