Indiana Trial Courts

Deputy prosecutor new Madison Circuit judge

October 5, 2009
IL Staff
A deputy prosecutor of Madison County was appointed as Madison Circuit judge Sunday by Gov. Mitch Daniels. Rudolph R. Pyle III succeeds Judge Fredrick Spencer, who resigned Sept. 25.
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Committee ponders DCS authority of juveniles

October 2, 2009
Michael Hoskins
An interim legislative committee is deciding what it should do about a last-minute, special session addition giving the Department of Child Services even more control over juvenile justice decisions that judges have historically been entrusted to make.
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Madison County judge resigns amid misconduct investigation

September 24, 2009
Michael Hoskins
A longtime Madison County judge who's been repeatedly sanctioned and even suspended in the past is resigning amid a new investigation into his alleged misconduct during a 2007 murder trial.
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Judiciary announces court reforms

September 17, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
he Indiana Judicial Conference unveiled its "roadmap for the future" today for the Indiana courts, which included consolidating courts and creating a uniform system to select trial judges.
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Attorneys challenge state's med-mal cap

September 16, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
Two central Indiana attorneys have filed a challenge to Indiana's Medical Malpractice Cap, arguing the cap violates the Indiana Constitution. The challenge follows a jury verdict in which a widower won $8.5 million following his wife's death.
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Tipton City Court judge dies

August 19, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
Tipton City Court Judge Lewis Daily Harper died Aug. 14 at the age of 85. Judge Harper became city judge in 1997; he also worked as a real estate broker.
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Former Marion Superior judge dies

August 13, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
Former Marion Superior Judge John "Jan" D. Downer died Aug.10 at the age of 73. Judge Downer was appointed a Marion County Municipal judge in 1978 by Gov. Otis Bowen and served as judge for 22 years. He retired from the Marion Superior Court in 2000 and worked as a senior judge until 2004.
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Comment sought on foreclosure settlement rule

August 7, 2009
IL Staff
The Marion County courts are seeking comment on proposed amendments to Administrate Local Rule 49-TR 85 Rule 231 - Mandatory Settlement Conferences in Mortgage Foreclosure Cases.
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Man convicted in attorney attack

August 3, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
The man who attempted to push a Fort Wayne attorney over a railing in the Tippecanoe County courthouse in 2007 was convicted of Class C felony criminal confinement Friday.
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Judge awards $42 million in back pay suit

July 28, 2009
Michael Hoskins
A Marion Superior judge is awarding more than $42.4 million to a class of thousands of former state employees who sued to recover back pay for unequal wages earned between 1973 and 1993.
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Marion Superior judge recognized for service

July 17, 2009
IL Staff
Marion Superior Judge Cynthia Ayers was honored today by her colleagues and the business community during Indiana Black Expo for her many years of service on and off the bench.
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Suspended judge's case moved

July 17, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
LaPorte Circuit Court granted suspended LaPorte Superior Judge Jennifer Evans Koethe's motion for change of venue Thursday.
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Fate of courtroom cameras still unknown

July 15, 2009
Michael Hoskins
The federal judge vying to become the next justice on the U.S. Supreme Court favors having cameras in court and says she might be interested in furthering their use at the nation's highest court that has resisted the idea for decades.
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Attorney sentenced to 2 years in prison

June 3, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
An attorney who pleaded guilty to operating a vehicle while intoxicated causing death as a Class C felony has been sentenced to two years in the Indiana Department of Correction.
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Comment sought on late fee rule change

June 1, 2009
IL Staff
Comments are being accepted regarding a proposed rule change that would allow Marion Superior and Circuit Courts to impose a $25 late payment fee for failing to pay costs, fines, or civil penalties.
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Former city judge dies in accident

May 19, 2009
IL Staff
A former city judge and current mayor of Butler, Ind. died May 17 following a motorcycle accident.
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Gov. appoints Madison Superior judge

May 15, 2009
IL Staff
Attorney David A. Happe is the new judge of Madison Superior Court IV.
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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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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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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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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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Governor likely to soon get St. Joe judges bill

April 29, 2009
Michael Hoskins
Gov. Mitch Daniels will likely receive legislation today aimed primarily at scrapping judicial merit selection in St. Joseph County and creating a new Indiana Court of Appeals panel starting 2011.
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UPDATE: Committee tweaking St. Joe judges bill

April 23, 2009
Michael Hoskins
A legislative conference committee is debating what changes might be possible for a bill aimed at scrapping merit selection for St. Joseph Superior judges.
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Officers say wrong textbook hurt promotions

April 23, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
Three current Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department officers have filed a suit against the city because they received the wrong textbooks to study for a promotion examination.
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Former justice discusses merit selection

April 22, 2009
Michael Hoskins
During a visit to South Bend today, former U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor pushed a message that merit selection is the best way to ensure an independent judiciary, though her words come at a time when state lawmakers are close to scrapping that very system in the county she visited.
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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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