Courts & Crime

China sees ethnic bias in U.S. cyber espionage accusations

China is hitting back against U.S. indictments of six of its citizens for economic espionage, with a state-run newspaper on Thursday accusing American authorities of engaging in ethnic persecution by targeting Chinese nationals. | 05/21/15 10:20:46 By - By Stuart Leavenworth

Justice Department’s action against global banks likely to dampen GOP plan to ease rules

A plea agreement by five major global banks announced Wednesday by the Justice Department for manipulation of currency markets is likely to complicate an already tough path for Republican legislation to lighten the regulatory touch on financial institutions. | 05/20/15 18:12:28 By - By Kevin G. Hall and Michael Doyle

'Victim 1' in Sandusky case finds his voice

There are days when Aaron Fisher believes he has finally put the past behind him. | 05/19/15 16:23:20 By - By JEREMY ROEBUCK

Texas officer cleared in fatal shooting of Mexican immigrant

A grand jury declined to indict the Grapevine police officer who fatally shot an unarmed Mexican immigrant on the side of a Euless highway in February. | 05/18/15 18:57:28 By - By MITCH MITCHELL AND MONICA NAGY

In Baltimore’s Sandtown-Winchester, every day is an ongoing Katrina

Life in Freddie Gray’s neighborhood is a study in the juxtaposition of rich history and impoverished reality. Thurgood Marshall, the first black Supreme Court justice, graduated from high school in Sandtown, which now leads all the state in the number of residents in prison. | 05/15/15 14:05:44 By - By Hannah Allam

3 arrested in shooting deaths of 2 Mississippi police officers

Police in Hattiesburg, Miss., arrested three people Sunday on charges they shot two police officers during what began as a routine traffic stop, authorities said. | 05/10/15 15:18:33 By - By MATT PEARCE

Sacramento tries to cover a loophole in nudity law

There's no law currently that prevents a nudist from walking down the street in Sacramento, Calif., but there may be soon. | 05/08/15 14:21:32 By - By BILL LINDELOF

Appeals court: NSA’s bulk collection of phone data illegal

In a blow to the Obama administration’s surveillance operations, a key appellate court on Thursday ruled federal law does not authorize the National Security Agency’s controversial bulk collection of telephone ‘metadata.’ | 05/07/15 19:46:19 By - By Michael Doyle

NSA collection of phone records illegal, appeals court rules

A key appellate court ruled Thursday that the National Security Agency broke the law with its sweeping collection of telephone call data, in a groundbreaking decision that repudiates the Obama administration and encourages Congress to weigh in. | 05/07/15 19:44:32 By - By Michael Doyle

Koch says it is part of bipartisan coalition seeking criminal justice reform

A top Koch Industries official says the corporate giant has become part of a bipartisan coalition contending that the criminal justice system needs reform. | 05/06/15 13:17:49 By - Tim Potter

Serial number links gun in NYPD officer slaying to Perry

The doors of Little’s Bait & Tackle & Pawn Shop were closed Tuesday and a sign in the window says it’s for sale. | 05/05/15 18:27:10 By - Becky Purser

Islamic State embrace of Texas attack is first claim of action in U.S.

Islamic State radio stations in Syria and Iraq on Tuesday claimed that two gunmen slain by police in Texas were “brothers of the caliphate” but did not include any details about the failed attack in Garland that would show a direct link between the group and the two men. | 05/05/15 19:28:29 By - By Mitchell Prothero and Maria Recio

After Texas shooting: If free speech is provocative, should there be limits?

Organizers of the Muhammad Art Exhibit in Garland, Texas, knew violence was a possibility. | 05/05/15 11:05:04 By - By Lindsay Wise and Jonathan S. Landay

Shot near burned CVS puts Baltimore back on edge

Police used pepper spray to push back an angry crowd Monday afternoon from the Baltimore intersection that has been the epicenter of that city’s unrest after a confusing incident that initially was reported as a police shooting but may have been only an accidental discharge of a weapon. | 05/04/15 23:18:15 By - By Hannah Allam

Judges skeptical of challenge to Obama’s deportation reprieve

A controversial Arizona sheriff’s challenge to the Obama administration’s immigration policy of deferring deportations seemed to divide a key appellate court Monday. | 05/04/15 15:26:41 By - By Michael Doyle

Baltimore police charged in Freddie Gray’s death

The announcement Friday that six police officers would face criminal charges in the death of Freddie Gray prompted boisterous celebrations in the streets of Baltimore and objections from some police organizations that the rare move was politically motivated. | 05/01/15 18:19:57 By - By Lindsay Wise and Marisa Taylor

In shadow of Baltimore riots, one woman’s choice says a lot about the future

On the corner of Etting and Traction streets, three blocks from where Baltimore erupted in violence and looting, Barbara Young peered out of her tidy, immaculately maintained house. | 05/01/15 18:55:54 By - By Chris Adams

Police face criminal charges in death of Freddie Gray in Baltimore

The announcement Friday that six police officers would face criminal charges in the death of Freddie Gray prompted boisterous celebrations in the streets of Baltimore and objections from some police organizations that the rare move was politically motivated. | 05/01/15 16:22:04 By - By Lindsay Wise and Marisa Taylor

California man loses challenge to warrantless GPS tracking

A California man who famously found a GPS tracking device on his car, installed without a warrant, lost his bid Thursday to hold federal law enforcement officials to account. | 04/30/15 15:09:41 By - By Michael Doyle

Colgate-Palmolive settles talc-asbestos case, dismisses link to cancer

A California woman with a deadly form of cancer has won a settlement with Colgate-Palmolive Co. after a Los Angeles jury found that asbestos-contaminated talcum powder was the main cause of her disease. | 04/30/15 16:03:37 By - By Myron Levin

New poll shows young people have little confidence in justice system

A new national poll of young Americans found nearly half don’t have confidence that the U.S. justice system is fair -- and don’t believe that social protests will make much of a difference. | 04/29/15 10:50:57 By - By Lesley Clark

Women shut out from interviews for federal bench slot

It seems that women need not apply to the federal district court bench in Idaho. | 04/28/15 11:27:14 By - Betsy Z. Russell

Alleged shooter apprehended at North Thurston High School in Washington state, no injuries

Nobody was hurt during a shooting that was reported at North Thurston High School on Monday morning, district spokeswoman Courtney Schrieve said. | 04/27/15 15:15:18 By - Lisa Pemberton

Lynch sworn in as attorney general, and a full agenda awaits

Loretta Lynch made history Monday as she became the nation’s first female African-American attorney general, who now must confront a litany of legal, political and management challenges. | 04/27/15 15:10:46 By - By Michael Doyle

Translators forced to take DEA polygraphs awarded $4 million in damages

A federal jury awarded $4 million to nine former translators after they were forced at the behest of the Drug Enforcement Administration to undergo illegal lie-detector tests. | 04/23/15 16:08:24 By - By Marisa Taylor

David Petraeus pleads guilty, apologizes for ‘pain’ he caused

n a humbling chapter of an exemplary career, David Petraeus – a West Point grad who succeeded in leading U.S. forces in Iraq and Afghanistan before becoming the nation’s top spy – pleaded guilty Thursday in federal court to sharing classified information. | 04/23/15 15:36:16 By - Michael Gordon, Rick Rothacker, Elizabeth Leland and Mark Washburn ELAND AND MARK WASHBURN

Officials: Teen’s ISIS plans investigation kept quiet for public safety

City of York officials said they kept quiet about a two-month investigation into a Muslim teen who wanted to join ISIS and help kill American soldiers because of a concern about public safety and to ensure the investigation could be completed. | 04/23/15 13:21:18 By - Andrew Dys

David Petraeus’ fall began and ends in Charlotte

A scandal that began to unravel in Charlotte ends in Charlotte on Thursday when former CIA Director David Petraeus is expected to admit sharing top government secrets with his biographer and lover. | 04/23/15 12:19:09 By - Michael Gordon

AG lawsuit: State Farm enriched itself through Katrina homeowner program

Attorney General Jim Hood is suing State Farm Fire & Casualty Co. over millions of dollars he claims the state lost because the insurance company "maliciously" denied Hurricane Katrina claims for wind losses while the federally funded Homeowners Assistance Program picked up the tab. | 04/21/15 19:28:44 By - Anita Lee

Immigration officials admit N.C. murder suspect was in gang database

Federal immigration officials admitted this week that the suspect in the February slayings of four people in Charlotte, N.C., was granted special immigration status – shielding him from deportation two years ago despite being listed in a federal database as a gang member. | 04/21/15 18:42:11 By - By Franco Ordoñez

Grand Theft Auto gang hit with US sanctions

It’s not every day that a tattoo-loving, magazine-printing criminal syndicate finds itself in the crosshairs of the pin-striped suits at the U.S. Treasury Department. It’s Office of Foreign Assets Control Tuesday sanctioned an affiliate of Japan’s infamous Yakuza syndicate. | 04/21/15 14:56:10 By - By Kevin G. Hall

U.S. fails to stem flow of illegal firearms to Mexico

The U.S. government has pledged to combat the illegal flow of firearms across the border, but new data reveal that the United States remains by far the largest source of weapons seized in Mexico. | 04/17/15 18:00:33 By - By Tim Johnson

Stiff sentences for ex-Blackwater guards in 2007 Iraq massacre

A federal judge sentenced four former Blackwater USA security contractors Monday to long prison terms for killing Iraqi civilians in a notorious 2007 incident. | 04/13/15 18:56:51 By - By Michael Doyle

FEC argues that ex-Sen. Larry Craig misused campaign funds

Former Idaho Republican Sen. Larry Craig “appears to have gambled that he would not be pursued for his violation” of campaign finance laws, the Federal Election Commission now says. | 04/10/15 12:28:04 By - By Michael Doyle

U.S. blocks settlement between Lance Armstrong associates and ex-teammate

Uncle Sam has now further complicated the high-stakes grudge match between disgraced bicyclist Lance Armstrong and his former teammate, Floyd Landis. | 04/09/15 16:45:53 By - By Michael Doyle

Man who shot video of North Charleston cop killing unarmed African-American man is now afraid

The man who took the video of the white North Charleston cop firing his gun and killing an unarmed African-American man running away said Thursday he wasn’t fearful at first but later became afraid just after the horrific sight unfolded before his eyes and camera. | 04/09/15 13:15:22 By - John Monk

U.S. wants Salvadoran ex-colonel to face murder charges in ’89 deaths

Inocente Orlando Montano Morales went from elite military training in Georgia and a high-ranking position in El Salvador to a lowly prison cell in North Carolina. | 04/08/15 16:39:34 By - By Michael Doyle

SC officers exonerated in more than 200 shootings

Police in South Carolina have fired their weapons at 209 suspects in the past five years, and a handful of officers have been accused of pulling the trigger illegally – but none has being convicted, according to an analysis by The State newspaper. | 04/08/15 13:31:03 By - Cliff LeBlanc

Justice Department aids transgender inmates

The Justice Department on Friday extended a helping hand to a transgender Georgia inmate doing hard time in a men’s prison. | 04/06/15 10:29:34 By - By Michael Doyle

U.S. executions fell in 2014, Amnesty International reports

Executions and death sentences dropped in the United States last year in another sign that support for the punishment may be on the decline, a new report from Amnesty International says. | 03/31/15 21:14:26 By - By John Zarocostas

Fresno cop’s drug arrest shows federal wiretaps on the rise

Federal investigators increasingly rely on wiretaps like those that allegedly ensnared Fresno Deputy Police Chief Keith Foster in a drug investigation. | 03/31/15 18:20:44 By - By Michael Doyle

Military chaplain wins partial court appeal of alleged discrimination

Fresno resident Pierre E. Saint-Fleur once earned distinction as California’s most deployed military chaplain. | 03/27/15 16:30:33 By - By Michael Doyle

Former Ct. Gov. Rowland sentenced to 30 months in prison

Former Connecticut Gov. John Rowland was sentenced Wednesday to 30 months in jail in connection with a campaign payment scheme. | 03/18/15 18:56:35 By - By David Lightman

Supreme Court case may devastate hospitals in 34 states

As the nation’s largest private health care provider, Hospital Corporation of America owns 155 hospitals, 112 surgery centers and three psychiatric facilities across the country. | 03/13/15 14:49:25 By - By Tony Pugh

Justice Dept. uses grants to encourage good community-police relations

The Justice Department will help fight crime while it tries to strengthen the bonds between police and residents of six ethnically diverse cities, including Stockton, Calif., and Fort Worth, Texas, under a new program incited by the turmoil in Ferguson, Mo. | 03/12/15 17:25:15 By - By Michael Doyle

Justice Dept. probe sought of police shooting in Pasco, Wash.

One of the most outspoken Hispanic leaders calling for a federal investigation of the fatal police shooting of Antonio Zambrano Montes in Pasco, Wash., is taking the community’s fight to Capitol Hill. | 03/11/15 17:46:44 By - By Franco Ordoñez

Lawyer: Witness differs from police over shooting of Mexican by Texas officer

The attorney representing the family of a man shot and killed by a Grapevine police officer said an eyewitness to the shooting offers a “very different” version from what police say happened. | 03/11/15 15:57:08 By - Monica S. Nagy

Ex-Sen. Craig appeals ruling on his use of campaign funds

The police officer who arrested Idaho Republican Sen. Larry Craig in 2007 was frankly dismayed at the lawmaker. | 03/11/15 16:03:17 By - By Michael Doyle

Immigration sweep nets more than 2,000

A Mexican man and alleged member of the Sureños criminal street gang living in Arvada, Colorado and a Jamaican man in Atlanta who was convicted of assaulting a law enforcement officer were part of a nationwide sweep of 2,059 convicted criminals arrested and targeted for deportation, federal officials announced Monday. | 03/09/15 18:00:15 By - By Franco Ordoñez

Justice Dept. won’t prosecute police officer in Ferguson case

Attorney General Eric Holder announced Wednesday that no federal civil rights charges will be brought against the former Ferguson, Mo., police officer who shot and killed unarmed teenager Michael Brown last August. | 03/05/15 09:59:21 By - By Michael Doyle

Justice Department probe finds racial bias in Ferguson police

A law enforcement official familiar with the wide-ranging Justice Department investigation prompted by the shooting of unarmed teenager Michael Brown last August gave new details of the pattern of discriminatory and troubling behavior that he said the probe had found at the Ferguson Police Department in Missouri. | 03/03/15 18:45:44 By - By Michael Doyle

David Petraeus signs plea deal over giving classified info to Charlotte’s Paula Broadwell

Former Iraqi War general David Petraeus is pleading guilty to mishandling classified information, apparently avoiding an embarrassing trial that would have included his affair with Paula Broadwell, according to documents filed in Charlotte on Tuesday. | 03/03/15 12:52:31 By - Michael Gordon and Elizabeth Leland

At Washington state funeral home, Mexican migrant’s family recalls his difficult life

Antonio Zambrano Montes’ mother approached the blue casket – and fainted. | 02/25/15 09:11:40 By - By Franco Ordoñez

Holder: No civil rights charges in Trayvon Martin shooting

Attorney General Eric Holder announced Tuesday that no federal civil rights charges would be brought against George Zimmerman for the fatal shooting in February 2012 of Florida teenager Trayvon Martin. | 02/24/15 19:27:24 By - By Michael Doyle

Military court’s HIV ruling may have larger impact

The nation’s highest military court has forged new law by reversing the conviction of a former enlisted man at McConnell Air Force Base in Wichita, Kan., who was charged with aggravated assault for not telling his sexual partners he was HIV-positive. | 02/24/15 18:23:37 By - By Michael Doyle

Attorney who represented Trayvon Martin, Michael Brown families now in Pasco

Benjamin Crump — possibly the best-known civil rights attorney in the nation — is now representing the family of a Pasco man shot by police earlier this month. | 02/24/15 09:42:41 By - By Tyler Richardson

Pentagon's order for judges to move to Guantanamo contested at hearing

A military judge on Monday called the top Pentagon official overseeing the war court to testify on why the Defense Department suddenly ordered judges to move down to this remote base until they’ve wrapped up complex death-penalty cases that are months if not years away from trial. | 02/24/15 09:14:23 By - By Carol Rosenberg

Ripping off your refunds: One little number fuels South Florida’s tax-fraud explosion

Like so many street-smart cyber thieves, Josue Pierre took a shortcut into the easy-money underworld of tax fraud. | 02/23/15 13:25:25 By - Jay Weaver

Protests of immigrant shooting reflect nation’s political tensions

As the sun began to fall late Saturday afternoon, about 100 people marched through the streets of Pasco, Wash., to once again protest police brutality. | 02/21/15 20:30:24 By - By Franco Ordoñez

Justice Dept. vs. Big Tobacco battle over cigarettes continues

Tobacco companies battle the Obama administration on Monday, as a key court considers what they can be compelled to say about their cigarettes. | 02/20/15 17:17:38 By - By Michael Doyle

Family of Mexican worker shot in Washington state wants second autopsy

The details of the first examination, performed last week, have not been released. Antonio Zambrano-Montes was shot by three Pasco, Wash., police officers in an incident that was recorded on video. He was unarmed. | 02/20/15 09:35:27 By - By Tyler Richardson

Absent Justice: Sex crime victims in Southern Illinois find that police, prosecutors dypically do not charge their attackers

Sex crime victims in Southern Illinois find that police, prosecutors typically do not charge their attackers. From 2005 to 2013, 70 percent of sex crimes never made it to a courtroom | 02/19/15 13:28:42 By - Beth Hundsdorfer and George Pawlaczyk

Court annuls guilty plea of Australian ex-detainee

An appeals court on Wednesday set aside the guilty plea of former Guantanamo detainee David Hicks, an Australia native who was held captive amid other alleged terrorists for nearly six years. | 02/18/15 18:09:07 By - By Michael Doyle

Drug cases down as feds sharpen focus, Holder says

Federal drug prosecutions have dropped, Attorney General Eric Holder disclosed Tuesday in a valedictory speech that foreshadowed some Capitol Hill fights awaiting his designated successor. | 02/17/15 17:41:16 By - By Michael Doyle

Court ruling puts Obama’s immigration work on hold

The White House will suspend plans to begin giving more than 4 million immigrants here illegally work permits as it pursues an appeal of a Texas federal judge’s ruling that temporarily blocks President Barack Obama’s executive action on immigration. | 02/17/15 15:17:19 By - By Franco Ordoñez

No violence at rally to protest police killing of Mexican migrant

The family of Antonio Zambrano Montes linked arms and wiped away tears Saturday as they led a swift-moving crowd of several hundred people through the streets of Pasco, Wash., to the spot where the father of two was fatally shot by police. | 02/14/15 18:47:13 By - Tri-City Herald

Colorado, Washington face big challenges in controlling pot

When Colorado and Washington won permission from the U.S. Justice Department to begin selling marijuana in retail stores, the states promised to keep the pot inside their borders and away from children. | 02/13/15 13:53:34 By - By Rob Hotakainen

Washington, D.C., grieves for slain Chapel Hill students

Although Samreen Anwar, 24, of Columbia, Md., never met Yusor Mohammad Abu-Salha, Deah Shaddy Barakat or Razan Mohammad Abu-Salha, she feels like she knows them. | 02/12/15 21:39:54 By - By Ellie Silverman

Victims' father says Chapel Hill triple homicide was 'hate crime'

The father of two of three students shot to death in Chapel Hill on Tuesday says the shooting was a “hate crime” based on the Muslim identity of the victims. | 02/11/15 15:03:57 By - Jane Stancill and Jay Price

Former sailor fights Navy rules on civilian offenses

Machinist’s Mate Fireman Nancy L. Castillo was already in hot water with the Navy when she was busted near Bremerton, Wash., for suspected drunken driving. | 02/10/15 17:49:25 By - By Michael Doyle

California sheriff wants clear message: Pot is illegal

Fresno County Sheriff Margaret Mims wants more than money from the Obama administration, although money certainly helps. | 02/05/15 15:44:08 By - By Michael Doyle

Stephenville, Tx, braces for trial in sniper Chris Kyle slaying

This small city southwest of Fort Worth that calls itself the “Cowboy Capital of the World” is preparing for a wild ride starting Thursday when jury selection begins in the capital murder trial of the man accused of fatally shooting retired Navy SEAL Chris Kyle and a friend. | 02/04/15 18:46:26 By - Domingo Ramirez, Jr.

S&P settles lawsuit; feds, states take home nearly $1.4 billion

The immensely powerful Standard & Poor’s credit rating agency will pay a whopping $1.375 billion to settle charges brought by 19 states, the District of Columbia and the federal government, Attorney General Eric Holder announced Tuesday. | 02/03/15 16:13:22 By - By Michael Doyle

U.S. soldier’s death a tale of war, terrorism hatched from afar

The Tunisian suicide bomber who killed Elk Grove, Calif., native Bryan E. Hall died alongside him. | 01/30/15 13:44:52 By - By Michael Doyle

Navy relieves Guantánamo base commander after worker found dead in water

The commander of the U.S. Navy base at Guantánamo Bay has been removed from the remote outpost and reassigned to headquarters, a Navy announcement said Wednesday, declining to elaborate because of an ongoing Naval Criminal Investigative Services probe. | 01/21/15 17:34:05 By - Carol Rosenberg

Boehner suggests NSA wiretap led investigators to Ohio jihadist

House Speaker John Boehner said Thursday that the government “would never have known” that a Cincinnati area man was allegedly plotting this week to wage jihad on the U.S. Capitol with semi-automatic weapons were it not for a wiretap ordered by a secret foreign intelligence court. | 01/15/15 18:43:29 By - By Greg Gordon and William Douglas

Accused inmate killer gets life in plea deal, avoiding death penalty

A 2003 murder at U.S. Penitentiary Atwater in California’s San Joaquin Valley will be resolved Tuesday when the accused inmate pleads guilty in a deal that spares him from the death penalty, according to his defense attorney. | 01/12/15 16:46:31 By - By Michael Doyle

Butterfield takes helm of Congressional Black Caucus, promises focus on criminal justice reform

The Congressional Black Caucus will focus on criminal justice reform, U.S. Rep. G.K. Butterfield of North Carolina said in a speech on Tuesday at a ceremony where he was sworn in as the group’s new chairman. | 01/06/15 18:28:13 By - By Renee Schoof

Charles Koch’s views on criminal justice system just may surprise you

Charles Koch studied the justice system – both federal and state – wondering whether it has been over-criminalized with too many laws and too many prosecutions of nonviolent offenders, not only for him but for everybody. His conclusion: Yes, it has. | 12/28/14 19:26:03 By - Roy Wenzl

Judge cites highway named for victim in order moving murder trial

The upcoming trial of an inmate charged with killing a federal correctional officer at the U.S. penitentiary in Atwater, Calif., has now been moved to Southern California, in part because of a highway’s name. | 12/23/14 16:22:05 By - By Michael Doyle

Obama nominates Georgia attorney for No. 2 at Justice Department

President Barack Obama on Monday announced his intention to nominate Georgia-based U.S. Attorney Sally Quillian Yates for the key position of deputy attorney general, setting the stage for a history-making duo atop the Justice Department. | 12/22/14 17:19:07 By - By Michael Doyle

Retrial underway in murder of N.C. student Phylicia Barnes

A second trial of the man accused of killing 16-year-old Phylicia Barnes, an honor-roll student from Monroe, N.C., is underway, but prosecutors say they won’t call a jailhouse informant whose involvement in the first trial got the guilty verdict overturned. | 12/18/14 17:24:17 By - By Renee Schoof

Recent killings by police increase calls for independent probes

When New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman recently sought authority to investigate and prosecute cases that involve police killings of unarmed civilians, it was a watershed moment for Vincent Warren. | 12/16/14 15:06:28 By - By Tony Pugh

Judge orders sweeping 9/11 trial secrecy review

The judge overseeing the Sept. 11 mass murder trial has ordered prosecutors to go back and look at secrets sealed up in the court record to assess what the public can now see in light of this week’s revelations in the Senate Intelligence Committee’s so-called Torture Report. | 12/13/14 23:52:19 By - Carol Rosenberg

McClatchy-Marist Poll: Don’t charge Ferguson police officer

Despite massive protests, Americans say by 2-1 that the federal government shouldn’t charge the white police officer who shot an unarmed black teenager in Ferguson, Mo., according to a new McClatchy-Marist Poll. | 12/12/14 18:05:00 By - By Anita Kumar

Will police protests fade like tea party and Occupy?

This time, the protests might have consequences. | 12/12/14 14:03:17 By - By David Lightman

Police officers across U.S. upset at being seen as brutal racists

Police officers dispatched to investigate a 911 hang-up last week in an Idaho suburb were surprised by the reaction they got from the mother of the children who’d been playing with the phone. | 12/11/14 10:27:54 By - By Lindsay Wise and Katy Moeller

Will history or the law judge CIA’s interrogations as illegal torture?

The Senate Intelligence Committee’s report on harsh treatment of detainees prompted renewed calls for legal action against CIA officers, but the Obama administration on Tuesday questioned the need for criminal prosecution. | 12/10/14 07:12:59 By - By Michael Doyle and Marisa Taylor

New York AG wants to prosecute police who kill unarmed civilians

- New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman asked Gov. Mario Cuomo on Monday to let his office investigate and prosecute cases in which police officers kill unarmed civilians. | 12/09/14 07:39:00 By - By Tony Pugh

Former police chief: Too much fear on the force

As protests erupt over police killings of unarmed African-Americans, one former police chief is experiencing a painful case of déjà vu. | 12/08/14 18:02:46 By - By Lindsay Wise

Justice Department tightens rules on using racial profiling

Amid heightened national attention to police behavior, Attorney General Eric Holder unveiled new federal guidelines Monday restricting the use of profiling by federal law enforcement officers. | 12/08/14 18:00:01 By - By Michael Doyle

At Temple U., students hope to put famous alum Cosby behind them

As they are elsewhere, students at Temple University are busy preparing for finals and the holidays. | 12/05/14 18:38:00 By - By Daniel Salazar

Results are mixed when feds try to reform local police

As the Justice Department pursues new cases involving the deaths of black suspects, a recent North Carolina courtroom clash shows what can happen when the federal government becomes entangled with local policing. | 12/05/14 18:15:00 By - By Michael Doyle

Cleveland police use excessive force, Justice Department says

As a national spotlight focuses on police violence against black suspects, Attorney General Eric Holder said in Cleveland on Thursday that the city’s police force has been prone to using excessive force. | 12/04/14 18:54:53 By - By Michael Doyle

‘This is an American problem,’ Obama says of deaths at hands of police

President Barack Obama interrupted his own speech at the White House Tribal Nations Conference to decry a New York grand jury’s decision not to indict a police officer in the choking death of a black male. | 12/04/14 14:44:38 By - By Lesley Clark

California tribe gets good news, bad news about its casino bid

Federal judges far from California dealt a mixed hand this week to a long-debated casino proposed for the Amador County foothills, 36 miles east of Stockton. | 12/02/14 17:46:35 By - By Michael Doyle

Social media help take Ferguson protests national

Post-Ferguson protests are now viral, a hybrid of old school and new wave that can skitter in unpredictable directions. | 11/26/14 17:52:55 By - By Michael Doyle and William Douglas

A possible Ferguson solution: Cameras on cops

The Ferguson fallout will include more police officers nationwide wearing cameras as part of their uniforms. | 11/26/14 16:35:59 By - By Michael Doyle

What’s next, what’s not in wake of Michael Brown decision

What now? | 11/25/14 17:00:21 By - By Michael Doyle

Ferguson grand jury does not indict, but probes continue in Washington

Two Justice Department investigations remain open related to the fatal shooting in Ferguson, Mo., of teenager Michael Brown, independent of the state's grand jury announcement Monday that it would not indict Police Officer Darren Wilson in the death. | 11/24/14 22:26:05 By - By Michael Doyle

Attorney general nominee Lynch: ‘Courtly,’ ‘focused,’ ‘no political games’

Loretta Elizabeth Lynch entered politics the old-fashioned way, family first. | 11/14/14 18:25:28 By - By Michael Doyle

Levy hearing also hints at shadowy Fresno crime figure

Subject 1 is a dangerous man, officials believe; maybe, one of Fresno, Calif.’s worst. | 11/14/14 17:50:29 By - By Michael Doyle

In new trial hearing for Levy killer, what did prosecutors know and when?

An FBI special agent and a longtime federal prosecutor from Fresno on Thursday faced two of D.C.’s favorite questions: | 11/13/14 17:46:25 By - By Michael Doyle

New trial for convicted Chandra Levy killer leans on informant’s credibility

A former Fresno, Calif., gang leader fed scoops to law enforcement long before his testimony secured the conviction of the man accused of killing Chandra Levy, a court hearing revealed Wednesday. | 11/12/14 19:31:59 By - By Michael Doyle

New trial hearing for convicted Chandra Levy killer

Prison snitching, missing emails and some long-forgotten Fresno, Calif.-area crimes might captivate a D.C. courtroom audience this week during a high-stakes hearing to determine whether the man convicted of killing Chandra Levy gets a new trial. | 11/10/14 16:11:51 By - By Michael Doyle

Plea deal in works in California prison inmate killing

A proposed plea deal could spare the life of a former U.S. Penitentiary Atwater prisoner accused of killing his cellmate in 2003. | 11/06/14 15:30:58 By - By Michael Doyle

Alex Rodriguez’s DEA confession: Yes, I used steroids from fake Miami doctor

For 21 tumultuous months, New York Yankees superstar Alex Rodriguez has defiantly maintained he never used banned substances from a Coral Gables anti-aging clinic, that he is the victim of a Major League Baseball “witch hunt,” and that he would fight to the end to clear his name. | 11/05/14 14:55:05 By - Jay Weaver

Increase in big money influencing judical elections, study finds

An explosion of big money in state judicial elections is changing the way some judges rule from the bench, according to a new study. | 11/04/14 21:11:55 By - By William Douglas

Federal regulators accuse AT&T of failing to disclose that ‘unlimited’ data plans had limits

Federal regulators are suing AT&T for allegedly charging customers for unlimited data plans that were not, in reality, unlimited. | 10/28/14 15:22:08 By - By Lindsay Wise

Legal questions loom in Blackwater convictions

Congress and courts alike could end up chasing after the high-profile convictions of four ex-Blackwater Worldwide guards now facing decades in prison. | 10/23/14 17:56:39 By - By Michael Doyle

Blackwater guards found guilty in 2007 killings of Iraqi civilians

An infamous chapter of the Iraq War closed Wednesday as a jury convicted four former Blackwater Worldwide contractors of killing unarmed civilians in the chaotic streets of Baghdad. | 10/22/14 18:31:11 By - By Michael Doyle

Time has run out for Camp Lejeune water lawsuits, appeals court rules

Marines and their family members who were poisoned by toxic water at Camp Lejeune apparently lost their chance to sue the government when a federal appeals court ruled Tuesday that a North Carolina statute doesn’t give them the time they needed to make their cases. | 10/14/14 20:50:50 By - By Renee Schoof

Nursing home abuse claims lead to $38 million settlement with feds

One of the nation’s largest nursing home chains has agreed to pay $38 million to settle allegations that it improperly billed federal health programs for the poor and aging and provided unnecessary care, as well as “disturbing” substandard care. | 10/10/14 16:29:53 By - By Daniel Salazar

S.C. National Guard official charged with bribery

An active-duty South Carolina Army National Guard official has been charged with soliciting and accepting bribes in exchange for steering millions of dollars worth of contracts in the National Guard’s recruitment and marketing efforts. | 10/02/14 17:55:26 By - By Ali Watkins

Federal drug informant scores victory over DEA

A fabled Florida drug informant once known as “the Princess” has now crowned her career with a bittersweet legal victory | 09/29/14 16:33:46 By - By Michael Doyle

Multiple-victim shootings have reached ‘an alarming rate,’ FBI says

Active-shooter incidents, in which gunmen try to kill people in a populated area, are becoming more common and more deadly, according to a first-of-its-kind FBI study released Wednesday. | 09/24/14 18:27:13 By - By Michael Doyle

Wikileaks convict sues Pentagon over gender change treatments

Army Pvt. Chelsea Manning, known as Bradley Manning when she was convicted last year for releasing classified documents, sued Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel on Tuesday for failing to provide medical treatment for her gender disorder. | 09/23/14 19:32:25 By - By James Rosen

Convicted killer of Chandra Levy pursues new trial

Nearly four years since a jury convicted Salvadoran immigrant Ingmar Guandique of killing former intern Chandra Levy, the stage is set for a potential reprise. | 09/23/14 16:56:13 By - By Michael Doyle

Florida court shuts down diploma mill business at request of federal regulators

A U.S. District Court in Florida on Friday shut down a diploma mill business that federal regulators say earned more than $11 million selling fake high school diplomas online. | 09/19/14 16:33:55 By - By Lindsay Wise

Blocked Obama nominee for Justice’s Civil Rights Division withdraws

Debo Adegbile, President Barack Obama’s nominee to head the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division, withdrew his name from consideration Monday, unable to overcome a bipartisan Senate filibuster. | 09/16/14 06:28:28 By - By William Douglas

Border probe finds most agent abuse allegations need no more review

A study of more than 800 allegations against the federal Customs and Border Protection agency for excessive force and other alleged abuses has found less than a quarter of them may warrant further review. | 09/15/14 06:04:04 By - By Samantha Ehlinger

Misconduct at Justice Department isn’t always prosecuted

Dozens of Justice Department officials, ranging from FBI special agents and prison wardens to high-level federal prosecutors, have escaped prosecution or firing in recent years despite findings of misconduct by the department’s own internal watchdog. | 09/11/14 06:46:15 By - By Marisa Taylor and Michael Doyle

Holder pledges to ‘follow the facts’ in civil rights probe of Ferguson shooting

Attorney General Eric Holder on Thursday formally opened a broad civil rights investigation into the Ferguson, Mo., Police Department, as well as a cooperative reform effort with the St. Louis County Police Department. | 09/04/14 17:58:32 By - By Michael Doyle

Judge overturns convictions of North Carolina men in child's 1983 rape, murder

Despite a judge’s order declaring them innocent and freeing them after almost 31 years, prison officials insisted that Henry McCollum and Leon Brown remain in their custody Tuesday for one final night behind bars. | 09/03/14 08:12:07 By - Joseph Neff

Talks underway to resolve 10-year-old California prison death

In life-or-death trials, as in real estate, a lot comes down to location, location, location. | 08/29/14 16:32:28 By - By Michael Doyle

Soldier’s sentence in drug-related death gets another look

A former Tacoma, Wash.-area soldier serving time for his role in the 2009 drug-related death of his 16-year-old girlfriend will get another chance at a lighter sentence. | 08/28/14 17:22:59 By - By Michael Doyle

New trial ordered for soldier who says anti-smoking drug drove him to kill

The nation’s highest military appeals court on Wednesday ordered a new trial for a soldier who killed a Fresno, Calif., native in a sudden rage allegedly induced by the anti-smoking drug Chantix. | 08/27/14 18:49:56 By - By Michael Doyle

Barricaded soldier shoots herself at Fort Lee

A distraught female soldier at the Fort Lee army garrison shot herself in the head Monday morning as negotiators tried to calm her at the base south of Richmond, Virginia. The incident triggered fears of another deadly base rampage. | 08/25/14 15:18:12 By - By Kevin G. Hall

In Ferguson, mixed reviews for Gov. Nixon, good for Sen. McCaskill

Think New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, whose competence in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy helped raise his profile outside his state. | 08/22/14 17:12:06 By - By Lindsay Wise and Dave Helling

Data on police shootings is hard to find

The shooting of an unarmed teenager in Ferguson, Mo., has exposed what the Justice Department doesn’t know about police use of force. | 08/20/14 17:16:09 By - By Michael Doyle

Holder heads to Ferguson with options for federal shooting probe

Several options await the Justice Department inquiry that Attorney General Eric Holder will see firsthand Wednesday in embattled Ferguson, Mo., where he will meet with law enforcement authorities investigating the police shooting of 18-year-old Michael Brown. | 08/19/14 18:29:16 By - By Michael Doyle

Violence in Ferguson didn’t have to happen

The Rev. Tommie Pierson was meeting in his church a week ago Saturday when, only blocks away, multiple bullets fired from a Ferguson police officer’s pistol pierced the body of Michael Brown, leaving the unarmed African-American teen dead on the street. | 08/17/14 08:03:18 By - Eric Adler and Jason Hancock

R.J. Reynolds suit challenges tribes over cigarette fees

The R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co. is taking on tribal cigarette manufacturers, in a fight that’s already included covert investigations, aerial surveillance and confidential informants. | 08/15/14 18:29:05 By - By Michael Doyle

Tensions continue in Ferguson, Mo. over shooting

Police breaking a week-long silence and revealing the name of the officer involved in the fatal shooting of an unarmed black teenager was supposed to be a step towards healing a fracture community. | 08/15/14 15:36:05 By - Jason Hancock

Obama vows ‘justice will be done’ in Ferguson, Mo.

Justice Department officials on Thursday stepped up their investigation into the shooting of an unarmed teenager in Ferguson, Mo., while Missouri Highway Patrol officers took over security in the town that’s been roiled by demonstrations. | 08/14/14 22:35:14 By - By Michael Doyle, Anita Kumar and Lindsay Wise

Group: Inquiry ordered into lost IRS emails

The group suing the Internal Revenue Service in federal court to obtain the emails of former division head Lois Lerner celebrated Thursday a judge’s decision to open an inquiry into the matter. | 08/14/14 18:32:35 By - By Kevin G. Hall

NCAA says athletic departments must not interfere in sexual assault cases

After a Senate survey found 22 percent of colleges give their athletics departments oversight over sexual assault allegations against athletes, the NCAA Executive Committee has issued a resolution saying it expects that practice to stop. | 08/14/14 12:02:56 By - By Renee Schoof

Tracy Martin, Trayvon's father, urges calm after Ferguson shooting

Tracy Martin knows the pain a Ferguson, Mo., family and their community are feeling over the fatal shooting over the weekend of an 18-year-old unarmed black man. Martin's son, Trayvon Martin, 17, was fatally shot by a neighborhood watch security guard, George Zimmerman, on Feb. 26, 2012, in Sanford, Fla., a suburb of Orlando. The shooting sparked a national debate, and the case is strangely similar to the shooting of Michael Brown. | 08/12/14 11:42:38 By - Carolyn P. Smith

California water agency wins damage suit against feds

A federal appeals court has delivered a big victory to a small water district in California’s parched San Joaquin Valley. | 08/04/14 14:04:39 By - By Michael Doyle

Bipartisan bill would tighten rules on campus sexual assault

A bipartisan group of senators on Wednesday introduced legislation to streamline how colleges handle cases of sexual assault. | 07/31/14 07:42:17 By - By Stephanie Haven

Families of fallen firefighters denied federal benefits

Mark Ransdell and seven fellow firefighters died without federal benefits 11 years ago on their way home from battling an Idaho blaze. | 07/29/14 17:13:21 By - By Michael Doyle

Conservative federal appeals court strikes down Virginia’s same-sex marriage ban

Appellate judges on Monday struck down Virginia’s same-sex marriage ban, further teeing up the marriage equality question for final resolution by the Supreme Court. | 07/28/14 19:19:01 By - By Michael Doyle

Smoke-filled room? Legal marijuana debated at National Press Club

For Bill Piper, there’s no doubt that the nation’s war on drugs has failed, with 666,000 Americans arrested on marijuana charges last year alone. | 07/24/14 17:47:06 By - By Rob Hotakainen

Undercover GAO investigators secure health care tax credits using fake information

- Government undercover investigators using fake identities were able to get premium tax credits to help pay for health coverage in 11 of 12 attempts after applying online and by phone through the federal health insurance marketplace. | 07/23/14 16:04:49 By - By Tony Pugh

Rand Paul wants to let ex-cons vote, reduce drug offenses

Calling the criminal justice system “the largest impediment to both voting and employment in our country,” Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul wants to restore voting rights to nonviolent felons and reduce many drug crimes down to misdemeanors. | 07/23/14 06:33:24 By - By Sean Cockerham

Courts issue conflicting rulings on health care tax subsidies

Two appeals courts on Tuesday reached radically different conclusions about whether millions of consumers in 36 states can use tax credits to help buy health coverage on the federal health insurance marketplace. | 07/23/14 06:32:25 By - By Michael Doyle and Tony Pugh

Missing and exploited children’s advocates press for more help

Rep. Todd Rokita’s voice quavered as he closed a congressional hearing this week on the abduction and sex trafficking of children. | 07/16/14 18:51:57 By - By Caroline Cataldo

Will campus sexual-assault probes affect enrollment?

Sixty-seven U.S. colleges are under federal investigation for their handling of sexual assault cases. And prospective students have started to take notice. | 07/16/14 18:27:50 By - By Stephanie Haven

Holder says the push for civil rights must continue

U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder called on Congress Tuesday to update housing and lending laws, and to take steps to end discrimination against women and the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender community during Howard University’s celebration of the 50th anniversary of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. | 07/16/14 07:09:59 By - By Alejandro Davila Fragoso

Mongols biker club, accused of criminality, tries to shield its trademark

Federal prosecutors are revving up efforts to seize the Mongols Nation Motorcycle Club trademark, taking with it associated patches and logos. | 07/11/14 15:59:11 By - By Michael Doyle

Judge won’t dismiss Atwater inmate’s murder case

A federal inmate accused of murdering Correctional Officer Jose Rivera at U.S. Penitentiary Atwater has failed in his efforts to dismiss the indictment or exclude the death penalty. | 07/11/14 14:14:06 By - By Michael Doyle

Colleges lax over campus sexual assault cases, senator finds

An in-depth survey of American colleges and universities on sexual violence on campus found that many schools fall short in how they investigate and resolve such claims, Sen. Claire McCaskill, who commissioned the survey, said Wednesday. | 07/09/14 15:31:59 By - By Renee Schoof

Documents show soldiers called Robert Bales 'paranoid' well before Afghanistan killings

Months before he committed an inexplicable massacre, Staff Sgt. Robert Bales showed a split personality to his fellow soldiers at a small outpost in Southern Afghanistan. | 07/07/14 12:34:12 By - Adam Ashton

Justice Department releases controversial memo on legality of drone strike on American

An American leader of al Qaida based overseas could be killed without violating international or U.S. law because he was a senior member of a terrorist group who posed a continuous threat to the United States and whose capture wasn’t feasible, according to a Justice Department memorandum that was declassified Monday. | 06/23/14 19:02:45 By - By Jonathan S. Landay

FBI sting recovers missing children, nabs pimps

The FBI recovered 168 children and arrested 281 people on pimping charges during a nationwide sting coordinated through federal, state and local law enforcement agencies last week, the bureau announced Monday, part of a decade-long effort to combat child sex trafficking. | 06/23/14 18:25:49 By - By John Moritz

50 years on, race relations in Mississippi take a far different tone

Emily Dannenberg stepped off an air-conditioned tour bus into oppressive Mississippi heat. The white Columbia University graduate student had come to this steamy rural town on Monday with a mission: to mentor both black and white teenagers and help them make sense of their state’s violent and racist past. | 06/20/14 15:00:26 By - By Liz Willen

Judge in Guantanamo force-feeding case wants more evidence

A federal judge on Wednesday ordered the government to turn over more videotapes showing the forceful removal of a hunger-striking Guantanamo Bay detainee from his cell. | 06/18/14 18:27:14 By - By Michael Doyle

Border protection commissioner fires internal affairs chief amid allegations of abuse

U.S. Customs and Border Protection removed its head of internal affairs on Monday and called for a review of procedures involving the use of force following a wave of shooting deaths of unarmed civilians and hundreds of complaints of abuse by armed agents. | 06/09/14 21:28:26 By - By Franco Ordoñez

FBI, social workers unite to attack sexual trafficking of children

By just saying hello, a human trafficker can know whether or not a young boy or girl is worth pursuing as a victim, an FBI analyst explained at a recent training session with 20 local health and social services employees. | 06/03/14 13:20:53 By - By Elissa Nadworny

Former Charlotte Mayor Patrick Cannon tells judge he’s guilty on corruption charge

Former Charlotte Mayor Patrick Cannon pleaded guilty Tuesday morning to a federal public corruption charge, capping a four-year investigation in which he took bribes in exchange for the promise of helping developers. | 06/03/14 12:09:52 By - Ely Portillo, Elizabeth Leland and Mike Gordon

Head of U.S. border agencies, seeking ‘better public trust,’ revises lethal force policy

The federal agency in charge of U.S. border security on Friday issued a revised handbook on when its agents may use lethal force, adopting changes aimed at reducing dozens of killings that have generated a handful of lawsuits and cast agents as quick to pull their triggers. | 05/30/14 19:34:00 By - By Tim Johnson

Supermax confinement could send killer over the edge, lawyers say

A revealing new fight has erupted over the future of the inmate who admitted helping to kill a correctional officer at U.S. Penitentiary Atwater in California’s San Joaquin Valley. | 05/28/14 14:35:30 By - By Michael Doyle

Rep. Schiff wants tougher gun laws in wake of UCSB rampage

As the House of Representatives prepares to return from its Memorial Day recess, calls for tougher gun laws in the wake of the weekend’s University of California-Santa Barbara rampage that left three people dead by gunfire and three others stabbed to death are starting to trickle in. | 05/27/14 10:54:45 By - By William Douglas

Feds accuse Hattiesburg firm of breaking disabilities law

The U.S. Justice Department sued Hattiesburg, Miss.-based Dawn Properties Inc. on Friday, charging that the firm and its affiliates violated federal civil rights laws by designing and building at least five residential properties whose barriers make them inaccessible to disabled people. | 05/25/14 05:54:03 By - By Greg Gordon

Angry judge lifts ban on force-feeding of Guantanamo detainee, blasts Pentagon

An unhappy federal judge has blasted the Defense Department for its “intransigence” but said she had no choice but to lift a ban on the forced feeding of a hunger-striking Guantanamo Bay detainee. | 05/23/14 14:57:59 By - By Michael Doyle

Marine’s sexual assault conviction overturned because of commandant’s tough talk

The Marine Corps commandant’s uncompromising talk against sexual assault looked like unlawful command influence, a military appeals court said Thursday, as it overturned a Parris Island enlisted man’s conviction on sexual assault charges. | 05/22/14 18:37:01 By - By Michael Doyle

BP wants Supreme Court to throw out Deepwater Horizon settlement

BP is asking the U.S. Supreme Court to hear its challenge of the settlement agreement that’s forcing the oil company to reimburse businesses deemed hurt by the massive 2010 Deepwater Horizon spill in the Gulf of Mexico . | 05/21/14 14:28:54 By - By Sean Cockerham

Lawmakers want to prevent campus assaults

College officials often aren’t clear about how they must report cases of campus rape and sexual violence, and victims often feel they don’t have the support they need to hold assailants accountable, Sen. Claire McCaskill said Monday following a Capitol Hill roundtable. | 05/21/14 06:29:54 By - By Renee Schoof

Private pilots say border agents go too far

The young pilot from Miami was trying to impress a woman with a lunch trip to Key West. | 05/20/14 06:02:22 By - By Franco Ordonez

Mississippi man who sent ricin to Obama and others gets 25 years in prison

A former north Mississippi martial arts instructor was sentenced Monday to 25 years in prison for mailing letters laced with deadly ricin last year to President Barack Obama, Republican Sen. Roger Wicker and a Mississippi state court judge. | 05/19/14 19:28:26 By - By Greg Gordon

Marines make provocative choice for key defense counsel post

A Marine Corps officer whose bellicose prosecutorial rhetoric prompted defense complaints will now oversee defense attorneys, potentially including some who blew the whistle on him. | 05/19/14 17:04:30 By - By Michael Doyle

Cyber-spying charges against Chinese reveal shadow trade war

The indictment of alleged Chinese military hackers announced Monday illuminates the shadowy world of cyber-theft, while exacerbating the already tense relations between China and the United States. | 05/19/14 17:47:31 By - By Michael Doyle and Stuart Leavenworth

Fatally Flawed: Faulty medical examinations in N.C. devastate families

Across North Carolina, medical examiners fail to follow crucial investigative steps, raising questions about the accuracy of thousands of death rulings. The living face the consequences. | 05/18/14 08:10:17 By -

Meat labeling vs. free speech: A fine meal for judges

Twelve judges will consider claims that country-of-origin label requirements violate U.S. meat producers’ First Amendment rights. It’s a case with global implications. | 05/16/14 16:49:46 By - By Michael Doyle

Court rules against Calif. raisin farmer’s complaint with USDA

A dissident Fresno-area raisin farmer who took his complaints all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court has lost his challenge to a crucial part of the system that governs his industry. | 05/16/14 07:11:23 By - By Michael Doyle

Funding for police bulletproof vest program in question

A program that has supplied more than 1 million bulletproof vests to police departments in Texas and around the country is facing a holdup on Capitol Hill. | 05/14/14 18:24:17 By - By Laurel White

Military court hears convicted killer’s anti-smoking drug defense

The 2008 homicide of Fresno, Calif., native Rick Bulmer riveted the nation’s top military appeals court Tuesday, as judges weighed the killer’s claims that he’d snapped under the influence of a potent anti-smoking drug called Chantix. | 05/13/14 17:12:48 By - By Michael Doyle

Another 90 Arrests As Strike Force’s Medicare Fraud Tally Hits $6 Billion

In the seventh “takedown” since the government formed a Medicare Fraud Strike Force in 2007, federal agents arrested 90 people on May 13th, including 50 in Miami, on charges they schemed to falsely bill taxpayers $260 million. | 05/13/14 15:39:11 By - By Greg Gordon

Did Marine prosecutor’s search ask for an inch and take a mile?

An unusual government search of Marine Corps defense attorneys’ offices at California’s Camp Pendleton could cast a cloud over dozens of criminal cases. | 05/09/14 18:02:52 By - By Michael Doyle

Judges seem skeptical over latest challenge to health care law

The seemingly endless legal war over health care found an esoteric new front Thursday, as appellate judges considered where certain bills should originate. | 05/09/14 06:57:07 By - By Michael Doyle

DEA settles suit alleging government lie-detector abuses

The Drug Enforcement Administration has agreed to pay 14 contractors $500,000 to settle a lawsuit that accuses the agency of illegally requiring them to undergo highly intrusive lie detector tests to keep their jobs as translators. | 05/08/14 05:29:32 By - By Marisa Taylor

Border Patrol rarely punishes agents accused of abuse, study shows

The report by the American Immigration Council found that 97 percent of abuse complaints lodged against Border Patrol agents and Customs and Border Protection officers resulted in no disciplinary action once an investigation had been completed. Those included a complaint from a pregnant woman in El Paso, Texas, that she had miscarried after a Border Patrol agent kicked her in the stomach, and several complaints from women that they had been forced to bare their breasts while in custody. | 05/06/14 20:06:17 By - By Franco Ordonez

Convicted killer in Chandra Levy case questions snitch’s credibility

Attorneys for the man convicted of killing former intern Chandra Levy formally made their case for a new trial Tuesday, citing serious problems with the prosecution’s key witness. | 05/06/14 17:51:15 By - By Michael Doyle

How high is too high to drive? States find no easy answers

Josephine Drum says her daughter was “cheated out of life” when she was killed while driving to work in downtown Seattle in 2012, hit by a man in a Jeep whose blood tested positive for marijuana. | 05/06/14 14:30:23 By - By Rob Hotakainen

Convicted of murder, soldier blames anti-smoking drug

While his homicidal claim is rare _ he may be the first, and so far only, murder defendant to go all the way to trial with a Chantix defense _ questions about the drug’s safety are not. | 05/04/14 00:00:00 By - By Michael Doyle

An appeals victory might open new inquiries into anti-smoking drug

Before Pfizer paid at least $299 million to settle claims that its anti-smoking drug Chantix caused harm, the pharmaceutical giant played hardball with Army Pfc. George D.B. MacDonald. | 05/04/14 00:00:00 By - By Michael Doyle

Judges display healthy skepticism of juice maker’s health claims

Appellate judges Friday taste-tested a pomegranate juice maker’s health claims. | 05/02/14 17:05:54 By - By Michael Doyle

Penn State listed among universities under investigation for possible Title IX violations

Penn State is among 55 universities and colleges being investigated for possible violations of federal laws over its handling of sexual violence and harassment complaints, according to a list released Thursday by the U.S. Department of Education in what it called a move for transparency. | 05/01/14 18:22:06 By - Matt Carroll

FBI chief mourns loss of life to ‘madman with warped view’

Mourning three recent killings outside Jewish sites in suburban Kansas City, Mo., by “a madman with a warped view of what America should look like,” FBI Director James Comey called Monday for stronger reporting of hate crimes and increased education to help prevent them. | 04/28/14 17:44:11 By - By Greg Gordon

IG: Feds didn’t pass polygraph evidence of child abuse to investigators

The nation’s spy satellite agency failed to notify authorities when some employees and contractors confessed during lie detector tests to crimes such as child molestation, an intelligence inspector general has concluded. | 04/22/14 11:28:00 By - By Marisa Taylor

Supreme Court weighs truth in labeling in fruit juice case

Dual marketing disputes have ripened for the California-based makers of Pom Wonderful pomegranate juice, with Supreme Court justices sounding sympathetic Monday to some company claims. | 04/22/14 07:55:09 By - By Michael Doyle

Debate over Armenian museum will continue at appellate hearing

The legal fight over a proposed Armenian Genocide Museum and Memorial has lasted nearly as long as the horrors the project is supposed to commemorate. | 04/21/14 07:54:14 By - By Michael Doyle

Feds quietly toughen standards for immigrant asylum seekers

Federal officials have quietly introduced new guidelines that make it tougher for asylum seekers to get their cases heard before judges. | 04/18/14 15:51:41 By - By Franco Ordonez

New trial to begin in Baltimore in killing of North Carolina teen

The family of slain North Carolina teenager Phylicia Barnes is bracing themselves for a second grueling trial more than a year after a Baltimore judge tossed out a murder conviction of the man known to have last seen her. | 04/16/14 15:27:17 By - By Franco Ordonez

New group aims to curb gun violence

Backed with millions of dollars and potentially millions of supporters, a new group aiming to curb gun violence will launch Wednesday. | 04/16/14 08:20:18 By - David Lightman

Lawmakers seek prosecution of ex-IRS official Lois Lerner

A congressional committee asked the Department of Justice on Wednesday to prosecute a top tax official who’s alleged to have improperly targeted conservative political organizations. | 04/10/14 05:52:19 By - By Kevin G. Hall

Senate’s findings on CIA interrogations likely to become roadmap for litigation

A scathing and still-secret Senate report on harsh CIA interrogations and detentions threatens to drag President Barack Obama into a legal thicket he’d rather avoid. | 04/07/14 04:54:12 By - By Michael Doyle and Marisa Taylor

Fort Hood shooting provokes debate over ban on guns on bases

The haunting scene of another mass shooting at Fort Hood is igniting a debate among lawmakers, especially from Texas, about the Pentagon’s rules against personnel carrying guns on military bases. | 04/04/14 06:33:32 By - By Maria Recio

Will campaign-spending decision energize or squelch voters?

Thanks to Wednesday’s U.S. Supreme Court decision overturning laws on certain donor restrictions, legions of American voters, already angry at a distant, dysfunctional political system, might feel even further alienated from the process. Or they’ll have new opportunities to make it better. | 04/03/14 06:06:35 By - By David Lightman

Prison snitch key to retrial for Chandra Levy killer

Significant mystery still surrounds the former Fresno gang leader whose compelling testimony helped secure the conviction of the man accused of killing Chandra Levy. | 03/28/14 15:59:01 By - By Michael Doyle

In CSI: Fort Worth style, special lawmen track rustlers

Like a beat cop working the streets, Wayne Goodman is marking his turf and showing his badge as dozens of stock trailers unload hundreds of cattle at the Dublin Livestock Auction. Goodman’s one of just 30 of a unique brand of public/private “cow cops” who investigate agricultural crimes across Texas and Oklahoma. | 03/28/14 13:20:34 By - Steve Campbell

Secret Service agents in South Florida for Obama visit had traffic accident

A burgeoning new scandal over drunkenness or tawdry behavior among Secret Service officers traveling with President Barack Obama prompted intense scrutiny of a traffic accident in the Florida Keys earlier this month involving two of the agency’s men. | 03/27/14 19:02:34 By - By Charles Rabin, Greg Gordon and Glenn Garvin

Feds investigate rapes in Alaska National Guard

Alaska Gov. Sean Parnell has called in a federal investigation of sexual assault and fraud in the Alaska National Guard, including an inquiry into how the guard’s commanders handled reports of rape and other offenses. | 03/26/14 20:20:39 By - By Sean Cockerham

Questions still unanswered about U.S. Border Patrol’s killing of 16-year-old

Sixteen-year-old Jose Antonio Elena got the kind of punishment that those who toss rocks at Border Patrol agents receive with startling frequency: He was shot with a .40-caliber round from an agent’s service weapon. | 03/21/14 15:20:43 By - By Tim Johnson

Inmate in California prison murder to get life

One of two inmates who killed a federal correctional officer at U.S. Penitentiary Atwater will spend the rest of his life in prison in exchange for a guilty plea, under a plea bargain reportedly approved by Attorney General Eric Holder. | 03/07/14 18:23:34 By - By Michael Doyle

Senators block bill to remove sex assault cases from military chain of command

The Senate on Thursday rejected legislation that would have stripped military commanders of the power to prosecute sexual assaults and other major crimes. | 03/07/14 07:04:37 By - By Lindsay Wise

D.C. Council OKs dropping fine for pot possession to $25

Which offense is likely to carry a bigger fine soon in Washington, D.C.? a) Parking near a fire hydrant. b) Possessing pot. If you answered “a,” you are correct. | 03/05/14 06:47:33 By - By Rob Hotakainen

Mike McQueary was sexually abused, according to ESPN report

Mike McQueary told Penn State players in November 2011 that he was sexually abused when he was a child, ESPN The Magazine reported Tuesday. | 03/04/14 14:12:35 By - Mike Dawson

Will Mexican cartels go the way of Colombia’s crime syndicates?

As jockeying intensified over who’ll replace Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman as head of the Sinaloa Cartel, experts predicted that the arrest of the legendary crime boss would usher in the breakup of Mexico’s huge crime syndicates. | 02/24/14 17:30:05 By - By Tim Johnson

Alaska National Guard members face accusations of sexual misconduct

Five were members of the guard's recruiting unit and are alleged to have committed the offenses against potential recruits, new recruits, subordinates and others. | 02/24/14 08:12:50 By - By Sean Cockerham

After 13-year hunt, Mexico arrests ‘Chapo’ Guzman, reputedly world’s No. 1 crime lord

Authorities on Saturday captured Mexico’s most wanted accused drug lord, Sinaloa Cartel leader Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman Loera, in a stunning development likely to deal a fateful blow to a drug syndicate with vast tentacles around the globe. | 02/22/14 16:40:35 By - By Tim Johnson

Inmate accused of killing prison guard seeks deal

One of two inmates accused of killing a federal correctional officer at U.S. Penitentiary Atwater in California’s San Joaquin Valley has offered to plead guilty in exchange for a life sentence, new court records show. | 02/21/14 13:05:01 By - By Michael Doyle

Ex-Marine’s suit over sexual assault case faces uphill battle

A former Dallas-area resident who played soccer at the U.S. Naval Academy, Ariana Klay is now a front-and-center civilian in the debate over handling sexual assault in the military | 02/18/14 17:43:38 By - By Michael Doyle

Fightin’ over moonshine recipe is classic Carolina tale

It had the makings of a storybook Carolina partnership. In 2010, a distillery co-owned by NASCAR legend Junior Johnson teamed up with one of North Carolina’s most famous moonshine families. Before long, business was booming. | 02/18/14 11:35:25 By - Ames Alexander

Feds won’t enforce money-laundering laws against banks doing business with pot stores

Marking another milestone for the legal marijuana industry, the Obama administration on Friday said it has advised U.S. attorneys in states where the sale of marijuana is legal not to prosecute banks that allow pot stores to open accounts and accept credit-card payments. | 02/14/14 17:52:14 By - By Rob Hotakainen

Justice Department includes same-sex couples in host of legal protections

Same-sex married couples nationwide now will receive many more of the same legal protections and benefits enjoyed by other couples, under new Justice Department policies formally unveiled Monday. | 02/10/14 17:19:41 By - By Michael Doyle

Lawsuit challenges Eric Holder action on Wall Street

A public advocacy group filed a legal challenge Monday to block implementation of a record $13 billion civil settlement between Attorney General Eric Holder and Wall Street powerhouse JP Morgan Chase. | 02/10/14 16:29:17 By - By Kevin G. Hall

Seattle judge will join super-secret spy court

A Washington state-based federal appellate judge who once represented the Seattle Mariners baseball team has now joined the roster of one of the nation’s most unique and secretive courts. | 02/07/14 17:33:58 By - By Michael Doyle

Advocates on each side of pot debate pressure Obama to take stand

With more than half of all federal prisoners serving time on drug charges, the Obama administration says it’s time to free more low-level drug offenders. | 02/06/14 15:38:39 By - By Rob Hotakainen

Paterno family attorneys name Penn State a ‘nominal defendant’ in amended complaint against NCAA

The lawyers for the family of the late Joe Paterno have filed an amended complaint in their case against the NCAA. The complaint outlines claims that the NCAA sanctions hurt job prospects for two former coaches, and it adds Penn State as a nominal defendant in the breach of contract claim. | 02/05/14 15:36:19 By - Mike Dawson

Obama administration won't divulge cost of Guantanamo camp, asks court to dismiss FOIA lawsuit

The Obama administration is refusing to divulge how much it spent to build the secret prison facility at Guantanamo where the accused 9/11 co-conspirators are held and has asked a federal court to dismiss a lawsuit by a Miami Herald reporter demanding documents that would reveal the number. | 02/01/14 19:36:31 By - By Mark Seibel

Feds seize fake Seahawks, Broncos gear

Federal officials announced Thursday that they’d seized more than $21.6 million in counterfeit NFL and other sports merchandise during a special operation leading up to this Sunday’s Super Bowl. | 01/30/14 14:16:55 By - By Franco Ordonez

Lawmakers worry about sex trafficking at Super Bowl

In a chamber at standing-room-only capacity, with photographs of young victims flashing from TV screens aligning the committee walls, a House of Representatives panel held a hearing Monday to raise awareness about human trafficking. Of immediate concern among the legislators is this Sunday’s Super Bowl, an event that is thought to heighten the demand for forced prostitution. | 01/27/14 18:56:31 By - By Sam Sturgis

Good Samaritan paralyzed in Myrtle Beach purse snatching settles with Kmart, looks ahead

For Brenda Williams, the last four years and nearly three months have been a triumph of faith and forgiveness over self pity and hatred. Williams, now 54, was paralyzed from the waist down on the morning of Nov. 9, 2009, while trying to help an elderly woman whose purse had been snatched while she was shopping inside the Kmart store in Myrtle Beach, SC | 01/25/14 07:48:28 By - David Wren

Battle set in Congress after privacy board says NSA program is illegal

A government oversight board’s finding that the National Security Agency’s massive collection of cellphone data is illegal and should never have been approved by the federal court created to deal with sensitive intelligence issues set off a furor in Washington on Thursday that presages the bitter battle likely to come in Congress over how to change the country’s intelligence operations. | 01/23/14 20:14:57 By - By Ali Watkins

Fresno mayor talks to colleagues about combating gang violence

Fresno Mayor Ashley Swearengin on Wednesday shared her city’s hard-won knowledge about street gangs with an attentive national audience. | 01/22/14 18:12:32 By - By Michael Doyle

No one is sure how public advocate at spy court would work

Serious questions shadow President Barack Obama’s proposal to add a public advocate to the secret court that oversees surveillance programs. The public advocate, Obama says, would provide an “independent voice in significant cases” before the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court. The details, though, remain sketchy even as some of the administration’s own lawyers wonder about the wisdom of it all. | 01/21/14 04:34:37 By - By Michael Doyle and Anita Kumar

Fans say Snowden is vindicated, deserves amnesty for leaks

Supporters of Edward Snowden complained of a glaring omission in the White House’s pledge Friday to rein in government surveillance activities: amnesty for the fugitive leaker who’s now holed up in Russia after revealing the secrets that led to this shakeup. | 01/17/14 19:00:17 By - By Hannah Allam

Air Force criminal cases could be grounded

The questionable appointment of a civilian judge to a struggling military appeals court has already cast into doubt dozens of Air Force criminal cases. Now, it’s embarrassed the government attorneys who are trying to defend the appointment. | 01/17/14 17:09:59 By - By Michael Doyle

U.N. panel uses treaty on children's rights to grill Vatican on sex abuse

Senior Vatican officials came under a barrage of critical questions by an independent United Nations panel Thursday over the Roman Catholic Church's response to allegations of child sexual abuse by members of the clergy in many countries. | 01/16/14 19:07:41 By - By John Zarocostas

As trial in 2005 Hariri assassination opens, Lebanese have more current worries

After nine years of investigation costing tens of millions of dollars, international prosecutors in The Hague on Thursday began to lay out their case against four Hezbollah members accused in the 2005 car bombing that killed a former prime minister and 21 others in downtown Beirut. | 01/16/14 17:41:26 By - By Mitchell Prothero

Supreme Court looks at a president’s power to appoint

Many federal decisions hung in the balance Monday as Supreme Court justices wrestled with a case that involved the appointments made by presidents during a congressional recess. | 01/13/14 16:07:17 By - By Michael Doyle

Picture this: Judge orders ‘flea market’ Renoir returned to museum

A little-known, even insignificant, Renoir painting now has a whole lot more cachet after a mysterious series of events – including its long-ago disappearance from the Baltimore Museum of Art, the story of its recent discovery at a flea market, and its seizure by the FBI – culminated Friday in a federal judge’s decision to return it to the museum. | 01/10/14 18:09:22 By - By Maria Recio

Supreme Court will hear dispute over presidential appointments

A routine labor dispute at a soft drink bottling company in Yakima, Wash., has now bubbled up to the Supreme Court, posing a serious challenge to presidential powers. | 01/09/14 16:19:02 By - By Michael Doyle

BP, claiming fraud, wants to stop oil-spill payments

The Deepwater Horizon settlement agreement is in turmoil, with BP attempting to stop the payments and saying money shouldn’t have gone to an adult escort service, a global nuclear consultant and others that haven’t proved the monster 2010 oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico cost them business. | 01/07/14 13:11:28 By - By Sean Cockerham

Jerry Sandusky fights for pension from jail

Jerry Sandusky didn’t take the stand at his own trial, but the former Penn State coach testified during a hearing that started Tuesday over whether he can win back his state pension that was taken away when he was convicted. | 01/07/14 12:30:08 By - Mike Dawson

Changes on the way in how military handles sexual assault

Get ready for some unforeseen consequences as Congress changes how the military handles sexual assault. | 12/20/13 17:46:40 By - By Michael Doyle

BP engineer convicted in 2010 Deepwater Horizon federal case

A former BP engineer was convicted today of deleting text messages considered evidence in the federal investigation of the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill. | 12/18/13 17:17:45 By - Sean Cockerham

Navy investigator pleads guilty in bribery case

A senior Navy criminal investigator pleaded guilty Tuesday to conspiracy and accepting bribes for leaking sensitive information that allegedly enabled the central figure in a massive corruption investigation to evade detection for nearly two years. | 12/17/13 20:27:39 By - By Greg Gordon

Wichita man arrested, planned suicide bombing at Mid-Continent Airport

A Wichita man has been charged in federal court with attempting to explode a car bomb at Wichita MC Airport, U.S. Attorney Barry Grissom. | 12/13/13 17:03:21 By - Tim Potter and Bill Wilson

NBC News: Man arrested planned suicide bombing at Wichita airport

Wichita Police Chief Norman Williams says a 1 p.m. news conference Friday will address “a major situation for our city that was averted” through a collaborative investigation. | 12/13/13 14:11:01 By - Tim Potter

Lawsuit seeks to unlock CIA’s secret history of Bay of Pigs invasion

The Obama administration on Thursday fought to keep secret a CIA account of the 1961 Bay of Pigs debacle. | 12/12/13 16:34:31 By - By Michael Doyle

Court weighs whether Guantanamo detainee searches are too aggressive

The key appellate court that’s incited a Senate-confirmation clash confronted on Monday touchy questions about searches of detainees at the U.S. naval base at Guantanamo Bay. | 12/09/13 16:35:08 By - By Michael Doyle

Prison guard murder defendant intellectually disabled, defense experts say

Respect means everything to one of the men accused of helping kill a federal correctional officer at U.S. Penitentiary Atwater, in California’s San Joaquin Valley. | 12/06/13 16:43:23 By - By Michael Doyle

Supreme Court tackles Kentucky false advertising case

Fanciful questions about chocolate sauce confronted a Lexington, Ky., attorney representing a hometown firm Tuesday as the Supreme Court weighed when companies can file false advertising lawsuits. | 12/03/13 16:48:13 By - By Michael Doyle

Should government release its secret study on CIA interrogation?

More activists are suing to obtain a massive, secret study of CIA interrogation practices in a fight that could last longer than the study itself. | 11/27/13 15:30:59 By - By Michael Doyle

South Florida ex-FBI agent seized in Iran becomes longest-held U.S. hostage

The Obama administration renewed calls for Iran to free retired FBI agent Robert “Bob” Levinson, who on Tuesday reached the grim milestone of becoming the longest-held hostage in U.S. history. | 11/26/13 19:30:49 By - By Hannah Allam

’Tis the season to be wary – of scam artists

The holiday season: Time with the family, large amounts of food, gifts galore – and scams. | 11/26/13 16:31:34 By - By Mary Faddoul

Military court questions Marine chief’s tough talk on sexual assault

Military judges on Tuesday worried about when a commander’s tough talk against sexual assault could tilt the scales of justice. | 11/26/13 16:06:03 By - By Michael Doyle

Internet posts provide incriminating look at lives of Mexico’s narco families

The sons and daughters of Mexico’s most renowned outlaws just can’t refrain from posting photos of their lavish lifestyles online: Fat bundles of cash. Gold-plated assault rifles. Pet lions and tigers. Tricked-out dune buggies. | 11/25/13 15:43:42 By - By Tim Johnson

Florida House colleagues will pick up slack while Radel undergoes drug treatment

Seven hundred and twenty two thousand residents of southwest Florida will be voiceless in the House of Representatives while Rep. Trey Radel, who pleaded guilty to cocaine charges Wednesday, takes leave to deal with his acknowledged addiction. | 11/22/13 06:43:26 By - By Michael Doyle

Sen. Murkowski decries sexual misconduct in Alaska National Guard

Sen. Lisa Murkowski on Wednesday cited sexual misconduct problems in the Alaska National Guard for her support of a proposal to take decisions on prosecuting sex crimes away from military commanders. | 11/20/13 18:55:10 By - By Sean Cockerham

U.S. Rep. Radel takes leave, gets probation after pleading guilty to cocaine charge

Rep. Henry “Trey” Radel, R-Fla., pleaded guilty in a soft voice Wednesday to one count of cocaine possession and was placed on one year of supervised probation. | 11/20/13 18:10:59 By - By Michael Doyle

Third time not the charm: Senate GOP rejects another Obama judicial nominee

Senate Republicans on Monday stymied President Barack Obama’s latest judicial nominee, leaving one of the nation’s top appellate courts shorthanded and escalating the endless confirmation war. | 11/18/13 19:22:22 By - By Michael Doyle and William Douglas

Senators find momentum shifting in revising military sexual-assault law

Timing can be everything in politics, as a congressional showdown over military sexual assault might soon demonstrate. | 11/18/13 04:29:08 By - By Michael Doyle

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Suits & Sentences

"Suits & Sentences" is written by Mike Doyle, who covers the Supreme Court for McClatchy's Washington Bureau. Send a story suggestion.

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