Courts

BMV policy needed to prevent identity theft

May 15, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
The inconvenience of a few Hoosiers outweighs the very real threat of identity theft, so the trial court was correct in denying a preliminary injunction against the Bureau of Motor Vehicle's verification of records using Social Security Administration data, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled today.
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Justices rule on uninsured motorist statute

May 14, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
In an issue of first impression, the Indiana Supreme Court had to decide whether an insurance company's uninsured motorist policy - which requires the bodily injury be sustained by an insured - violates the state's uninsured motorist statute and is unenforceable.
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COA: No preliminary injunction against casinos

May 14, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
A panel of Indiana Court of Appeals judges agreed a city isn't entitled to a preliminary injunction to order riverboat casinos to make payments to the city, but the judges disagreed as to why the city didn't meet its burden to prove an injunction was necessary.
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Judicial merit-selection override a possibility

May 14, 2009
Michael Hoskins
The state's top executive has rejected the idea of scrapping merit selection in St. Joseph County, but it remains unclear whether lawmakers will attempt to override that veto during a special session.
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Family Court project grants now available

May 14, 2009
IL Staff
The Indiana Supreme Court, Division of State Court Administration is accepting Phase V Family Court Project Grant Applications. The application includes information about the county's current judicial system, and a request for a family court grant in the amount of $10,000 to $40,000 per year, for a two-year period. Selected counties will begin operation in January 2010.
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COA: Just running red light not reckless

May 13, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
Ruling on the issue for the first time, the Indiana Court of Appeals held that not stopping at an intersection cannot, without more evidence, constitute criminally reckless conduct and establish a prima facie case.
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Statewide system debuts in City Court

May 13, 2009
Michael Hoskins
Greenwood City Court is the state's first city or town court to start using a tool that will eventually connect all of Indiana courts' case management systems.
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Jury instruction requires new damages trial

May 12, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
A jury instruction the Indiana Court of Appeals found to incorrectly state the law required the court to remand for a new trial on damages in a negligence suit.
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Prosecutor faces disciplinary charges

May 12, 2009
Michael Hoskins
Delaware County Prosecutor Mark R. McKinney faces disciplinary charges that he violated four professional conduct rules stemming from his role as a private attorney on civil forfeiture matters related to the criminal defendants he handled as a deputy prosecutor on behalf of the state.
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COA reverses decree award of military benefits

May 12, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals reversed a portion of a divorce decree awarding some of the husband's military benefits and housing allowance to his wife because the separation agreement excluded granting the wife any rights to them.
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Second Cinergy trial starts in Indy

May 12, 2009
Michael Hoskins
A second clean-air violation trial is underway in Indianapolis about whether coal-fired power plant modifications triggered a need for new pollution-control equipment at facilities in Indiana and Ohio.
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7th Circuit: No attorney conflict of interest

May 11, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed the denial of a drug offender's petition for habeas corpus, ruling his attorney didn't render ineffective assistance of counsel when he also represented other co-defendants on the same drug charges.
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Court reprimands attorneys for trade-name use

May 11, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
Three attorneys who practiced separately but advertised as an LLC were publicly reprimand by the Indiana Supreme Court for violating several Indiana Professional Conduct Rules by not letting clients know they didn't practice law as a firm.
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Suspended judge returns to bench

May 11, 2009
IL Staff
Marion Superior Judge Grant Hawkins, who was suspended earlier this year without pay, returned to the bench today.
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Deputy prosecutor fired after arrest

May 8, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
A deputy Madison County Prosecutor has been fired following her arrest for allegedly driving drunk. Deputy Prosecutor Janine L. Sutton was arrested for operating while intoxicated, a Class A misdemeanor.
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Indicted judge to be suspended

May 8, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Commission on Judicial Qualifications has filed a notice with the Indiana Supreme Court for a request of suspension of LaPorte Superior Judge Jennifer Koethe, who was indicted Thursday for attempted obstruction of justice stemming from a shooting incident at her home in December.
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Justices to address university graduates

May 8, 2009
IL Staff
Indiana Supreme Court Chief Justice Randall T. Shepard and Justice Robert D. Rucker will be commencement speakers at the graduation ceremonies at two Indiana schools.
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Adkins applies to drug possession defense

May 7, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
While the Indiana Court of Appeals unanimously agreed a defendant charged with possessing drugs within 1,000 feet of a school only has the burden of placing the issue of statutory defense in question where the state's evidence hasn't done so, the court split in affirming the defendant's possession conviction.
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Former public defender sentenced

May 7, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
A former Marion County public defender arrested during an undercover child sex sting was sentenced Wednesday for child solicitation, a Class C felony.
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COA split on which statute of limitation applies

May 7, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals split today in its decision as to whether Indiana's two-year statute of limitations for personal injury torts or the three-year statute of limitations under the Federal Employers' Liability Act applied in a man's FELA claim in state court.
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Supreme Court takes Fireman's Rule case

May 7, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Supreme Court granted transfer today to case involving the Indiana Fireman's Rule and whether a policeman's suit against an Indianapolis strip club is barred by the rule.
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CASA, American Legion form partnership

May 7, 2009
Rebecca Berfanger
The CEO of the national organization of Court Appointed Special Advocates met Monday with high ranking members of the American Legion's Child Welfare Foundation in Indianapolis and the foundation's board approved a resolution for a partnership between the two organizations two days later.
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Court grants transfer to clarify appeals by state

May 6, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Supreme Court granted a transfer with opinion to address conflicting rulings regarding the state's ability to challenge the legality of a criminal sentence without first filing a motion to correct erroneous sentence.
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Governor gets judicial merit-selection bill

May 6, 2009
Michael Hoskins
Gov. Mitch Daniels received today legislation that, if signed, would toss out merit selection and retention of St. Joseph Superior judges and also create a new three-judge panel for the Indiana Court of Appeals.
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COA rules on first impression lemon-law issue

May 5, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals tackled today an issue of first impression regarding the state's lemon law: Once a consumer has met the law's repair threshold, he can still file an action under the lemon law even if a subsequent repair fixes the problem.
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  1. Too many attorneys take their position as a license to intimidate and threaten non attorneys in person and by mail. Did find it ironic that a reader moved to comment twice on this article could not complete a paragraph without resorting to insulting name calling (rethuglican) as a substitute for reasoned discussion. Some people will never get the point this action should have made.

  2. People have heard of Magna Carta, and not the Provisions of Oxford & Westminster. Not that anybody really cares. Today, it might be considered ethnic or racial bias to talk about the "Anglo Saxon common law." I don't even see the word English in the blurb above. Anyhow speaking of Edward I-- he was famously intolerant of diversity himself viz the Edict of Expulsion 1290. So all he did too like making parliament a permanent institution-- that all must be discredited. 100 years from now such commemorations will be in the dustbin of history.

  3. Oops, I meant discipline, not disciple. Interesting that those words share such a close relationship. We attorneys are to be disciples of the law, being disciplined to serve the law and its source, the constitutions. Do that, and the goals of Magna Carta are advanced. Do that not and Magna Carta is usurped. Do that not and you should be disciplined. Do that and you should be counted a good disciple. My experiences, once again, do not reveal a process that is adhering to the due process ideals of Magna Carta. Just the opposite, in fact. Braveheart's dying rebel (for a great cause) yell comes to mind.

  4. It is not a sign of the times that many Ind licensed attorneys (I am not) would fear writing what I wrote below, even if they had experiences to back it up. Let's take a minute to thank God for the brave Baron's who risked death by torture to tell the government that it was in the wrong. Today is a career ruination that whistleblowers risk. That is often brought on by denial of licenses or disciple for those who dare speak truth to power. Magna Carta says truth rules power, power too often claims that truth matters not, only Power. Fight such power for the good of our constitutional republics. If we lose them we have only bureaucratic tyranny to pass onto our children. Government attorneys, of all lawyers, should best realize this and work to see our patrimony preserved. I am now a government attorney (once again) in Kansas, and respecting the rule of law is my passion, first and foremost.

  5. I have dealt with more than a few I-465 moat-protected government attorneys and even judges who just cannot seem to wrap their heads around the core of this 800 year old document. I guess monarchial privileges and powers corrupt still ..... from an academic website on this fantastic "treaty" between the King and the people ... "Enduring Principles of Liberty Magna Carta was written by a group of 13th-century barons to protect their rights and property against a tyrannical king. There are two principles expressed in Magna Carta that resonate to this day: "No freeman shall be taken, imprisoned, disseised, outlawed, banished, or in any way destroyed, nor will We proceed against or prosecute him, except by the lawful judgment of his peers or by the law of the land." "To no one will We sell, to no one will We deny or delay, right or justice." Inspiration for Americans During the American Revolution, Magna Carta served to inspire and justify action in liberty’s defense. The colonists believed they were entitled to the same rights as Englishmen, rights guaranteed in Magna Carta. They embedded those rights into the laws of their states and later into the Constitution and Bill of Rights. The Fifth Amendment to the Constitution ("no person shall . . . be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law.") is a direct descendent of Magna Carta's guarantee of proceedings according to the "law of the land." http://www.archives.gov/exhibits/featured_documents/magna_carta/

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