ABA Journal

Civil Rights

4029 ABA Journal Civil Rights articles.

Police are often first responders to mental health crises, but tragedies are prompting change

Cases such as Quintonio LeGrier’s have prompted demands around the country to reform how police respond to people in mental health crises, a movement that advocates believe can help avert such deadly confrontations.

Biden has an opportunity to reform and diversify federal courts

We have seen that courts can be an instrument for social and political change; they can be the sword and the shield. But they best serve justice when they are inclusive—a perennial challenge for the federal judiciary.

Afternoon Briefs: Georgia voting restrictions challenged; judge charged with terroristic threats

News Roundup

Amy Breihan has dedicated her career to helping juvenile lifers seek parole

It’s been nearly nine years since the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in Miller v. Alabama that mandatory life without parole for juveniles violates the Eighth Amendment. It’s been five years since it held in Montgomery v. Louisiana that its 2012 decision was retroactive. In that time, Amy Breihan has helped seek second chances for prisoners in Missouri who were younger than age 18 when they were sentenced to life behind bars.

Afternoon Briefs: No-mask lawyer’s lawsuit tossed; suit alleges 60-plus mistaken-identity arrests

Judge tosses case for lawyer’s refusal to wear mask

Judge Lawrence Knipel of New York City has tossed a car-crash lawsuit because of a lawyer’s refusal to wear a face…

Falling behind on rent could mean jail time in one state, but that could change

Only Arkansas permits criminal consequences for nonpayment of rent—and it has enforced the law during the pandemic. Now, after ProPublica investigated the practice, some legislators want to revoke the statute.

Afternoon Briefs: State supreme court limits use of bail; prosecutors in this state may face stricter discipline

California judges must consider defendant’s ability to pay when setting bail, ruling says

The California Supreme Court ruled Thursday that it is unconstitutional to keep criminal defendants behind bars simply…

Roberts, Kavanaugh join with liberal justices to rule for woman shot by police while fleeing

A woman who continued to flee after being shot by police has the same Fourth Amendment rights against unreasonable seizure as a person who is detained, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled Thursday.

Afternoon Briefs: Christian baker faces trial in new bias case; city approves housing reparations

Christian baker faces new bias case

A Christian baker is facing a new bias claim after persuading the U.S. Supreme Court that a Colorado agency showed impermissible hostility to…

High tech can heighten discrimination; here are some policy recommendations for its ethical use

From federal surveillance of social justice protests to facial recognition technology that results in inordinately high false positives for certain demographic groups, recent surveillance trends have deep historical roots and troubling future implications for traditionally marginalized groups. These trends threaten our core constitutional values, democratic principles and the rule of law.

Biden DOJ outpaces Trump DOJ for reversing US position in pending Supreme Court cases

The Biden administration’s Department of Justice has changed positions in at least five cases before the U.S. Supreme Court, putting it on track to outpace reversals during the first full Supreme Court term under former President Donald Trump.

Afternoon Briefs: ACLU wants lawyer’s libel lawsuit tossed; Dershowitz gives limited advice in MyPillow CEO suit

ACLU seeks dismissal of lawyer’s libel suit

The Georgia Supreme Court has agreed to consider whether a lawyer’s libel lawsuit against the American Civil Liberties Union may go to trial.…

Lawyer who once brought loaded gun to court should be disbarred partly for deportation threats, opinion says

Disbarment is the appropriate punishment for a California lawyer accused of threatening to get opponents’ clients deported, failing to promptly return client money, and improperly handling his attorney trust account, a bar review department has found.

Why were lawyers arguing about third-degree murder charge in case of cop charged in George Floyd killing?

Updated: A Minnesota judge on Thursday reinstated a third-degree murder charge against Derek Chauvin, the former Minneapolis police officer accused in the death of George Floyd.

Afternoon Briefs: States ratified ERA too late, judge says; US supports school in cheerleader’s SCOTUS case

Federal judge rules ERA ratified too late

U.S. District Judge Rudolph Contreras of the District of Columbia has ruled that the last three states to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment…

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