The NC Department of Public Safety says that a portion of Neuse Correctional Institution was evacuated on Monday morning following a disturbance that started late Sunday afternoon. According to a press release, a small group of inmates “set two separate fires, one inside the prison’s diagnostic building and one that destroyed a storage shed.” The inmates also broke windows and damaged four dorms. Approximately 500 inmates were transferred to other prisons because of the damage. Keep reading for more news.
Judge Convicted. The Wilmington Star News reports that a federal jury has convicted Wayne County Superior Court Judge Arnold O. Jones on three corruption charges. Jones was charged after asking a Wayne County deputy to access his wife’s text messages in exchange for cases of beer and $100. According to the report, Jones will be sentenced in January.
Supreme Court Ads. The Charlotte Observer has an editorial this week that says that political ads “funded by shadowy independent groups who don’t disclose their donors” are “undercutting the judiciary’s credibility and giving voters the impression that judges and justices are for sale.” In addition to criticizing the ads, the editorial notes that a study by two Emory Law School professors found that as the number of political ads in supreme court elections increases, the likelihood that justices will side with criminal defendants on appeal decreases.
Police-Community Relations Committee. The Winston-Salem Journal reports that state representatives Ed Hanes and Craig Horn “have formed an ad-hoc, bipartisan committee of 12 legislators who will meet to discuss and propose legislation to improve police and community relationships statewide.” The committee will be comprised of an equal number of Republicans and Democrats and will hold public meetings between the November election and the reconvening of the General Assembly in January. Body cameras and police video footage will be among the topics considered by the committee, according to the report.
Former PA Attorney General Sentenced. The Philadelphia Inquirer reports that former Pennsylvania Attorney General Kathleen Kane was sentenced to 10 to 23 months in jail on Monday after being convicted of perjury, obstruction of justice, and other charges in August. According to the report, Kane, the first democrat and woman to be elected attorney general in Pennsylvania, was a rising star before becoming embroiled in a political feud that culminated in the criminal charges.
Legalize All of It? A few states will vote on whether to legalize recreational marijuana use in November, but the Associated Press reports that Human Rights Watch and the American Civil Liberties Union are urging a more drastic change in drug laws: the decriminalization of possession and personal use of all illicit drugs. In a jointly-issued report entitled Every 25 Seconds: The Human Toll of Criminalizing Drug Use in the United States, the groups argue that “[c]riminalization is simply the wrong response to drug use and needs to be rethought altogether.”
Timberlake Skates. Jeff did his best to save everyone a lot of election hassle by blogging about voter crimes earlier this week; he specifically noted that many states, North Carolina included, have laws against ballot selfies. Former Mouseketeer Justin Timberlake is probably kick-stepping himself for not reading that post. As CNN reports, Timberlake found himself in hot water this week after posting a ballot selfie while early voting in Tennessee. He’s lucky though, the local district attorney says that her office won’t investigate the misdemeanor.