courts

Marathon Bombing
2:31 pm
Thu January 30, 2014

U.S. Will Seek Death Penalty In Boston Bombing Case

Dzhokhar Tsarnaev.
Handout Getty Images

Originally published on Fri January 31, 2014 6:07 am

Attorney General Eric Holder said the Justice Department will seek the death penalty in the case of Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, the man charged in connection with the bombing of the 2013 Boston Marathon.

"The nature of the conduct at issue and the resultant harm compel this decision," Holder said in a statement.

As we've reported, the 20-year-old Tsarnaev has been charged with 30 counts, including killing four people and using weapons of mass destruction.

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East Haven
10:50 am
Fri January 24, 2014

Former East Haven Police Officer Sentenced to Five Years in Prison

Former East Haven police officer Dennis Spaulding with his wife.
Credit Melanie Stengel / The New Haven Register

Former East Haven police officer Dennis Spaulding has been sentenced to five years in prison for violating the constitutional rights of members of the East Haven community, particularly Latinos.  

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Health Care
12:15 pm
Thu January 23, 2014

Lawmakers Take United Healthcare to Task Over Medicare Plan

Credit Gubcio / iStock / Thinkstock

Insurer United Healthcare was taken to task at a legislative hearing in Hartford for its action in dropping 2,000 Connecticut physicians from its Medicare Advantage plan. The company is in the midst of legal action by doctors' groups in the state over the move.

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troubled religious order
10:55 am
Thu January 23, 2014

Lawsuit Against Legion of Christ Can Move Forward

Fr. Marcial Maciel Degollado, founder of the Legion of Christ, has been accused of sexually abusing boys, of morphine addiction, and fathering six children since the 1950s.
Bishop-accountability.org

A federal magistrate judge is allowing a lawsuit to move forward against a disgraced Roman Catholic order which has its U.S. headquarters in Connecticut.

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Hartford Insurance Investigation
9:24 am
Thu January 23, 2014

Troubled Insurance Broker O'Garro Due in Court

Earl O'Garro.
Credit Mike Priggins and Kyle Reyes / under30ceo.com

Earl O'Garro, the embattled insurance broker who is at the heart of a federal criminal probe, is due in state court Thursday on charges that he failed to pay his workers.

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Civil Rights
4:32 pm
Tue January 21, 2014

Former East Haven Police Officer Sentenced to Two and a Half Years In Prison

David Cari, at center, in a 2009 video that led to an arrest.
Credit Father James Manship / New Haven Independent

A former East Haven police officer was sentenced on Tuesday to two and a half years in prison for multiple civil rights violations. David Cari was found guilty in October of conspiring to violate and violating the civil rights of members of the East Haven community, particularly Latinos.  

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11:49 am
Tue January 21, 2014

Supreme Court Rejects Former Governor's Case

The U.S. Supreme Court has decided against review a lower court decision that involves former Governor John Rowland and state unions. "In a statement, Rowland and his former budget director Marc Ryan said this: It is unfortunate that the Supreme Court is not taking this case. It will have a profound impact on Governors, Mayors, Boards of Education and taxpayers all across America." The Connecticut Mirror has more.
The U.S. Supreme Court has declined to hear former Gov. John G. Rowland's appeal regarding a ruling that his administration used layoffs to punish state employee unions in 2003. The case now heads back to U.S. District Court in Hartford, where Rowland will file a motion to dismiss the case, according to a written statement released Monday through his attorney.
Supreme Court
3:18 am
Tue January 21, 2014

A Union For Home Health Aides Brings New Questions To Supreme Court

One of the questions before the U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday is whether non-union members must pay for negotiating a contract they benefit from.
Jonathan Ernst Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Tue January 21, 2014 12:40 pm

The U.S. Supreme Court hears arguments Tuesday in an Illinois case that could drive a stake through the heart of public employee unions.

At issue are two questions: whether states may recognize a union to represent health care workers who care for disabled adults in their homes instead of in state institutions; and whether non-union members must pay for negotiating a contract they benefit from.

To understand why a growing number of states actually want to recognize unions to represent home health care workers, listen to Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan:

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Gender
12:29 pm
Fri January 10, 2014

Same-Sex Couples In Utah Made Eligible For Federal Benefits

Chris Serrano, left, and Clifton Webb embrace after being married on Dec. 20 in the Salt Lake County Clerk's Office in Salt Lake City.
Kim Raff AP

Originally published on Fri January 10, 2014 3:35 pm

"Attorney General Eric Holder announced Friday that the federal government will recognize the 900-plus same-sex marriages that took place in Utah during the two weeks when such unions were legal," NPR's Nina Totenberg writes for us.

That means those couples "will be eligible for all federal benefits," NPR's Carrie Johnson adds.

In a statement, Holder says that:

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Insider Trading Investigation
11:23 am
Tue January 7, 2014

SAC Capital Manager Goes to Trial

Matthew Martoma in November 2012, outside a New York federal court.
Credit Spencer Platt/Getty Images News / Thinkstock

Jury selection begins on Tuesday in the trial of Matthew Martoma, a manager for SAC Capital, who's accused of insider trading. It's the latest court action in an investigation of the Connecticut-based hedge fund that has lasted for several years.

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Former Hartford Mayor
4:36 pm
Mon January 6, 2014

Prosecutors Ask State Supreme Court to Take Perez Case

Former Hartford Mayor Eddie Perez.
Credit WNPR File Photo

Prosecutors want the state supreme court to weigh in on the matter of former Hartford mayor Eddie Perez. 

Late last year, the state's appellate court ruled that Perez's trial judge made procedural errors in the original proceedings. It then ordered two new trials.

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Affordable Care Act
12:39 pm
Fri January 3, 2014

Nuns' Objection To Health Care Law Is Unwarranted, Justice Dept. Says

At the center of the debate: prescription contraceptives.
Tim Matsui Getty Images

Originally published on Fri January 3, 2014 4:20 pm

The Obama administration has asked the Supreme Court not to extend a temporary injunction given to a group of Colorado nuns who want to be exempt from some rules in the new health care law. The rules relate to the requirement that most employers provide health insurance that includes coverage of birth control costs.

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Targeted
1:21 pm
Mon December 23, 2013

Customers Sue Target Over Credit Card Breach

A couple of shoppers leave a Target store on a rainy afternoon in Alhambra, California.
Frederic J. Brown AFP/Getty Images

At least 11 customers have filed lawsuits against Target over a security breach that exposed the credit card information of 40 million customers.

The BBC reports:

"The lawsuits, each seeking class-action status, have been filed in US courts in the past several days.

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WAMC News
6:36 pm
Thu December 12, 2013

Caesars Entertainment Sues Massachusetts Gaming Commission Chairman

Massachusetts Gaming Commission Chairman Stephen Crosby

Originally published on Thu December 12, 2013 4:04 pm

A failed bidder for a casino license in Massachusetts has sued the chairman of the state gaming commission. 

   Ceasars Entertainment filed a federal court lawsuit Thursday questioning the objectivity and fairness of gaming commission chairman Stephen Crosby.   The suit highlights Crosby’s past business ties to someone who could profit handsomely if a casino proposed by Wynn Resorts is built in Everett.  Crosby has said the state ethics commission has cleared him of a conflict of interest.

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Courts
2:52 pm
Wed December 11, 2013

Two British Terror Suspects Plead Guilty in New Haven Federal Court

Babar Ahmad.
Credit BBC

Two terror suspects who were extradited from Britain a year ago pleaded guilty Tuesday in federal court in New Haven. The men admitted to raising funds for terrorists through a Connecticut-based web company that was unaware of it's clients' business practices.

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SEBAC Dispute
10:35 am
Tue December 10, 2013

Jepsen Withdraws Supreme Court Petition in Rowland Layoff Case

Connecticut Attorney General George Jepsen.
Credit Chion Wolf / WNPR

Connecticut's Attorney General says he will sit down with union leaders to talk about a settlement in a damages case that dates back to the Rowland administration. To clear the way for talks, George Jepsen has withdrawn his appeal of the U.S. Supreme Court in the case.

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The Fate of Eddie Perez
11:46 am
Mon December 9, 2013

Court Orders Two New Trials For Former Hartford Mayor Eddie Perez

Eddie Perez walks to court with family and supporters.
Credit Chion Wolf / WNPR

The state's appellate court has thrown out the 2010 corruption convictions of former Hartford Mayor Eddie Perez and ordered two new trials.

The court ruled that there was a enough evidence to convict Perez, but that the trial court judge made a procedural error that merits two new trials. Perez was convicted over three years ago on separate charges relating to bribery and extortion while he was mayor. A judge sentenced him to three years in prison.   

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Media
5:08 pm
Mon December 2, 2013

Court Upholds Public Broadcasting Political Ad Ban

This image, provided by the Obama For America campaign, shows a still frame made from a video ad entitled "Only Choice."
Uncredited AP

Originally published on Mon December 2, 2013 5:48 pm

While lawyers dismantle many restrictions on political money, the rules affecting Morning Edition and Downton Abbey still stand tall. A federal court in San Francisco says public radio and TV stations cannot carry paid political ads.

The 8-3 decision Monday by the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals reversed a ruling last April by a smaller panel of the court. NPR and PBS both joined the case as friends of the court.

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Ohio
11:53 am
Mon November 25, 2013

Schools Chief Among 4 Indicted In Steubenville Rape Case

Originally published on Mon November 25, 2013 12:24 pm

Four adults, including the superintendent of the city's schools, have been indicted by a grand jury on charges related to the aftermath and alleged attempted coverup of a teenage girl's 2012 rape by members of the high school football team in Steubenville, Ohio.

Ohio Attorney Gen. Mike DeWine just announced that news.

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Courts
12:43 pm
Fri November 22, 2013

Chemist Pleads Guilty In Massachusetts Crime Lab Scandal

Annie Dookhan, pictured earlier this year, pleaded guilty Friday to falsifying drugs tests at a Massachusetts state crime lab.
Steven Senne AP

Originally published on Fri November 22, 2013 7:36 pm

A former chemist for the state of Massachusetts' crime labs pleaded guilty Friday to falsifying drugs tests that potentially compromised tens of thousands of criminal cases. WBUR reports she admitted all 27 counts against her.

Update at 4:40 p.m. ET: Prison Sentence Of 3-5 Years

Judge Carol Ball sentenced Annie Dookhan, 36, to three to five years in prison, plus a probation period. Prosecutors had requested a sentence of from five to seven years in prison.

Our original post continues:

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Courts
11:39 am
Thu November 21, 2013

Kennedy Cousin Michael Skakel Released Today on $1.2 Million Bond

Michael Skakel in court on Thursday.
Credit CT-N

Michael Skakel walked out of Stamford Superior Court this afternoon after posting a $1.2 million dollar bond. He has served eleven years in prison after being convicted in the 1975 death of Greenwich neighbor, Martha Moxley when they were 15.

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Troubled Mortgages
3:08 pm
Tue November 19, 2013

JPMorgan Chase Will Pay $13 Billion In Record Settlement

In a settlement deal, JPMorgan Chase has agreed to pay some $13 billion in fines and other payments related to mortgages and mortgage securities that helped cause the financial crisis that began in 2007.
Mark Lennihan AP

Originally published on Tue November 19, 2013 5:38 pm

In an agreement settling many U.S. claims over its sale of troubled mortgages, JPMorgan Chase will pay a record $13 billion, in a deal announced by the Justice Department Tuesday. The plan includes a $4 billion payment for consumer relief, along with a payment to investors of more than $6 billion and a large fine.

The latest updates on this story are at the bottom of this post. We've also added a few key points to the main post.

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Political Corruption
11:40 am
Mon November 18, 2013

Soucy Sentenced to Halfway House

Harry Raymond Soucy, left, with his lawyer, Steven Rasile, outside federal court.
Credit Mark Pazniokas / The Connecticut Mirror

A former labor union official will spend six months in a halfway house for his role in a conspiracy to funnel illegal campaign contributions to former Connecticut House Speaker Christopher Donovan. 

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whitey bulger
10:39 am
Thu November 14, 2013

Judge Sentences 'Whitey' Bulger To Two Life Terms In Prison

James "Whitey" Bulger, in a 2011 U.S. Marshals Service photo, has been sentenced to two life terms in prison for his role in 11 killings.
EPA/Landov

Originally published on Thu November 14, 2013 11:32 am

James "Whitey" Bulger has been sentenced to two terms of life in prison, to run consecutively, plus five years for his role in the murder of 11 people. Bulger, 84, is also being punished for racketeering and other crimes. Before announcing the sentence, U.S. District Judge Denise Casper read aloud the names of Bulger's victims.

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Host's Diary
3:36 pm
Fri November 1, 2013

UConn's Problems Go From Bad to Herbst

UConn President Susan Herbst.
Credit Chion Wolf / WNPR

It's never a good thing when civil rights litigator Gloria Allred shows up in your town for the second time in two weeks to file her second legal action against you. It's even worse when Allred says she's using your response to the first legal action as part of the basis of the second one. 

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Insurance Scandal
3:20 pm
Fri November 1, 2013

In Hartford Controversy, Feds Serve Subpoena on Two State Agencies

Hartford City Treasurer Adam Cloud.
Credit City of Hartford

The scope of the federal grand jury investigation involving the relationship between Hartford's city treasurer and an insurance broker continues to grow, as the state has confirmed that federal prosecutors served a subpoena on two of its departments.

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Sexual Assault
2:36 pm
Fri November 1, 2013

UConn Faces Federal Lawsuit Over Response to Sexual Assaults

Attorney Gloria Allred in Hartford on Friday. A lawsuit is being filed on Friday in U.S. District Court.
Credit Ray Hardman / WNPR

Four women who say they were sexually assaulted while students at the University of Connecticut have filed a federal lawsuit against the school. The lawsuit alleges UConn violated the rights of the women under Title IX by failing to protect them after they reported being sexually assaulted on campus.

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International ties
8:26 am
Fri November 1, 2013

Alexei Navalny Faces New Indictment

Alexei Navalny in 2011.
Credit Никита Баталов / Creative Commons

Russian investigators have charged Alexei Navalny with a new crime. Navalny is a Russian opposition leader with ties to Yale University.

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Immigration
5:56 pm
Tue October 29, 2013

Alabama Agrees To Permanently Gut Immigration Law

Parents arrive to pick up their children from a school in Montgomery, Ala. After a tough immigration law was enacted in 2011, Hispanic students began to disappear from classrooms in the state's public schools.
Dave Martin AP

Originally published on Tue October 29, 2013 6:33 pm

Opponents of Alabama's strict immigration law are declaring victory Tuesday, as the state agreed not to pursue key provisions of a measure critics had called an endorsement of racial profiling. Earlier this year, the U.S. Supreme Court refused to hear the state's appeal of a federal court's ruling that gutted the law.

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the long arm
2:18 pm
Tue October 29, 2013

Before It Releases Subpoena, Hartford Waits to Hear From Feds

Credit Jeff Cohen / WNPR

Attorneys for Mayor Pedro Segarra say they are still waiting to hear from federal prosecutors as to whether they can release a federal grand jury subpoena.

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