St. Joseph County

Jury finds South Bend teen convicted of murder had gang ties

April 4, 2016
 Associated Press
South Bend jury finds teenager convicted of murder should have sentence enhanced for criminal gang activity.
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Jury convicts 7th person in fatal shooting of South Bend boy

April 1, 2016
 Associated Press
Jurors have convicted a seventh person of involvement with gunfire during a gang fight that resulted in a South Bend toddler being fatally wounded by a stray bullet.
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ADA claims against St. Joseph County courts fail in 7th Circuit

March 24, 2016
Scott Roberts
The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals upheld summary judgment for the St. Joseph County court system in a case involving accessibility of the St. Joseph County Courthouse and the Mishawaka County Services Building. The court said many of the plaintiffs’ claims lack standing, while others failed to raise genuine disputes of material fact.
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Ruling: Simon must face anti-trust suit from competitor

March 21, 2016
Dave Stafford
Indianapolis-based Simon Property Group must face an anti-trust lawsuit from a competitor that developed a northern Indiana shopping center near a Simon mall, a federal judge has ruled.
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Pretrial release project to test assessment tool

January 7, 2016
Marilyn Odendahl
The Indiana Supreme Court is preparing to test the viability of allowing certain offenders to be released pretrial without having to pay a bail.
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Gotsch will not seek third term as St. Joe Circuit judge

January 6, 2016
IL Staff
St. Joseph Circuit Judge Michael G. Gotsch announced Tuesday that he will not seek election for a third term in 2016.
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Northern Indiana woman gets probation for home explosion

January 6, 2016
 Associated Press
A northern Indiana woman whom authorities say caused an explosion that heavily damaged her house has been sentenced to nine years on probation after pleading guilty but mentally ill to three counts of arson resulting in bodily injury.
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Carrying on an old family tradition

December 30, 2015
Dave Stafford
Cousins marking 25 years as lawyers are among quartet of Zappias practicing in St. Joseph County.
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6 counties next in line for trial court e-filing

December 28, 2015
 Associated Press
Six Indiana counties — Clark, Harrison, Henry, St. Joseph, Shelby and Wells — will be joining Hamilton County in implementing e-filing in the trial courts during the first half of 2016, with more to come later.
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5 finalists named for St. Joseph judicial position

December 23, 2015
IL Staff
The St. Joseph County Nominating Commission announced Tuesday the five finalists to fill the upcoming vacancy on the Superior Court due to Judge Jerome Frese’s pending retirement.
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Prosecutor seeks to dismiss charge against abortion doctor

December 2, 2015
 Associated Press

The St. Joseph County Prosecutor's Office said Tuesday the doctor fulfilled terms of a pretrial diversion program he entered after being charged last year with failing to report an abortion performed at the Women's Pavilion on a 13-year-old in 2013.

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Vacancy opens up on St. Joseph County bench

November 20, 2015
IL Staff
St. Joseph Superior Judge Jerome Frese is retiring early next year, opening up a spot on the bench. The St. Joseph County Judicial Nominating Commission will hold interviews with candidates in late December.
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Judge calls out DLGF ‘infirmities’ in ruling for township, fire district

November 13, 2015
Dave Stafford
Indiana Tax Court Judge Martha Blood Wentworth had a few choice words for the Department of Local Government Finance in finding the state hadn’t answered the key question in a township’s tax appeal.
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Jail conditions ordered eased for Indy blast convict

August 6, 2015
 Associated Press
A judge in South Bend has ordered a northern Indiana jail to ease conditions for an Indianapolis man awaiting sentencing on charges stemming from a deadly house explosion.
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Petition: Jail mistreats Indianapolis house blast convict

August 5, 2015
 Associated Press
Attorneys for an Indianapolis man awaiting sentencing on charges stemming from a deadly house explosion allege he's being mistreated in a South Bend jail.
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St. Joe County to pay $270K for not holding prompt hearings

August 5, 2015
 Associated Press
St. Joseph County in northern Indiana has agreed to pay $270,000 to settle a federal class-action lawsuit that accuses the county of failing to provide those arrested with probable cause hearings within 48 hours, the South Bend Tribune reported.
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Jury hears closing statements on man accused in home blast

July 13, 2015
 Associated Press
Jurors have heard closing statements from the state and defense in the trial of a man accused of planning a 2012 home explosion that gutted an Indianapolis subdivision and killed a neighboring couple.
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Defense calls 1 witness in Indianapolis home explosion trial

July 10, 2015
 Associated Press
More than 160 witnesses testified for the prosecution in the month-long trial of a man accused of planning a home explosion that gutted an Indianapolis subdivision in 2012, killing two neighbors.
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Judge gives 35-year term in South Bend toddler's killing

July 9, 2015
 Associated Press
A northern Indiana judge has sentenced a 20-year-old man to 35 years in prison in the 2014 shooting death of a South Bend toddler.
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ATF agent found no bomb evidence at house explosion

July 8, 2015
 Associated Press
An agent for the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives told jurors he found no evidence of a destructive device or bomb at a 2012 explosion that devastated an Indianapolis neighborhood, killing two.
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Evolving science helps link defendants to crime

July 1, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
St. Joseph County obtained its first conviction using DNA evidence in 1992.
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Judge rejects mistrial in Indianapolis house explosion case

June 25, 2015
 Associated Press
An Indiana judge has denied a mistrial in the case of a man accused of rigging a deadly Indianapolis house explosion. The defendant's attorneys raised concerns about miscalculations by a witness.
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Indianapolis house blast trial delayed for mistrial motion

June 24, 2015
 Associated Press
A northern Indiana judge has put the trial of a man accused of rigging a deadly 2012 Indianapolis house explosion on hold so attorneys can prepare arguments on whether he should grant a mistrial because of a miscalculation of a witness who has yet to testify.
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Former St. Joseph County couple may divorce in Hamilton County

June 16, 2015
Dave Stafford
A couple married 45 years who lived in St. Joseph County until the husband moved several months ago may divorce in Hamilton County, where he moved, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled Tuesday.
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Opening statements set for Indianapolis house explosion trial

June 8, 2015
 Associated Press
The final three jurors have been seated in the trial of an Indianapolis man charged in a deadly house explosion that ravaged a neighborhood.
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  1. Joseph Buser, Montgomery County Chief Prosecutor, has been involved in both representing the State of Indiana as Prosecutor while filing as Representing Attorney on behalf of himself and the State of Indiana in Civil Proceedings for seized cash and merchandise using a Verified Complaint For Forfeiture of Motor Vehicle, Us Currency And Reimbursement Of Costs, as is evident in Montgomery County Circuit Court Case Number 54C01-1401-MI-000018, CCS below, seen before Judge Harry Siamas, and filed on 01/13/2014. Sheriff Mark Castille is also named. All three defendants named by summons have prior convictions under Mr. Buser, which as the Indiana Supreme Court, in the opinion of The Matter of Mark R. McKinney, No. 18S00-0905-DI-220, stated that McKinney created a conflict of interest by simultaneously prosecuting drug offender cases while pocketing assets seized from defendants in those cases. All moneys that come from forfeitures MUST go to the COMMON SCHOOL FUND.

  2. I was incarcerated at that time for driving while suspended I have no felonies...i was placed on P block I remember several girls and myself asking about voting that day..and wasn't given a answer or means of voting..we were told after the election who won that was it.

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  4. Oh, and you fail to mention that you deprived the father of far FAR more time than he ever did you, even requiring officers to escort the children back into his care. Please, can you see that you had a huge part in "starting the war?" Patricia, i can't understand how painfully heartbreak ithis ordeal must have been for you. I read the appellate case and was surprised to see both sides of the story because your actions were harmful to your child; more so than the fathers. The evidence wasn't re weighed. It was properly reviewed for abuse of discretion as the trial court didn't consider whether a change of circumstance occurred or follow and define the statutes that led to their decision. Allowing a child to call a boyfriend "daddy" and the father by his first name is unacceptable. The first time custody was reversed to father was for very good reason. Self reflection in how you ultimately lost primary custody is the only way you will be able heal and move forward. Forgiveness of yourself comes after recognition and I truly hope you can get past the hurt and pain to allow your child the stability and care you recognized yourself that the father provides.

  5. Patricia, i can't understand how painfully heartbreak ithis ordeal must have been for you. I read the appellate case and was surprised to see both sides of the story because your actions were harmful to your child; more so than the fathers. The evidence wasn't re weighed. It was properly reviewed for abuse of discretion as the trial court didn't consider whether a change of circumstance occurred or follow and define the statutes that led to their decision. Allowing a child to call a boyfriend "daddy" and the father by his first name is unacceptable. The first time custody was reversed to father was for very good reason. Self reflection in how you ultimately lost primary custody is the only way you will be able heal and move forward. Forgiveness of yourself comes after recognition and I truly hope you can get past the hurt and pain to allow your child the stability and care you recognized yourself that the father provides.

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