U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana

Next up for Judge Hamilton: full Senate vote

June 4, 2009
Michael Hoskins
After surviving a Senate committee's party-line vote today, an Indianapolis-based federal judge must now get approval from the full U.S. Senate in order to move to the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals.
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BREAKING: U.S. Senate committee OKs judicial nomination

June 4, 2009
Michael Hoskins
The Senate Judiciary Committee has just voted in favor of U.S. District Judge David F. Hamilton's nomination to the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals.
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Court denies officer's summary judgment motion

June 3, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
A federal judge denied an Indiana State Police officer's motion for summary judgment in a suit alleging he violated a motorist's rights under the Fourth and 14th amendments, ruling it should be up to a jury to decide the issues because the parties' stories regarding what happened during the traffic stop differ radically.
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Cinergy trial ends with split verdict

May 20, 2009
Michael Hoskins
A federal jury returned a verdict that a major energy company violated clean-air rules at a coal-fired power plant along the Ohio River in southeast Indiana.
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Second Cinergy trial starts in Indy

May 12, 2009
Michael Hoskins
A second clean-air violation trial is underway in Indianapolis about whether coal-fired power plant modifications triggered a need for new pollution-control equipment at facilities in Indiana and Ohio.
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Fired deputy files suit over Taser training

April 10, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
A former Hamilton County Sheriff's deputy is suing the county's sheriff for firing him last year because he refused to be shocked by a Taser as part of a training session.
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Use of bench warrants still not certain

April 7, 2009
Michael Hoskins
Attorneys have settled a federal case that led to the Marion Superior Court scrapping its practice of issuing bench warrants for the arrest of people who'd failed to appear in civil cases, but a statewide investigation of whether state law allows judges to issue these warrants remains ongoing.
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Plea puts stop to federal death penalty trial

March 30, 2009
Michael Hoskins
The first-ever federal death penalty trial for the Southern District of Indiana was set to start today, but a plea agreement means a trial likely won't be happening at all for a man connected to a violent killing spree four years ago.
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Protective order issued in National Guard suit

March 26, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
A magistrate judge has issued a protective order to preserve and maintain the confidentiality of certain documents in a lawsuit filed by members of the Indiana National Guard against a contractor working in Iraq.
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Finalists chosen in court mural competition

March 26, 2009
IL Staff
Four finalists have been named in a competition to design and execute new murals at the Birch Bayh Federal Building and United States Courthouse in Indianapolis.
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Federal judiciary: 1 new Southern District judge

March 18, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
The Judicial Conference of the United States Tuesday adopted a revised Code of Conduct for judges and released its recommendations for new federal judgeships.
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Judge Hamilton nominated for 7th Circuit

March 17, 2009
Michael Hoskins
An Indianapolis federal judge could be the next to take a spot on the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals.
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Military-leave suit targets law firm

March 17, 2009
Michael Hoskins
The U.S. Department of Justice says an Indianapolis law firm wrongfully refused to re-employ a staff attorney who'd returned from serving in Iraq as a member of the Indiana Army National Guard.
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High-profile federal trials slated for early 2009

February 16, 2009
Michael Hoskins
The first half of the year is shaping up to be a time of high-profile trials for Indiana's federal courts.
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Judge allows class action in hail damage suit

February 9, 2009
Jennifer Mehalik
A U.S. District judge is allowing certain State Farm insurance policy holders to proceed in a class action suit against the company as a result of how the insurer handled roof claims following a 2006 hail storm in central Indiana.
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Courts celebrate Black History Month

February 9, 2009
Rebecca Berfanger
The chair of the Department of Africana Studies and associate professor of history at Notre Dame University will speak to children and the general public in a lecture titled "Forging the Children of the Sun: The Human Spirit and Jim Crow," a Black History Month program Feb. 20 at the Federal Courthouse in Indianapolis.
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Letter not covered by attorney-client privilege

February 4, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
A Southern District magistrate judge has decided a letter between the city of Madison's mayor and city attorney isn't protected by attorney-client privilege in a civil action seeking damages over strip searches of three women.
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Snow closes some federal, county courts

January 28, 2009
Michael Hoskins
The foot or more of snow dumped on the southern two-thirds of Indiana hasn't stopped some attorneys from making it to their offices today, but it has closed some courts around the state.
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Lilly must produce files from noose incident

January 21, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
Eli Lilly & Co. must produce documents related to the handling of a noose being found in an area its employees frequent for discovery in a separate suit alleging discrimination in the company.
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Judge: No attorney discipline needed

January 13, 2009
Michael Hoskins
A federal judge in Indianapolis has decided disciplinary actions aren't needed against a handful of attorneys relating to their conduct in a clean air trial last year, though he hasn't changed his mind about setting aside the jury verdict and holding a new trial as a result of the behavior of in-house counsel.
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Comment sought on magistrate reappointment

January 13, 2009
IL Staff
The United States District Court for the Southern District of Indiana is seeking comments from bar members and the public as to whether Magistrate Judge Tim A. Baker should be reappointed to a new eight-year term.
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Magistrate denies any pre-bench wrongdoing

January 9, 2009
Michael Hoskins
A newly appointed federal magistrate in Indianapolis denies any misconduct or knowledge of wrongdoing that a judge says happened during a clean air trial last spring prior to her taking the bench.
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Court certifies exotic dancer suit as class action

January 8, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
Anyone who danced in the past three years at one Indianapolis strip club embroiled in a lawsuit over minimum wage may be able to collect on unpaid wages, ruled a District Court judge Wednesday.
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Woman sues BMV over vanity plate denial

November 19, 2008
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Bureau of Motor Vehicles is again involved in a lawsuit involving the use of "God" on a license plate.
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Court offers free CLE on judicial restraint

October 30, 2008
IL Staff
The United States District Court for the Southern District of Indiana will conduct a free CLE event next week in New Albany regarding judicial restraint.
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  1. The fee increase would be livable except for the 11% increase in spending at the Disciplinary Commission. The Commission should be focused on true public harm rather than going on witch hunts against lawyers who dare to criticize judges.

  2. Marijuana is safer than alcohol. AT the time the 1937 Marijuana Tax Act was enacted all major pharmaceutical companies in the US sold marijuana products. 11 Presidents of the US have smoked marijuana. Smoking it does not increase the likelihood that you will get lung cancer. There are numerous reports of canabis oil killing many kinds of incurable cancer. (See Rick Simpson's Oil on the internet or facebook).

  3. The US has 5% of the world's population and 25% of the world's prisoners. Far too many people are sentenced for far too many years in prison. Many of the federal prisoners are sentenced for marijuana violations. Marijuana is safer than alcohol.

  4. My daughter was married less than a week and her new hubbys picture was on tv for drugs and now I havent't seen my granddaughters since st patricks day. when my daughter left her marriage from her childrens Father she lived with me with my grand daughters and that was ok but I called her on the new hubby who is in jail and said didn't want this around my grandkids not unreasonable request and I get shut out for her mistake

  5. From the perspective of a practicing attorney, it sounds like this masters degree in law for non-attorneys will be useless to anyone who gets it. "However, Ted Waggoner, chair of the ISBA’s Legal Education Conclave, sees the potential for the degree program to actually help attorneys do their jobs better. He pointed to his practice at Peterson Waggoner & Perkins LLP in Rochester and how some clients ask their attorneys to do work, such as filling out insurance forms, that they could do themselves. Waggoner believes the individuals with the legal master’s degrees could do the routine, mundane business thus freeing the lawyers to do the substantive legal work." That is simply insulting to suggest that someone with a masters degree would work in a role that is subpar to even an administrative assistant. Even someone with just a certificate or associate's degree in paralegal studies would be overqualified to sit around helping clients fill out forms. Anyone who has a business background that they think would be enhanced by having a legal background will just go to law school, or get an MBA (which typically includes a business law class that gives a generic, broad overview of legal concepts). No business-savvy person would ever seriously consider this ridiculous master of law for non-lawyers degree. It reeks of desperation. The only people I see getting it are the ones who did not get into law school, who see the degree as something to add to their transcript in hopes of getting into a JD program down the road.

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