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Probationer’s admission to smoking marijuana supports revocation

May 27, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
Because a man on probation admitted to participating in unlawful conduct during his probationary period, the trial court correctly revoked his probation, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled.
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COA upholds man’s belated appeal, molestation conviction

May 27, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
Citing the defendant’s limited understanding of English and his timely request for appellate counsel, the Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed the decision by the trial court to grant a man’s belated notice of appeal regarding a child molesting conviction.
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How law firms use Facebook and other data to track down medical victims

May 27, 2015
 Bloomberg News
For ambulance chasers, persistence and a phone book just don’t cut it anymore. Law firms, which once relied on television commercials, billboards, and cold calling numbers in the white pages to find plaintiffs for medical lawsuits, have begun to embrace technology. To locate their ideal pharma victims more quickly and at lower costs, they're using data compiled from Facebook, marketing firms, and public sources, with help from digital bounty hunters.
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Obama loses second bid to implement overhaul of immigration

May 27, 2015
 Bloomberg News
President Barack Obama’s bid to make overhauling immigration policy a second-term victory was dealt a serious blow as federal judges ruled the effort must remain on hold while 26 states sue to overturn it.
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Environmental groups sue over Illiana Tollway approval

May 27, 2015
 Associated Press
Illinois environmental groups have filed a lawsuit over the proposed Illiana Tollway. They claim federal approval relied on faulty information and didn't adequately consider environmental impacts.
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Indiana securities commissioner abruptly resigns

May 27, 2015
IBJ Staff
Carol Mihalik resigned as Indiana’s securities commissioner, the state announced.
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Judge believes lack of victim notification of plea supports vacating agreement

May 26, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
A Court of Appeals judge dissented from his colleagues on Tuesday when he voted to support a trial court's decision to throw out a plea agreement on the day of sentencing. The trial court discovered the victim in the case had not been notified of the plea agreement.
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Court declines to rule on constitutionality of statute as it relates to auditors

May 26, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
Because the Marion County auditor does not have statutory or common law standing to appeal a property tax assessment board of appeals’ decision under Indiana Code 6-1.1-15-12 to the Indiana Tax Court, its judge, Martha Wentworth, held that the constitutional challenge raised regarding the statute will have to be decided another day.
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Drug conviction reversed because state didn’t prove substance was heroin

May 26, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
Because police did not prove the product of a controlled drug buy was heroin, the Court of Appeals reversed a man's conviction of Class A felony dealing in a narcotic within 1,000 feet of a school.
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KBR, Halliburton win at US Supreme Court on suit deadlines

May 26, 2015
 Bloomberg News
The Supreme Court of the United States tightened the time limits for whistle-blower lawsuits that accuse contractors of overbilling the federal government during overseas conflicts. The ruling is a victory for KBR Inc. and Halliburton Co.
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SCOTUS to consider appeal over electoral districts

May 26, 2015
 Associated Press
The Supreme Court of the United States agreed Tuesday to hear an important case about whether states must count only those who are eligible to vote, rather than the total population, when drawing electoral districts for their legislatures.
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US Supreme Court clarifies power of bankruptcy judges

May 26, 2015
 Associated Press
The Supreme Court of the United States says bankruptcy courts have authority to rule on disputes that fall outside the bankruptcy proceedings if the parties to the case consent.
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COA: No evidence employee violated professional conduct rule

May 26, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals on Tuesday reversed the denial of a man's application for unemployment benefits, finding the record doesn't support that he was fired for just cause for violating his employer's professional conduct rules. The man kept a mentally disabled client in a hot car, citing his safety and the safety of other riders.
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State proved man forced his way into apartment, COA holds

May 26, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
A man convicted of three crimes stemming from the robbery of an apartment could not convince the Indiana Court of Appeals that he did not force his way into the apartment because someone inside opened the door first.
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Fallout from Supreme Court case on Obamacare could be 'ugly'

May 26, 2015
 Associated Press
A Supreme Court ruling due in a few weeks could wipe out health insurance for millions of people covered by President Barack Obama's health care law. But it's Republicans — not White House officials — who have been talking about damage control.
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Indiana fish farm loses lawsuits over unpaid bills

May 26, 2015
 Associated Press
A central Indiana fish farm that last year won approval for a $30 million expansion faces more than $200,000 in court judgments after lawsuits filed by businesses who say the company owes them money.
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Gay marriage challenges cost Indiana $1.4M in attorney fees

May 26, 2015
 Associated Press
The state of Indiana had to pay more than $1.4 million in fees to plaintiffs' attorneys in its unsuccessful attempt to maintain a ban on same-sex marriages, the attorney general's office says.
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COA reverses felony conviction for lack of evidence

May 22, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
The state did not prove that a St. Joseph County man intimidated another person when the man pulled out a knife after being confronted about stealing water, the Indiana Court of Appeals held Friday. The dissenting judge believed there to be no distinction between the defendant being “caught” stealing water and “confronting” the defendant about stealing it.
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Man’s appellate arguments challenging misdemeanor convictions waived

May 22, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals agreed with the state that a man waived his arguments on appeal because he did not raise a relevant objection at trial, he did not make a cogent argument on appeal, and because his arguments are otherwise meritless.
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Jury awards $32.5M to victim of 2006 traffic accident

May 22, 2015
 Associated Press
A jury awarded $32.5 million to a Dyer, Indiana, woman who suffered brain damage and was left partially paralyzed in a traffic accident.
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Judge dismisses bulk of Christ Church suit against JPMorgan

May 22, 2015
Greg Andrews
A federal judge on Thursday dealt a major blow to Christ Church Cathedral’s lawsuit charging JPMorgan Chase & Co. caused $13 million in losses in trust accounts endowed decades ago by Eli Lilly Jr. via “intentional mismanagement” and “self-dealing.”
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Indiana man faces more charges in Facebook threat case

May 21, 2015
 Associated Press
A federal grand jury has issued a second indictment with more charges against an Indiana man accused of threatening to blow up a courthouse and kill judges in a Facebook posting.
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Bankruptcy lawyer’s unruly conduct draws warning

May 21, 2015
Dave Stafford
A Terre Haute lawyer’s behavior at a bankruptcy court proceeding last week so alarmed parties involved that U.S. marshals were called, according to an order warning he could face discipline for his conduct.
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Study: Local lockups can be more pricey to run than thought

May 21, 2015
 Associated Press
It turns out running a jail can be even more expensive than previously thought. A study released Thursday examining what it actually costs to operate local lockups has found that a whole host of costs aren't always covered as line items in a corrections department's budget.
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Certified question regarding Patient’s Compensation Fund dismissed

May 21, 2015
IL Staff
The Indiana Supreme Court has dismissed as moot a certified question sent to it from the U.S. District Court in the Northern District of Indiana regarding a claim the Patient’s Compensation Fund sought to pursue against an insurer.
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  1. Yes diversity is so very important. With justice Rucker off ... the court is too white. Still too male. No Hispanic justice. No LGBT justice. And there are other checkboxes missing as well. This will not do. I say hold the seat until a physically handicapped Black Lesbian of Hispanic heritage and eastern religious creed with bipolar issues can be located. Perhaps an international search, with a preference for third world candidates, is indicated. A non English speaker would surely increase our diversity quotient!!!

  2. First, I want to thank Justice Rucker for his many years of public service, not just at the appellate court level for over 25 years, but also when he served the people of Lake County as a Deputy Prosecutor, City Attorney for Gary, IN, and in private practice in a smaller, highly diverse community with a history of serious economic challenges, ethnic tensions, and recently publicized but apparently long-standing environmental health risks to some of its poorest residents. Congratulations for having the dedication & courage to practice law in areas many in our state might have considered too dangerous or too poor at different points in time. It was also courageous to step into a prominent and highly visible position of public service & respect in the early 1990's, remaining in a position that left you open to state-wide public scrutiny (without any glitches) for over 25 years. Yes, Hoosiers of all backgrounds can take pride in your many years of public service. But people of color who watched your ascent to the highest levels of state government no doubt felt even more as you transcended some real & perhaps some perceived social, economic, academic and professional barriers. You were living proof that, with hard work, dedication & a spirit of public service, a person who shared their same skin tone or came from the same county they grew up in could achieve great success. At the same time, perhaps unknowingly, you helped fellow members of the judiciary, court staff, litigants and the public better understand that differences that are only skin-deep neither define nor limit a person's character, abilities or prospects in life. You also helped others appreciate that people of different races & backgrounds can live and work together peacefully & productively for the greater good of all. Those are truths that didn't have to be written down in court opinions. Anyone paying attention could see that truth lived out every day you devoted to public service. I believe you have been a "trailblazer" in Indiana's legal community and its judiciary. I also embrace your belief that society's needs can be better served when people in positions of governmental power reflect the many complexions of the population that they serve. Whether through greater understanding across the existing racial spectrum or through the removal of some real and some perceived color-based, hope-crushing barriers to life opportunities & success, movement toward a more reflective representation of the population being governed will lead to greater and uninterrupted respect for laws designed to protect all peoples' rights to life, liberty & the pursuit of happiness. Thanks again for a job well-done & for the inevitable positive impact your service has had - and will continue to have - on countless Hoosiers of all backgrounds & colors.

  3. Diversity is important, but with some limitations. For instance, diversity of experience is a great thing that can be very helpful in certain jobs or roles. Diversity of skin color is never important, ever, under any circumstance. To think that skin color changes one single thing about a person is patently racist and offensive. Likewise, diversity of values is useless. Some values are better than others. In the case of a supreme court justice, I actually think diversity is unimportant. The justices are not to impose their own beliefs on rulings, but need to apply the law to the facts in an objective manner.

  4. Have been seeing this wonderful physician for a few years and was one of his patients who told him about what we were being told at CVS. Multiple ones. This was a witch hunt and they shold be ashamed of how patients were treated. Most of all, CVS should be ashamed for what they put this physician through. So thankful he fought back. His office is no "pill mill'. He does drug testing multiple times a year and sees patients a minimum of four times a year.

  5. Brian W, I fear I have not been sufficiently entertaining to bring you back. Here is a real laugh track that just might do it. When one is grabbed by the scruff of his worldview and made to choose between his Confession and his profession ... it is a not a hard choice, given the Confession affects eternity. But then comes the hardship in this world. Imagine how often I hear taunts like yours ... "what, you could not even pass character and fitness after they let you sit and pass their bar exam ... dude, there must really be something wrong with you!" Even one of the Bishop's foremost courtiers said that, when explaining why the RCC refused to stand with me. You want entertaining? How about watching your personal economy crash while you have a wife and five kids to clothe and feed. And you can't because you cannot work, because those demanding you cast off your Confession to be allowed into "their" profession have all the control. And you know that they are wrong, dead wrong, and that even the professional code itself allows your Faithful stand, to wit: "A lawyer may refuse to comply with an obligation imposed by law upon a good faith belief that no valid obligation exists. The provisions of Rule 1.2(d) concerning a good faith challenge to the validity, scope, meaning or application of the law apply to challenges of legal regulation of the practice of law." YET YOU ARE A NONPERSON before the BLE, and will not be heard on your rights or their duties to the law -- you are under tyranny, not law. And so they win in this world, you lose, and you lose even your belief in the rule of law, and demoralization joins poverty, and very troubling thoughts impeaching self worth rush in to fill the void where your career once lived. Thoughts you did not think possible. You find yourself a failure ... in your profession, in your support of your family, in the mirror. And there is little to keep hope alive, because tyranny rules so firmly and none, not the church, not the NGO's, none truly give a damn. Not even a new court, who pay such lip service to justice and ancient role models. You want entertainment? Well if you are on the side of the courtiers running the system that has crushed me, as I suspect you are, then Orwell must be a real riot: "There will be no curiosity, no enjoyment of the process of life. All competing pleasures will be destroyed. But always — do not forget this, Winston — always there will be the intoxication of power, constantly increasing and constantly growing subtler. Always, at every moment, there will be the thrill of victory, the sensation of trampling on an enemy who is helpless. If you want a picture of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face — forever." I never thought they would win, I always thought that at the end of the day the rule of law would prevail. Yes, the rule of man's law. Instead power prevailed, so many rules broken by the system to break me. It took years, but, finally, the end that Dr Bowman predicted is upon me, the end that she advised the BLE to take to break me. Ironically, that is the one thing in her far left of center report that the BLE (after stamping, in red ink, on Jan 22) is uninterested in, as that the BLE and ADA office that used the federal statute as a sword now refuses to even dialogue on her dire prediction as to my fate. "C'est la vie" Entertaining enough for you, status quo defender?

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