Arson

Curry reflects on 4 years of Richmond Hill prosecutions

December 21, 2016
Olivia Covington
More than four years after an intentional home explosion killed two south-side Indianapolis residents and damaged dozens of nearby houses, Marion County Prosecutor Terry Curry said reaching the end of the emotional legal battle is gratifying.
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Shirley gets maximum 50 years in Indianapolis house blast

December 20, 2016
 Associated Press
A woman who was one of five people charged in a deadly Indianapolis house explosion has been sentenced to 50 years in prison.
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Defendant in Indianapolis house blast to be sentenced

December 19, 2016
 Associated Press
A woman who was one of five people charged in a deadly Indianapolis house explosion is set for sentencing.
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Justices hear home explosion appeal

October 5, 2016
Olivia Covington
Nearly four years after he orchestrated an Indianapolis home explosion that killed two people, Mark Leonard is arguing that he should not have to spend the rest of his life in prison because his Sixth Amendment rights were violated.
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Indiana Supreme Court hears arguments in home explosion appeal

September 22, 2016
Olivia Covington
Defense counsel for Mark Leonard, the man convicted of killing two people in a 2012 home explosion, argued before the Indiana Supreme Court Thursday that Leonard’s constitutional rights to an attorney were violated when an undercover officer posed as a hitman in prison and questioned Leonard, without his attorney present, about his plan to have a key witness killed.
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COA calls for guidance on social media use during criminal trials

August 24, 2016
Jennifer Nelson
In affirming that a man was not deprived due process when the media live tweeted during his murder trial, the Indiana Court of Appeals noted that it’s time for the judicial branch to address social media use concerns.
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Indiana's high court to hear appeal in house explosion case

August 17, 2016
 Associated Press
The Indiana Supreme Court will hear an appeal next month in the case of the alleged ringleader of a deadly Indianapolis house explosion.
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Indiana man pleads guilty in deadly house explosion

August 12, 2016
 Associated Press
One of five people charged in a deadly house explosion that devastated an Indianapolis neighborhood pleaded guilty Friday to a conspiracy charge after agreeing to a deal with prosecutors.
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Man charged in deadly house explosion reaches plea deal

August 9, 2016
 Associated Press
A man charged with murder for his role in a deadly Indianapolis house explosion has reached a plea deal weeks before his scheduled trial.
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Judge thinks cop convicted of murder deserves new trial

August 4, 2016
Jennifer Nelson
A 7th Circuit Court of Appeals judge dissented from his colleagues’ affirmation of an Evansville police officer’s murder and arson convictions, believing the evidence presented by the state doesn’t support that the man started the fire at his ex-lover’s house.
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Indianapolis man convicted of murder in home explosion

February 24, 2016
 Associated Press
An Indianapolis man was convicted of murder, arson and insurance fraud on Wednesday for his role in a 2012 house explosion that killed two neighbors and devastated a subdivision in the southern part of the city.
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Deliberations resume in Indianapolis house explosion trial

February 24, 2016
 Associated Press
Jurors resumed deliberating charges Wednesday against a man accused of helping plot a 2012 house explosion in Indianapolis that killed a couple and damaged or destroyed more than 80 homes.
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Closing arguments conclude in house blast trial

February 23, 2016
 Associated Press
A deputy prosecutor told jurors that a natural gas explosion in Indianapolis that killed two and devastated a neighborhood was no accident, while a defense attorney argued prosecutors failed to prove his client was involved despite the testimony of 150 witnesses.
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Attorney urges jurors in house blast trial to keep open mind

January 22, 2016
 Associated Press
An attorney for a man accused of murder and arson in a house explosion that killed two people urged jurors to keep an open mind despite emotional testimony they will hear during the trial expected to last more than a month.
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Jury seated in trial of man accused in fatal house explosion

January 20, 2016
 Associated Press
A jury of eight men and four women has been seated for the trial of a man accused of murder, arson and conspiracy charges.
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2nd Indiana man faces trial in deadly house explosion

January 18, 2016
 Associated Press
The half brother of a man serving two life sentences in a deadly 2012 Indianapolis house explosion that devastated a subdivision is facing a weekslong trial for his alleged role in the blast, which prosecutors say was a scheme to collect a big insurance payout.
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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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Judge denies ex-officer's bid for review of convictions

November 12, 2015
 Associated Press
A judge has denied a former Evansville police officer's bid for a federal review of his murder and arson convictions.
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Judge: Private Facebook messages fair game at arson trial

October 27, 2015
 Associated Press
A judge has declined to prevent private Facebook messages from being considered as evidence at the trial of two people charged in an Evansville marina fire.
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Wrongfully convicted Frankton man to get $3M settlement

October 1, 2015
 Associated Press
The attorney for a man who had a central Indiana school arson conviction overturned says a $3 million lawsuit settlement will let him start a new life.
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Judge considers life sentence in Indianapolis explosion case

July 15, 2015
 Associated Press
An Indianapolis man will spend decades in prison after his conviction for a house explosion scheme that killed two neighbors, and prosecutors urged a judge Wednesday to make him eligible for life without parole at next month's sentencing.
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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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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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In case of conflicting evidence, high court defers to jury verdict

June 29, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
A Pike County man challenging the jury’s finding that he was not insane or mentally ill did not meet what the Indiana Supreme Court acknowledged was a “heavy burden” to overturn the guilty verdict.
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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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  1. Hysteria? Really Ben? Tell the young lady reported on in the link below that worrying about the sexualizing of our children is mere hysteria. Such thinking is common in the Royal Order of Jesters and other running sex vacays in Thailand or Brazil ... like Indy's Jared Fogle. Those tempted to call such concerns mere histronics need to think on this: http://www.msn.com/en-us/news/us/a-12-year-old-girl-live-streamed-her-suicide-it-took-two-weeks-for-facebook-to-take-the-video-down/ar-AAlT8ka?li=AA4ZnC&ocid=spartanntp

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  3. This is happening so much. Even in 2016.2017. I hope the father sue for civil rights violation. I hope he sue as more are doing and even without a lawyer as pro-se, he got a good one here. God bless him.

  4. JLAP and other courtiers ... Those running court systems, have most substance abuse issues. Probably self medicating to cover conscience issues arising out of acts furthering govt corruption

  5. I whole-heartedly agree with Doug Church's comment, above. Indiana lawyers were especially fortunate to benefit from Tom Pyrz' leadership and foresight at a time when there has been unprecedented change in the legal profession. Consider how dramatically computer technology and its role in the practice of law have changed over the last 25 years. The impact of the great recession of 2008 dramatically changed the composition and structure of law firms across the country. Economic pressures altered what had long been a routine, robust annual recruitment process for law students and recent law school graduates. That has, in turn, impacted law school enrollment across the country, placing upward pressure on law school tuition. The internet continues to drive significant changes in the provision of legal services in both public and private sectors. The ISBA has worked to make quality legal representation accessible and affordable for all who need it and to raise general public understanding of Indiana laws and procedures. How difficult it would have been to tackle each of these issues without Tom's leadership. Tom has set the tone for positive change at the ISBA to meet the evolving practice needs of lawyers of all backgrounds and ages. He has led the organization with vision, patience, flexibility, commitment, thoughtfulness & even humor. He will, indeed, be a tough act to follow. Thank you, Tom, for all you've done and all the energy you've invested in making the ISBA an excellent, progressive, highly responsive, all-inclusive, respectful & respected professional association during his tenure there.

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