What do Three Strikes laws, mandatory-minimums for drug offenders, the Stop Snitching campaign, and private police have in common? According to Paul H. Robinson, a law professor at the University of Pennsylvania Law School, they are all expressions of a “shadow” vigilantism that has spread in the contemporary U.S.—usually in response to perceived failures in the justice system.
A bill introduced by a California assemblywoman aims to stop the practice, currently followed by the San Diego Police Department—after a Voice of San Diego investigation revealed it. It’s already illegal to collect DNA from minors without parental consent, a warrant or criminal conviction, but the San Diego cops argue that only applies if they send the DNA to state or national databases.
TIKD alleges in a lawsuit that it is being blocked from consulting on traffic-ticket cases by the Florida Bar Association and The Ticket Clinic, a law practice with 28 offices in Florida. Its legal foes counter that TIKD is practicing law without a license.
Although appellate courts can’t know whether a defendant is actually innocent, they can—or should—know when a trial is unfair. Unfortunately, says a New York attorney who writes under the pseudonym “Appellate Squawk,” most are simply rubber stamps for miscarriages of justice in lower courts.
San Francisco DA George Gascón repeatedly clashed with Maricopa County, Ariz., Sheriff Joe Arpaio when he headed the Mesa, Ariz., police department. In an exclusive interview co-published by TCR and WitnessLA, he calls on prosecutors and law enforcement officials around the country to “stand together” in defense of the Constitution following Trump’s controversial pardon.
Four organizations partner to publish profiles of how each jurisdiction in the U.S. handles the loss and restoration of civil rights and firearms rights, judicial and executive mechanisms for avoiding or mitigating “collateral consequences,” and provisions addressing non-discrimination in employment and licensing.