« Ind. Law - "Sue A. Shadley to be Honored on Saturday, November 7, 2015" [Updated] | Main | Law - Not to be missed, NYT series on arbitration and class actions »

Monday, November 02, 2015

Ind. Courts - "Students witness state's high court in action"

On Friday, Oct. 30 the Supreme Court heard oral argument in the case of Leonard Suggs v. State of Indiana. Argument was held in NW Indiana, at Portage High School in Porter County. There is no webcast available.

Amy Lavalley of the Gary Post-Tribune has coverage here; some quotes:

"This is rather a rare occurrence. We typically hold oral arguments in an ornate courthouse in the state Capitol," said Justice Robert Rucker, a Gary native, adding that a few times a year, the justices bring the oral arguments to the public. "We do this because we want you to see the process firsthand."

About 875 students from 10 schools heard the Indiana Supreme Court dissect what constitutes a family member during oral arguments Friday in the Portage High School auditorium.

The case focused on Leonard Suggs, who was found guilty in Allen Superior Court in Allen County of domestic battery against his girlfriend and felony battery against Vera Warren, a woman Suggs had known all his life as "Auntie," who is the sibling of a man who was married to Suggs' aunt.

That convoluted relationship is the basis for the appeal that landed before the Supreme Court, as attorneys for the defendant and the state argued whether Warren was truly a relative, which would support the felony battery charge.

Later in the story:
One student wanted to know about whether politics come into play in judicial appointments, because the governor makes those decisions. Justice Brent Dickson, a Hobart native, said a commission reviews applicants and provides three choices for the governor.

"The law said politics should not be considered," he said.

Joyce Russell had this report in the NWI Times. Some quotes:
Students from 10 schools, including Portage High, Chesterton High, Chesterton Middle, Immanuel Lutheran, Indiana University Northwest School of Business and Economics, Kouts High, Portage Christian, St. Paul Catholic School, Valparaiso High and Valparaiso University Law School, filled the auditorium, along with local attorneys, judges and officials. * * *

The justices also answered a few questions from students before leaving the high school to attend the Porter County Veterans Court graduation ceremony later in the morning. They were to also have lunch in Valparaiso with university students and local attorneys, Dolan said.

Posted by Marcia Oddi on November 2, 2015 08:33 AM
Posted to Indiana Courts