McConnell Gets Bill Passed to Legalize Hemp

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, who will be a top Democratic target in 2020 when he runs for reelection, won a big legislative victory when he succeeded in passing a bill that makes hemp a legal agricultural commodity, removing it from the federal list of controlled substances. He says hemp is distinct from marijuana, hemp’s “illicit cousin.”

Ex-Judges to ICE: Stop Arrests in Courthouses

Dozens of former state and federal judges are asking U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement to add courthouses to the list of “sensitive locations” where their officers generally do not go. saying, “Our justice system cannot function effectively — if victims, defendants, witnesses, and family members do not feel secure in accessing the courthouse,”

Meth a Larger Factor in Overdose Deaths, CDC Says

The number of fatal overdoses involving meth more than tripled between 2011 and 2016, says the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The percentage of overdose deaths involving meth grew from less than 5 percent to nearly 11 percent. Fentanyl was involved in the highest percentage of fatal overdoses in 2016, followed by heroin and cocaine.

Half of MS Jail Detainees Stay Over 90 Days

Long pretrial detentions are particularly prevalent in Mississippi because of impoverished inmates who can’t make bail, delays in appointing public defenders, slow processing of evidence and infrequent meetings of local courts.