Courts

Attempted murder sentence upheld in Martinsville school shooting

June 11, 2012
Dave Stafford
A Martinsville teen who as an eighth-grader shot and seriously wounded a classmate will continue to serve a 35-year sentence with five years suspended for his attempted murder conviction as an adult.
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Appeals court affirms attempted rape conviction

June 8, 2012
Dave Stafford
A man who tried to sexually assault a female co-worker as she slept in her home where he was a guest lost his appeal of an attempted rape conviction Friday.
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COA reverses in favor of FSSA in provider payment dispute

June 8, 2012
Jenny Montgomery
The Indiana Court of Appeals held that a trial court erred in ruling in favor of health care providers regarding payments from the state’s Residential Care Assistance Program.
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Daughter's emancipation upheld; COA advises on forthcoming child-support changes

June 8, 2012
Dave Stafford
A 20-year-old woman will remain emancipated from her divorced parents after the Indiana Court Appeals on Friday upheld a Howard Circuit Court order.
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7th Circuit affirms court in retaliation claim

June 8, 2012
Jenny Montgomery
A man who claimed he was wrongfully terminated in retaliation for claiming racial discrimination at his workplace was fired for just cause, the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled.
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COA: Indiana hog farmer’s suit against N.C. operation to proceed

June 7, 2012
Dave Stafford
A North Carolina commercial hog operation must face an Indiana farmer’s claims of nuisance, negligence and trespass after an intentionally introduced, highly contagious virus infected his neighboring herd, causing damages in excess of $275,000.
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Appeals court affirms admission of victim video in molestation trial

June 7, 2012
Dave Stafford
St. Joseph Probate Court did not err when it allowed videotaped evidence of a child molesting victim to be presented at the fact-finding hearing of a minor who subsequently was placed at the Indiana Boys School.
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Proposed rule changes in Northern District

June 7, 2012
IL Staff
The United States Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of Indiana is seeking public comment about proposed changes to the court’s local rules.
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COA finds court made several errors in sentencing

June 6, 2012
Jenny Montgomery
A trial court erred in sentencing a man who was on probation for one offense when he committed another, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled.
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Termination of father's parental rights upheld on appeal

June 6, 2012
Dave Stafford
A father with a history of incarceration and substance abuse properly had his parental rights to his four minor children terminated, an Indiana Court of Appeals panel ruled Wednesday.
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Appeals court affirms dismissal of suit against Nappanee in near-drowning

June 6, 2012
Dave Stafford
The city of Nappanee was not negligent and didn’t breach its duty of care when a 5-year-old boy required CPR after lifeguards rescued the child as he floated face-down in a city pool, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled Wednesday.
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Disciplinary Commission investigates Conour

June 6, 2012
IL Staff
The Indiana Supreme Court Disciplinary Commission is recommending the justices discipline Indianapolis attorney William Conour for allegedly settling a client’s case without the client’s knowledge and depositing the settlement into his trust account.
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Zero tolerance in schools could lead to problems for students in future

June 6, 2012
Jenny Montgomery
Indiana's effort to study juvenile justice issues has stalled as the group waits for the governor to appoint a chair.
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Disciplinary Actions - 6/8/12

June 6, 2012
Learn who's been suspended, reinstated, or had charges dismissed.
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Federal Bar Update: 6-month update on changes to removal statutes

June 6, 2012
John Maley
As readers will recall, the Federal Courts Jurisdiction and Venue Clarification Act of 2011 took effect Jan. 6. Since the act took effect, it has been cited by name in 13 reported decisions, most of which simply deal with the effective date of the act.
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Courting civility

June 6, 2012
Dave Stafford
The Indiana Trial Lawyers Association joined with the Defense Trial Counsel of Indiana to promote courtesy among adversaries. The two held a seminar on civility at Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law.
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Revocation of probation was court error

June 5, 2012
Jenny Montgomery
A trial court erred when it revoked a man’s probation, because it failed to consider several factors before issuing that order, Indiana’s Court of Appeals ruled.
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Man pleads guilty to threatening federal judge

June 5, 2012
IL Staff
A man who authorities said threatened a federal judge pleaded guilty to a charge of mailing threatening communications and was sentenced to more than nine years in prison.
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COA holds omission of 'voluntary' was not an error

June 5, 2012
Jenny Montgomery
The Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed a trial court’s decision to refuse a man’s tendered jury instructions.
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Rolls-Royce must answer federal whistleblower suit on military engines

June 5, 2012
Dave Stafford
Rolls-Royce must answer whistleblowers’ allegations that the company violated manufacturing standards, concealed defects in military aircraft engines, and retaliated against workers who raised concerns, a federal judge ruled Monday.
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COA finalists named

June 4, 2012
IL Staff
Marion Superior Judge Robert R. Altice Jr., public defender Patricia Caress McMath and Madison Circuit Judge Rudolph R. Pyle III have been chosen as finalists for the Indiana Court of Appeals.
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SCOTUS rules in favor of Indianapolis in sewer dispute

June 4, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
The Supreme Court of the United States ruled Monday that the city of Indianapolis did not violate the Federal Equal Protection Clause when it refused to refund money to residents who paid the in-full assessment up front for sewer work.
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Tax Court denies bid to dismiss medical supplier's refund suit

June 4, 2012
Dave Stafford
A medical supplier’s lawsuit seeking a refund of sales taxes its customers paid to purchase dialysis equipment will go forward, the Indiana Tax Court ruled.
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More than 300 attorneys suspended for CLE, fee violations

June 1, 2012
IL Staff
The Indiana Supreme Court has suspended the licenses of 302 attorneys who failed to pay registration fees and/or comply with continuing legal education requirements.
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7th Circuit affirms lower court in elaborate mortgage fraud case

June 1, 2012
Jenny Montgomery
The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals has affirmed a District Court’s conviction and sentence for a man who defrauded buyers and lenders in northern Indiana.
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  1. Applause, applause, applause ..... but, is this duty to serve the constitutional order not much more incumbent upon the State, whose only aim is to be pure and unadulterated justice, than defense counsel, who is also charged with gaining a result for a client? I agree both are responsible, but it seems to me that the government attorneys bear a burden much heavier than defense counsel .... "“I note, much as we did in Mechling v. State, 16 N.E.3d 1015 (Ind. Ct. App. 2014), trans. denied, that the attorneys representing the State and the defendant are both officers of the court and have a responsibility to correct any obvious errors at the time they are committed."

  2. Do I have to hire an attorney to get co-guardianship of my brother? My father has guardianship and my older sister was his co-guardian until this Dec 2014 when she passed and my father was me to go on as the co-guardian, but funds are limit and we need to get this process taken care of quickly as our fathers health isn't the greatest. So please advise me if there is anyway to do this our self or if it requires a lawyer? Thank you

  3. I have been on this program while on parole from 2011-2013. No person should be forced mentally to share private details of their personal life with total strangers. Also giving permission for a mental therapist to report to your parole agent that your not participating in group therapy because you don't have the financial mean to be in the group therapy. I was personally singled out and sent back three times for not having money and also sent back within the six month when you aren't to be sent according to state law. I will work to het this INSOMM's removed from this state. I also had twelve or thirteen parole agents with a fifteen month period. Thanks for your time.

  4. Our nation produces very few jurists of the caliber of Justice DOUGLAS and his peers these days. Here is that great civil libertarian, who recognized government as both a blessing and, when corrupted by ideological interests, a curse: "Once the investigator has only the conscience of government as a guide, the conscience can become ‘ravenous,’ as Cromwell, bent on destroying Thomas More, said in Bolt, A Man For All Seasons (1960), p. 120. The First Amendment mirrors many episodes where men, harried and harassed by government, sought refuge in their conscience, as these lines of Thomas More show: ‘MORE: And when we stand before God, and you are sent to Paradise for doing according to your conscience, *575 and I am damned for not doing according to mine, will you come with me, for fellowship? ‘CRANMER: So those of us whose names are there are damned, Sir Thomas? ‘MORE: I don't know, Your Grace. I have no window to look into another man's conscience. I condemn no one. ‘CRANMER: Then the matter is capable of question? ‘MORE: Certainly. ‘CRANMER: But that you owe obedience to your King is not capable of question. So weigh a doubt against a certainty—and sign. ‘MORE: Some men think the Earth is round, others think it flat; it is a matter capable of question. But if it is flat, will the King's command make it round? And if it is round, will the King's command flatten it? No, I will not sign.’ Id., pp. 132—133. DOUGLAS THEN WROTE: Where government is the Big Brother,11 privacy gives way to surveillance. **909 But our commitment is otherwise. *576 By the First Amendment we have staked our security on freedom to promote a multiplicity of ideas, to associate at will with kindred spirits, and to defy governmental intrusion into these precincts" Gibson v. Florida Legislative Investigation Comm., 372 U.S. 539, 574-76, 83 S. Ct. 889, 908-09, 9 L. Ed. 2d 929 (1963) Mr. Justice DOUGLAS, concurring. I write: Happy Memorial Day to all -- God please bless our fallen who lived and died to preserve constitutional governance in our wonderful series of Republics. And God open the eyes of those government officials who denounce the constitutions of these Republics by arbitrary actions arising out capricious motives.

  5. From back in the day before secularism got a stranglehold on Hoosier jurists comes this great excerpt via Indiana federal court judge Allan Sharp, dedicated to those many Indiana government attorneys (with whom I have dealt) who count the law as a mere tool, an optional tool that is not to be used when political correctness compels a more acceptable result than merely following the path that the law directs: ALLEN SHARP, District Judge. I. In a scene following a visit by Henry VIII to the home of Sir Thomas More, playwriter Robert Bolt puts the following words into the mouths of his characters: Margaret: Father, that man's bad. MORE: There is no law against that. ROPER: There is! God's law! MORE: Then God can arrest him. ROPER: Sophistication upon sophistication! MORE: No, sheer simplicity. The law, Roper, the law. I know what's legal not what's right. And I'll stick to what's legal. ROPER: Then you set man's law above God's! MORE: No, far below; but let me draw your attention to a fact I'm not God. The currents and eddies of right and wrong, which you find such plain sailing, I can't navigate. I'm no voyager. But in the thickets of law, oh, there I'm a forester. I doubt if there's a man alive who could follow me there, thank God... ALICE: (Exasperated, pointing after Rich) While you talk, he's gone! MORE: And go he should, if he was the Devil himself, until he broke the law! ROPER: So now you'd give the Devil benefit of law! MORE: Yes. What would you do? Cut a great road through the law to get after the Devil? ROPER: I'd cut down every law in England to do that! MORE: (Roused and excited) Oh? (Advances on Roper) And when the last law was down, and the Devil turned round on you where would you hide, Roper, the laws being flat? (He leaves *1257 him) This country's planted thick with laws from coast to coast man's laws, not God's and if you cut them down and you're just the man to do it d'you really think you would stand upright in the winds that would blow then? (Quietly) Yes, I'd give the Devil benefit of law, for my own safety's sake. ROPER: I have long suspected this; this is the golden calf; the law's your god. MORE: (Wearily) Oh, Roper, you're a fool, God's my god... (Rather bitterly) But I find him rather too (Very bitterly) subtle... I don't know where he is nor what he wants. ROPER: My God wants service, to the end and unremitting; nothing else! MORE: (Dryly) Are you sure that's God! He sounds like Moloch. But indeed it may be God And whoever hunts for me, Roper, God or Devil, will find me hiding in the thickets of the law! And I'll hide my daughter with me! Not hoist her up the mainmast of your seagoing principles! They put about too nimbly! (Exit More. They all look after him). Pgs. 65-67, A MAN FOR ALL SEASONS A Play in Two Acts, Robert Bolt, Random House, New York, 1960. Linley E. Pearson, Atty. Gen. of Indiana, Indianapolis, for defendants. Childs v. Duckworth, 509 F. Supp. 1254, 1256 (N.D. Ind. 1981) aff'd, 705 F.2d 915 (7th Cir. 1983)

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