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Statewide system debuts in City Court

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Greenwood City Court is the state's first city or town court to start using a tool that will eventually connect all of Indiana courts' case management systems.

Greenwood will now be used as a guide for the 75 city and town courts statewide, the latest in a process that's gradually grown throughout Indiana since the system was first launched on a pilot basis in December 2007.

Known as the Odyssey computer system, it's been now installed at 23 courts in seven counties - making up 16 percent of all cases filed statewide, and City Judge Lewis Gregory's court is the newest addition with more than 7,000 new ordinance violations, traffic infractions, and misdemeanor criminal cases each year. The system went online there about a month ago.

Justice Frank Sullivan, who chairs the state's effort in implementing the system, joined Judge Gregory at a public demonstration today - along with other state and city officials; Sen. Richard Bray, R-Martinsville, who heads the Senate Judiciary Committee; and a handful of judges from the Johnson County legal community.

"In some ways, it's not a surprise that Greenwood would be the first to take this important step," Justice Sullivan said, pointing out that the northern Johnson County court is one of only two state-certified drug and recovery courts and has led the way in that area. "This court represents a milestone in our effort to modernize court technology in Indiana."

Through the Indiana Supreme Court's Judicial Technology and Automation Committee (JTAC), Odyssey connects each court's system with others throughout the state and gives them access to police, state agency, and protective order registries. That includes an e-traffic ticket feature that allows Indiana State Police and authorities to use scanning equipment in their patrol cars to print out citations, and then send that information electronically between the police, courts, and Bureau of Motor Vehicles.

More installations are scheduled for later this year, including the New Haven City Court on July 1. The program will also go through an update in 60 to 90 days to include probation departments from all counties where the system is operating, Justice Sullivan said. Testing will begin on that aspect in coming weeks.

Justice Sullivan estimates that it could take five years to plug all of the remaining county courts into the system, and much depends on funding resources. Courts pay no installation costs, training costs, license fees, or annual maintenance costs for Odyssey; those costs are paid by JTAC using the proceeds from a court filing fee dedicated to the project by the General Assembly - a fee that is expected to increase once lawmakers institute a final budget this summer.

Once a court is added to Odyssey, the case information is available at no cost to the public online at http://courts.IN.gov.

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  1. 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.

  2. 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?

  3. I will agree with that as soon as law schools stop lying to prospective students about salaries and employment opportunities in the legal profession. There is no defense to the fraudulent numbers first year salaries they post to mislead people into going to law school.

  4. 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.

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

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