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Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Ind. Courts - "Sketches evidence of court reporter's keen eye"

Great story this weekend by Sophia Voravong of the Lafayette Journal Courier about the late 1960s-early 1970s courtroom sketches made by Jane Moore, a former Tippecanoe County court reporter. The story notes that "Since Moore’s death in 2002, the drawings have been stored in two photo albums [Tippecanoe Circuit Court Judge Don] Daniel keeps in his chambers."

[ILB: These sound like something the Indiana Courts and/or Historical Bureau might scan and post online, along with historical notes.]

From the story:

there are still some places where handheld technology is of little use.

Most of Indiana’s county courtrooms, for instance.

Though attorneys can have access to laptops, projectors and monitors, and some courtrooms video-record daily proceedings, cameras of any kind remain prohibited. That includes cellphones.

For Tippecanoe Circuit Court Judge Don Daniel, it makes the hundreds of vintage courtroom sketches — started in 1968 by Jane Moore, a former court reporter in Tippecanoe Superior Court 1, according to a Jan. 31, 1974, Journal & Courier article — that he holds onto all the more valuable.

Moore’s drawings are mostly headshots of attorneys and defendants, with a sprinkle of sketches of jurors in the jury box, done in the late 1960s and early ‘70s on pieces of scratch paper, roughly the size of a small notepad.

Most court reporters in Indiana courtrooms do not record proceedings by hand using stenography equipment. Rather, they record the proceedings on tape or digitially, then later transcribe testimony or proceedings when necessary. Moore had time to make sketches because she was not constantly taking shorthand.

Since Moore’s death in 2002, the drawings have been stored in two photo albums Daniel keeps in his chambers.

But for about three months in 2005, they were posted at the now-closed Wells Yeager Best pharmacy at 120 N. Third St., along the courthouse square. Pharmacy owner Steve Klink said Daniel showed the drawings to him, and he immediately thought, “other people have to see these.

“ … People came just to see them. Relatives of people in the drawings came to see them,” Klink said. “Lawyers who were pictured got a big kick out of it. It was interesting for everyone to see the defendants and talk about the old cases.”

Posted by Marcia Oddi on December 26, 2012 09:11 AM
Posted to Indiana Courts