evidence

Notebook found in car falls under Fourth Amendment exception

July 2, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
A notebook taken from a vehicle during an investigation of an identity-theft scheme was admissible at trial even though police did not have a search warrant, the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled.
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Evolving science helps link defendants to crime

July 1, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
St. Joseph County obtained its first conviction using DNA evidence in 1992.
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Evidence seized from probationer’s roommate violated 4th Amendment

June 10, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Supreme Court on Tuesday reversed the partial denial of a man's request to suppress drug evidence found during a routine warrantless search of the residence he shared with a man on probation. The probationer only consented to searches based on reasonable suspicion.
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Judge dismisses 54 potential jurors in house explosion trial

June 5, 2015
 Associated Press
Jury selection in the trial of an Indianapolis man charged in a deadly 2012 house explosion got off to a rocky start Thursday when a judge dismissed the first 54 potential jurors following a defense attorney's revelation that the suspect is also accused of trying to hire a hit man to kill a witness.
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Panel splits over interpretation of corrupt business influence statute

June 4, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
The majority on a Court of Appeals panel tossed out a man’s corrupt business influence conviction after finding his criminal activity did not pose a threat of future criminal conduct. But the dissenting judge noted the majority was inserting a new element into the Indiana statute that does not exist.
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COA: Trial court properly admitted drug evidence

May 20, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals held that a trial court acted within its discretion when it admitted evidence found after executing a search warrant of a large quantity of marijuana in a defendant’s backpack, which led to the revocation of the defendant’s probation.
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Woman’s theft, check deception convictions affirmed

May 20, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
The Court of Appeals concluded Wednesday that a defendant did not establish that the trial court abused its discretion by refusing her proffered jury instruction or in the admission of pretrial identification evidence.
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Ruling clarifies, broadens admissibility of social media content as evidence

May 20, 2015
Dave Stafford
Donnell Wilson’s murder convictions for shooting and killing two gang members in Gary relied in part on Twitter posts shown to a jury in which he bragged about having a gun and threatened to shoot rival gang members.
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Admission of recording is harmless error

May 15, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
A recording of a victim’s conversation with friends should not have been admitted into evidence at trial, but the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled it was a harmless error.
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COA: Rapper’s brokered peace treaty irrelevant in murder case

May 15, 2015
Dave Stafford
A rapper convicted as an accomplice in the murder of Indianapolis disc jockey Thomas Keys failed on appeal to show his brokering of a peace treaty between rival rap groups was wrongly excluded from evidence in his trial.
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COA issues new opinion in bail case involving self-defense claim

May 12, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals has issued a new opinion in its decision involving a man charged with murder who sought to be released on bail, but was denied. The judges again held that James Satterfield should be allowed to present evidence of self-defense at a new bail hearing.
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Handgun properly admitted at juvenile’s hearing

April 23, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
A handgun discarded by a teen after seeing a marked police car – and later picked up by the officer who saw the teen throw the gun into a yard – was properly admitted at his delinquency hearing, the Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed.
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Ball State students learn secrets behind cyber forensics

April 22, 2015
 Associated Press
If any computers or smartphones were to be confiscated during the investigation of recent identity thefts at Ball State University, BSU instructor Vinayak Tanksale's students would know what to do before examining the evidence.
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Theft conviction reversed based on lack of evidence

April 10, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
A man accused of stealing a rangefinder from a southern Indiana Rural King had his conviction reversed Friday by the Indiana Court of Appeals. The judges concluded there was insufficient evidence to support Jeremy Middleton’s conviction.
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Man’s affidavit entered after final order requires reversal of summary judgment

April 10, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
A trial court abused its discretion when it did not allow a set of parents to introduce the affidavit from their son, who allegedly suffered a brain injury from an attack, after he was able to remember the night of the incident. The affidavit was submitted shortly after a final judgment was entered in their lawsuit against the alleged attacker.
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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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Court upholds convictions from controlled drug buys

March 31, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals rejected a man’s argument that his two Class B felonies for dealing in cocaine should be reversed based on prosecutorial misconduct and his limited cross-examination of the state’s confidential informant.
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Driving 91 mph in 55 zone supports reckless driving verdict

March 26, 2015
Dave Stafford
A driver’s argument that his speed of 91 mph on a 55-mph country road was insufficient evidence of endangerment cut no ice with the trial court, and the Indiana Court of Appeals agreed Thursday.
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COA reverses neglect resulting in death verdict against mom

March 25, 2015
Dave Stafford
An Indianapolis mother was wrongly convicted of neglect of a dependent child resulting in death, the Court of Appeals ruled Wednesday in reversing the jury’s verdict. Judges found evidence against Chelsea Taylor was insufficient to support the conviction.
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Bragging is admissible in court, COA rules

March 25, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
A defendant’s statement to law enforcement that he could “read” people was a boast and not a character reference, according to the Indiana Court of Appeals, so it was admissible at trial.
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Justices hear textbook case of errors in evidence

March 25, 2015
Dave Stafford
A man who stabbed his son-in-law and was convicted of battery with a deadly weapon argues trial court errors prevented him from presenting evidence that he acted in self-defense. The appellant claims the victim was the first to strike, whacking him with a 2-by-4 piece of lumber.
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Incredible dubiosity argument does not sway Indiana Supreme Court

March 24, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
Inconsistencies from witnesses on the details of a crime did not convince the Indiana Supreme Court to overturn a jury’s verdict that found a South Bend man guilty of two murders.
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Justices reverse trespass conviction of man near break-in scene

March 24, 2015
Dave Stafford

The Indiana Supreme Court reversed the trespassing conviction of a man arrested by Indianapolis police who saw him running in a field near the scene of a reported break-in.

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Mistaken interpretation of law by officer created reasonable suspicion

March 24, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
The Indiana Court of Appeals reversed its earlier reversal of a trial court ruling after the Supreme Court of the United States found that reasonable mistakes of law do not violate the Fourth Amendment.
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Absence of evidence douses tobacco charge

February 20, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
An Indiana inmate’s punishment for allegedly trafficking in tobacco was snuffed out when the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals found he was convicted without evidence of guilt.
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