7th Circuit Court of Appeals

7th Circuit affirms murder, racketeering convictions despite government error

December 5, 2016
Olivia Covington
Despite improper statements made by the government during closing arguments of a trial, the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed the defendant’s murder and racketeering convictions, writing that the statements constituted harmless error.
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Full 7th Circuit hears LGBT-workplace bias appeal

November 30, 2016
 Associated Press
The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals has heard arguments en banc on whether the 1964 Civil Rights Act covers workplace discrimination against LGBT workers.
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7th Circuit to rehear Ivy Tech discrimination case Wednesday

November 29, 2016
Marilyn Odendahl
The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals will again consider whether the protections offered by Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act extend to sexual orientation.
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7th Circuit dismisses appeal based on waiver

November 28, 2016
Olivia Covington
The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals has dismissed a convicted murderer’s appeal arguing that the waiver of his right to appeal should be ignored because his sentence was outside statutory requirements, calling the man’s argument “undesirable” and “nonsensical.”
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Appeals court blocks 'Making a Murderer' inmate's release

November 17, 2016
 Associated Press
A Wisconsin prison inmate whose case was featured in the Netflix series "Making a Murderer" will stay behind bars while state attorneys appeal a decision overturning his conviction, a panel of federal appellate judges ruled Thursday.
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Wisconsin to appeal to feds over 'Making a Murderer' inmate

November 16, 2016
A federal judge told Wisconsin prison officials on Wednesday that they must release an inmate featured in the Netflix series "Making a Murderer" by Friday evening.
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Ong still has path to Southern District seat

November 9, 2016
Marilyn Odendahl
With Republicans set to control the White House, U.S. Senate and House of Representatives, the fate of Indiana’s judicial nominees to the federal bench is even more uncertain, but one court-watcher believes Winfield Ong might be confirmed.
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Plaintiffs in Carmel class-action traffic lawsuit file appeal

November 7, 2016
Lindsey Erdody, IBJ Staff
The plaintiffs in a federal class-action lawsuit filed against the city of Carmel for its enforcement of a local traffic ordinance are appealing the dismissal of the case in early October.
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7th Circuit vacates brandishing sentence for lack of jury finding

November 1, 2016
Olivia Covington
A man convicted of attempted robbery in Indiana federal court will be resentenced after the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals found Tuesday that the jury failed to find that the defendant had actually aided and abetted the brandishing of firearms during the robbery.
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State appealing $31M judgment against DCS workers

November 1, 2016
IL Staff
The state of Indiana is asking the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals to review the $31 million jury verdict awarded to a Pulaski County family after they sued Department of Child Services workers and others for the wrongful removal of their children and prosecution of the parents.
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7th Circuit affirms jury verdict in injured railroad worker's suit

October 27, 2016
Olivia Covington
A jury correctly ruled against an employee of the railroad company CSX Transportation Inc. who sued his employer after an on-the-job accident that resulted in severe back pain, citing evidence that proved the pain existed before the accident, the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals decided Thursday.
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7th Circuit upholds drug offender’s conviction, vacates life sentence

October 25, 2016
Olivia Covington
A man convicted of multiple drug offenses and sentenced to a life term in prison will soon receive a new sentence after the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals vacated it on Tuesday.
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State appeals judgment for deaf litigant denied interpreter

October 25, 2016
IL Staff
The state of Indiana is appealing a federal court ruling that a deaf Indianapolis man was discriminated against when he was denied an interpreter for a court-ordered mediation session in his child custody case.
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Pence mum on continuing anti-Syrian refugee fight gubernatorial candidates reject

October 19, 2016
Dave Stafford
Gov. Mike Pence’s fight to keep Syrian refugees out of Indiana may continue — as his term is expiring, he hasn’t said whether he will appeal federal court rulings that his position is discriminatory. Nevertheless, the candidates vying to succeed him as governor oppose the stance he’s unsuccessfully fought for.
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Indy jail wrongful-detention suit order appealed to 7th Circuit

October 17, 2016
Dave Stafford
A judge’s ruling denying class-action certification for a group of people held in the Marion County Jail, sometimes for days after posting bond, has been challenged at the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals.
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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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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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Law professor calls for Selby to be confirmed to 7th Circuit

October 7, 2016
Marilyn Odendahl
With the U.S. Senate adjourned until after the presidential election and the chances for judicial confirmations dwindling, an article just published by a Virginia law professor calls for former Indiana Supreme Court Justice Myra Selby to be appointed to the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals.
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7th Circuit rejects former Bloomington employee’s request to defer restitution

October 7, 2016
Olivia Covington
The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals has rejected a former Bloomington city employee’s argument that his restitution debt should be deferred to his release from prison because he is limited to paying only 10 percent of his income toward that debt each month.
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Exodus: Syrian refugees ‘not who Pence and others claim’

October 4, 2016
Dave Stafford
Fresh off a defeat of Gov. Mike Pence’s effort to bar Syrian war victims from settling in Indiana, the leader of a refugee resettlement program said the agency’s work assisting them will continue.
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7th Circuit: Schizophrenia meets ‘severe impairment’ requirement for disability insurance

October 4, 2016
Olivia Covington
The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled that an undisputed diagnosis of schizophrenia should be considered a “severe impairment,” an opinion that will allow an Indiana man to have another chance to receive disability insurance benefits after he was forced to quit his job because of his mental illness.
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7th Circuit affirms order against Pence in Syrian refugee case

October 3, 2016
Dave Stafford
Calling Gov. Mike Pence’s objection to the resettlement of Syrian refugees in Indiana because they may pose a terrorism threat “nightmare speculation,” the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals Monday rejected the governor’s appeal of rulings blocking his bid to withhold federal funding to an agency assisting war victims.
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7th Circuit proposes changes to maximum word counts for briefs

September 27, 2016
IL Staff
The clerk of the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals announced Tuesday proposed new and amended circuit rules dealing with maximum word counts for briefs.
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7th Circuit Court orders issuance of writ of habeas corpus for convicted murderer

September 26, 2016
Olivia Covington
The full 7th Circuit Court of Appeals has ordered that writ of habeas corpus or a new trial be ordered for a man convicted of three murders and sentenced to death, finding that state courts incorrectly omitted a key piece of evidence in the defense’s case.
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7th Circuit Court finds former county employee’s FLSA rights were not violated

September 23, 2016
Olivia Covington
The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals found Thursday that Tippecanoe County adequately compensated a former employee who sued the county for violation of his rights under the Fair Labor Standards Act.
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  1. A high ranking Indiana supreme Court operative caught red handed leading a group using the uber offensive N word! She must denounce or be denounced! (Or not since she is an insider ... rules do not apply to them). Evidence here: http://m.indianacompanies.us/friends-educational-fund-for-negroes.364110.company.v2#top_info

  2. A high ranking bureaucrat with Ind sup court is heading up an organization celebrating the formal N word!!! She must resign and denounce! http://m.indianacompanies.us/friends-educational-fund-for-negroes.364110.company.v2#top_info

  3. ND2019, don't try to confuse the Left with facts. Their ideologies trump facts, trump due process, trump court rules, even trump federal statutes. I hold the proof if interested. Facts matter only to those who are not on an agenda-first mission.

  4. OK so I'll make this as short as I can. I got a call that my daughter was smoking in the bathroom only her and one other girl was questioned mind you four others left before them anyways they proceeded to interrogate my daughter about smoking and all this time I nor my parents got a phone call,they proceeded to go through her belongings and also pretty much striped searched my daughter including from what my mother said they looked at her Brest without my consent. I am furious also a couple months ago my son hurt his foot and I was never called and it got worse during the day but the way some of the teachers have been treating my kids they are not comfortable going to them because they feel like they are mean or don't care. This is unacceptable in my mind i should be able to send my kids to school without worry but now I worry how the adults there are treating them. I have a lot more but I wanted to know do I have any attempt at a lawsuit because like I said there is more that's just some of what my kids are going through. Please respond. Sincerely concerned single parent

  5. California Sex Offender Management Board (CASOMB) End of Year Report 2014. (page 13) Under the current system many local registering agencies are challenged just keeping up with registration paperwork. It takes an hour or more to process each registrant, the majority of whom are low risk offenders. As a result law enforcement cannot monitor higher risk offenders more intensively in the community due to the sheer numbers on the registry. Some of the consequences of lengthy and unnecessary registration requirements actually destabilize the life’s of registrants and those -such as families- whose lives are often substantially impacted. Such consequences are thought to raise levels of known risk factors while providing no discernible benefit in terms of community safety. The full report is available online at. http://www.casomb.org/index.cfm?pid=231 National Institute of Justice (NIJ) US Department of Justice Office of Justice Programs United States of America. The overall conclusion is that Megan’s law has had no demonstrated effect on sexual offenses in New Jersey, calling into question the justification for start-up and operational costs. Megan’s Law has had no effect on time to first rearrest for known sex offenders and has not reduced sexual reoffending. Neither has it had an impact on the type of sexual reoffense or first-time sexual offense. The study also found that the law had not reduced the number of victims of sexual offenses. The full report is available online at. https://www.ncjrs.gov/app/publications/abstract.aspx? ID=247350 The University of Chicago Press for The Booth School of Business of the University of Chicago and The University of Chicago Law School Article DOI: 10.1086/658483 Conclusion. The data in these three data sets do not strongly support the effectiveness of sex offender registries. The national panel data do not show a significant decrease in the rate of rape or the arrest rate for sexual abuse after implementation of a registry via the Internet. The BJS data that tracked individual sex offenders after their release in 1994 did not show that registration had a significantly negative effect on recidivism. And the D.C. crime data do not show that knowing the location of sex offenders by census block can help protect the locations of sexual abuse. This pattern of noneffectiveness across the data sets does not support the conclusion that sex offender registries are successful in meeting their objectives of increasing public safety and lowering recidivism rates. The full report is available online at. http://www.jstor.org/stable/full/10.1086/658483 These are not isolated conclusions but are the same outcomes in the majority of conclusions and reports on this subject from multiple government agencies and throughout the academic community. People, including the media and other organizations should not rely on and reiterate the statements and opinions of the legislators or other people as to the need for these laws because of the high recidivism rates and the high risk offenders pose to the public which simply is not true and is pure hyperbole and fiction. They should rely on facts and data collected and submitted in reports from the leading authorities and credible experts in the fields such as the following. California Sex Offender Management Board (CASOMB) Sex offender recidivism rate for a new sex offense is 0.8% (page 30) The full report is available online at http://www.cdcr.ca.gov/Adult_Research_Branch/Research_Documents/2014_Outcome_Evaluation_Report_7-6-2015.pdf California Sex Offender Management Board (CASOMB) (page 38) Sex offender recidivism rate for a new sex offense is 1.8% The full report is available online at. http://www.google.com/url?sa= t&source=web&cd=1&ved= 0CCEQFjAA&url=http%3A%2F% 2Fwww.cdcr.ca.gov%2FAdult_ Research_Branch%2FResearch_ documents%2FOutcome_ evaluation_Report_2013.pdf&ei= C9dSVePNF8HfoATX-IBo&usg=AFQjCNE9I6ueHz-o2mZUnuxLPTyiRdjDsQ Bureau of Justice Statistics 5 PERCENT OF SEX OFFENDERS REARRESTED FOR ANOTHER SEX CRIME WITHIN 3 YEARS OF PRISON RELEASE WASHINGTON, D.C. Within 3 years following their 1994 state prison release, 5.3 percent of sex offenders (men who had committed rape or sexual assault) were rearrested for another sex crime, the Justice Department’s Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) announced today. The full report is available online at. http://www.bjs.gov/content/pub/press/rsorp94pr.cfm Document title; A Model of Static and Dynamic Sex Offender Risk Assessment Author: Robert J. McGrath, Michael P. Lasher, Georgia F. Cumming Document No.: 236217 Date Received: October 2011 Award Number: 2008-DD-BX-0013 Findings: Study of 759 adult male offenders under community supervision Re-arrest rate: 4.6% after 3-year follow-up The sexual re-offense rates for the 746 released in 2005 are much lower than what many in the public have been led to expect or believe. These low re-offense rates appear to contradict a conventional wisdom that sex offenders have very high sexual re-offense rates. The full report is available online at. https://www.ncjrs.gov/pdffiles1/nij/grants/236217.pdf Document Title: SEX OFFENDER SENTENCING IN WASHINGTON STATE: RECIDIVISM RATES BY: Washington State Institute For Public Policy. A study of 4,091 sex offenders either released from prison or community supervision form 1994 to 1998 and examined for 5 years Findings: Sex Crime Recidivism Rate: 2.7% Link to Report: http://www.oncefallen.com/files/Washington_SO_Recid_2005.pdf Document Title: Indiana’s Recidivism Rates Decline for Third Consecutive Year BY: Indiana Department of Correction 2009. The recidivism rate for sex offenders returning on a new sex offense was 1.05%, one of the lowest in the nation. In a time when sex offenders continue to face additional post-release requirements that often result in their return to prison for violating technical rules such as registration and residency restrictions, the instances of sex offenders returning to prison due to the commitment of a new sex crime is extremely low. Findings: sex offenders returning on a new sex offense was 1.05% Link to Report: http://www.in.gov/idoc/files/RecidivismRelease.pdf Once again, These are not isolated conclusions but are the same outcomes in the majority of reports on this subject from multiple government agencies and throughout the academic community. No one can doubt that child sexual abuse is traumatic and devastating. The question is not whether the state has an interest in preventing such harm, but whether current laws are effective in doing so. Megan’s law is a failure and is destroying families and their children’s lives and is costing tax payers millions upon millions of dollars. The following is just one example of the estimated cost just to implement SORNA which many states refused to do. From Justice Policy Institute. Estimated cost to implement SORNA Here are some of the estimates made in 2009 expressed in 2014 current dollars: California, $66M; Florida, $34M; Illinois, $24M; New York, $35M; Pennsylvania, $22M; Texas, $44M. In 2014 dollars, Virginia’s estimate for implementation was $14M, and the annual operating cost after that would be $10M. For the US, the total is $547M. That’s over half a billion dollars – every year – for something that doesn’t work. http://www.justicepolicy.org/images/upload/08-08_FAC_SORNACosts_JJ.pdf. Attempting to use under-reporting to justify the existence of the registry is another myth, or a lie. This is another form of misinformation perpetrated by those who either have a fiduciary interest in continuing the unconstitutional treatment of a disfavored group or are seeking to justify their need for punishment for people who have already paid for their crime by loss of their freedom through incarceration and are now attempting to reenter society as honest citizens. When this information is placed into the public’s attention by naive media then you have to wonder if the media also falls into one of these two groups that are not truly interested in reporting the truth. Both of these groups of people that have that type of mentality can be classified as vigilantes, bullies, or sociopaths, and are responsible for the destruction of our constitutional values and the erosion of personal freedoms in this country. I think the media or other organizations need to do a in depth investigation into the false assumptions and false data that has been used to further these laws and to research all the collateral damages being caused by these laws and the unconstitutional injustices that are occurring across the country. They should include these injustices in their report so the public can be better informed on what is truly happening in this country on this subject. Thank you for your time.

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