Courts

Chief justice: courts handling the tough times

January 20, 2010
Michael Hoskins
The recession has hit Indiana's judiciary just as it has everyone else, but the state's chief justice said record numbers of cases are slamming the courts and the General Assembly can help ease that caseload.
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Former attorney gets probation in fraud case

January 20, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
A former attorney who pleaded guilty to mail fraud last year was sentenced to 3 years probation Tuesday by a federal judge.
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COA: annexed parcels must touch each other

January 20, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals reaffirmed today that Indiana requires that an annexation ordinance applies only to solid, unbroken areas of land. This issue arose in an annexation dispute between two northern Indiana towns.
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Majority: No double jeopardy in enhancement

January 20, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
In a matter of first impression, the Indiana Court of Appeals was divided about whether a man's sentence enhancement based on his use of a deadly weapon violated the application of double-jeopardy principals.
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Sidebars: Pancake house offers delightful fare

January 20, 2010
Jennifer Lukemeyer, Fred Vaiana
When I travel, all intentions of eating healthy or not eating a lot go right out the window. When I travel with someone who has the same affinity for food, it is even worse. When I travel with my partner Jim Voyles, I make sure I wear pants with extra room because it is going to be a pig-fest all day long as it was on our recent trip to Michigan City.
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Bill seeks to repeal placements statute

January 20, 2010
Michael Hoskins
Lawmakers are considering legislation that would repeal a last-minute 2009 special session provision that gave the Indiana Department of Child Services key control in deciding whether juveniles should be placed outside the state.
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Appellate case 'purgatory' exists in Indiana's government center basement

January 20, 2010
Michael Hoskins
Outside of courtrooms, conference rooms, and law firm offices, there's a place that most lawyers don't often see but is an essential step in the process cases go through at the Indiana appellate level.
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Suspended LaPorte judge acquitted at trial

January 20, 2010
Michael Hoskins
A suspended LaPorte Superior judge has been acquitted of any criminal charges involving an accidental shooting where her head was grazed by a bullet and led to accusations that she tried to cover up details about what happened.
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Nominations would fill 3 U.S. District judicial posts.

January 20, 2010
Michael Hoskins
A federal magistrate, a trial court judge, and a banking attorney who's served as a federal and county prosecutor are in line to be the newest additions to Indiana's federal bench.
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Housing can cause conflicts in divorces

January 20, 2010
Rebecca Berfanger
There is often obvious animosity between a husband and wife who are divorcing, and for those still living under one roof, more problems can arise.
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Circuit Court upholds attorney-fee reduction

January 19, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals wasn't swayed by an attorney's arguments that the amount of attorney's fees he was entitled to shouldn't have been reduced by nearly $90,000.
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SCOTUS denies Evansville shopping center case

January 19, 2010
Michael Hoskins
The nation's highest court has refused to accept a case from the Indiana Supreme Court, which almost a year ago reduced a $2.3 million jury award in favor of an Evansville shopping center owner because of traffic flow issues created by the state.
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COA: No presumption of undue influence

January 19, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
A 2005 amendment to Indiana Code sets aside the common law presumption of undue influence with respect to certain transactions benefiting an attorney in fact, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled today on an issue of first impression.
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Dad who took son owes arrearage to mom

January 19, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals split today in its decision of who should receive back child support payments from a father who kidnapped his son for 16 years before turning himself in when the son was 23 years old.
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Bill proposes monetary relief for exonoree

January 18, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
A man recently released from prison after DNA evidence proved his innocence may receive $100,000 if one Indiana representative's bill passes.
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State funding of judges being explored

January 15, 2010
Michael Hoskins
Lawmakers rejected a southern Indiana county's request this week for a new judge to run a family court, even though it proposes paying for it locally rather than with state money.
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Justices decide statute, court rule issue

January 15, 2010
Michael Hoskins
Even if a court rule is no longer relevant and an underlying state statute has been removed from the books, the Indiana Supreme Court says it still applies and must be followed until the justices revisit it themselves or say otherwise.
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Committees discuss various bills in second week

January 15, 2010
Michael Hoskins
The Indiana General Assembly made some of its first votes this week, while four legislative committees discussed an array of issues that may be of interest to the state's legal community.
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Justices accept 2 civil cases

January 15, 2010
Michael Hoskins
Two civil cases got the go ahead from the Indiana Supreme Court this week to move up for consideration by the state's justices.
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Law clear only guarantor's signature needed

January 14, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals ruled on a guaranty issue today that is "so well-settled" in state law that the judges had difficulty finding recent cases restating it.
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Law school reject sues to take bar exam

January 14, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
An Indianapolis man is suing the state Supreme Court justices and Board of Law Examiners because he believes he should be able to take the bar exam even if he didn't go to law school.
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COA: Storage fees capped per statute

January 13, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed that the owner of a car involved in a fatal accident must pay storage fees to a towing company, but those fees must be capped at $1,500.
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Justices to hear cheek swab, blood draw cases

January 13, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Supreme Court is set to hear three arguments Thursday, including a case that challenges whether reasonable suspicion alone is sufficient for law enforcement to obtain DNA from a cheek swab.
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Suit filed after statute of limitations end

January 12, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals reversed summary judgment for a company that purchases and collects charged-off credit card debt, ruling the statute of limitations prevented the company from going after a delinquent consumer.
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Woman can't prove pregnancy discrimination

January 12, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed summary judgment for a stone company after finding a woman couldn't prove the company knew she was pregnant when it decided to relocate her to another office.
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  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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)

  4. "Meanwhile small- and mid-size firms are getting squeezed and likely will not survive unless they become a boutique firm." I've been a business attorney in small, and now mid-size firm for over 30 years, and for over 30 years legal consultants have been preaching this exact same mantra of impending doom for small and mid-sized firms -- verbatim. This claim apparently helps them gin up merger opportunities from smaller firms who become convinced that they need to become larger overnight. The claim that large corporations are interested in cost-saving and efficiency has likewise been preached for decades, and is likewise bunk. If large corporations had any real interest in saving money they wouldn't use large law firms whose rates are substantially higher than those of high-quality mid-sized firms.

  5. The family is the foundation of all human government. That is the Grand Design. Modern governments throw off this Design and make bureaucratic war against the family, as does Hollywood and cultural elitists such as third wave feminists. Since WWII we have been on a ship of fools that way, with both the elite and government and their social engineering hacks relentlessly attacking the very foundation of social order. And their success? See it in the streets of Fergusson, on the food stamp doles (mostly broken families)and in the above article. Reject the Grand Design for true social function, enter the Glorious State to manage social dysfunction. Our Brave New World will be a prison camp, and we will welcome it as the only way to manage given the anarchy without it.

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