Indiana Supreme Court Hears Case at Valparaiso University Law School

The Indiana Supreme Court heard oral arguments for the case State v. Hollin on Feb. 24 at Wesemann Hall. The Court takes time each session to hear one case at each of the four law schools in the state.

Chief Justice Randall T. ShepardJustice Frank Sullivan, Jr., Justice Robert D. Rucker, and Justice Steven David were present. Justice Brent E. Dickson will read the record and vote on the matter at a later date.

Cynthia Ploughe, Deputy Attorney General, represented the State and Michael Sauer represented the defendant, Hollin. The case involved a dispute over whether the defendant had been burdened by ineffective assistance of counsel in early appeals and the tension between evidentiary rules. Hollin was convicted of conspiracy to commit burglary. Later, he was granted post-conviction relief by the Ripley Circuit Court on the grounds that he had been denied the effective assistance of trial counsel. The Court of Appeals reversed in State v. Hollin, 952 N.E.2d 887 (Ind. Ct. App. 2011) (unpub.mem.dec), vacated. The Supreme Court granted Hollin’s petition to transfer on Jan. 5, 2012, and assumed jurisdiction over the case. The Court of Appeal’s opinion can be found at

Following the arguments, students were given the opportunity to ask questions and seek advice from the Justices.

Valparaiso University Law School Dean Jay Conison offered a heartfelt farewell speech in honor of Chief Justice Randall T. Shepard. He will be retiring this year after more than 25 years of service and numerous contributions to legal education programs within the state of Indiana.

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