Make your home page

Appeals Court upholds conviction against former IMPD Officer David Bisard

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) – A State Court of Appeals is upholding the conviction against former IMPD Officer David Bisard.

Bisard was convicted in November 2013 in connection with the August 2010 crash that injured Kurt Weekly and Mary Mills and killed 30-year-old Eric Wells. Allen County Judge John Surbeck, Jr. sentenced Bisard to 16 years in prison, with three years suspended for probation.

Bisard appealed the conviction in January, then asked an appeals court for a new trial in July. That filing cited three grounds for appeal:

  • That Bisard was deprived of due process and denied the right to present a defense
  • That Judge Surbeck abused his discretion by denying Bisard’s motion for a mistrial
  • That Judge Surbeck abused his discretion by citing “breach of the public trust” as an aggravating factor at sentencing

Bisard’s attorneys claimed his right to due process was violated because he was not given ample opportunity to present evidence refuting the state’s claim that he was a “tolerant drinker.”

Wednesday, the Court of Appeals sided with the trial court on all the above issues. In response to the claims of the denied right to present a defense, the Court of Appeals says Bisard could have chosen to present witness testimony that they had never seen him intoxicated. The Appeals Court ruled strategic decisions do not violate a defendant’s due process right to present a defense.

Marion County Prosecutor Terry Curry released the following statement:

“It is an obvious understatement that it has been a long path to reach this point, with more than four years passing since the time of the tragic crash. I commend the work and perseverance of deputy prosecutors and staff from our office and officers from IMPD in bringing this case to the conviction which has now been upheld by the Court of Appeals.”

“As was expressed at the time of the jury verdict, the only ultimate satisfaction that this decision delivers is that justice has been served on behalf of Eric Wells, Mary Mills, and Kurt Weekly.”

To read the entire ruling handed down by the Court of Appeals, click here.