Court opinions

Legislature, courts navigate uncertainty about registry lawsRestricted Content

March 3, 2010
Michael Hoskins
Hoosier lawmakers are revising state law following the confusion created by an Indiana Supreme Court ruling last year, which involves how convicted sex offenders can be removed from a statewide registry if they believe registration wasn't required at the time of their conviction.
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Appellate court upholds guardian appointment

March 2, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed the appointment of a third-party guardian for an incompetent adult because a disinterested person may hopefully prevent unnecessary disputes caused by mistrust between the woman's children and husband.
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COA: Consent prevented constitutional violations

March 1, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed the denial of two defendants' motion to suppress evidence even though it wasn't reasonable under the Indiana Constitution because one of the men gave his consent to search the bag which held drugs.
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COA: Commissioners couldn't dissolve district

February 26, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The Brown County Commissioners had no authority to enact an ordinance to attempt to dissolve a recently created fire district, the Indiana Court of Appeals concluded today.
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Judges find stop violated Fourth Amendment

February 26, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled a defendant's stop by police and subsequent search of a wheelbarrow he was pushing - which led to convictions of burglary and theft - violated the man's Fourth Amendment rights. The Circuit Court ordered the defendant's petition for habeas corpus be granted.
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High court adopts COA opinion in billing dispute

February 25, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Supreme Court granted transfer Wednesday in a dispute over who bears the burden to prove "pecuniary liability" under the Worker's Compensation Act, and adopted the Indiana Court of Appeals' opinion on the matter.
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COA: inequity in grandparent visitation act

February 25, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals discovered an inequity in the Grandparent Visitation Act due to the lack of biological relationships between the parties in an adoption petition.
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7th Circuit: Officer entitled to qualified immunityRestricted Content

February 24, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
Because Indiana's conversion statute doesn't appear to have an implied-consent defense, the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled a couple's excuse for possessing another person's camping gear was irrelevant to the probable-cause determination to arrest them.
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High court defines 'briefly'

February 23, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
In two cases involving a statutory defense to possession or dealing of drugs within 1,000 feet of a school, the Indiana Supreme Court defined the term "briefly" and ruled on whether the defendants were briefly near schools when they committed their crimes.
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7th Circuit: amendment applies to all mortgagesRestricted Content

February 22, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
A 2007 amendment allowing recorded mortgages with certain technical defects to provide constructive notice, as if the mortgages were properly recorded and acknowledged, applies to all mortgages regardless of when they were recorded, the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Friday.
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Judges split on endangerment issueRestricted Content

February 19, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals found the state proved a defendant had driven drunk, but the judges disagreed as to whether the state showed the man had endangered others with his driving.
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COA reverses finding IDEM breached agreementRestricted Content

February 18, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals reversed the finding that the Indiana Department of Environmental Management breached a settlement agreement because the trial court didn't have subject matter jurisdiction to determine whether it committed a breach.
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Proof of service is state's burden

February 18, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals reversed an invasion of privacy conviction today because the state didn't prove the defendant knew he was the subject of an active protective order. The appellate court also concluded that notice of a protective order should come from the state.
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COA allows woman to establish maternity

February 17, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals reversed the denial of an agreed petition to establish paternity and maternity of a child who was born of a surrogate, finding equitable relief should allow the biological mother to establish she is in fact the baby's biological mother.
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High court clarifies preliminary injunction issue

February 17, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Supreme Court issued an opinion today explaining its reasoning for granting a permanent writ of mandamus last year against Clark Circuit Court.
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Trial court didn't have personal jurisdiction over serviceman

February 17, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals reversed part of a dissolution decree after finding the Marion Superior Court lacked personal jurisdiction over the husband who was in the military overseas.
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Judges split on duty owed to injured teen

February 12, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
A majority on the Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed summary judgment for a golf course, golf scramble organizers, and golfer in a teenager's suit after she was hit with a golf ball. Today's decision also expanded language from a previous ruling involving the duty to prevent injury to sports participants to now include sporting event volunteers.
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Circuit Court rules on first impression issueRestricted Content

February 9, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals resolved an issue of first impression today: what is needed to be deemed "adequate writing" under the Telecommunications Act of 1996.
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Majority affirms conviction despite no witnesses

February 9, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
An appellate judge dissented from the majority's decision to uphold a woman's conviction of operating a car after her driving privileges had been forfeited for life, finding that confirming her conviction would break from precedent.
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Judges reverse theft conviction

February 9, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals reversed a defendant's conviction of theft because the trial court failed to instruct the jury on conversion as a lesser-included offense of theft.
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COA split on whether company can repurchase stock

February 8, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
A panel of Indiana Court of Appeals judges disagreed as to whether a company's attempt to exercise its option to repurchase stock had occurred in a timely manner under a shareholders' agreement.
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7th Circuit Court: Class action suit isn't mootRestricted Content

February 4, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
A class action lawsuit filed by an inmate at the Tippecanoe County Jail who has since been transferred can proceed through the litigation process to determine if class action certification is proper, the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals concluded today.
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Little court guidance on repressed memory litigation results in trial court splitRestricted Content

February 3, 2010
Michael Hoskins
Reaching into a person's mind to revive repressed memories is an issue that's settled law in one sense, but what remains unsettled is how such memories are used during litigation and whether a lawsuit should be tossed or allowed to proceed to trial.
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COA rules on service of summons issues

February 3, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals addressed service of summons issues in foreclosure actions in two decisions today, finding the servicing parties needed to do more to ensure the recipients actually get notice.
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Judges affirm finding teen is a CHINS

February 2, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals upheld the finding that a 17-year-old is a child in need of services, ruling that evidence of her drug test wasn't irrelevant and was properly admitted by the trial court.
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  1. Frankly, it is tragic that you are even considering going to an expensive, unaccredited "law school." It is extremely difficult to get a job with a degree from a real school. If you are going to make the investment of time, money, and tears into law school, it should not be to a place that won't actually enable you to practice law when you graduate.

  2. As a lawyer who grew up in Fort Wayne (but went to a real law school), it is not that hard to find a mentor in the legal community without your school's assistance. One does not need to pay tens of thousands of dollars to go to an unaccredited legal diploma mill to get a mentor. Having a mentor means precisely nothing if you cannot get a job upon graduation, and considering that the legal job market is utterly terrible, these students from Indiana Tech are going to be adrift after graduation.

  3. 700,000 to 800,000 Americans are arrested for marijuana possession each year in the US. Do we need a new justice center if we decriminalize marijuana by having the City Council enact a $100 fine for marijuana possession and have the money go towards road repair?

  4. I am sorry to hear this.

  5. I tried a case in Judge Barker's court many years ago and I recall it vividly as a highlight of my career. I don't get in federal court very often but found myself back there again last Summer. We had both aged a bit but I must say she was just as I had remembered her. Authoritative, organized and yes, human ...with a good sense of humor. I also appreciated that even though we were dealing with difficult criminal cases, she treated my clients with dignity and understanding. My clients certainly respected her. Thanks for this nice article. Congratulations to Judge Barker for reaching another milestone in a remarkable career.

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