Indiana News

Settlement reached in former IPFW chancellor’s lawsuit

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (AP) – Attorneys for Purdue University say the school has settled a federal lawsuit over the forced retirement of Indiana-Purdue Fort Wayne’s former chancellor.

The school’s attorneys say in a Monday court filing that Michael Wartell’s lawsuit “has now been resolved.” That filing includes no details of the settlement.

A message left Tuesday seeking comment from Wartell’s attorney, Blake Hike, was not immediately returned.

Wartell was forced to retire in 2011 at age 65 under a mandatory retirement age policy he alleges was not enforced against any other senior administrator.

Wartell sued Purdue in both federal and Tippecanoe County court in 2013.

The Journal Gazette reports the settlement ends years of wrangling over a report prepared by an attorney who investigated Wartell’s removal.

Purdue officials fought to keep that report secret.


Shoe art by Kokomo native stolen from northern Indiana museum

SOUTH BEND, Ind. (WISH) — A shoe by an Indiana native was stolen Saturday from a northern Indiana art museum.

South Bend Museum of Art is seeking help to find the thief of a shoe from the piece titled “Welcome Knives,” part of an exhibit by Kokomo native Chris Francis that’s traveled to other U.S. museums. His work has been described as wearable architecture.

The shoe disappeared between 2 and 5 p.m. Saturday while the museum was open. The museum staff and city police are reviewing surveillance video from the Century Center to gain a lead. South Bend’s show called “Chris Francis: Modern Bespoke 21st Century Shoe Art” is in the downtown Century Center through April 5.

Francis, who grew up in Kokomo and now lives in Los Angeles, said in a statement that he was “saddened to be informed that someone has chosen to steal the piece ‘Welcome Knives’ from the exhibition. The shoes exhibited are all documented and catalogued works of art that have shown in many museums. Every shoe in the exhibition is one of a kind, with no others in existence making them very different than shoes we find in stores.”

Francis has created shoes for runway shows and for celebrities, including Lady Gaga and the members of Kiss and The Sex Pistols.

His work was displayed late last year on the Purdue University campus.

Anyone with information was asked to call the South Bend Police Department at (574) 235.9201 or contact the South Bend Museum of Art via email at, or through the museum’s social media accounts: Facebook, @SouthBendMuseumofArt; Twitter, @southbendart; Instagram, @southbendart.