JEFFREY LANDRIGAN EXECUTED IN ARIZONA AFTER SUPREME COURT REVERSES STAY

Jeffrey Landrigan was executed Tuesday night after the Supreme Court lifted a stay issued by the District Court. The State of Arizona along with other states uses a three-drug execution protocol. One of the drugs is the barbituate, sodium thiopental. Hospira Inc. is the only manufacturer licensed by the F. D. A. to produce sodium thiopental. Hospira Inc. is out of sodium thiopental and will not have more until the beginning of the year. Jeffrey Landrigan’s lawyers requested a stay […] Read more »

STUDY SHOWS RACIAL DISPERITY IN NYPD DECISIONS TO SEARCH CITIZENS

Yesterday, we looked at racial disparities in arrests for marijuana possession in California. Of course most drug arrests are based upon some type of search. There are three types of contacts between police and citizens. First there is the consensual contact in which both parties agree to the contact and can terminate it at any time. A search can only occur in a consensual if the citizen give knowing consent. In the second type of contact, the detention, the officer […] Read more »

DPA/NAACP STUDIES SHOWS RACIAL NATURE OF MARIJUANA ARRESTS

A study conducted by the Drug Policy Alliance and the California State Conference of the NAACP found that minorities were significantly more likely to be arrested for marijuana possession in twenty-five cities in California than Whites. The study found that African Americans are arrested four to twelve times as often as Whites.This happens despite the fact that Whites way outnumber African Americans in each of the cities and Federal government statistics show that more Whites use marijuana than African Americans. […] Read more »

FIRING EMPLOYEES FOR USING PRESCRIPTION MEDICATION

Employee drug testing is expanding. Now many companies test not only for illegal drugs but also for many prescribed medications. On one level that makes sense. Many prescribed pain killers can affect one’s ability to do a job and can increase the chances of severe injury on the job. But drug tests only tell you what medications are in the blood system. They do not tell you the quantity of the drug or how the drug affects the individual and […] Read more »

SIXTH CIRCUIT SUPRESSES GUN

In the predawn hours of November 15, 2007 Cuyahoga Metropolitan Housing Authority Police Officer Eric Williams notice an Oldsmobile legally parked in a housing complex. The engine was running and there was a person in the car but slumped over and barely visible. Williams checked the registration and found no warrants for the owner of the car. He then parked his patrol car, blocking in the vehicle and he approached the window. Demetrion Gross opened up the window to talk […] Read more »

JUDGE BRIGHT ATTACKS THE DISPARITY IN COCAINE SENTENCING

The Eighth Circuit’s decision in United States v. Brewer is rather meaningless and for the most part unworthy of comment. There is a decent search issue but it is based upon confusing testimony in the District Court and once the Court of Appeals settles the evidentiary question or thinks it has settled the question the decision to uphold the search is predictable. The other issues raised by the defendant such as the sufficiency of the evidence or the failure of […] Read more »

COURT DENIES UNDERWEAR BOMBER’S MOTION TO DENY ACCESS TO DISCOVERY TO STANDBY COUNSEL

Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, popularly known as the Underwear Bomber, who is accused of attempting to blow up an airplane as it landed in Detroit on Christmas Day is representing himself in his Federal trial. It is rarely a good thing to represent oneself. A defendant who is not a lawyer is held to the same standards as a lawyer in regard to the rules of evidence, admissibility of evidence, and examination of witnesses as a lawyer would be held. Furthermore, […] Read more »

ERIC HOLDER PROMISES TO PROSECUTE VIOLATIONS OF FEDERAL MARIJUANA LAWS EVEN IF IT IS LEGALIZED IN CALIFORNIA

Attorney General Eric Holder announced that the government will continue to prosecute marijuana case regardless of how California votes next month on Proposition 19. Proposition 19 will abolish California laws making possession of marijuana for personal use illegal for adults. But Holder will have little power over the use of marijuana under Proposition 19. It will legalize personal use and possession of an ounce of marijuana. But the Federal government rarely prosecutes such small cases except in national parks and […] Read more »

NINTH CIRCUIT UPHOLDS ADMISSION OF PRIOR BAD ACTS EVIDENCE

Robert Lozano, Sr. was tried and convicted for attempted possession of marijuana for sale in Barrow, Alaska. The charges were based on the controlled delivery of a package sent to him from California. At the trial, the government introduced evidence, including marijuana, found in a probation search of his residence eight months prior to the controlled delivery. Lozano objected. But the admission was upheld by both the trial court and the appellate court. Federal Rule of Evidence Rule 404(b) provides […] Read more »

CALIFORNIA ARAB-AMERICAN STUDENTS FINDS GPS DEVICE ATTACHED TO VEHICLE

An automobile mechanic discovered a GPS device attached to Yasir Afifi’s vehicle when Afifi took the car in for an oil change. Why the FBI attached the device to Afifi’s car we do not know. Afifi lives in California where the Ninth Circuit has ruled that a search warrant is not necessary to place a GPS device on a vehicle. If he lived in the District of Columbia the result would be different because the DC Circuit has ruled that […] Read more »