Judge rules Schuerman does not have to pay Rose

Wanda English Burnett, Editor

Last week in Jefferson Circuit Court, the final phase of a seven year legal battle for Batesville Attorney John Schuerman, came to a close. Jefferson County Circuit Court Judge Ted Todd ruled at the sentencing on September 18, that Schuerman would serve one year probation. He did not rule monetary restitution for the alleged victim Henry Rose, as was hoped by Special Prosecutor Brad Landwerlen. In the judgment of conviction and sentencing order it reads, “Although the state portrays Rose as an illiterate man, the evidence reveals him to be a shrewd business man who started a business from scratch and later sold the business for seven figures. As Mr. Rose stated, he can’t read and write, but he can figure.”

The case was complicated and had “dragged on way to long,” according to Landwerlen, who previously told the Osgood Journal, “no criminal case should ever go on for this amount of time.”
Schuerman had pled guilty in May of this year to three misdemeanor deception charges stemming from him representing Garco Developments, Inc. in 1997. Bob Hammerle, Indianapolis, attorney for Schuerman, noted that his client has paid dearly for “simply representing Henry Rose in a business endeavor.” This business proceeding saw Rose investing money with Garco Deveopments with Schuerman being the attorney who drew up paperwork for Rose.

Hammerle told the Osgood Journal last Wednesday that he was glad to have the matter resolved. He noted that the judge’s ruling was appropriate in his opinion. The attorney has maintained all along that Rose was a “savvy business man who duped the police and investigators.” He went on to say he felt Rose just wanted somebody to blame for a business deal that went wrong. He says Rose shouldn’t get a dime from Schuerman, because his client has not wronged him. He was pleased with the judge’s ruling.

Schuerman thanked his family, friends and clients for their support. “Without their support I am not sure I could have survived the horror that I have been through as an innocent man falsely accused. Also, I want to thank my wonderful friend, law school classmate and my attorney, Robert Hammerle for his friendship, support and for his seven years of hard work to convince the state to dismiss the charges.”

Noting that the state voluntarily dismissed every one of the seven-year-old charges against him on July 9 of this year, Schuerman said it was truly gratifying to him and his family. He only had to wait for the September sentencing to see if the judge would order him to pay Rose any money. “Fortunately, the judge who heard the evidence did not order me to pay Henry Rose Sr. anything,” he told the Osgood Journal this week.

Schuerman said the charges brought against him makes him more aware than ever how easy it is for innocent people to be wronged by the system. He will continue to practice law from his Batesville office.