Courts in the Classroom
Supreme Court of Indiana
Division of State Court Administration
30 S. Meridian Street, Ste 500
Indianapolis, IN 46204
History Project Award
from the National Council
on Public History
The Supreme Court will travel to Theodore Roosevelt College & Career Academy in Gary, Indiana to hear oral arguments in the case of Danny Sims v. Andrew Pappas and Melissa Pappas on Thursday, March 9 at 10:30 am CST.
If you are interested in bringing a small group of students to Gary on March 9, please contact Sarah Kidwell.
Public Supreme Court proceedings are called "oral arguments," which provide the Justices with the opportunity to ask attorneys questions about the cases. Usually, oral arguments last 40 minutes to an hour. An honorary bailiff will call the court to order. Each side has 20 minutes to argue. Typically the appealing party will open the argument, the other side then responds, and then the appealing party has the last word. More information including rules for attending Supreme Court oral arguments can be found online.
The traveling oral arguments program addresses state academic standards in U.S. Government and United States History. The argument process demonstrates the principles of due process, judicial review, and an independent judiciary.
Andrew Pappas was injured in a car accident with Danny Sims, who was drunk. Pappas and his wife sued Sims for negligence. Over Sims’ objection, the Lake Superior Court admitted evidence that he had prior alcohol-related driving convictions in 1983 and 1996. A jury awarded the Pappases $2.0 million in damages. The Court of Appeals reversed and remanded for a new trial, finding evidence of Sims’ prior convictions should not have been admitted. Sims v. Pappas, 61 N.E.3d 1285 (Ind. Ct. App. 2016), vacated. The Supreme Court has granted a petition to transfer the case and has assumed jurisdiction over the appeal.