Legal News

COA reverses summary judgment in personal injury claim, abandons volunteer doctrine

February 3, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
A negligence case involving a Terre Haute HVAC business and a man injured while helping move a furnace will move forward now that the Indiana Court of Appeals has reversed summary judgment in favor of the company.
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COA reverses conviction based on unreasonable police search

February 3, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
A police officer had no reasonable suspicion to believe that a container found in a man’s pocket during an arrest held any illegal substances, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled Tuesday. As such, it reversed his Class D felony possession of schedule III controlled substance conviction, ruling it violated the Indiana Constitution.
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Justices send post-conviction case back to COA for consideration

February 2, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Supreme Court has vacated the dismissal of a Marion County post-conviction case and remanded it to the Court of Appeals. That was one of two cases justices took action on last week.
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Judge orders revenue department to produce handwritten notes

February 2, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
Two pages of handwritten notes prepared by an Indiana Department of State Revenue employee must be turned over to an Illinois company challenging the denial of four refund claims, the Indiana Tax Court held Friday.
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Appeals court finds high-fence deer hunting not prohibited in Indiana

February 2, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
Indiana law does not prohibit “high-fence” hunting of deer in Indiana, nor does it allow for the Department of Natural Resources to create regulations relating to the practice, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled Monday.
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Winter storm delays child neglect trial in South Bend

February 2, 2015
 Associated Press
A winter storm that brought as much as 19 inches of snow to northern Indiana has delayed a South Bend child neglect trial.
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Judges deny request to modify probation to allow contact with daughter

January 30, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
The judges on an Indiana Court of Appeals panel had different reasons for affirming the denial of an incarcerated man’s petition to modify his probation so that he could have contact with his daughter.
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7th Circuit rules man entitled to new hearing on crack-cocaine sentence

January 30, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals reversed the denial of a prisoner’s motion for a reduced sentence for distributing crack cocaine, finding that he is allowed to bring his petition for relief under 28 U.S.C. Section 2255.
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New part-time law school program launched at Indiana Tech

January 30, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
Indiana Tech Law School has started a part-time day program to allow students to obtain their J.D. in as many as seven years.
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Expungement law still being perfected, legislator says

January 29, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
County clerks being overrun by expungement petitions are asking the Legislature to impose a filing fee to help offset the costs of processing the forms and restricting the records.
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Senate votes to raise judicial retirement age

January 29, 2015
Dave Stafford
Indiana appellate judges could serve until age 80 under a bill that cleared the Indiana Senate Thursday.
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Restaurant not entitled to return of insurance proceeds seized

January 29, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
A Mexican restaurant that is part of a chain which has been under investigation by Marion and Tippecanoe county officials will not have insurance funds seized from a bank account returned, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled Thursday.
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Judge admonishes losing counsel in long-running litigation

January 29, 2015
Dave Stafford
A federal judge admonished a lawyer Wednesday whose clients were found to have abused the process in prosecuting a trademark infringement suit against a similar wine-and-art business.
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COA rules teachers may negotiate for ancillary duty compensation

January 28, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
A dispute between a school corporation and teachers association that made its way before the Indiana Court of Appeals led to the court concluding the teachers may qualify for overtime for performing school-related duties outside of their normal teaching hours.
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Gang member’s sentence for bar fight reduced

January 28, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
The convictions of a gang member stemming from his role in a bar fight were upheld by the Court of Appeals Wednesday, but the judges ordered his sentence shortened because the convictions all occurred during a single episode of criminal conduct.
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7th Circuit upholds new conviction, cannot address registration requirement

January 28, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
Although a judge communicated that a man must register as a sex offender based on the Sex Offender and Registration Notification Act, because that decision was not incorporated into the judge’s final ruling, there is nothing for the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals to review regarding his challenge to that part of his sentence.
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Juvenile’s delinquent adjudication reversed based on illegal search

January 28, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
Because the physical evidence used to adjudicate a teen as delinquent was the direct result of an illegal search of his backpack by police, the Indiana Court of Appeals reversed.
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7th Circuit affirms dismissal of workplace discrimination suit

January 28, 2015
Dave Stafford
A Sudanese woman’s discrimination suit against a Jeffersonville shipyard where she had worked as a welder was properly dismissed, the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Tuesday.
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Group working to lure national medical-legal conference to Indianapolis

January 28, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
A group of legal and medical professionals will launch an effort Thursday to bring a super bowl – of sorts – to Indianapolis.
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Chavis to chair Marion Superior Executive Committee

January 28, 2015
IL Staff
Marion Superior Civil Division 12 Judge John M.T. Chavis II will chair the 2015-2016 term of the courts’ executive committee.
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Denial by justices to take prosecutorial misconduct case draws dissent

January 28, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
Believing that the Indiana Supreme Court should have taken a case involving the “disturbing trend” of alleged prosecutorial misconduct, two justices dissented from their colleagues' decision to not accept the case.
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Rush rolls out commercial court plan in State of Judiciary

January 28, 2015
Dave Stafford
Commercial courts heralded by Indiana Chief Justice Loretta Rush in her first State of the Judiciary address could be in business soon, with the first pilots launching as early as this summer, according to judges and lawyers involved in developing the plans.
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Changes being considered for medical malpractice claims

January 28, 2015
Dave Stafford
More medical malpractice cases could be filed directly in state trial courts without first having to go through the exhaustive and mandatory medical review process under legislation pending in the Indiana Senate. A proposal in the Indiana House of Representatives aims to raise the caps on damages and insurer liability.
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House panel backs new rules after nursing home scandal

January 27, 2015
 Associated Press
An Indiana House committee has endorsed tighter rules on the conduct of lawmakers in the wake of an ethics investigation of a top Republican who fought privately to defeat legislation that would have hurt his family's business.
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‘Spice’ law void for vagueness, divided panels rule

January 27, 2015
Dave Stafford
Divided Court of Appeals panels found Indiana’s “spice” law void for vagueness in two separate cases Tuesday.
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  1. Call it unauthorized law if you must, a regulatory wrong, but it was fraud and theft well beyond that, a seeming crime! "In three specific cases, the hearing officer found that Westerfield did little to no work for her clients but only issued a partial refund or no refund at all." That is theft by deception, folks. "In its decision to suspend Westerfield, the Supreme Court noted that she already had a long disciplinary history dating back to 1996 and had previously been suspended in 2004 and indefinitely suspended in 2005. She was reinstated in 2009 after finally giving the commission a response to the grievance for which she was suspended in 2004." WOW -- was the Indiana Supreme Court complicit in her fraud? Talk about being on notice of a real bad actor .... "Further, the justices noted that during her testimony, Westerfield was “disingenuous and evasive” about her relationship with Tope and attempted to distance herself from him. They also wrote that other aggravating factors existed in Westerfield’s case, such as her lack of remorse." WOW, and yet she only got 18 months on the bench, and if she shows up and cries for them in a year and a half, and pays money to JLAP for group therapy ... back in to ride roughshod over hapless clients (or are they "marks") once again! Aint Hoosier lawyering a great money making adventure!!! Just live for the bucks, even if filthy lucre, and come out a-ok. ME on the other hand??? Lifetime banishment for blowing the whistle on unconstitutional governance. Yes, had I ripped off clients or had ANY disciplinary history for doing that I would have fared better, most likely, as that it would have revealed me motivated by Mammon and not Faith. Check it out if you doubt my reading of this, compare and contrast the above 18 months with my lifetime banishment from court, see appendix for Bar Examiners report which the ISC adopted without substantive review: https://www.scribd.com/doc/299040839/2016Petitionforcert-to-SCOTUS

  2. Wow, over a quarter million dollars? That is a a lot of commissary money! Over what time frame? Years I would guess. Anyone ever try to blow the whistle? Probably not, since most Hoosiers who take notice of such things realize that Hoosier whistleblowers are almost always pilloried. If someone did blow the whistle, they were likely fired. The persecution of whistleblowers is a sure sign of far too much government corruption. Details of my own personal experience at the top of Hoosier governance available upon request ... maybe a "fake news" media outlet will have the courage to tell the stories of Hoosier whistleblowers that the "real" Hoosier media (cough) will not deign to touch. (They are part of the problem.)

  3. So if I am reading it right, only if and when African American college students agree to receive checks labeling them as "Negroes" do they receive aid from the UNCF or the Quaker's Educational Fund? In other words, to borrow from the Indiana Appellate Court, "the [nonprofit] supposed to be [their] advocate, refers to [students] in a racially offensive manner. While there is no evidence that [the nonprofits] intended harm to [African American students], the harm was nonetheless inflicted. [Black students are] presented to [academia and future employers] in a racially offensive manner. For these reasons, [such] performance [is] deficient and also prejudice[ial]." Maybe even DEPLORABLE???

  4. I'm the poor soul who spent over 10 years in prison with many many other prisoners trying to kill me for being charged with a sex offense THAT I DID NOT COMMIT i was in jail for a battery charge for helping a friend leave a boyfriend who beat her I've been saying for over 28 years that i did not and would never hurt a child like that mine or anybody's child but NOBODY wants to believe that i might not be guilty of this horrible crime or think that when i say that ALL the paperwork concerning my conviction has strangely DISAPPEARED or even when the long beach judge re-sentenced me over 14 months on a already filed plea bargain out of another districts court then had it filed under a fake name so i could not find while trying to fight my conviction on appeal in a nut shell people are ALWAYS quick to believe the worst about some one well I DID NOT HURT ANY CHILD EVER IN MY LIFE AND HAVE SAID THIS FOR ALMOST 30 YEARS please if anybody can me get some kind of justice it would be greatly appreciated respectfully written wrongly accused Brian Valenti

  5. 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

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