Friday August 29, 2014
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Friday August 29, 2014

Contributors: News - Harmless Error

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    Tuesday Aug 19, 2014 | 12:18 pm

    Ferguson recap 8/19/14, autopsy, tear gas & John Oliver’s take

    When I last wrote about the Ferguson Missouri situation, it seemed that the conflict was drawing to a close. Turns out, that was super not what happened. It’s worth considering where we are now and how we got here. Last Thursday, as things looked like they were going to explode, Governor Jay Nixon ordered State Police to take over security from the Ferguson PD. Capt. Ronald S. Johnson was appointed to […]

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  • Friday Aug 15, 2014 | 6:31 am

    Sooo…this Ferguson, Missouri sitch got kinda crazy

    If you hadn’t noticed already, stuff in Ferguson, Missouri got pretty rugged for a second. The St. Louis suburb was in turmoil after the 8/9/14 police shooting of unarmed black teenager, Michael Brown Jr. Eyewitnesses, including Brown’s friend and a bystander, report that an officer struggled with Brown through the window of his police car and then shot the teen as he ran away. Witnesses said that after he was hit Brown turned, put his […]

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  • Thursday Aug 14, 2014 | 6:37 am

    Teacher charged with “maintaining drug-involved premises,” what’s that?

    Noel Thibodeau is a former language teacher accused of allowing his home to be used for drug activity. He was arrested on August 5th and released on bail this monday. Thibodeau is charged with a federal crime that we don’t see very often called “Maintaining Drug-Involved Premises.” After reading the coverage earlier this week, I thought I would take a closer look at the law. The statute is 21 U.S.C. […]

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  • Friday Aug 08, 2014 | 1:35 pm

    Ex-Connecticut mayor who defrauded Maine man loses appeal

    Peter DiRosa used to be the mayor of Manchester, Connecticut. Today he’s serving a 57-month federal prison sentence for wire fraud. DiRosa was convicted in Portland’s federal court in 2013 for his role in defrauding Frank Jablonski out of $540,000. This week, the First Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed the conviction and sentence. Facts of DiRosa’s case Frank Jablonski invested $600,000 with DiRosa and his business partner, Thomas Renison. The money […]

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  • Thursday Jul 31, 2014 | 10:28 am

    Senate considers limiting NSA surveillance & FISA courts

    On July 29, 2014, senator Patrick Leahy, introduced the USA Freedom act of 2014. The bill would change the way that the government collects digital surveillance under the Foreign Surveillance Intelligence Act by significantly increasing privacy protections and adding some transparency to the FISA court process. Here are some of the notable changes: Scope of collection must be limited Under current law, the government has been able to intercept all communication […]

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    Friday Jul 18, 2014 | 11:04 am

    Lawyered to death: why California’s death penalty is unconstitutional

    In 1995 Ernest Dewayne Jones was sentenced to death in California. He exhausted all his state appeals and lost at every turn. In 2009 Jones applied for federal Habeas Corpus relief claiming that his sentence violated his federal rights. On Wednesday, federal district court judge Cormac J. Carney finally ruled on the petition and held that Jones’ sentence is unconstitutional. His decision was not based on the idea that it’s too harsh […]

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    Thursday Jul 17, 2014 | 7:03 am

    Your Genome is less protected than your iPhone, except in Vermont

    Many states have laws mandating DNA collection from people who get arrested. Once analyzed, the arrestee’s DNA profile can be added to a database for use in future investigations. Last term, the U.S. Supreme Court decided Maryland v. King and held that these compulsory DNA sampling laws are constitutional. Maine has a DNA testing law but it only requires samples from people convicted of certain crimes. Vermont’s new DNA protections Last week, Vermont’s Supreme Court decided State […]

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  • Monday Jul 14, 2014 | 7:35 am

    Interesting items: marijuana search, attempted murder

    Here are some of my favorite stories of the past week: Smell of Marijuana is grounds for a search in Maine, not in Massachusetts The Massachusetts High court decided Commonwealth v. Overmyer last week and held that the smell of unburnt marijuana does not create probable cause to search a car. The same court decided in 2011 that the smell of burnt marijuana was not a valid basis to detain and search […]

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  • Tuesday Jul 08, 2014 | 11:04 am

    Florida fighting Judge back on the bench, lawyer he hit is out of a job

    Some may recall my earlier post about Florida Judge John C. Murphy. He’s the guy who challenged Assistant public defender Andrew Weinstock to a fight for refusing to waive his client’s speedy trial rights. Judge Murphy then apparently grabbed the defense lawyer by the collar and punched him in the head. Security footage of the incident is embedded below: Many who saw the original post asked, “What happened with that case? Was […]

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