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Prosecutor can stay for new Camm trial

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Indiana Lawyer Rehearing

A special judge in Southern Indiana has ruled that the prosecutor who handled the first two triple murder trials of former state trooper David Camm can stay on to handle the third.

On Jan. 7, Special Judge Jon Dartt from Spencer Circuit Court ruled that Floyd County prosecutor Keith Henderson can continue on as the prosecuting attorney in the case against David Camm, a former Indiana state trooper who’s on trial for a third time in the murder of his wife and two young children.

The Indiana Supreme Court overturned his first two convictions, most recently in 2009. That was after Henderson discussed writing a book about the Camm trials, and the prosecutor later said that he pulled out of the book deal once the justices ordered a new trial. But defense attorneys argued it was an ethics violation for Henderson to continue in the case because of that one-time deal.

Special Judge Dartt disagreed and denied the motion for a special prosecutor, saying the book agreement was cancelled after the guilty verdict in the second trial was overturned. The judge also ruled that the defense can attempt to obtain the manuscript from any “non-party” to this case, referencing Henderson’s claims that he does not possess any copies but that the publisher does. The court said that any manuscript the defense might obtain must be kept sealed and confidential unless the court orders otherwise.

Camm’s attorneys said they plan to appeal the decision on the prosecutor change, but no appeal was docketed with the Indiana Court of Appeals at Indiana Lawyer deadline.

Once the case gets to trial, Special Judge Dartt will preside. He decided last summer not to change venue from Warrick County, but jurors will be brought in from outside the county. No date for trial has been set.

Rehearing "Disagreements plague Camm case" IL Sept. 1-14, 2010

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  1. The sad thing is that no fish were thrown overboard The "greenhorn" who had never fished before those 5 days was interrogated for over 4 hours by 5 officers until his statement was illicited, "I don't want to go to prison....." The truth is that these fish were measured frozen off shore and thawed on shore. The FWC (state) officer did not know fish shrink, so the only reason that these fish could be bigger was a swap. There is no difference between a 19 1/2 fish or 19 3/4 fish, short fish is short fish, the ticket was written. In addition the FWC officer testified at trial, he does not measure fish in accordance with federal law. There was a document prepared by the FWC expert that said yes, fish shrink and if these had been measured correctly they averaged over 20 inches (offshore frozen). This was a smoke and mirror prosecution.

  2. I love this, Dave! Many congrats to you! We've come a long way from studying for the bar together! :)

  3. This outbreak illustrates the absurdity of the extreme positions taken by today's liberalism, specifically individualism and the modern cult of endless personal "freedom." Ebola reminds us that at some point the person's own "freedom" to do this and that comes into contact with the needs of the common good and "freedom" must be curtailed. This is not rocket science, except, today there is nonstop propaganda elevating individual preferences over the common good, so some pundits have a hard time fathoming the obvious necessity of quarantine in some situations....or even NATIONAL BORDERS...propagandists have also amazingly used this as another chance to accuse Western nations of "racism" which is preposterous and offensive. So one the one hand the idolatry of individualism has to stop and on the other hand facts people don't like that intersect with race-- remain facts nonetheless. People who respond to facts over propaganda do better in the long run. We call it Truth. Sometimes it seems hard to find.

  4. It would be hard not to feel the Kramers' anguish. But Catholic Charities, by definition, performed due diligence and held to the statutory standard of care. No good can come from punishing them for doing their duty. Should Indiana wish to change its laws regarding adoption agreements and or putative fathers, the place for that is the legislature and can only apply to future cases. We do not apply new laws to past actions, as the Kramers seem intent on doing, to no helpful end.

  5. I am saddened to hear about the loss of Zeff Weiss. He was an outstanding member of the Indianapolis legal community. My thoughts are with his family.

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