ILNews

Supreme Court takes 4 cases

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The Indiana Supreme Court granted transfer to four cases Sept. 17, including one involving translated transcripts presented to a jury in a drug case.

The Indiana Court of Appeals found in Noe Romo v. State of Indiana, No. 49S04-1009-CR-499, a third example of when transcripts “may” be necessary – when an audio recording isn’t the best evidence of a conversation because it features a language that a jury can’t understand.

Romo had challenged the admission of English transcripts of drug transactions he participated in with a confidential informant in Spanish. The appellate court found the state laid the proper foundation to establish the accuracy of the transcripts and that Romo wasn’t prejudiced by their admission.

The justices also granted transfer to Jeffrey L. Sloan v. State of Indiana, No. 18S04-1009-CR-502, in which the Court of Appeals decided that the statute of limitations on felony child molesting begins once the actions stop and the victim is no longer prevented from telling authorities. The issue had been litigated for more than 20 years and produced conflicting opinions on the matter. Because the judges found the statute of limitations had expired, preventing the state from filing charges because the victim – who said the molestation began in 1984 – didn’t report the abuse until 2007, long after the molestation had stopped.

The high court also took:

- Elmer D. Baker v. State of Indiana, No. 17S04-1009-CR-500, in which the lower appellate court affirmed Elmer Baker’s felony child molesting convictions. The Court of Appeals held the trial court didn’t violate Baker’s constitutional protection against ex post facto laws in granting the state’s motion to amend the charging information, the trial court didn’t commit fundamental error by giving certain jury instructions, nor did it abuse its discretion in denying his motion to correct error on the issue of unanimity of the jury verdict. They also held he wasn’t denied effective assistance of counsel. The Court of Appeals affirmed their original opinion on rehearing.

- Clifton Mauricio v. State of Indiana, No. 02S03-1009-PC-501, in which the Court of Appeals affirmed the denial of Clifton Mauricio’s petition for post-conviction relief in a not-for-publication opinion. They found he didn’t show he was prejudiced by the counsel’s alleged errors or that his sentence would have been different on remand.
 

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  2. The practitioners and judges who hail E-filing as the Saviour of the West need to contain their respective excitements. E-filing is federal court requires the practitioner to cram his motion practice into pigeonholes created by IT people. Compound motions or those seeking alternative relief are effectively barred, unless the practitioner wants to receive a tart note from some functionary admonishing about the "problem". E-filing is just another method by which courts and judges transfer their burden to practitioners, who are the really the only powerless components of the system. Of COURSE it is easier for the court to require all of its imput to conform to certain formats, but this imposition does NOT improve the quality of the practice of law and does NOT improve the ability of the practitioner to advocate for his client or to fashion pleadings that exactly conform to his client's best interests. And we should be very wary of the disingenuous pablum about the costs. The courts will find a way to stick it to the practitioner. Lake County is a VERY good example of this rapaciousness. Any one who does not believe this is invited to review the various special fees that system imposes upon practitioners- as practitioners- and upon each case ON TOP of the court costs normal in every case manually filed. Jurisprudence according to Aldous Huxley.

  3. Any attorneys who practice in federal court should be able to say the same as I can ... efiling is great. I have been doing it in fed court since it started way back. Pacer has its drawbacks, but the ability to hit an e-docket and pull up anything and everything onscreen is a huge plus for a litigator, eps the sole practitioner, who lacks a filing clerk and the paralegal support of large firms. Were I an Indiana attorney I would welcome this great step forward.

  4. Can we get full disclosure on lobbyist's payments to legislatures such as Mr Buck? AS long as there are idiots that are disrespectful of neighbors and intent on shooting fireworks every night, some kind of regulations are needed.

  5. I am the mother of the child in this case. My silence on the matter was due to the fact that I filed, both in Illinois and Indiana, child support cases. I even filed supporting documentation with the Indiana family law court. Not sure whether this information was provided to the court of appeals or not. Wish the case was done before moving to Indiana, because no matter what, there is NO WAY the state of Illinois would have allowed an appeal on a child support case!

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