With just sixteen hours before polling stations were to open in Ohio, the Supreme Court on Monday afternoon blocked voters from beginning tomorrow to cast their ballots in this year’s general election. By a vote of five to four, the Justices put on hold a federal judge’s order providing new opportunities for voting before election day, beyond what state leaders wanted.
The order will remain in effect until the Court acts on an appeal by state officials. If that is denied, then the order lapses. It is unclear when that scenario will unfold. The state’s petition has not yet been filed formally.
The practical effect of the order will mean that, at the least, early voting will not be allowed this week — a period that supporters of early balloting have called “Golden Week.” That permits voters to register and cast their ballots on the same day.
Rio Arriba County Sheriff Tommy Rodella was found guilty Friday on both counts - a civil rights charge for making an unconstitutional arrest of a motorist and a firearms charge for brandishing a gun during the crime - that he faced in a federal court trial in Albuquerque.
In finding Rodella guilty, the jury determined that the sheriff used unreasonable force, unlawfully arrested [the victim, Michael] Tafoya and used a dangerous weapon.
Tafoya, in police reports and at trial, maintained that Rodella and his son provoked what amounted to a road-rage incident by first tailgating him, then making “come on” motion as if they wanted to fight. Tafoya sped off but was trapped after he pulled into a driveway.
He testified he was begging for his life as an armed man who turned out to be Rodella wrestled with him and Rodella Jr. dragged him out of his car and threw him to the ground. Tafoya said that when Rodella Jr. told him the older man with a gun was the sheriff and Tafoya asked to see his badge, Rodella said, “Here’s my badge, mother(expletive)” and shoved the badge into Tafoya’s face. Tafoya was arrested and charged but his case was dismissed.
Helping back up Tafoya’s account were three other drivers who testified about intimidating encounters with the sheriff at traffic stops, including two that started with Rodella tailgating and one where the sheriff allegedly threw his badge at the driver.
Also, a jogger who witnessed part of the pursuit involving Tafoya confirmed that during the chase, Tafoya stopped and asked the jogger through his car window to call police. The same witness did say that the end of the pursuit, Tafoya nearly struck Rodella while backing up.
Read the rest here: Rio Arriba Sheriff Tommy Rodella Found Guilty on Both Counts
Attitude problem? What attitude problem?
Some members of the Rodella family were decked out in black shirts that gave their view of the proceedings Friday as Rio Arriba County Sheriff “Tommy” Rodella and his son appeared in handcuffs in federal court to answer to criminal civil rights charges.
“When Injustice Becomes Law Rebellion Becomes Duty” was the message printed across the back as the controversial sheriff and his son pleaded not guilty to charges that they violated the civil rights of a 26-year-old Española man during a high-speed chase, confrontation and arrest last March.
It’s not quite over. The Rodella defense now looks to implicate the US Attorney who convicted them. (From the first link:)
Rodella, 52, faces up to 17 years in prison.
Rodella’s lawyers have filed a “Hyde Amendment” claim of prosecutorial misconduct and allege that U.S. Attorney Damon Martinez has a “vendetta” against Rodella because the sheriff has refused to deputize U.S. Forest Service agents to enforce state law in Rio Arriba County.
Not the same ‘Hyde Amendment’ prohibiting US money being spent on abortions.
“China appreciated the efforts expended by Qatar to promote and protect human rights.”
“Bangladesh praised Qatar for the progress made in empowering women.”
“Iran commended Qatar on its integrated social development, and for improving the situation of women.”
“Sudan applauded the steps taken by Qatar.”
“Turkey commended the progress achieved by Qatar in human rights.”
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I think we can be glad this man had a gun and the sense to stop a killing. This is an example of the benefit of a right to access contemporary and effective defensive tools. Like guns. Sometimes a gun does save some lives in the hands of a citizen. I don’t consider this a law enforcement shoot because the man was only a reserve deputy, has a full time civilian job, and responded the same as anyone with a gun on the spot may have. it’s an appropriate use of force by a company executive that saved lives.
OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — A man fired from an Oklahoma food processing plant beheaded a woman with a knife and was attacking another worker when he was shot and wounded by a company official, police said Friday.
Moore Police Sgt. Jeremy Lewis says police are waiting until the 30-year-old man is conscious to arrest him in Thursday’s attack and have asked the FBI to help investigate …
The man, whom The Associated Press is not naming because he has not been charged, stabbed Colleen Hufford, 54, severing her head, Lewis said.
Lewis said the man then stabbed Traci Johnson, 43, a number of times before being shot by Mark Vaughan, a reserve sheriff’s deputy and the company’s chief operating officer.
“This was not going to stop if he didn’t stop it. It could have gotten a lot worse,” Lewis said.
(Reuters) - The Obama administration has agreed to pay the Navajo Nation a record $554 million to settle longstanding claims by America’s largest Indian tribe that its funds and natural resources were mishandled for decades by the U.S. government.
The accord, resolving claims that date back as far as 50 years and marking the biggest U.S. legal settlement with a single tribe, will be formally signed at a ceremony on Friday in Window Rock, Arizona, the capital of the sprawling Navajo reservation.
The deal stems from litigation accusing the government of mismanaging Navajo trust accounts and resources on more than 14 million acres (5.7 million hectares) of land held in trust for the tribe and leased for such purposes as farming, energy development, logging and mining.
Under the current classification, marijuana is placed in the same category as heroin, which severely limits how researchers and doctors can use the drug. A reclassification could dramatically shift how the federal government handles marijuana in the war on drugs and provide some legal legitimacy to medical marijuana at the federal level.
“I think it’s certainly a question that we need to ask ourselves — whether or not marijuana is as serious a drug as is heroin,” Holder said. “[T]he question of whether or not they should be in the same category is something that I think we need to ask ourselves, and use science as the basis for making that determination.”
If a defendant applies for indigent defense, as Mr. Burks did on the day of his arrest in November, the senior circuit judge, Marcus D. Gordon, generally approves the request. But it is the judge’s policy not to appoint a public defense lawyer until a person is indicted. And there is no state law setting a time limit on detention before an indictment.
So Mr. Burks sits in jail and waits, with no lawyer and no end in sight.
Legal experts said such circumstances were widespread, even if this was an extreme example. Steep bail amounts and long jail stays without access to a lawyer are particularly common for those charged with misdemeanors, said Alexandra Natapoff, a professor at Loyola Law School in Los Angeles.
It is somewhat less common for felony cases. But common or not, Professor Natapoff said, it is still wrong.
But the man in charge was never even charged. He got to retire.
Six one-time Los Angeles Sheriff’s deputies were sentenced Tuesday to at least two years in prison for conspiracy and obstruction of justice in connection with an FBI investigation into beatings and corruption in the downtown jails.
“You broke the vow you made to protect the public, to protect the community,” U.S. District Court Judge Percy Anderson said during the nearly three-hour hearing. “You didn’t serve the public by concealing what was happening in the jails.”
Their sentences ranged from 21- to 41-months - less than the 28- to 60-months in federal prison the U.S. Attorney’s Office has asked for in court papers.
Even after their conviction and sentencing, the defendants maintained they were just doing their jobs.