Courts

NCAA faces new lawsuit over concussions by late football player

June 7, 2017
 Associated Press
The family of a former college linebacker who killed himself in 2014 is suing the NCAA, assailing its handling of concussions that included more than 100 allegedly suffered by Zack Langston at Pittsburg State.
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Lake County sheriff granted summary judgment in deputy sexual assault case

June 7, 2017
Olivia Covington
A northern Indiana sheriff has been cleared of liability relating to an alleged sexual assault of a Lake County resident by a sheriff’s deputy after a magistrate judge concluded the alleged victim failed to present evidence that the sheriff had a duty to her.
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Judge says part of lawsuit in Flint water crisis can proceed

June 6, 2017
 Associated Press
A judge has refused to dismiss portions of a sweeping lawsuit against state and local officials in the Flint water crisis.
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Suit alleges Allen County sheriff denied vote to those in jail

June 6, 2017
Dave Stafford
Lawyers for inmates of the Allen County Jail and for the sheriff conferred in federal court Tuesday as a lawsuit proceeds alleging detainees were denied their right to vote.
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Chief deputy prosecutor tapped for Henry County bench

June 6, 2017
IL Staff
David Lynn McCord, a chief deputy prosecutor, has been appointed as judge of Henry Circuit Court 3, Gov. Eric Holcomb’s office announced Tuesday.
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Muncie man gets 80 years in attempted suicide-by-cop shootings

June 6, 2017
 Associated Press
A judge in Muncie has sentenced a 29-year-old man to the maximum 80-year term in prison for firing shots at two law enforcement officers.
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Evansville newspaper can’t claim tax deduction for out-of-date printing press

June 6, 2017
Olivia Covington
A southern Indiana newspaper company cannot claim an “abnormal obsolescence” tax deduction for its purchase of a now-outdated printing press after a special tax court judge found the media company did not establish a prima facie case.
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Judge won’t bifurcate ‘Texas’ steakhouses’ trademark trial

June 5, 2017
Dave Stafford
A federal judge refused to order separate trials on liability and damages for a Merrillville-based steakhouse chain accused of copying the trade dress and trademarks of a larger Texas-themed competitor.
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Man's 9-year sentence for possessing a gun upheld by 7th Circuit

June 5, 2017
Olivia Covington
An Indiana’s man sentence for possession of a firearm by a violent felon will stand after the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals held Monday the federal and state definitions of “battery” and “force” work together to convict him of violent felonies.
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Judgment against ex-state lawyer vacated in long-running puppy mill case

June 5, 2017
Olivia Covington
A former attorney in the Indiana Attorney General’s Office has been relieved of a $15,000 judgment against him for his role in the raid of an alleged puppy mill, the most recent decision in a long-running case stemming from the state’s seizure of roughly 240 dogs.
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Justices limit recovery in securities fraud cases

June 5, 2017
 Associated Press
The Supreme Court of the United States on Monday made it tougher for the government to recover ill-gotten gains from people convicted of securities fraud, ruling that such recoveries are subject to a five-year statute of limitations.
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Justices side with religious hospitals in pension dispute

June 5, 2017
 Associated Press
Religious hospitals don't have to comply with federal laws protecting pension plans, a unanimous U.S. Supreme Court ruled Monday in a case that affects retirement benefits for roughly a million workers nationwide.
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More than half of Indiana counties now e-filing

June 5, 2017
IL Staff
Electronic filing is now available in more than half of Indiana circuit and superior courts, as Fountain and Starke Counties on Friday became the latest to adopt e-filing initially on a voluntary basis.
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Judge gives man convicted in Gary slaying 147-year term

June 5, 2017
 Associated Press
A judge has sentenced a man to 147 years in prison after he was convicted in the drug-related slaying of a man in Gary three years ago.
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Trump assails Justice Department court strategy on travel ban

June 5, 2017
 Associated Press
President Donald Trump lashed out at his own Justice Department Monday for seeking the Supreme Court's backing for a "watered down, politically correct version" of the travel ban he signed in March instead of a broader directive that was also blocked by the courts.
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3 Ex-Penn St. officials get jail in Sandusky case

June 2, 2017
 Associated Press
A former president of Penn State and two other former university administrators were each sentenced Friday to at least two months in jail for failing to alert authorities to a 2001 allegation against ex-assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky, a decision that enabled the now-convicted serial predator to continue molesting boys.
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ABA supports Supreme Court review of ‘enemy combatant’

June 2, 2017
Marilyn Odendahl
A Guantanamo Bay detainee, represented by Indianapolis criminal defense attorney Richard Kammen, has picked up support from the American Bar Association in his challenge to the validity of the military tribunal to try him.
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Justices weigh restitution order linked to car theft

June 2, 2017
Olivia Covington
The Indiana Supreme Court will decide if the state properly assessed restitution against a woman convicted of auto theft after hearing oral arguments Thursday morning that suggested there was no evidence directly linking her to some of the damage to the vehicle.
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Man gets 86 years in killing, kidnapping case

June 2, 2017
 Associated Press
A central Indiana man convicted of killing another man and forcing his estranged wife and three children to flee with him to Minnesota has been sentenced to 86 years in prison.
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Indiana man charged in crash that killed girl, 6

June 2, 2017
 Associated Press
A central Indiana man accused of causing a highway crash near Muncie that killed his girlfriend's 6-year-old daughter has been formally charged in the deadly crash.
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Anderson lawyer pleads guilty in estate misappropriation case

June 2, 2017
 Associated Press
Suspended Anderson attorney Stephen Schuyler has pleaded guilty in connection with the alleged misappropriation of funds from six estates totaling more than $700,000.
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COA: Indiana death penalty protocol ‘void’

June 1, 2017
Dave Stafford
Indiana’s means of carrying out the death penalty through lethal injection “is void and without effect,” the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled Thursday, reversing a death row inmate’s challenge to the Indiana Department of Correction’s execution protocol.
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Title VII sexual orientation cases bubbling in federal courts

June 1, 2017
Marilyn Odendahl
As the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Indiana continues with its first case allowing a Title VII claim on the basis of sexual orientation, the 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals is preparing for an en banc rehearing to consider whether Title VII prohibitions include sexual orientation discrimination.
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ACLU, solicitor general argue to justices over DCS caseloads

June 1, 2017
Olivia Covington
Opposing counsel and the justices of the Indiana Supreme Court were agreed on one issue during oral arguments Thursday in a case involving the Department of Child Services – family case managers are the “backbone” of the work DCS does for Hoosier children.
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7th Circuit: Officer had reasonable suspicion to prolong traffic stop

June 1, 2017
Olivia Covington
The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals has affirmed a northern Indiana man’s conviction of possession more than 15 doctored gift cards, finding the police officer who stopped the man had reasonable suspicion to prolong the traffic stop that led to the discovery of the fraudulent gift cards.
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  2. Mr. Levin says that the BMV engaged in misconduct--that the BMV (or, rather, someone in the BMV) knew Indiana motorists were being overcharged fees but did nothing to correct the situation. Such misconduct, whether engaged in by one individual or by a group, is called theft (defined as knowingly or intentionally exerting unauthorized control over the property of another person with the intent to deprive the other person of the property's value or use). Theft is a crime in Indiana (as it still is in most of the civilized world). One wonders, then, why there have been no criminal prosecutions of BMV officials for this theft? Government misconduct doesn't occur in a vacuum. An individual who works for or oversees a government agency is responsible for the misconduct. In this instance, somebody (or somebodies) with the BMV, at some time, knew Indiana motorists were being overcharged. What's more, this person (or these people), even after having the error of their ways pointed out to them, did nothing to fix the problem. Instead, the overcharges continued. Thus, the taxpayers of Indiana are also on the hook for the millions of dollars in attorneys fees (for both sides; the BMV didn't see fit to avail itself of the services of a lawyer employed by the state government) that had to be spent in order to finally convince the BMV that stealing money from Indiana motorists was a bad thing. Given that the BMV official(s) responsible for this crime continued their misconduct, covered it up, and never did anything until the agency reached an agreeable settlement, it seems the statute of limitations for prosecuting these folks has not yet run. I hope our Attorney General is paying attention to this fiasco and is seriously considering prosecution. Indiana, the state that works . . . for thieves.

  3. I'm glad that attorney Carl Hayes, who represented the BMV in this case, is able to say that his client "is pleased to have resolved the issue". Everyone makes mistakes, even bureaucratic behemoths like Indiana's BMV. So to some extent we need to be forgiving of such mistakes. But when those mistakes are going to cost Indiana taxpayers millions of dollars to rectify (because neither plaintiff's counsel nor Mr. Hayes gave freely of their services, and the BMV, being a state-funded agency, relies on taxpayer dollars to pay these attorneys their fees), the agency doesn't have a right to feel "pleased to have resolved the issue". One is left wondering why the BMV feels so pleased with this resolution? The magnitude of the agency's overcharges might suggest to some that, perhaps, these errors were more than mere oversight. Could this be why the agency is so "pleased" with this resolution? Will Indiana motorists ever be assured that the culture of incompetence (if not worse) that the BMV seems to have fostered is no longer the status quo? Or will even more "overcharges" and lawsuits result? It's fairly obvious who is really "pleased to have resolved the issue", and it's not Indiana's taxpayers who are on the hook for the legal fees generated in these cases.

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