Courts

COA: Letter satisfied notice requirements after city damages pipeline

September 26, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals has affirmed the denial of the city of Plymouth’s motion to dismiss an administrative action against it stemming from damages it caused to an underground natural gas pipeline. The appeals court found the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission satisfied the statutory and administrative requirements concerning notice of the violation and recommended penalties.
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Access counselor doubts city's need for secrecy on justice center RFP

September 26, 2014
Kathleen McLaughlin
Indiana Public Access Counselor Luke Britt told the city of Indianapolis that he wasn't swayed by its reasons for withholding its request for proposals for a new $500 million criminal justice complex.
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COA orders trial over whether trucking company must pay for highway damage

September 25, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The crash report prepared after a fatal trucking accident on Interstate 70 that resulted in damage to the highway should not have been included as evidence in the state’s lawsuit seeking recovery of the money it spent repairing the highway, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled Thursday. As a result, the judges reversed summary judgment in favor of the state and ordered the matter proceed to trial.
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Justices affirm adoption despite father’s untimely appeal

September 25, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Supreme Court in its decision affirming the adoption of a girl first tackled the issue of appellate jurisdiction to entertain the biological father’s appeal.
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1,291-day delay in holding trial requires reversing conviction

September 25, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The “unduly long delay” in bringing a man to trial on a charge of child molesting – 1,291 days – violated his constitutional right to a speedy trial and requires reversing his conviction, the Indiana Supreme Court ruled Wednesday.
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Child services investigators claim unpaid overtime

September 25, 2014
 Associated Press
Two Indiana Department of Child Services investigators say in a lawsuit that they've had to work extensive overtime without receiving required overtime pay.
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Second suit filed over Wal-Mart PCB contamination

September 25, 2014
IL Staff
A second lawsuit has been filed as a result of toxic contamination discovered at an Indianapolis Wal-Mart return center.
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Former sheriff’s deputies lose suit challenging promotion process

September 24, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
Because the phrase “shall endeavor” should be read to mean one shall try, the Indiana Court of Appeals rejected two Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department officers' arguments that they should have been promoted to captain. The two claimed because they were former sheriff’s deputies, the consolidation of the sheriff’s and city police departments in 2006 required their promotions to maintain proportional representation.
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Bankruptcy Court to hold ceremony for retiring judge

September 24, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The United States Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Indiana is hosting a private retirement ceremony Thursday in honor of Judge James K. Coachys, who is retiring Sept. 30.
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State's way of paying public defenders debated

September 24, 2014
 Associated Press
The state pays the salaries of its judges and prosecutors, but public defenders are paid by counties that are only partially reimbursed for their costs — an approach that some including the executive director of the Indiana Public Defender Council want to see changed.
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The traditional suit still rules when in court

September 24, 2014
Marilyn Odendahl
The decision by one Indiana attorney to not wear socks in the courtroom has sparked a discussion among lawyers about professional dress codes. Shined shoes, closed-toe pumps, crisp shirts and blouses, pants, skirts and jackets are the closet staples of lawyers. While the business world has gone casual, pitching the tie and welcoming sandals in some cases, the legal profession has largely remained true to conservative business attire.
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Line blurs on intoxication

September 24, 2014
Dave Stafford
Convictions for public intoxication don’t just require being pickled in public anymore. An inebriated person now has to do something else, but conduct elements added to the criminal statute in 2012 have blurred what constitutes a misdemeanor.
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Representation is imperative to due process for immigrants

September 24, 2014
Marilyn Odendahl
The cases involving immigrant children coming to the U.S. from Central America are creating more need for pro bono legal representation and are highlighting an area of asylum law that the courts struggle to clearly define.
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Spotlight: North/Central Indiana

September 24, 2014
IL Staff
A round up of news from northern and central Indiana, including a mayor's attempt to stay his contempt order.
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Bell: 3 things to know about reporting pro bono hours

September 24, 2014
James Bell
Ready or not, Rule 6.7 of the Indiana Rules of Professional Conduct will hit the books Jan. 1, 2015. This rule will require an attorney to report his or her pro bono hours at the time of annual registration.
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DTCI: Deciphering the new Administrative Rule 9(G)

September 24, 2014
From DTCI
On Sept. 8, the Indiana Supreme Court issued an order amending the Administrative Rules, wherein it adopted most of the proposed changes and added some requirements to Rule 9(G). These amendments take effect Jan. 1, 2015.
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Disciplinary Actions - 9/24/14

September 24, 2014
IL Staff
Read who's received a public reprimand and who has been suspended by the Indiana Supreme Court.
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Tenant who trashed house loses appeal, owes attorney fees

September 23, 2014
Dave Stafford
A former babysitter entrusted to live in a family’s home while they were away for a year and care for their pet dog in exchange for paying $300 monthly rent instead trashed the place. The ex-tenant appealed an $85,889 judgment against her but now has more bills to pay.
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Attorney wins summary judgment appeal

September 23, 2014
Marilyn Odendahl
An Indianapolis attorney ensnared in a dispute between a land developer and a creditor was successful at convincing the Indiana Court of Appeals he is identical to the other defendants and should be granted summary judgment.
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Despite erroneous findings, termination of parental rights affirmed

September 23, 2014
Dave Stafford
A trial court entered erroneous findings in terminating the parental rights of a mother and father concerning two minor children, but the mistakes weren’t significant enough to reverse in a case where the state presented enough evidence to warrant the decision.
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Meth dealing conviction affirmed, restitution required

September 23, 2014
Dave Stafford
Convictions for dealing methamphetamine and two counts of neglect of a dependent were affirmed on appeal Tuesday, as was an order that the offender pay restitution to the state for the costs of cleaning up the meth lab.
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Angie's List to pay $2.8M in membership-fee settlement

September 23, 2014
Mason King
Indianapolis-based Angie's List Inc. will pay $2.8 million to settle a lawsuit alleging that it automatically renewed members at a higher rate than they were led to believe.
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Reversal of PACER decision restores access

September 23, 2014
Marilyn Odendahl
The Administrative Office of the United States Courts is showing what technology has taken away, technology can restore. The federal judiciary is reversing an earlier decision to delete hundreds of thousands of older case files from the federal courts’ electronic system, PACER.
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Child support and tax deduction rulings reversed

September 23, 2014
Dave Stafford
A Lake County father prevailed in appealing a trial court order regarding his child support obligations that deviated from those recommended under Indiana’s official guidelines.
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On rehearing, panel clarifies ruling regarding Death Property Act

September 23, 2014
Dave Stafford
A promissory note between a mother and son did not transfer to the mother’s estate on her death, the Indiana Court of Appeals clarified in rehearing an estate dispute that reversed a trial court ruling.
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  1. KUDOS to the Indiana Supreme Court for realizing that some bureacracies need to go to the stake. Recall what RWR said: "No government ever voluntarily reduces itself in size. Government programs, once launched, never disappear. Actually, a government bureau is the nearest thing to eternal life we'll ever see on this earth!" NOW ... what next to this rare and inspiring chopping block? Well, the Commission on Gender and Race (but not religion!?!) is way overdue. And some other Board's could be cut with a positive for State and the reputation of the Indiana judiciary.

  2. During a visit where an informant with police wears audio and video, does the video necessary have to show hand to hand transaction of money and narcotics?

  3. I will agree with that as soon as law schools stop lying to prospective students about salaries and employment opportunities in the legal profession. There is no defense to the fraudulent numbers first year salaries they post to mislead people into going to law school.

  4. The sad thing is that no fish were thrown overboard The "greenhorn" who had never fished before those 5 days was interrogated for over 4 hours by 5 officers until his statement was illicited, "I don't want to go to prison....." The truth is that these fish were measured frozen off shore and thawed on shore. The FWC (state) officer did not know fish shrink, so the only reason that these fish could be bigger was a swap. There is no difference between a 19 1/2 fish or 19 3/4 fish, short fish is short fish, the ticket was written. In addition the FWC officer testified at trial, he does not measure fish in accordance with federal law. There was a document prepared by the FWC expert that said yes, fish shrink and if these had been measured correctly they averaged over 20 inches (offshore frozen). This was a smoke and mirror prosecution.

  5. I love this, Dave! Many congrats to you! We've come a long way from studying for the bar together! :)

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