Articles

Justices reverse convictions for man denied Pirtle rights, but concurrence suggests revisiting Pirtle

A Cass County man convicted of multiple felonies after police responded to a report of a possible robbery at his home has secured a reversal from the Indiana Supreme Court after convincing the justices his Pirtle rights were violated during a police search. However, one justice, while concurring, suggested the high court take another look at Pirtle in the future.

Read More

Justices split, find ‘jurisdictional gap’ in child molesting offense committed by minor who is now an adult

Neither the juvenile court nor the criminal court has jurisdiction over a man who allegedly committed child molesting while still a minor but whom the state did not attempt to criminally charge until he was over 21, creating a “jurisdictional gap” in cases where an offender ages out of the juvenile system, according to the Indiana Supreme Court. But the court’s majority holding was challenged by two dissenting justices, who argued the Indiana Legislature “would never have intended” for the alleged criminal act to go unpunished.

Read More

Split justices eliminate proximity rule for emotional distress claims

A mother who brought claims for emotional distress after learning that her disabled daughter had been sexually abused can once again proceed with her case after a majority of the Indiana Supreme Court created a new rule eliminating the proximity requirement for emotional distress recovery. A dissenting justice, however, warned that the “watershed” ruling could have a wider-ranging impact than anticipated.

Read More

Split Supreme Court upholds denial of LWOP defendant’s pro se request

A Boone County murder defendant convicted and sentenced to life without parole failed to convince a majority of the Indiana Supreme Court that the trial court improperly denied his request to proceed pro se. The majority provided an analysis for considering pro se requests in capital and LWOP sentences, but minority justices raised concerns about the majority “till(ing) new constitutional soil.”

Read More