News Roundup

As Reuters reports, this week Purdue Pharma and its owners the Sackler family agreed to pay $6 billion to resolve litigation brought by a group of state attorneys general related to the company’s substantial culpability for the American opioid epidemic.  The deal is part of bankruptcy proceedings that, if approved, will result in Purdue Pharma ceasing to exist.  In 2020 Purdue Pharma pleaded guilty to federal criminal charges related to its distribution of OxyContin.  Keep reading for more news.

Taylor Search Acquittal.  The Louisville Courier-Journal reports this week that a jury found former Louisville Metro Police detective Brett Hankison not guilty of criminal wanton endangerment for his actions during the execution of a search warrant at Breonna Taylor’s apartment.  In violation of department policy, Hankison fired his gun into Taylor’s apartment from the outside and through a window and door that were obscured by blinds.  The alleged victims of the endangerment offenses were residents of a neighboring apartment in Taylor’s building.  Hankison was fired from the department in the aftermath of Taylor’s death.

Kidnapping.  WRAL reports that Raleigh Police are investigating a kidnapping that took place near NC State’s campus last weekend.  Witnesses said that armed men in ski masks kidnapped a woman and attempted to kidnap a man she lived with around 10pm Sunday night.  The woman later was found unharmed in Durham and investigators believe it was not a random incident.

Traffic Cam.  The Greensboro News & Record reports that the Greensboro Police Department has been using 10 automatic license plate readers newly installed around the city to great success in identifying vehicles of interest driving around the city.  The Department has used the cameras to locate vehicles potentially occupied by people subject to arrest warrants and to locate vehicles involved in hit and runs.  The cameras require a $2,500 annual subscription and the department plans to acquire 5 additional cameras soon.

Conspiracy.  ABC News reports that an Alabama man pleaded guilty this week to charges of seditious conspiracy arising from his participation in the attack on the United States Capitol on January 6 of last year.  Joshua James entered the plea as part of a deal with prosecutors to cooperate with the government in prosecutions of other defendants.  James admitted that he coordinated with the Oath Keepers group to collect firearms at a hotel near Washington and coordinated with the group’s leader Stewart Rhodes in breaching the Capitol.

Chief Found.  Last month the News Roundup noted that former Chadbourn Police Chief Anthony Spivey had been arrested for allegedly stealing catalytic converters and that earlier drug and embezzlement charges were pending against him.  Since then, Spivey allegedly faked his own death in what investigators have described as an “elaborate ruse” to avoid criminal prosecution.  As part of the ploy, Spivey represented that he intended to commit suicide and left his boat floating abandoned on a river.  Authorities spent $64,000 searching the river for Spivey, but he later was discovered hiding near an apartment complex in Loris, S.C.