Student Suing Yale

A group of current and former students at Yale University have sued the Ivy League school for discriminating against students with mental health challenges in violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act. The lawsuit alleges Yale pressures students to withdraw from the school if they’re suicidal or hospitalized for mental health treatment. Some students who refuse to withdraw are then involuntarily withdrawn.

One plaintiff said authorities at Yale visited her in the hospital after she overdosed on aspirin to urge her to withdraw. When she didn’t, the university involuntarily withdrew her while she was still hospitalized. She was then told she would need a police escort to retrieve her belongings.

The lawsuit alleges Yale has, quote, “treated unequally and failed to accommodate students with mental health disabilities.” The lawsuit goes on to say, quote, “The impact of Yale’s discriminatory policies is harshest on students with mental health disabilities from less privileged backgrounds, including students of color, students from poor families

— source | Dec 05, 2022

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Legendary Prosecutor Luis Moreno Ocampo

Julio was the prosecutor in charge. He needed help. And we knew each other from the university, so he invited me to support him. And he gave me the task: I need to lead the investigation. And we cannot use the police, because the police was involved in the crimes.

So, what we did, we used the victims to produce the evidence. So, the Truth Commission identified the victims. We first selected the best cases. Then we called the victims, the survivors, asking more details. Who saw — who watched you when you were abducted? There was habeas corpus or criminal proceedings. So, we collect all of these documents and prove well the abduction. Then the victims told us about their own torture and how they watched other people being tortured. And then we show the killings showing people who were abducted before and then appear dead, and the Army recognized they killed them, but they invented that it was they killed them in a fight, in a battle. And we show it was a fake battle, so these people were abducted before.

In this way, in four months, with this group of young kids, who were just meeting the victims, meeting the people, receiving them in the office, we produced the evidence. We produced 2,000 witnesses in four months. And that transformed the case, because the witness testimonies transformed the perception of what happened during the dictatorship.

— source | Jan 13, 2023

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Drop Murder Charges Against Domestic Abuse Survivor

In a remarkable courtroom scene, Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg asked a New York judge Monday to dismiss murder charges against Tracy McCarter, who says she acted in self-defense when her estranged husband died from a stab wound in the chest in 2020. Bragg campaigned on a promise to fight to free McCarter of murder charges, though, when elected, advocates say his actions initially fell short. This comes as pressure is growing in New York to end the criminalization of domestic abuse survivors, which happens at a disproportionate rate against Black women. Advocates say 90% of women who are incarcerated in New York have been subjected to domestic violence. McCarter “had done everything we tell domestic abuse survivors to do,” says journalist Victoria Law, who has closely followed McCarter’s case, but the nurse still finds herself “in legal limbo, waiting to see if she can try to start picking up the pieces of her life or if she will be facing trial for murder.”

So, as you said, Tracy McCarter was arrested on March 2nd, 2020, a few weeks before New York went on lockdown because of the coronavirus pandemic. She had done everything that we tell domestic violence survivors to do. She separated herself from her increasingly abusive husband. She moved out. She found her own apartment. She continued working as a nurse — and I

— source | Nov 29, 2022

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A Life Fighting for Justice

After 41 years in prison, most of it on death row, this Friday, the journalist and former Black Panther Mumia Abu-Jamal faces what could be his last chance for a new trial to consider newly discovered evidence that casts doubt on his 1982 conviction for the murder of police officer Daniel Faulkner. And this judge has weighed on this case.

Mumia Abu-Jamal’s lawyers say evidence in boxes discovered in the Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office by DA Larry Krasner in 2019 show his trial was tainted by judicial bias and police and prosecutorial misconduct, like withholding of evidence, bribing or coercing witnesses to lie, and more.

Yes, a prominent voice calling for a new trial and for the release of Mumia Abu-Jamal is Judge Wendell Griffen, a judge of the 6th Judicial Circuit of Arkansas, 5th Division. He spent more than 10 years as a judge on the Arkansas state Court of Appeals. He’ll retire this month after 24 years on the bench and a career that’s included speaking out against

— source | Dec 14, 2022

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Google to pay Indiana $20M to settle location tracking suit

Indiana Attorney General Todd Rokita announced Friday a settlement agreement with Google LLC over violations of the Indiana Deceptive Consumer Sales Act (DCSA).

The agreement orders Google to pay Indiana $2 million within 60 days, and the proceeds may be used for any purpose allowable under Indiana law. Additionally, the agreement mandates that Google have “pop-up” notifications to inform users if their location history is enabled. The agreement also orders Google to maintain a webpage disclosing its practices and policies concerning customer location information. Lastly, Google must provide instructions to users about location-related settings and has to report its compliance with the agreement.

Indiana sued Google for unfair business practices under Indiana law and violating DCSA. The complaint asserted that Google “deceives” customers regarding their ability to protect their privacy through Google account and device settings. The complaint also argued that location data can be used to infer personal details as well as major life events about customers.

On December 28, the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit ruled that guardians can sue Google for tracking their children’s YouTube activity without consent.

— source | Dec 31, 2022

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The Supreme Court Case That Could Gut Native Sovereignty

Supreme Court, which heard oral arguments on Wednesday in a case focused on the Indian Child Welfare Act, a 1978 law created to prevent family separation in Native communities. The case centers on a Navajo girl known as Baby O, who is being raised by a white couple who sued to overturn the Indian Child Welfare Act. Our next guest says the court’s ruling could have potentially seismic implications for Indigenous nations in the U.S.

Yeah. So, Baby O, when she was born, she was left at a hospital under Nevada’s safe haven law. And she went to live with Heather and Nick Libretti, a white couple who live outside of Reno, Nevada. They thought, given the circumstances, they would be able to adopt her. But the child’s father was identified, and it became clear that she was eligible for citizenship in the Ysleta del Sur Pueblo, a federally recognized tribe in Texas, and that her case fell under ICWA. The Librettis were told they would not be able to adopt the child, that her placement with them would be temporary.

And instead of accepting that the child would go to blood relatives, they decided to fight. They hired lawyers. They asked the child’s grandmother to renounce her tribal membership so that ICWA wouldn’t apply to the case. They got in touch with relatives who were considering fostering and adopting the child, and had conversations with them to try

— source | Nov 10, 2022

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The Worst Abuser You Could Ever Have

Tracy McCarter did everything that society tells domestic violence survivors to do. She separated from her husband, Jim Murray, and moved on with her life. She continued working full-time as a nurse at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital, was enrolled in a master’s program at Columbia University, and was looking forward to celebrating her graduation with her four grown children. In the seven months since she had separated from her husband, she had rented her own apartment in Manhattan and was in the process of buying one in Queens, far enough away from Murray, whose alcoholism had been spiraling out of control, to minimize his intrusions. Although she still loved her husband, McCarter was preparing to enter a new chapter in her life—one in which she would welcome her first grandchild into the world, purchase and renovate a co-op, and advance her career.

But then, more than two years ago, she was forced to put those plans on hold, McCarter told me in the first of several interviews conducted in her apartment, where she is confined not because of the pandemic, but because the Manhattan district attorney’s office is charging her with murder—for Murray’s death. This awful tragedy is actually not that unusual. It’s a bind she shares with many other domestic violence survivors who act in self-defense, only to find themselves ensnared in the legal system.

McCarter, who’s facing a potential prison sentence of 25 years to life, declined to discuss what happened in the moments before police arrived at her apartment on the night of

— source | Victoria Law | Jul 18, 2022

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New York to Pay $36 Million for Two Men Wrongfully Jailed for 1965 Murder

New York City and New York state have agreed to pay a total of $36 million to settle lawsuits on behalf of two men who were wrongly convicted and jailed for decades for assassinating Malcolm X in 1965. Last year, a judge tossed out convictions against Muhammad Aziz and the late Khalil Islam after finding serious miscarriages of justice. An investigation by the Manhattan DA’s Office and the Innocence Project found that prosecutors, the FBI, the New York Police Department omitted key evidence around Malcolm X’s murder. Muhammad Aziz spent two decades in prison before being released on parole. He was interviewed by ABC earlier this year.

First of all, the first settlement was with the state of New York. That happened a few months ago. The recent news was the settlement with the City of New York, which happened just last week. Fortunately, and this is the exception, not the norm, both of those entities wanted to come to the table immediately. They were both serious about trying to resolve these cases. And it was important to resolve them quickly. As you know, this case had a 50-year injustice that lingered and lingered and lingered. So, for the government to resolve these cases immediately was essential.

— source | Nov 01, 2022

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The Story of Baby O

In March of 2016, a newborn baby was left at a hospital in Nevada. In court documents, the child is called “Baby O,” but we will call her “Octavia.” When she was 3 days old, Octavia went to live with a couple named Heather and Nick Libretti in the small city of Sparks, Nev., just outside of Reno. At the time, Heather did PR for a classic cars festival, while Nick worked as a mechanic. The couple, now in their early 40s, had fostered and adopted two boys—and taken in a third—but Heather had always wanted a girl.

Octavia had been left at the hospital under Nevada’s Safe Haven law, which allows a parent to give up their child at a hospital, a firehouse, or a police station without fear of being arrested or prosecuted. In line with the statute, Octavia’s mother voluntarily relinquished her parental rights. When she was asked by hospital staff to share the father’s name, she refused. And so, when Octavia went home with the Librettis, there was no biological family to claim her. Given the circumstances, the Librettis felt certain they would be able to adopt her.

Then, three weeks after Octavia was born, her father’s name was found, though it’s not entirely clear how. He was contacted, as required by law, and, after a DNA test confirmed his paternity, said he wanted to raise the child. Since Octavia’s father was homeless and struggling with substance use, however, the Washoe County Human Services Agency (HSA)

— source | Rebecca Nagle | Nov 9, 2022

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