Legal News

Enhancements for different offenses are permissible

April 7, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
A drunken driver handed a stiff sentence for repeated offenses was unable to convince the Indiana Court of Appeals his penalty was an improper double enhancement.
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Convicted murderer who claims innocence loses PCR appeal

April 7, 2015
Dave Stafford
A man convicted of a 1993 murder in southern Indiana was not wrongly denied post-conviction relief on his argument that his lawyer was ineffective for failing to recommend he take a plea deal, among other things.
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IU Maurer professor remembered for criminal justice work

April 7, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
A longtime professor at Indiana University Maurer School of Law is being remembered as a ‘crusader for justice’ by those he worked with and taught. 
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One test enough to uphold methamphetamine conviction

April 7, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
Despite a second test not being conducted to confirm the presumptive findings, a Cass County man’s drug conviction was upheld after the Indiana Court of Appeals found the state had established reliability of the test performed.
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Hearing to be held on proposed Indy Criminal Justice Center

April 7, 2015
IL Staff
The first of several public hearings on the proposed Indianapolis Criminal Justice Center complex will take place at 4:30 p.m. Tuesday in Room 118 of the Indianapolis City-County Building.
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Pence objection blocks adoptees' birth-record access, advocates say

April 6, 2015
Dave Stafford
Gov. Mike Pence’s objections to a bill that would open the birth records for hundreds of thousands of adult Hoosiers thwarted chances it will pass the General Assembly this session, according to proponents who said they have been informed the bill will receive no further hearings in the House of Representatives.
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Reversal: Bank’s refiled foreclosure 'disingenuous,' 'improper'

April 6, 2015
Dave Stafford
A bank won summary judgment in a refiled mortgage foreclosure suit against a bankrupt couple after its first complaint was dismissed, but the Indiana Court of Appeals slapped down the trial court ruling Monday and dismissed the case.
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New Albany council to weigh in on religious objections law

April 6, 2015
 Associated Press
The revision of Indiana's religious objections law isn't stopping a southern Indiana city from considering a measure condemning the statute.
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Court: NYC woman can serve divorce papers via Facebook

April 6, 2015
 Associated Press
Social media continues to make headway into the legal system. A judge has given a New York City woman permission to file for divorce from her elusive husband via a Facebook message.
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Groups aim to further expand gay rights at state level

April 6, 2015
 Associated Press
Gay rights advocates are hoping to parlay the momentum from their legislative victories in Indiana and Arkansas this week into further expanding legal protections for gays and lesbians in those states and others.
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Firm's annual event promotes bike safety

April 6, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
Parr Richey Obremskey Frandsen & Patterson is presenting its 5th annual “Pedalpalooza” later this month, an event that promotes healthy lifestyles and bike safety.
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Nineteen counties split nearly $243K in family court grants

April 6, 2015
Dave Stafford
Family courts around Indiana will receive $242,911 in grant money to support projects, the Indiana Supreme Court announced Monday. A total of 19 counties will each receive grants of $4,000 to $35,000.
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Humane Society blasts 'shameful' canned hunting bill

April 3, 2015
IL Staff
The Humane Society of the United States is opposing a bill in the Legislature that would allow canned hunting of deer, elk and other mammals inside fenced enclosures, saying it would sanction and expand a “shameful industry.”
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Man gets life sentence for Waynesville quadruple murder

April 3, 2015
 Associated Press
A southern Indiana man found guilty in the deaths of a couple and two of their friends has been sentenced to life in prison without possibility of parole.
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7th Circuit grills state over Indy judge election system

April 2, 2015
Dave Stafford
As Indiana endured the harsh national glare from the Religious Freedom Restoration Act controversy this week, Indianapolis’ pay-to-play, power-sharing system for electing Marion Superior Court judges was on trial in Chicago.
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Zoeller calls for congressional inquiry into herbal supplements

April 2, 2015
IL Staff
Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller and his New York counterpart A.G. Schneiderman are leading a bipartisan group of 14 attorneys general who want Congress to look into the herbal supplements industry.
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Advocate says Indiana woman's sentence for feticide alarming

April 2, 2015
 Associated Press
An Indiana woman received a 20-year sentence in the death of her premature infant, a punishment the head of a national advocacy group called cruel and a misuse of the state's feticide law.
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Tax Court affirms ruling in favor of KinderCare on educational exemption

April 1, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Board of Tax Review did not err when it determined property on which a KinderCare Learning Center sits qualified for an educational purposes exemption for the 2009 tax year, the Indiana Tax Court ruled Wednesday.
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7th Circuit affirms Outlaws members’ convictions, remands over suspicionless search condition

April 1, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
Three members of the Indianapolis Chapter of the Outlaws Motorcycle Club lost their appeals before the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals Tuesday, however, the judges did decide that one man’s probation condition needs further consideration.
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IU McKinney lecture cancelled over RFRA

April 1, 2015
IL Staff
The annual Birch Bayh Lecture scheduled for Thursday at Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law has been cancelled after the speaker declined to come to the Indiana law school because of the recently passed Religious Freedom Restoration Act.
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Indy could be short $37M on justice center financing, analysis says

April 1, 2015
Kathleen McLaughlin, IBJ Staff
Indianapolis Mayor Greg Ballard's promise of financing a new justice center through operational savings is overblown, according to an analysis by the Indianapolis City-County Council.
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Federal court rejects Dearborn judges' immunity defense

March 31, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
A deaf man’s discrimination lawsuit against three judges in Dearborn County can proceed according to a March 30 ruling in federal court.
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COA reverses ruling in favor of couple who kept alpacas in residential area

March 31, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals held Tuesday that a Lake County court erred when it denied the county’s request for an injunction to prevent a couple from keeping alpacas on their property to raise for business purposes.
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SCOTUS sides with Idaho in Medicaid pay dispute

March 31, 2015
 Associated Press
Private health care providers cannot sue to force states to raise their Medicaid reimbursement rates to keep up with rising medical costs, the Supreme Court of the United States ruled Tuesday.
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Court finds railroad’s arguments over dam don’t hold water

March 31, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
Because a railroad company failed to prove there are no genuine issues of material fact regarding its defense to a breach of covenant claim against it concerning the maintenance of a dam, the Indiana Court of Appeals reversed summary judgment in its favor and remanded for further proceedings.
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  1. Where may I find an attorney working Pro Bono? Many issues with divorce, my Disability, distribution of IRA's, property, money's and pressured into agreement by my attorney. Leaving me far less than 5% of all after 15 years of marriage. No money to appeal, disabled living on disability income. Attorney's decision brought forward to judge, no evidence ever to finalize divorce. Just 2 weeks ago. Please help.

  2. For the record no one could answer the equal protection / substantive due process challenge I issued in the first post below. The lawless and accountable only to power bureaucrats never did either. All who interface with the Indiana law examiners or JLAP be warned.

  3. Hi there I really need help with getting my old divorce case back into court - I am still paying support on a 24 year old who has not been in school since age 16 - now living independent. My visitation with my 14 year old has never been modified; however, when convenient for her I can have him... I am paying past balance from over due support, yet earn several thousand dollars less. I would contact my original attorney but he basically molest me multiple times in Indy when I would visit.. Todd Woodmansee - I had just came out and had know idea what to do... I have heard he no longer practices. Please help1

  4. Yes diversity is so very important. With justice Rucker off ... the court is too white. Still too male. No Hispanic justice. No LGBT justice. And there are other checkboxes missing as well. This will not do. I say hold the seat until a physically handicapped Black Lesbian of Hispanic heritage and eastern religious creed with bipolar issues can be located. Perhaps an international search, with a preference for third world candidates, is indicated. A non English speaker would surely increase our diversity quotient!!!

  5. First, I want to thank Justice Rucker for his many years of public service, not just at the appellate court level for over 25 years, but also when he served the people of Lake County as a Deputy Prosecutor, City Attorney for Gary, IN, and in private practice in a smaller, highly diverse community with a history of serious economic challenges, ethnic tensions, and recently publicized but apparently long-standing environmental health risks to some of its poorest residents. Congratulations for having the dedication & courage to practice law in areas many in our state might have considered too dangerous or too poor at different points in time. It was also courageous to step into a prominent and highly visible position of public service & respect in the early 1990's, remaining in a position that left you open to state-wide public scrutiny (without any glitches) for over 25 years. Yes, Hoosiers of all backgrounds can take pride in your many years of public service. But people of color who watched your ascent to the highest levels of state government no doubt felt even more as you transcended some real & perhaps some perceived social, economic, academic and professional barriers. You were living proof that, with hard work, dedication & a spirit of public service, a person who shared their same skin tone or came from the same county they grew up in could achieve great success. At the same time, perhaps unknowingly, you helped fellow members of the judiciary, court staff, litigants and the public better understand that differences that are only skin-deep neither define nor limit a person's character, abilities or prospects in life. You also helped others appreciate that people of different races & backgrounds can live and work together peacefully & productively for the greater good of all. Those are truths that didn't have to be written down in court opinions. Anyone paying attention could see that truth lived out every day you devoted to public service. I believe you have been a "trailblazer" in Indiana's legal community and its judiciary. I also embrace your belief that society's needs can be better served when people in positions of governmental power reflect the many complexions of the population that they serve. Whether through greater understanding across the existing racial spectrum or through the removal of some real and some perceived color-based, hope-crushing barriers to life opportunities & success, movement toward a more reflective representation of the population being governed will lead to greater and uninterrupted respect for laws designed to protect all peoples' rights to life, liberty & the pursuit of happiness. Thanks again for a job well-done & for the inevitable positive impact your service has had - and will continue to have - on countless Hoosiers of all backgrounds & colors.

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