Morgan County Courthouse damaged, closed

Jennifer Nelson
January 1, 2008
Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrintBookmark and Share
The Morgan County Courthouse is closed today as a result of damage sustained by high winds from Tuesday's storm, and a courthouse disaster plan mandated by a new state rule has been kicked into gear for the first time.

North and west sides of the courthouse's roof were heavily damaged in the storm. One half of the roof has been blown completely off, including the tresses and some of the brick wall it was attached to, said Jeff Neal, director of Morgan County Emergency Management. Officials are awaiting an evaluation by engineers to determine the impact of the damage.

"There is a huge hole in the roof. We have things covered in the upstairs of the courthouse to minimize any damage. We are securing the courthouse, barricading it off, and there is no access at this time," he said.

As a result of the storm, the local court and state have turned to a disaster action plan mandated by a rule that went into effect Jan. 1, according to David Remondini, chief deputy director of the Indiana Supreme Court's Division of State Court Administration. The rule gained mention from Indiana Chief Justice Randall T. Shepard during his annual address two weeks ago, but Remondini said this is the first time the rule has been used since it is in the pilot-planning stages to help courts operate after disasters, such as tornadoes and floods. Ironically, Morgan Superior Judge Thomas Gray - who is now turning to this disaster plan - was on the committee that drafted the new rule, Remondini said.

"Court's been cancelled, some have to move to new locations, and special sessions will be scheduled for court hearings," he said.

Night court will be in Morgan County's administration building this evening, said Debbie Chatten, administrative assistant in the commissioner's office. Trials and hearings scheduled at the courthouse for Thursday and Friday are being postponed, and letters will be sent to those involved for more information. There is no word when offices and courts will reopen as officials are waiting for engineers to decide if the building is structurally sound, she said.

Chatten recommended those in the area listen to the local radio station, WCBK 102.3 FM, for more information. She said the radio station is working with the county to broadcast updated information about closings and relocations.

Post a comment to this story

We reserve the right to remove any post that we feel is obscene, profane, vulgar, racist, sexually explicit, abusive, or hateful.
You are legally responsible for what you post and your anonymity is not guaranteed.
Posts that insult, defame, threaten, harass or abuse other readers or people mentioned in Indiana Lawyer editorial content are also subject to removal. Please respect the privacy of individuals and refrain from posting personal information.
No solicitations, spamming or advertisements are allowed. Readers may post links to other informational websites that are relevant to the topic at hand, but please do not link to objectionable material.
We may remove messages that are unrelated to the topic, encourage illegal activity, use all capital letters or are unreadable.

Messages that are flagged by readers as objectionable will be reviewed and may or may not be removed. Please do not flag a post simply because you disagree with it.

Sponsored by
Subscribe to Indiana Lawyer
  1. If a class action suit or other manner of retribution is possible, count me in. I have email and voicemail from the man. He colluded with opposing counsel, I am certain. My case was damaged so severely it nearly lost me everything and I am still paying dearly.

  2. There's probably a lot of blame that can be cast around for Indiana Tech's abysmal bar passage rate this last February. The folks who decided that Indiana, a state with roughly 16,000 to 18,000 attorneys, needs a fifth law school need to question the motives that drove their support of this project. Others, who have been "strong supporters" of the law school, should likewise ask themselves why they believe this institution should be supported. Is it because it fills some real need in the state? Or is it, instead, nothing more than a resume builder for those who teach there part-time? And others who make excuses for the students' poor performance, especially those who offer nothing more than conspiracy theories to back up their claims--who are they helping? What evidence do they have to support their posturing? Ultimately, though, like most everything in life, whether one succeeds or fails is entirely within one's own hands. At least one student from Indiana Tech proved this when he/she took and passed the February bar. A second Indiana Tech student proved this when they took the bar in another state and passed. As for the remaining 9 who took the bar and didn't pass (apparently, one of the students successfully appealed his/her original score), it's now up to them (and nobody else) to ensure that they pass on their second attempt. These folks should feel no shame; many currently successful practicing attorneys failed the bar exam on their first try. These same attorneys picked themselves up, dusted themselves off, and got back to the rigorous study needed to ensure they would pass on their second go 'round. This is what the Indiana Tech students who didn't pass the first time need to do. Of course, none of this answers such questions as whether Indiana Tech should be accredited by the ABA, whether the school should keep its doors open, or, most importantly, whether it should have even opened its doors in the first place. Those who promoted the idea of a fifth law school in Indiana need to do a lot of soul-searching regarding their decisions. These same people should never be allowed, again, to have a say about the future of legal education in this state or anywhere else. Indiana already has four law schools. That's probably one more than it really needs. But it's more than enough.

  3. This man Steve Hubbard goes on any online post or forum he can find and tries to push his company. He said court reporters would be obsolete a few years ago, yet here we are. How does he have time to search out every single post about court reporters and even spy in private court reporting forums if his company is so successful???? Dude, get a life. And back to what this post was about, I agree that some national firms cause a huge problem.

  4. rensselaer imdiana is doing same thing to children from the judge to attorney and dfs staff they need to be investigated as well

  5. Sex offenders are victims twice, once when they are molested as kids, and again when they repeat the behavior, you never see money spent on helping them do you. That's why this circle continues