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‘Rushing’ door sufficient for burglary conviction

June 30, 2015
Dave Stafford
A man who rushed the door of an apartment where a co-conspirator had arranged a drug buy was rightly convicted of Class A felony burglary resulting in serious bodily injury, the Indiana Court of Appeals held Tuesday.
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EPA loses on power-plant emissions rule

June 29, 2015
 Bloomberg News, IL Staff
The Obama administration didn’t adequately consider the billions of dollars in costs before issuing a rule designed to cut hazardous emissions from 460 coal-fired power plants, the Supreme Court of the United States ruled.
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Legislative and judicial history settles feud over estate

June 29, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
Sisters arguing over the family estate failed to provide the court with “clear and convincing evidence” that their father’s intentions were different from his actions.
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Justices uphold Arizona’s system for redistricting

June 29, 2015
 Associated Press, IL Staff
The Supreme Court of the United States on Monday upheld Arizona congressional districts drawn by an independent commission and rejected a constitutional challenge from Republican lawmakers.
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Indiana House hires attorneys to defend public records suit

June 29, 2015
 Associated Press
The Indiana House of Representatives has hired two outside attorneys, who bill an average of nearly $400 an hour, to defend itself from a lawsuit filed over its refusal to provide correspondence over a solar power bill under the state's public records law.
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Tim Durham fails to convince judge to reduce 50-year sentence

June 29, 2015
Scott Olson
Convicted Ponzi scheme leader Tim Durham failed Friday afternoon in his bid to get his 50-year prison sentence reduced.
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Man’s sentence affirmed despite misapplication of law

June 29, 2015
Dave Stafford
A misapplication of Indiana law in setting a 10-year cap in a plea agreement for a man who admitted to multiple counts of child neglect and criminal confinement doesn’t require reversal, a divided Indiana Supreme Court held Monday.
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In case of conflicting evidence, high court defers to jury verdict

June 29, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
A Pike County man challenging the jury’s finding that he was not insane or mentally ill did not meet what the Indiana Supreme Court acknowledged was a “heavy burden” to overturn the guilty verdict.
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Justices affirm burglary conviction COA tossed out for perjury

June 29, 2015
Dave Stafford
The Indiana Supreme Court on Friday affirmed a trial court burglary conviction that a Court of Appeals panel vacated on the basis that the prosecution used perjured testimony.
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Justices uphold use of drug implicated in botched executions

June 29, 2015
 Associated Press
The Supreme Court of the United States has upheld the use of a controversial drug that has been implicated in several troubled executions.
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Justices allow new hearings in North Carolina capital cases

June 29, 2015
 Associated Press
The Supreme Court of the United States has left in place lower court rulings ordering hearings over jurors in two North Carolina death penalty trials who reached beyond the jury room for biblical references to help their deliberations.
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Supreme Court will re-hear Texas affirmative action

June 29, 2015
 Associated Press
The Supreme Court of the United States will dive back into the fight over the use of race in admissions at the University of Texas, a decision that presages tighter limits on affirmative action in higher education.
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Judgment reserving funds for mechanic’s lien reversed

June 26, 2015
Dave Stafford
A trial court judgment that a mortgage company reserve money to satisfy a mechanic’s lien was reversed by the Indiana Court of Appeals on Friday.
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Warsaw poker game operator’s conviction flushed

June 26, 2015
Dave Stafford
The operator of a fundraising poker game at a Warsaw veterans lodge won an appeal of his contracting conviction Friday at the Indiana Court of Appeals.
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Display celebrates Tinder’s career

June 26, 2015
IL Staff
In honor of 7th Circuit Court of Appeals Judge John Daniel Tinder’s retirement, a display has been installed in the main hall of the first floor of the Birch Bayh Federal Building and United States Courthouse in Indianapolis.
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Man deported after living in US since age 1 gets relief

June 26, 2015
Dave Stafford
An Indiana man who was ordered deported after pleading guilty to federal marijuana charges will be allowed to return to the country, the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Friday.
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Appeals panel reverses expungement denial

June 26, 2015
Dave Stafford
A trial court that rejected an expungement petition because the petitioner had not been arrested on an underage drinking charge got it wrong, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled Friday.
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Comment sought on possible child support guideline changes

June 26, 2015
IL Staff
The Indiana Supreme Court is considering altering the child support guidelines, which provide a measure for determining the amount of child support each parents owes.
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Minkler takes over as U.S. attorney in Southern District

June 26, 2015
IL Staff
Josh Minkler was sworn in as U.S. attorney for the Southern District of Indiana on Thursday by Southern District Chief Judge Richard L. Young.
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Supreme Court extends same-sex marriage nationwide

June 26, 2015
 Associated Press
The Supreme Court of the United States has declared that same-sex couples have a right to marry anywhere in the United States. The decision was 5-4.
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Woman’s comments to police considered political speech, COA rules

June 25, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals overturned a woman's misdemeanor disorderly conduct conviction, which was based on her comments to police that she was pulled over because she was black, finding the comments were political in nature.
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Judges deny sentence modifications, but for different reasons

June 25, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
A panel on the Indiana Court of Appeals concluded Thursday that neither of two men who petitioned in late 2013 to have their 1997 sentences modified are entitled to a modification, but the judges' reasoning for the denials differed.
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7th Circuit rules against Anderson mayor in suit following firings

June 25, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
Anderson Mayor Kevin Smith lost his appeal of the finding that he is not entitled to qualified immunity regarding all of the fired government workers involved in a lawsuit alleging their discharges violated the First Amendment.
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7th Circuit rejects claim conviction is outside statute of limitations

June 25, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals disagreed with a defendant who claimed the federal DNA tolling statute is unconstitutional as applied to him. The man was convicted in 2013 of attempting to rob an Anderson bank in 2003, thanks to a positive identification in 2010 using DNA collected at the crime scene.
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Judge rejects mistrial in Indianapolis house explosion case

June 25, 2015
 Associated Press
An Indiana judge has denied a mistrial in the case of a man accused of rigging a deadly Indianapolis house explosion. The defendant's attorneys raised concerns about miscalculations by a witness.
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  1. The appellate court just said doctors can be sued for reporting child abuse. The most dangerous form of child abuse with the highest mortality rate of any form of child abuse (between 6% and 9% according to the below listed studies). Now doctors will be far less likely to report this form of dangerous child abuse in Indiana. If you want to know what this is, google the names Lacey Spears, Julie Conley (and look at what happened when uninformed judges returned that child against medical advice), Hope Ybarra, and Dixie Blanchard. Here is some really good reporting on what this allegation was: http://media.star-telegram.com/Munchausenmoms/ Here are the two research papers: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/0145213487900810 http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0145213403000309 25% of sibling are dead in that second study. 25%!!! Unbelievable ruling. Chilling. Wrong.

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  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. From the article's fourth paragraph: "Her work underscores the blurry lines in Russia between the government and businesses . . ." Obviously, the author of this piece doesn't pay much attention to the "blurry lines" between government and businesses that exist in the United States. And I'm not talking only about Trump's alleged conflicts of interest. When lobbyists for major industries (pharmaceutical, petroleum, insurance, etc) have greater access to this country's elected representatives than do everyday individuals (i.e., voters), then I would say that the lines between government and business in the United States are just as blurry, if not more so, than in Russia.

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