Mandatory Minimum Felony Drug Charges for Nonviolent Offenses Are a Terrible Idea

September 9, 2013

Mandatory minimum sentences were part of the tough on crime movement a few decades ago. They seek to dole out the harshest penalties to people convicted of felony drug charges and more. In the case of these non-violent offenders, a several-year stint in prison is as likely to “help” them and their community as a […]

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Phone App Lets You Check Impairment Levels

September 6, 2013

Driving drunk, high, or even tired can be a recipe for disaster. Not only do you risk being arrested but you risk being involved in a serious accident. With marijuana laws in flux, police agencies across the nation are on the look-out for people who might be high behind the wheel, and the makers of […]

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Yes, ‘Big Brother’ Is Monitoring Your Snail-Mail Too

July 26, 2013

Not many people write letters anymore. Many may have thought of returning to the old-school communication tactic when they learned of the NSA’s program that pulls private information from email and other online sources. But as we are learning, “snail mail” may not be any safer from the eyes of Big Brother. According to the […]

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Most U.S. Police Have No Eyewitness Policies in Place

July 8, 2013

There is nothing quite as convincing to a jury as an eyewitness identification. Seeing the victim identify their assailant, for example, can have a profound effect on the people sitting in the courtroom. But, eyewitness identifications are called the “single greatest cause of wrongful convictions”; they are unreliable. And according to a new report, local […]

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Supreme Court Rules Silence Can Be Evidence of Guilt

July 5, 2013

You know that whole “right to remain silent” spiel the police give when they “Mirandize” you or read you your rights? Well it turns out you really don’t have that unequivocal right; you have the right to remain silent sometimes and only when you verbally invoke that right. Yes, in order to remain silent you […]

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Local Police Amassing Own DNA Databases

June 28, 2013

A Supreme Court ruling recently determined that DNA collections at the time of arrest constitute a Constitutional search. In other words, even if you aren’t convicted of an offense, the government can take your DNA. And while this ruling will set the stage for even more liberal DNA seizures at the state and federal levels, […]

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Sign of the Times: Sesame Street Film for Children of Incarcerated Parents

June 21, 2013

The Sesame Street show that so many of us grew up with has changed considerably over the years. Old characters have moved on and news ones have shown up. But, perhaps the most significant thing the Sesame Workshop has done is a recent attempt to address the heartbreaking number of children who have a parent […]

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New Criminal Statutes & Mandatory Minimums

June 18, 2013

Historically, law enforcement and crime and punishment was left to the states. The states wrote the majority of criminal laws and enforced them as well. But, over the past several decades, the federal government has played an increasing role in the criminal justice system—enacting new criminal laws at an alarming rate of about 500 per […]

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Taking DNA Samples When Arrested is Allowed by Supreme Court

June 7, 2013

The Supreme Court ruled last week that police can swab arrestees for a DNA sample as a booking procedure. This means, you don’t have to be guilty of a crime in order for your genetic material to be taken and owned by the government. The (somewhat) good news is that not all states follow the […]

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Federal Marijuana Excise Tax Bill Introduced

May 31, 2013

At least one Congressman is willing to make a serious effort to reconcile current strict federal prohibition of marijuana with the realities of new marketplaces for legal medical and recreational use in many States. It is encouraging to see some movement on a federal level to institute what many marijuana advocates have claimed for years […]

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