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Category Archive: Criminal Justice

Apr 15 2014

Indiana Court: Police Testimony Trumps Video

In an age where it has become absolutely routine to have video evidence that shows police officers to be lying in their reports and testimony, the Indiana Supreme Court is coming down firmly on the side of “who are you gonna believe, the cop or your lying eyes?”

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Apr 10 2014

LAPD Officers Disable Tracking Antennae

Here’s an entirely unsurprising but appalling story. LAPD officers that are assigned to inner city neighborhoods have been disabling the antennae that allow their conversations to be monitored by their superiors and to be recorded for future use in tracking their actions.

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Apr 04 2014

How to Put a Stop to Stop and Frisk

Christopher Smith is a white law professor with a black son who goes to Harvard. When his son was doing an internship on Wall Street for a summer he was stopped repeatedly by the police as part of their Stop and Frisk program. His father writes a powerful essay about it.

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Apr 03 2014

VA Sheriff Wants to Set Up Innocence Commission

Sheriff Chip Harding of Albemarle County, Virginia wants the state to set up an innocence commission to help prevent wrongful convictions. If established, it would be the second one that I’m aware of, the first being in Dallas, Texas, where District Attorney Craig Watkins set it up. And what Harding wrote to his fellow law …

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Apr 01 2014

Durham Police Paying Informants for Convictions

The police in Durham, North Carolina have been paying confidential informants not only for their testimony but giving them an extra bonus payment if the person they testify against is convicted. This is a rather blatant violation of the rules under Supreme Court precedent.

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Apr 01 2014

Alleged Right Wing Bombing Plot Ends in Arrest

In a situation reminiscent of the situation here in Michigan with the Hutaree militia (the subject of my second appearance on the Rachel Maddow show), a Texas man has been arrested by the FBI for an alleged plot to start a new revolutionary war with a bombing campaign.

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Mar 30 2014

Bin Laden Son-in-Law Convicted

Hey, remember all that Republican fury over the idea that terrorists could be tried in civilian courts and convicted without the world coming to an end and dogs and cats living together? Turns out, not so much. Osama Bin Laden’s son-in-law was convicted in civilian court in New York, just like hundreds of others have …

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Mar 26 2014

The Broken Criminal Justice System

Glenn Reynolds, law professor and the infamous Instapundit, has a good op-ed in USA Today wherein he declares, correctly, that our criminal justice system is a crime in and of itself. He points out how prosecutors vastly overcharge to force plea bargains:

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Mar 20 2014

Processing Rape Kits Catches Rapists

I’ve written many times about the thousands of rape kits that were found in a Detroit police crime lab, kits that had never been analyzed at all. Some progress is being made on getting through that backlog and it is producing important results, identifying more than 100 rapists.

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Mar 20 2014

Kevin Trudeau Gets 10 Years in Prison

Kevin Trudeau, the con man who sold fake diets to people and made tens of millions of dollars doing it, has been sentenced to 10 years in prison for criminal contempt for failing to comply with earlier punishments for the fraud he carried out on vast numbers of people.

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Mar 19 2014

Another ‘Sovereign Citizen’ Loses in Court

People who call themselves “sovereign citizens” and think that this somehow magically gets them out of the laws that apply to everyone else crack me up. They always lose in court but that does little to dissuade them. The latest is a guy in Ohio who moved into people’s houses while they were away, citing …

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Mar 18 2014

Alexander: Legalization is Not Enough

Michelle Alexander, author of the incredible book The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness (Revised) [ THE NEW JIM CROW: MASS INCARCERATION IN THE AGE OF COLORBLINDNESS (REVISED) BY Alexander, Michelle ( Author ) Jan-16-2012, makes the important point that ending the war on drugs, if it ever happens, will not …

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Mar 13 2014

Judge Who Thinks Prosecutors Should Follow Law Asked to Recuse Himself

Radley Balko, one of the very few journalists who actually pay attention to things like prosecutorial misconduct, reports on a South Carolina judge who recently criticized prosecutors who don’t follow the law and told them that he would be sanctioning them if it happens in his court.

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Mar 11 2014

Another Case of Law Enforcement Rape

We’ve seen multiple cases of rape with a badge in New Mexico and elsewhere lately, with the police forcing people to undergo invasive body cavity searches in a futile search for drugs. Here’s another such case, but this one is by Customs and Border Protection:

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Mar 06 2014

‘Psychic’ Fraud Marks Gets 10 Years

Rose Marks, the matriarch of an entirely family of “psychic” con artists, was sentenced to 10 years in prison after being convicted of many counts of fraud for bilking desperate people out of millions and millions of dollars. Insert the obligatory “she should have seen this coming” joke.

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