News Roundup

At the time of writing Hurricane Dorian was approaching the North Carolina coast and many communities were under evacuation orders.  The Department of Public Safety’s storm information website, listing evacuation routes and shelter locations is here.  County courthouse closings and delays are listed here.  The slow-moving storm caused extensive damage to the Bahamas over the past days and caused a tornado at Emerald Isle on Thursday afternoon.  Stay safe and our thanks to the local, state, and federal agencies that mobilize to assist during weather disasters.  Keep reading for more news.

Evacuation Violation.  WECT reports that on Wednesday night Wrightsville Beach officers charged several people with misdemeanors for not complying with the town’s mandatory evacuation order.  Police Chief Dan House said at a press conference that people are charged with violating evacuation orders if they impede police operations or put first responders in danger while the orders are in place.

Civil Defender Educator.  The School of Government’s Indigent Defense Education group is hiring a Civil Defender Educator – a person who, among other things, will be responsible for developing and conducting educational courses primarily in civil practice areas, creating written resources, and consulting with indigent defenders. A detailed description of the position and information about how to apply can be found here.

Winston Shootings.  The Winston-Salem Journal reports that there were three drive-by shootings in the city over the course of four days this week.  Four people have been injured in the shootings and presently there are no suspects in any of them.  The Journal further reports that shots were fired at a city park following an argument about food not being ready on time at a private event being held at the park.

Officer Impersonation.  The Durham Herald-Sun reports that on Wednesday morning a man was arrested at New Hope Elementary School and charged with impersonating a law enforcement officer.  Christopher Hill, of Durham, arrived at the school with his girlfriend, who said she was there to volunteer at the library, and her children.  He was wearing a black vest with a large “Sheriff” patch on the back and allegedly told two teachers that he was providing volunteer security.

Epstein Hearing.  Following Jeffrey Epstein’s suicide in pretrial detention, prosecutors moved to dismiss the sex trafficking charges he had been facing.  This apparently requires judicial approval in cases such as Epstein’s, and the New York Times reports that the federal judge overseeing the case called a hearing to give alleged victims a day in court.  Sixteen women spoke in person and others spoke through lawyers, many describing similar instances of sexual assault by Epstein.  Prosecutors told the judge that there is an ongoing investigation into other people who may have aided Epstein.

Road Race Bust.  A marijuana grow operation in Spain was busted in an unusual manner last weekend according to ESPN.  A helicopter tracking a professional cycling race through the town of Igualada panned its camera over an apartment rooftop where 40 plants were being grown, broadcasting the images straight to the television feed of the race.  It went viral on Twitter and police seized the plants, though the investigation into who was growing them is ongoing.

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