News Roundup

I feel like we’re living in East Texas, where summer consists of a long, unbroken string of 100 degree days with high humidity. Lucky for us, there are lots of things we can do indoors to pass the time, like perusing the new electronic version of North Carolina Crimes. It’s a web-based, searchable product, available by subscription. The details are here, but basically, it costs the same as the printed version, or you can package both together at a discounted price. I think it’s pretty cool but would like to hear what others think. Other options for beating the heat:

  1. Grab a sweet tea and listen to the radio. School of Government Civil Defender Educator Whitney Fairbanks will appear on WUNC’s The State of Things next Thursday, August 2, at 12:20 p.m. to discuss the Collateral Consequences Assessment Tool, which is a searchable database of the collateral consequences – licensing limitations and the like –  of various kinds of criminal convictions.
  2. Sit on the porch with the newspaper. I suggest reading about the use of nunc pro tunc orders in DWI cases in Wake County. The News and Observer has this story on point, suggesting that the issue is much more widespread than previously believed.
  3. Cool down by sitting in the dark. Due to a power outage. While you’re taking the bar exam. That may sound like an anxiety dream, but it actually happened to the July examinees in Raleigh.
  4. Cool your heels in jail. This story notes that Rodney Dwayne Valentine was recently released from the Rockingham County Jail, but he refused to leave . . . and was arrested for trespassing. I’m guessing that he didn’t post bond. There’s something funny about the story, obviously, but I suspect that there’s a serious and sad tale behind anyone who believes that living in jail is the best option available to him.
  5. There are some darkly humorous introductions that one can imagine for this item, but they’d be in poor taste, so I’ll simply note this very interesting story out of Oregon: the state’s governor has declared a moratorium on executions, but death row inmate Gary Haugen, who has been awaiting execution since 1981, has challenged the governor’s actions in court, arguing that he can’t be forced to accept the reprieve and that he is entitled to have the sentence carried out.
  6. Finally, although not a criminal law item and although it has no connection to North Carolina, I couldn’t resist this story about a mega-zillion dollar lawsuit between tech giants Apple and Samsung. The squabbling has reached the point that the parties are filing written briefs about who should sit where during the trial, with Samsung’s lawyers suggesting a de facto game of musical chairs allowing both parties precious moments sitting near the jury.
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