To a brain surgeon or corporate executive, a speeding ticket is no big deal. They probably have that much cash in their purse or wallet. When a retail clerk or maid gets that traffic ticket, it hurts. It may mean the rent is late or they can't buy food. It can have a domino effect.
Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced a coordinated and unprecedented effort to combat the scourge of prescription opioid abuse in America. By cracking down on the supply side, federal law enforcement hopes to reduce overdose deaths and the crime and family strife associated with painkiller addiction.
There is nothing wrong with federal agencies working with local law enforcement. Unless the feds are passing along unlawfully obtained information or concealing their secret surveillance.
Jail or loss of driving privileges may not even be the worst part of a DUI conviction. The long-term aftermath can be just as devastating.
Criminal prosecutions can be brought in state or federal court. What is the difference between a state crime and a federal crime? What triggers federal charges? Is federal court any different than state court?
Recently we wrote about racial bias in plea bargains. For the same crime with no prior convictions, researchers found that white defendants, on average, had better outcomes than their black counterparts. (You get probation, but you go to jail.)
Most states set a certain dollar amount to differentiate between misdemeanor theft and felony theft. South Carolina has one of the highest thresholds in the nation for grand larceny (felony) charges. This prevents filling our prisons with low-level offenders and people who steal to feed drug addictions.
Mobile phones were once the exclusive domain of business moguls. Today, even 10-year-old kids have cellphones. Increasingly, law enforcement is using that fact to track the whereabouts of suspects and obtain data about private communications.
The Internal Revenue Service has issued a list of helpful tips for taxpayers who receive letters in the mail. Their “don’t panic” reassurances are hardly reassuring. Some of the advice is conflicting.
Much has been written about racial profiling by police. Much has been written about federal judges giving longer prison terms to minorities. New research shows that African-American defendants also face discrimination at several points between the arrest and sentencing.