The Indiana Supreme Court ruled last week that unlawful entry by police into a person’s home is fine. Not only that, but it is illegal for a homeowner to resist the unlawful entry.
The case is the result of an argument between an Evansville man and his wife. The wife called 911 and police responded. After an argument, the man told police the two had settled their argument and retreated into his house. When officers tried to enter the house, the man struck one officer. The man was later tased. In a strong dissent, Justice Brent Dickson agreed that police should be able to enter in cases of domestic violence but believed the ruling was too broad.
This news should be a central part of most media’s packaging in the state of Indiana. The Northwest Times deserves credit for reporting about this in a timely fashion, and for writing a column about the decision. But where’s the statewide coverage of this decision? Searches through the Indianapolis Star, and newspapers from South Bend to Terre Haute show little more than AP coverage of this decision. Are the columnists writing about this? On Tuesday, theFort Wayne News Sentinel wrote this editorial but a search through o
On Tuesday, media announced that some of the judges are receiving threats because of the ruling. Read the Northwest Times piece here. Newspapers across the state started to pick up the story by Wednesday. The Indianapolis Star had a blog about it and Terre Haute’s Tribune-Star reported on a Tea Party speech against the ruling. Still, five days after the ruling and the coverage has not been extensive. Media have a job to serve as a fourth estate. Media have a responsibility to, at the very least, inform the public about decisions like the one the Indiana Supreme Court just handed down. Agree with the decision or disagree, and many states have similar statutes, the decision is important and Indiana media should be covering it, not just relying on the AP. Right now, the Indiana media is slow in keeping their public informed.