Judicial Discipline

Special masters named in judge's disciplinary case

September 14, 2011
Michael Hoskins
The Indiana Supreme Court has appointed three trial judges as special masters to preside over the disciplinary case of one of their city court colleagues from Lake County, who is accused of operating an illegal traffic school, dismissing cases without assessing required fees, and dissuading one litigant from contesting a seatbelt violation in court.
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Hammond traffic judge faces misconduct charges

June 30, 2011
Michael Hoskins
Hammond City Judge Jeffrey A. Harkin faces three misconduct charges for operating an illegal traffic school deferral program and dismissing cases without assessing required fees, as well as dissuading one litigant from contesting a seatbelt violation in court.
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Hamilton County judge receives public reprimand

May 27, 2011
Michael Hoskins
The Indiana Supreme Court issued a public reprimand against Hamilton Superior Judge William J. Hughes, the disciplinary sanction stemming from an out-of-state drunk driving arrest.
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Disciplinary charges filed against Hamilton County judge

May 13, 2011
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Commission on Judicial Qualifications has filed disciplinary charges against Hamilton Superior Judge William Hughes. The charges are related to the judge’s arrest for driving while impaired and later guilty plea to misdemeanor reckless driving in North Carolina.
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Beech Grove City judge publicly admonished

May 5, 2011
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Commission on Judicial Qualifications has publicly admonished Beech Grove City Court Judge Charles W. Hunter for comments he made last year to an Indianapolis television reporter.
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Court weighs needs when timing judicial suspensions

March 2, 2011
Michael Hoskins
When deciding that a judge must be suspended and determining when that time off the bench should be, decision-makers must maintain a delicate balance.
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Supreme Court suspends judge for 30 days

February 15, 2011
Michael Hoskins
A 30-day unpaid suspension begins next week for Marion Superior Traffic Judge William Young, though the chief justice expects the Indiana Supreme Court would have issued a lengthier sanction if a settlement had not been reached in the misconduct case.
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Traffic judge's suspension begins Feb. 22

February 14, 2011
Michael Hoskins
A 30-day suspension without pay begins next week for Marion Superior Traffic Judge William Young.
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Justices order Marion traffic judge's suspension

December 8, 2010
Michael Hoskins
The Indiana Supreme Court has suspended the Marion County traffic judge who’s admitted he imposed excessive fines and treated people unfairly in his court partly because he wanted to discourage future litigants from exercising their constitutional right to trial.
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Justices order Marion County traffic judge's suspension

November 24, 2010
Michael Hoskins
The Indiana Supreme Court has ordered the 30-day no pay suspension of the Marion County traffic judge who’s admitted he imposed excessive fines and treated people unfairly in his court partly because he wanted to discourage future litigants from exercising their constitutional right to trial.
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Marion Traffic judge suspended for 30 days

November 24, 2010
Michael Hoskins
The Indiana Supreme Court has suspended Marion County Traffic Judge William E. Young for 30 days.
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Indiana traffic court issues dent judiciary's public perception

November 24, 2010
Michael Hoskins
Two central Indiana traffic court judges are under fire for their conduct and practices in their courtrooms, with one Marion Superior judge facing disciplinary charges after sparking statewide legislative changes and criticism from the Indiana Court of Appeals.
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Plaintiff attorney chosen to serve on judicial commissions

November 11, 2010
Michael Hoskins
An Indianapolis plaintiff attorney has received the most votes from colleagues to join the Indiana Judicial Nominating and Judicial Qualifications commissions, and he’ll take a spot on a seven-person panel in January.
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Masters named in traffic judge’s misconduct case

September 10, 2010
IL Staff
The Indiana Supreme Court has appointed the three masters in the case of Marion Superior Judge William Young.
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Panel: 1 judge remains, another off ballot

September 3, 2010
Michael Hoskins
The Indiana Election Commission has pulled one Lake County judicial candidate off the ballot because of how the political process put him into the race, while a controversial incumbent Allen Superior judge remains on the ballot despite arguments that his disciplinary history should keep him off.
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Judge faces 4 charges

July 21, 2010
Michael Hoskins
A Marion Superior judge presiding over the county’s traffic court faces four judicial misconduct charges as a result of his general handling of traffic infraction cases and one suit in particular, where the state justices have described him as being “biased.”
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Marion Superior Traffic judge charged with misconduct

July 16, 2010
Michael Hoskins
The Indiana Commission on Judicial Qualifications has charged Marion Superior Judge William E. Young with misconduct for his handling of traffic court cases.
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Judge returns to bench following suspension

May 11, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The LaPorte Superior judge suspended for asking a law enforcement officer to destroy potential evidence in her accidental shooting returned to the bench today.
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City court judge resigns, banned from bench

March 25, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Supreme Court has accepted the resignation from the bench of a suspended city court judge accused of theft.
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New judge gets 60-day unpaid suspension

March 17, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Supreme Court has suspended LaPorte Superior Judge Jennifer L. Koethe for 60 days without pay, effective March 12.
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Court commissioner publicly admonished

January 26, 2010
Jennifer NelsonMore

Masters appointed in cases of 2 judges

January 25, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Supreme Court has appointed masters to the disciplinary cases of Bicknell City Court Judge David A. Moreland and LaPorte Superior Judge Jennifer Evans Koethe.
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Suspended LaPorte judge acquitted at trial

January 20, 2010
Michael Hoskins
A suspended LaPorte Superior judge has been acquitted of any criminal charges involving an accidental shooting where her head was grazed by a bullet and led to accusations that she tried to cover up details about what happened.
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City court judge faces disciplinary charges

December 16, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
A city court judge accused in October of theft of court funds is now facing disciplinary charges. The Indiana Commission on Judicial Qualifications has filed charges against non-attorney Bicknell City Court Judge David Andrew Moreland.
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Suspended judge faces disciplinary charges

December 10, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Commission on Judicial Qualifications has filed charges against the suspended LaPorte Superior judge who was shot in the head just before taking the bench this year.
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  4. 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.

  5. 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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