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Supreme Court accepts 2 cases

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The justices of the Indiana Supreme Court have granted transfer to a case involving a Batson challenge and another involving early retirement benefits.

In Jerrme Cartwright v. State of Indiana, No. 82S01-1109-CR-564, Jerrme Cartwright, who faced charges stemming from a fight at an American Legion in Evansville, challenged the removal of the only African-American from the jury. The majority on the Indiana Court of Appeals reversed his convictions because based on the record, they couldn’t determine which one of the state’s proffered explanations the trial court relied on to deny Cartwright’s Batson challenge.

Judge Nancy Vaidik dissented, believing the appellate court should give more deference to the trial court’s decision, and the state’s justifications for striking the juror were supported by the record.

In C.G. LLC v. Review Board of the Indiana Department of Workforce Development, No. 93S02-1109-EX-565, the Court of Appeals was divided on whether early retirees could continue to receive unemployment assistance. The review board determined that all employees – those who’d been on indefinite layoff when joining the early retirement program and those who were on temporary layoff or were actively working at the time – could receive benefits. The majority reversed, deciding that the workers didn’t have good cause to voluntarily leave their employment because there weren’t specific threats or plans of future plant closing or layoffs.

The employees who left due to risk of possible future changes at the company, but not due to direct threat of layoff weren’t entitled to benefits, the majority held. Judge James Kirsch dissented, believing that decision goes against legislative directive and ignores what many face in this economy.

The justices denied transfer to 23 other cases for the week ending Sept. 16.

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  1. Whether you support "gay marriage" or not is not the issue. The issue is whether the SCOTUS can extract from an unmentionable somewhere the notion that the Constitution forbids government "interference" in the "right" to marry. Just imagine time-traveling to Philadelphia in 1787. Ask James Madison if the document he and his fellows just wrote allowed him- or forbade government to "interfere" with- his "right" to marry George Washington? He would have immediately- and justly- summoned the Sergeant-at-Arms to throw your sorry self out into the street. Far from being a day of liberation, this is a day of capitulation by the Rule of Law to the Rule of What's Happening Now.

  2. With today's ruling, AG Zoeller's arguments in the cases of Obamacare and Same-sex Marriage can be relegated to the ash heap of history. 0-fer

  3. She must be a great lawyer

  4. Ind. Courts - "Illinois ranks 49th for how court system serves disadvantaged" What about Indiana? A story today from Dave Collins of the AP, here published in the Benton Illinois Evening News, begins: Illinois' court system had the third-worst score in the nation among state judiciaries in serving poor, disabled and other disadvantaged members of the public, according to new rankings. Illinois' "Justice Index" score of 34.5 out of 100, determined by the nonprofit National Center for Access to Justice, is based on how states serve people with disabilities and limited English proficiency, how much free legal help is available and how states help increasing numbers of people representing themselves in court, among other issues. Connecticut led all states with a score of 73.4 and was followed by Hawaii, Minnesota, New York and Delaware, respectively. Local courts in Washington, D.C., had the highest overall score at 80.9. At the bottom was Oklahoma at 23.7, followed by Kentucky, Illinois, South Dakota and Indiana. ILB: That puts Indiana at 46th worse. More from the story: Connecticut, Hawaii, Minnesota, Colorado, Tennessee and Maine had perfect 100 scores in serving people with disabilities, while Indiana, Georgia, Wyoming, Missouri and Idaho had the lowest scores. Those rankings were based on issues such as whether interpretation services are offered free to the deaf and hearing-impaired and whether there are laws or rules allowing service animals in courthouses. The index also reviewed how many civil legal aid lawyers were available to provide free legal help. Washington, D.C., had nearly nine civil legal aid lawyers per 10,000 people in poverty, the highest rate in the country. Texas had the lowest rate, 0.43 legal aid lawyers per 10,000 people in poverty. http://indianalawblog.com/archives/2014/11/ind_courts_illi_1.html

  5. A very thorough opinion by the federal court. The Rooker-Feldman analysis, in particular, helps clear up muddy water as to the entanglement issue. Looks like the Seventh Circuit is willing to let its district courts cruise much closer to the Indiana Supreme Court's shorelines than most thought likely, at least when the ADA on the docket. Some could argue that this case and Praekel, taken together, paint a rather unflattering picture of how the lower courts are being advised as to their duties under the ADA. A read of the DOJ amicus in Praekel seems to demonstrate a less-than-congenial view toward the higher echelons in the bureaucracy.

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