Blogs

NY stop and frisk challenge in federal court
Mar 18, 2013, - 0 Comments

March 18, 2013 Associated Press

NEW YORK  — A class-action suit challenging the New York Police Department's stop and frisk policy got under way Monday with a lawyer saying that officers have been wrongly stopping tens of thousands of young men based solely on their race.

Darius Charney of the Center for Constitutional Rights said the policy is legal, but the department is doing stops illegally. Changes must be ordered by a federal judge to ensure the department stops wrongly targeting black and Hispanic men, he said.

He called many of the half million annual stops a "frightening and degrading experience" for "thousands if not millions" of New Yorkers over the last decade. He called them "arbitrary, unnecessary and unconstitutional."

He promised plaintiffs will show the judge "powerful testimonial and statistical evidence" that New Yorkers are routinely stopped without suspicion.

The Yosemite Murders - 1999
Mar 18, 2013, - 0 Comments

Stayner

Cary Stayner

by Michael Thomas Barry

On March 18, 1999, the bodies of Carole Sund and Silvina Pelosso are found in a charred rental car in a remote wooded area of Long Barn, California. The women, along with Sund's daughter Juli, had been missing since February when they were last seen alive at the Cedar Lodge near Yosemite National Park.

Raymond Clark III pleads guilty to murdering Annie Le - 2011
Mar 17, 2013, - 0 Comments

clark and Le

Raymond Clark III and Annie Le

by Michael Thomas Barry

On March 17, 2011, Raymond Clark III, a former animal research assistant at Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut, pleads guilty to the murder and attempted sexual assault of 24-year-old Yale graduate student Annie Le. On September 13, 2009, Le’s partially decomposed body was found stuffed behind a wall in the university research building where she was last seen five days earlier.

Copper theft technology used to thwart crime bonanza
Mar 17, 2013, - 0 Comments

March 17, 2013 Contra Costa Times

CONCORD -- Some Bay Area cities would like Daniel Meyers to be the new poster boy for copper thievery. In an era when copper thefts are soaring and thieves loot with near impunity, Meyers' arrest was surprisingly routine.

Police say that on May 21, Meyers cut and took $1,050 worth of copper wire from a rural area near Columbus Parkway in Vallejo, put the stolen goods in a Cadillac Escalade and drove to an apartment.

Thanks to tracking technology, police followed his every move. The 32-year-old was arrested a short time later. He has since pleaded not guilty and is awaiting trial in April on charges of grand theft and receiving stolen property.

This electronic tracking technology is what Vallejo officials hope will put an end to the copper theft bonanza. Other cities also are eyeing the prospective solution to what has, in recent years, become a scourge that affects traffic lights, park lighting, building wiring and other public and private facilities that run on electricity.

Once a major component in making 1-cent coins, copper now is costing cities a pretty penny to replace. Thefts have soared along with the price of copper: The metal now goes for $4 a pound at salvage yards, nearly three times the price four years ago. But it's costing cities much more to replace.

Jilted Lover Murder - 1881
Mar 16, 2013, - 0 Comments

Forster

Francisco "Chico" Forster

by Michael Thomas Barry

On March 16, 1881, Francisco "Chico" Forster is shot to death on a downtown Los Angeles street by his jilted lover, eighteen-year old Lastania Abarta. The forty-year old Forster was the son of a wealthy Los Angeles land developer and considered one of the city's most eligible bachelors despite his reputation for womanizing and poorly treating women. Abarta worked in her parent's pool hall, where she sang, played the guitar, and met frequent customer Forster.

Arizona woman's murder conviction, death sentence overturned
Mar 15, 2013, - 0 Comments

March 14, 2013 CNN

After 22 years on death row, Debra Milke is close to freedom.

A jury convicted the Arizona woman, now 49, of murder, conspiracy to commit murder, child abuse and kidnapping on October 12, 1990, less than a year after her 4-year-old son was found dead.

A judge sentenced her to death a few months later.

But those convictions and the related sentence were tossed out Thursday by a federal appeals court judge. In explaining his decision, Chief Judge Alex Kozinski of the federal 9th Circuit Court of Appeals chided the prosecution for remaining "unconstitutionally silent" on the "history of misconduct" of its key witness, a Phoenix police detective.

"The Constitution requires a fair trial," Kozinski wrote. "This never happened in Milke's case."

Beware the Ides of March - 44 BC
Mar 15, 2013, - 0 Comments

caesar

Julius Caesar is assassinated

by Michael Thomas Barry

On March 15, 44 B.C. Julius Caesar, the "dictator for life" of the Roman Empire is murdered by his own senators at a meeting hall next to Pompey's Theatre. The conspiracy against Caesar encompassed as many as sixty noblemen, including Caesar's own protégé, Marcus Brutus.

Pages