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Criminal law Archives

The insanity defense: a fundamental right or state's choice?

Not guilty by reason of insanity. It is a phrase that conjures more than just visions of a plotline from a criminal drama. It is one that seems a part of the fabric of our justice system -- but is it? Not every state in the country currently allows an insanity defense. Idaho, Kansas, Montana and Utah, for example, have abolished it.

PASSENGER SERIOUSLY INJURED AFTER UNITED AIRLINES REFUSED WHEELCHAIR SERVICE TO STROKE VICTIM, FORCING HIM TO WALK DOWN A FLIGHT OF STAIRS TO EXIT AIRCRAFT

Houston, TX - (August 18th, 2018) - Dreams of walking unassisted again have been completely crushed after John "Rudy" Alvarado (62), a previous stroke victim whose use of the right side of his body has diminished, was refused wheelchair service to exit his aircraft in Manilla, Philippines. Mr. Alvarado, who just before his August 2018 trip to the Philippines had high hopes and was working toward his goal of unassisted walking, will likely never be able to walk without assistance again.

What is retaliatory arrest? Which story will the court believe?

In the last Supreme Court term there were few criminal cases. One that did get some attention involved retaliatory arrest. This is when an officer retaliates against someone who is exercising their First Amendment freedom of speech. It also provides a cautionary tale about the subjective nature of memory and experience.

What is genome sleuthing? And is it lawful?

Investigators have used DNA in criminal databases to help solve cases for decades. What is being pulled into these databases is increasing and raises privacy issues. Could a cheek swab to trace your roots through a service like Ancestry.com or 23andMe mean your biological information is public? Many people say yes in hopes of finding out more about where they came from and distant relatives.

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