The Indiana Court of Appeals will hit a milestone this week when it convenes at Trine University in Angola.
The court’s traveling program, dubbed Appeals on Wheels, will conduct its 400th oral argument June 19 before an audience of high school juniors attending Hoosier Boys State. Judges John Baker, Melissa May and Cale Bradford will constitute the panel hearing Dodson v. Seven Corners, Inc., a civil case on appeal from Marion Superior Court.
Launched during the Court of Appeals’ centennial in 2000-2001, Appeals on Wheels has traveled across Indiana to high schools, colleges, law schools and other venues to give state residents a close-up look at the court in action.
“The entire court can be proud of this milestone,” said Chief Judge Nancy Vaidik. “We appreciate the tremendous interest of audiences across the state and the excellent advocacy of so many attorneys who’ve participated through the years.”
Appeals on Wheels is not a moot court program. All the arguments involve pending civil or criminal appeals from Indiana trial courts. Individuals who attend receive a study guide about the Court of Appeals and the case along with copies of the case briefs, if requested. The court also provides a preparation checklist to the host site, sends a news release to area media and notifies the host site after the opinion is issued.
“Traveling oral arguments are just as focused on the case and the law as the rest of our caseload,” Vaidik said. “But they involve an added dimension of public outreach and education that benefits the court, the law and our audiences.”