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Thursday, June 12, 2014

Ind. Courts - "Indiana's chief justice stepping down" [Updated]

Here is Tim Evans' report in the Indianapolis Star of Chief Justice's Dickson's announcement yesterday. A quote:

Joel Schumm, a professor at the Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law in Indianapolis, called Dickson a very capable leader at a time when the Supreme Court was going through a period of remarkable change, taking on two new members in 2012 and another in 2010.

"He has led a court that issued significant and thoughtful opinions, usually unanimously, on a wide range of issues," Schumm said. "The remarkable civility that has characterized his professional life continued through his tenure as chief justice and has been a shining example for Indiana judges and lawyers."

Indiana's chief justice was designed on a rotation system until 1970. Since 1970, there have been just four permanent chief justices. Dickson's tenure is the shortest of those four. Shepard, his predecessor, served as chief justice for 25 years.

"It has been a great joy and a privilege to have helped continue the court's tradition of excellence — especially with four hard-working colleagues who are devoted to the law," Dickson said in the statement. "I am looking forward to being able to spend most of my time in legal research, deciding cases, and writing opinions."

[Updated at 6:48 PM] Here is a long story from Ken Kusmer of the AP. A quote:
Under Dickson’s leadership, the court last year created a statewide commission aimed at improving the availability of civil legal services for low-income residents. It announced last month that lawyers will be able to file documents electronically to courts throughout the state beginning next year, starting a phase-out of two centuries of paper filings.

One of the court’s most important recent rulings was a 3-2 split last year over fines levied by Indiana House Republicans against Democratic lawmakers for their 2011 walkout and 2012 boycotts in a series of bitterly partisan fights.

Dickson wrote the majority opinion for the ruling, allowing the fines to stand because he said the court didn’t have the constitutional power to intervene in internal legislative decisions.

Posted by Marcia Oddi on June 12, 2014 09:20 AM
Posted to Indiana Courts