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July 2017 Archives

Sessions urges increase in civil forfeitures by law enforcement

Civil forfeiture is a process by which law enforcement agencies seize money and property from suspected criminals and criminal organizations. The assets can be seized whenever law enforcement personnel determine they are connected to, or are the result of, criminal activity. This can occur long before the owner of those assets goes to trial, and it can be an uphill battle trying to get them back.

Is it fair and legal for police to shame defendants on Facebook?

A Boston writer for the Associated Press recently published an article on whether police departments can legally use their Facebook pages to shame defendants they have arrested. The article cites activity from several different cities where police departments, in a quest to "inform the community," have been posting photos of criminal defendants -- in many cases, accompanied by pejorative quips.

Supreme Court asked to rule on reach of email warrants under SCA

The Stored Communications Act was passed as Title II of the Electronic Communications Privacy Act of 1986, long before the possibility of cloud computing was even on the horizon. In general, it addresses the government's ability to compel the disclosure of "stored wire and electronic communications and transactional records."

MADD pushes for ignition interlock law

In a year when the national average for highway deaths involving drunk drivers was 1.9 percent, Massachusetts rated 2.9 percent. An average of 121 people in the state die each year from alcohol-related accidents. Impaired drivers were responsible for accidents that killed over 10,000 people across the country in one year.

When should the tragedy of an overdose become a criminal act?

A 30-year-old Pennsylvania woman has been charged with aggravated assault on a newborn after she overdosed while seven months pregnant. It's a tragic story, made only more so by the shortsightedness and mistakes that appear to have contributed to the events.

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July 2017 Archives | Worcester Criminal Defense Law Blog