Justices deny transfer to 11 cases, rule in juvenile counsel dispute

The Indiana Supreme Court declined to hear all but one of a dozen cases requesting to be heard last week.

Justices denied 11 cases presented to the high court on petition to transfer for the week ending Nov. 15, deadlocking 2-2 on whether to hear the case of James A. Camp v. State of Indiana, 19A-CR-25. In that case, the Indiana Court of Appeals divided in a memorandum decision whether James Camp’s aggregate 40-year sentence for conviction of Level 1 felony child molesting was inappropriate. The majority concluded it was; however, Judge Robert Altice dissented that Camp’s sentence was not an outlier.

Justices Geoffrey Slaughter and Steven David would have denied transfer to the case, while Chief Justice Loretta Rush and Justice Mark Massa would have granted transfer. Justice Christopher Goff did not participate in the decision that came from his home county of Wabash.

The high court only granted transfer in A.M. v. State of Indiana, 19S-JV-603, in which juvenile A.M. was placed in the Department of Correction after he could no longer be controlled by his parents. The 16-year-old had multiple instances of violent rage and was placed in the DOC in 2017 after what the Indiana Court of Appeals termed “a history of emotional and behavioral issues” from a young age.

In answering a question about ineffective assistance of counsel for juveniles, the split Supreme Court concluded that A.M.’s counsel helped ensure he received a fundamentally fair hearing where the court reached an accurate disposition that furthered his best interests.

The full list of transfer decisions can be found here.

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