Courts

Dozens of judge nominees wait on Senate as time dwindles

October 17, 2016
 Associated Press, IL Staff
Senate confirmation of President Barack Obama's nominees slowed to a halt this election year, a common political occurrence for the final months of divided government with a Democratic president and a Republican-controlled Senate. But more than 90 vacancies in the federal judiciary are taking a toll on judges, the courts and Americans seeking recourse.
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Lawsuit against Penn State by ex-coach gets underway

October 17, 2016
 Associated Press
A civil trial set to begin Monday in a courtroom in Bellefonte, Pennsylvania, will determine if Penn State should pay for a claim it mistreated a former assistant coach who provided key evidence used to convict child molester Jerry Sandusky.
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Ex-Lake Station mayor begins serving federal sentence

October 17, 2016
 Associated Press
Former Lake Station mayor Keith Soderquist has begun serving a four-year federal prison term for public corruption.
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Ginsburg: Sorry for criticizing Kaepernick anthem protest

October 14, 2016
 Associated Press
U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg apologized Friday for characterizing as "dumb and disrespectful" the national anthem protests by San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick and other athletes.
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Stepfather’s molestation convictions affirmed

October 14, 2016
Olivia Covington
A former stepfather accused of molesting his 6-year-old stepdaughter on multiple occasions cannot have his convictions or sentenced reduced after the Indiana Court of Appeals found Friday that there was enough evidence to support his 32-year sentence.
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COA upholds judgment against ex-husband accused of violating protective order

October 14, 2016
Olivia Covington
The Indiana Court of Appeals found Friday that an Allen County man must serve out his prison sentence after he knowingly violated the protective order his ex-wife had taken out against him and that he intentionally locked her out of a house that legally belonged to her.
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COA: Man in bar fight can’t seek damages based on default

October 14, 2016
Olivia Covington
A Lake County man cannot seek damages against another man he was involved in a bar fight with after the Indiana Court of Appeals decided Friday that the plaintiff waited too long to bring up the defendant’s default in court.
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Judge denies summary judgment for jailers accused of excessive force

October 14, 2016
Olivia Covington
The U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana, Terre Haute decision, denied a motion for summary judgment brought by four Terre Haute jail officers who have been accused of using excessive force against a former inmate.
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Judge: Man incompetent to stand trial for killing officer

October 14, 2016
 Associated Press
A man accused of fatally shooting an Indianapolis police officer two years ago has been found incompetent to stand trial.
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Indiana prosecutor seeking life for mom in kids' deaths

October 14, 2016
 Associated Press
A prosecutor announced Thursday that he's seeking a sentence of life without parole for an Indiana woman accused of smothering her two children after abducting them, saying such a sanction was appropriate "given the gravity of this horrible crime."
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4 charged following death of fellow Henry County inmate

October 13, 2016
 Associated Press
Four men are facing charges following the March death of a fellow inmate who was beaten in a jail in east-central Indiana.
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Appeals panel affirms murder conviction, sentence

October 13, 2016
Dave Stafford
An Indianapolis man who objected to his murder trial being scheduled later than permissible under the speedy trial rule failed to persuade the Indiana Court of Appeals to reverse his murder conviction.
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Divided COA tosses $2M DUI crash verdict over old convictions

October 13, 2016
Dave Stafford
The majority of an Indiana Court of Appeals panel held Thursday that a drunken driver’s decades-old convictions for alcohol-related offenses were irrelevant and prejudicial in a civil suit following a personal-injury crash. A dissenting judge, though, wrote the admissibility of such evidence should go to its weight rather than its age.
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Indiana judicial leaders honor Judson after 40 years with state judiciary

October 13, 2016
Olivia Covington
Judges and attorneys from around Indiana gathered together Wednesday to honor a member of the Indiana Supreme Court family who they say is the reason the court has operated effectively and efficiently for the last 40 years.
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7th Circuit allows Michigan man to sue Indiana body shop for fire that destroyed his vehicle

October 12, 2016
Olivia Covington
The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals overturned summary judgment in favor of a northern Indiana body shop Wednesday after finding that a Michigan man has legal ground to sue the body shop for a fire that destroyed his car.
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Justices say inmates can’t sue private employer for unpaid wages during incarceration

October 12, 2016
The Indiana Supreme Court granted transfer and affirmed Wednesday a trial court’s decision to dismiss a complaint seeking unpaid wages brought by inmates who claim they were underpaid while working for a private company while they were in prison.
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Feds say ASC's CEO, 3 others used kickbacks, shell firms to pull off massive fraud

October 12, 2016
IBJ Staff
An indictment unsealed Wednesday alleges that former American Senior Communities CEO James Burkhart orchestrated a massive scheme that used kickbacks and shell companies to defraud the nursing home company, its owner and federal health care programs out of many millions of dollars.
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Northwestern changes team rules after complaint to NLRB

October 12, 2016
 Associated Press
In another step toward redefining the amateur status of college athletes, Northwestern has agreed to drop social media restrictions placed on football players after a complaint about the team handbook was filed with the National Labor Relations Board.
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COA: Hotel did not conspire to commit theft from guests' room

October 12, 2016
Olivia Covington
The Indiana Court of Appeals decided Wednesday that an Evansville hotel cannot be considered negligent after its employees allowed a man into a guest room without the guests’ permission, resulting in the theft of the guests’ personal property.
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Major rights groups: Decriminalize use of all illicit drugs

October 12, 2016
 Associated Press
As Americans debate the expanding campaign to legalize marijuana, two of the nation's most prominent human rights organizations are urging a far bolder step — the decriminalization of possession and personal use of all illicit drugs.
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Full 7th Circuit to hear Ivy Tech sexual orientation discrimination case

October 11, 2016
IL Staff
The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals on Tuesday granted an ex-Ivy Tech employee’s request for the full court to hear her sexual orientation discrimination case against the school.
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COA maintains that belatedly filed records result in dismissal

October 11, 2016
Olivia Covington
The Indiana Court of Appeals has reversed an Allen Superior Court decision after finding that the trial court erred when it did not dismiss a case despite the fact that the record was not filed in a timely manner.
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Court seems favorable to defendant claiming jury race bias

October 11, 2016
 Associated Press
The Supreme Court of the United States on Tuesday suggested that racial bias in the jury room may trump the centuries-old legal principle of secrecy in jury deliberations.
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Appeals court: Consumer watchdog structure unconstitutional

October 11, 2016
 Associated Press
A federal appeals court has ruled that the structure of a U.S. consumer watchdog agency is unconstitutional because it gives too much power to a single agency director.
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Fort Wayne mom says she decided to kill kids after Amber Alert

October 11, 2016
 Associated Press
A Fort Wayne woman accused of smothering her two children after abducting them said she decided to kill them after hearing that authorities had issued an Amber Alert.
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