American Jails Have Become De Facto Psychiatric Facilities, P. 1

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This weekend not only marks the 10th anniversary of 9/11, but it marks the 40th anniversary of the Attica prison riots. No, the riots were not in North Carolina, but prison officials here and around the country watched and waited for four days. The riots ended with state troopers opening fire, killing both inmates and
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Eyewitness Identification Decision May Challenge Law Enforcement, P2

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We are continuing our discussion of a recent court ruling, in another state, regarding eyewitness identifications. The defendant in the case was convicted of reckless manslaughter, aggravated assault and weapons possession charges, even though the eyewitness told the court that a detective had “nudged” him to identify the defendant. Court decisions from outside of North
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Eyewitness Identification Decision May Challenge Law Enforcement

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While North Carolina sits out Hurricane Irene, we will turn our attention to the problems with eyewitness identification. Anyone who watches television is familiar with the scenario: The victim’s neighbor is on the stand. The prosecutor asks if she saw the man who assaulted the victim. She points at the defendant and cries, “Yes! That’s
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Judge Oks Use of Wife’s Medical Records in Nursing Home Trial

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A key witness was unable to testify last week at the trial of the man who shot ten people in a North Carolina nursing home. The witness is the defendant’s ex-wife, whom many believe was his primary target. She was hospitalized last week after attempting suicide the day before the murder trial began. The judge
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North Carolina Attorney General Responds to State Crime Lab Story

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A story from last Sunday’s Charlotte Observer sharply criticized the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation (SBI) for failing to enact reforms promised by North Carolina Attorney General Roy Cooper. In response to this and other criticism, Attorney General Cooper removed the head of the SBI and promised to appoint new leadership in the form
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