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Lake County judge pro tem appointed to fill Bonaventura vacancy

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Senior Judge Thomas W. Webber Sr. was appointed a judge pro tem late Friday as the Indiana Supreme Court intervened further in a controversy over who will be the next judge of the Lake Superior Court Juvenile Division.

The court issued an order appointing Webber one day after it issued an emergency order preventing Lake Superior Judge Nicholas Schiralli from taking over the vacancy created when Juvenile Division Judge Mary Beth Bonaventura was tapped to lead the Department of Child Services.

Justices on Friday ordered Webber, 75, to fill in until a dispute over Bonaventura’s successor can be resolved. Webber is a retired Superior Court judge from neighboring Porter County.

On Thursday, the court stayed any further effort to transfer Schiralli into the juvenile court after magistrates filed an action that said such a move would violate Lake County’s merit selection statute. Magistrates seek a permanent writ of mandamus and prohibition in State of Indiana ex rel. Glenn D. Commons, et al., v. the Hon. John R. Pera as Chief Judge of the Lake Superior Court, et al., 45S00-1303-OR-209.

Schiralli claims he is entitled through seniority to a transfer that would allow him to succeed Bonaventura, who resigned effective Sunday to take over DCS. Prior to the magistrates’ suit, Bonaventura asked the Supreme Court to require her replacement on the Lake Superior bench be appointed under the county’s merit selection system, I.C. 33-33-45-28.

Justices on Thursday gave respondents until noon Indianapolis time on April 8 to file briefings with the clerk of the court.


 

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  1. Hail to our Constitutional Law Expert in the Executive Office! “What you’re not paying attention to is the fact that I just took an action to change the law,” Obama said.

  2. What is this, the Ind Supreme Court thinking that there is a separation of powers and limited enumerated powers as delegated by a dusty old document? Such eighteen century thinking, so rare and unwanted by the elites in this modern age. Dictate to us, dictate over us, the massess are chanting! George Soros agrees. Time to change with times Ind Supreme Court, says all President Snows. Rule by executive decree is the new black.

  3. I made the same argument before a commission of the Indiana Supreme Court and then to the fedeal district and federal appellate courts. Fell flat. So very glad to read that some judges still beleive that evidentiary foundations matter.

  4. KUDOS to the Indiana Supreme Court for realizing that some bureacracies need to go to the stake. Recall what RWR said: "No government ever voluntarily reduces itself in size. Government programs, once launched, never disappear. Actually, a government bureau is the nearest thing to eternal life we'll ever see on this earth!" NOW ... what next to this rare and inspiring chopping block? Well, the Commission on Gender and Race (but not religion!?!) is way overdue. And some other Board's could be cut with a positive for State and the reputation of the Indiana judiciary.

  5. During a visit where an informant with police wears audio and video, does the video necessary have to show hand to hand transaction of money and narcotics?

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