It Would Have Been a Massacre

The horrifying scene at a practice field in Alexandria, Virginia, at which Congressman Steve Scalise was shot in a shocking flurry of gunfire, could have been much worse. Rand Paul pointed out that “it would have been a massacre” had a member of the House leadership not been there. His presence guaranteed that the heavily armed Capitol Police could take him down. Many others present expressed similar feelings. They were sitting ducks.

Government Hype Helps Terrorists

John Kelly, the secretary of homeland security, seems to be moonlighting as a publicist for ISIS. How else to explain his fearmongering warnings about terrorism on Fox News last Friday?

Officer gives customer a ticket for cracked windshield in the parking lot of windshield repair shop

In a world of black and white laws, citizens count on police officers and judges to see the shades of grey in between. Some officers may consider the context of an offense before delivering a charge or citation. The cop in this story wasn’t one of them.

Florida Man Jailed 180 Days for Not Giving Police His iPhone Password

Yesterday a circuit court judge in Broward County, Florida, sent 41-year-old Christopher Wheeler to jail for 180 days because he wouldn't give police his iPhone password. Wheeler, who is charged with aggravated child abuse, insisted that he did give them his password. But the cops say the password he provided doesn't work, and that Wheeler therefore hasn't complied with their request. This, the judge decided, put him in contempt of court.

Meanwhile, another Florida circuit court judge—this one in Miami-Dade County—issued a rather different ruling in the case of a couple accused of extorting a social media celebrity over a sex tape. They would not be held in contempt of court for failing to share a phone's password, the judge decided, because there's no way to prove that they couldn't remember their password.

Court to Grandma: You Shouldn't Lose Your House Just Because Your Dumb Son Sold Some Weed There

Four years after the Philadelphia District Attorney seized her house without ever charging her with a crime, a 72-year-old grandmother has prevailed at the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, where justices strengthened protections for property owners against civil asset forfeiture.

Supreme Court Rules 8-0 for Police in Major Fourth Amendment Case

In 2002 the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit said that the lawful use of deadly force by the police may be ruled unlawful if the police themselves "created the need to use force" by acting in an illegal manner. "Where an officer intentionally or recklessly provokes a violent confrontation, if the provocation is an independent Fourth Amendment violation," the 9th Circuit held in Billington v.

'ATF should better adhere to its policies': GAO

From the report:

Secret court rebukes NSA for 5-year illegal surveillance of U.S. citizens

U.S. intelligence agencies conducted illegal surveillance on American citizens over a five-year period, a practice that earned them a sharp rebuke from a secret court that called the matter a “very serious” constitutional issue.

The criticism is in a lengthy secret ruling that lays bare some of the frictions between the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court and U.S. intelligence agencies obligated to obtain the court’s approval for surveillance activities.

Senator Demands Answers After ICE Uses 'Stingray' to Arrest Immigrant

US Immigration and Customs Enforcement has repurposed cellphone tracking technology typically used in criminal investigations to track down at least one immigrant for deportation, The Detroit News revealed last week. ICE’s controversial use of the surveillance technology has caught the eye of Senator Ron Wyden, an Oregon Democrat who is now demanding answers from ICE about its use of cell-site simulators, colloquially known as “Stingrays.”

Concealed Carriers are NOT Innocent Until Proven Guilty in Florida: Findley

Are we INNOCENT until proven guilty by the prosecutor when we use our licensed concealed carry gun for self defense when threatened with death or great bodily harm?

Or are we GUILTY until we prove ourselves innocent whenever we use our gun in a self-defense situation?

It certainly makes sense to me, a legal layman and non-attorney, that an accused defendant is first INNOCENT until proven guilty...

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