News Roundup

Weekly Briefs: Protesters target law dean; Florida’s Stop Woke Act blocked at universities

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Student protest

Students of the New College of Florida and their supporters protested the closing in February of the college’s diversity, equity and inclusion office by a board of trustees handpicked by Republican Gov. Ron DesSantis. (AP Photo/Rebecca Blackwell)

11th Circuit allows block on Stop Woke Act

The Atlanta-based 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has refused to disturb an injunction that prevents Florida public universities from enforcing a law known as the Stop Woke Act pending an appeal. The law bars instruction that promotes eight concepts, including the idea that people are privileged or oppressed because of their race or sex. (ACLU press release, Florida politics)

Students protest dean who apologized to heckled judge

Students formed a “human corridor” on Monday outside the classroom of Stanford Law School dean Jenny Martinez to protest her apology to the conservative appeals judge who was heckled during a March 9 appearance at the school. The Washington Free Beacon says hundreds of protesters were there, but two sources told Original Jurisdiction’s David Lat that the number was lower—probably 60 to a hundred protesters. The judge, Stuart Kyle Duncan of the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, had called the hecklers “juvenile idiots,” but later said he accepted the apology. (The Washington Free Beacon, Original Jurisdiction)

$75M verdict upheld for wrongful murder conviction

A federal appeals court has upheld a $75 million verdict for half brothers who spent 31 years in prison for a murder they didn’t commit. A legal team from Hogan Lovells represented the half brothers, Leon Brown and Henry McCollum. DNA recovered from a cigarette butt at the murder scene matched that of a man convicted of rape and murder in a similar case. The verdict was the highest ever in a wrongful conviction case. (Hogan Lovells press release, the March 8 opinion by the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals)

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