Category : General

What Happens When a Person Receives an Exceptionally Long Prison Sentence?

General

In December 2020, an Elkhart Circuit Court judge sentenced Winston Corbett, a 25-year old Indiana man, to 115 years in prison for fatally stabbing a college professor and attempting to murder the professor’s wife during a home invasion ten years ago. For some, the sentence may seem exaggerated: why would a court hand down a […]

Indiana’s Suspension of In-Person Jury Trials: What Does This Mean for Your Case?

General

On December 16, 2020, the Indiana Supreme Court suspended in-person jury trials until March 1, 2021, to curb the transmission of the coronavirus. This unprecedented step will have an enormous effect on everyone involved in the criminal justice system, particularly for defendants awaiting trial. Here’s what you need to know. A severe backlog of cases […]

How Can You Prove Self-Defense if There Were No Other Witnesses to a Crime?

General

In Indiana, as in every state, the law recognizes that you have the right to self-defense. Indiana’s Stand Your Ground law states that a person may use reasonable force to defend themselves or another person from what the person reasonably believes to be the imminent use of unlawful force. Taking this defense a step further, […]

What is Attorney-Client Privilege and How Does It Work?

General

Attorney-Client privilege is an evidentiary rule that protects the confidentiality of certain oral or written communications between a lawyer and a client. The rule prevents attorneys from revealing the content of protected communications to a third party. The purpose of the privilege is to encourage candid and honest communication between clients and attorneys. It permits […]

Indiana Program Compensates Innocent People Who Have Been Wrongfully Convicted of a Crime

General

In June 2019, Governor Eric Holcomb signed HB 1150, legislation that provides compensation for people wrongly convicted of crimes they did not commit. This law made Indiana one of 35 states to enact a compensation law for exonerated people. The law provides exonerated people with up to $50,000 in compensation for each year they were […]

The Legal Fight in Indiana Over Smokeable Hemp: What’s Happening Now?

General

Smokeable hemp is banned in Indiana–at least for now–despite legal challenges brought by a group of Indiana hemp growers. Here’s the background. In 2018, Indiana legislators passed a law (Senate Enrolled Act 516) that legalized the commercial production of hemp but banned smokeable hemp. Under SEA 516, anyone who knowingly possesses, manufactures or delivers smokeable hemp […]

Lessons from the Wrongfully Convicted

General

If you’ve been wrongfully convicted of a crime, you can learn a few lessons and take hope from the following story. In February 1996, Kristine Bunch of Decatur County, Indiana, was convicted of arson and felony murder after a fire in her mobile home claimed the life of her 3-year old son. A State arson […]

Mask Mandate in Indiana

General

In an effort to curb the spread of the coronavirus, in mid-July, Governor Holcomb mandated by executive order that everyone in Indiana ages 8 and older must wear masks or face coverings in indoor public spaces, public transport, and outdoors when it is not possible to social distance. In September, the governor extended this order […]

What Are the Responsibilities of Having an Indiana Hardship License?

General

If an Indiana court or DMV has suspended your drivers’ license–for a DUI or other driving-related reason–you’re probably worried about how you’ll take care of your daily obligations without your vehicle. Fortunately, under Indiana law 9-30-16, you may be eligible to obtain a specialized license (formerly called a “hardship license”) that will allow you limited […]

New Indiana Law: Driving with a Cell Phone in Hand is Illegal

General

On July 1, a new law banned Indiana drivers from using handheld cell phones while driving. Governor Eric Holcomb signed the bill into law in March 2020 to fight against distracted driving, which causes over 10,000 accidents per year in the state. Under the new law, it is illegal for a motorist to drive while […]