By Matthew Maples, Hocker & Associates LLC
It is sometimes said that that a good lawyer knows the law, but a great lawyer knows the judge. And while it may be meant as a joke, knowing your audience (and the court) can be helpful in your practice. Feeling comfortable in court can help you provide better advocacy for your client and getting to know your local judges can help improve your practice. This year, we are providing our section members with information about judicial officers that we hope will both encourage positive bench/bar relationships and help us all serve our clients better. This is the sixth installment in the Solo/Small Firm Practice Section's "Getting to Know Your Judicial Officers" series.
Magistrate Stanley E. Kroh of Marion Superior Court sat down with Matthew Maples of Hocker & Associates LLC to answer a few questions about himself and his court.
Q: When did you become a Magistrate?
A: I have been a Magistrate since 2014 with the Marion Superior Court, Criminal Division. I served as a Commissioner from 2007-2014.
Q: What courts can we find you in?
A: Hon. Carlisle’s Court, Criminal Court 3 and major felony three days per week. Hon. Marchal’s Court, Criminal Court 15 and Level 6 felony and misdemeanor.
Q: What did you do before serving as a Commissioner?
A: I worked for the Marion County Prosecutor’s office for 15 years.
Q: What are you looking forward to most in the upcoming year in the Criminal Division?
A: Becoming more streamlined with Expungements. One issue that is tough for the Judges is not having quick access to the old criminal case files.
Q: Is there anything new that we should be looking out for in the Criminal Division?
A: Yes! Look out for potential big changes to Drug Court. Also, there will be a new Judge in Court 21.
Q: What would you like us to know about how you run your court?
A: I run both courts in accordance with the elected Judges. All attorneys need to be on time, or at least call the Court when you are running late! Also, please, be prepared. It is obvious to us when the attorneys are not prepared. Finally, be civil and be mindful of your reputation.
Q: Is there anything specific that annoys you about attorneys in your Court?
A: First, being late to Court without notifying the Court. Second, not being prepared. Specifically, not preparing your witnesses or discovery. Finally, know the grounds to your objections.
Q: OK, time for some easy questions...What was the last book you read?
A: All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr, a book about World War II that I would recommend to most people.
Q: What was the last movie that you watched?
A: “Meru,” a documentary about climbing the Shark’s Fin on Mount Meru.
Q: Should I watch it?
Q: Are you a mountain climber?
A: Not at all, but still a great movie.
Q: Final question, what is your ideal Saturday afternoon?
A: Sitting outside, playing with my black lab, and spending time with my family.
Thank you for sitting down with me to do this interview.
This post was written by Matthew Maples, Hocker & Associates LLC. If you would like to submit content or write an article for the Solo/Small Firm Practice Section page, please email Rachel Beachy at firstname.lastname@example.org.