Indiana courts caseload climbs in 2010


Roughly 1.86 million new cases were filed in the state's courts last year, an increase of 3.3

percent over 2001, according to a data report released Tuesday by the Indiana

Supreme Court


Among the report's findings:

- 205 murder cases were filed in trial courts in 2010, down 27 percent

from 2002.

- 1,514 civil and criminal jury trials took place in 2010.

- 361,969 cases included self-represented plaintiffs or defendants.

- There were 41,274 mortgage foreclosure filings, up 39 percent from


- An interpreter was used in 14,978 trial court cases last year.

The report also shows that state and local governments spent more than $393

million to operate the state's courts

systems. Filing fees, court costs, user fees and fines generated nearly $233

million in revenue.

The state produces the Indiana Judicial

Service Report

annually. It includes statistics about the courts in all 92

counties and provides information about which courts have the most cases on a

per-judge basis. Lawmakers use the statistics in part to determine which

counties need new courts or judicial officers.

"The work of the courts cannot

be summed up in numbers, but the 2010 statistics report does offer a snapshot

of the volume, breadth, challenges and success stories in each of the

courthouses in Indiana's 92 counties," Chief Justice Randall Shepard

said Tuesday in a press release announcing the report's release.

The above is one of an ongoing series of reports from the Indiana Statehouse by students at the Franklin College Pulliam School of Journalism.