CRIMINAL JUSTICE + POLICING

Miyares joins AGs in letter criticizing credit card tracking of gun purchases

BY: - September 27, 2022

Virginia Attorney General Jason Miyares joined a group of attorneys general in criticizing a handful of financial institutions for a new policy that would track and monitor firearm purchases. At the center of the coalition’s ire is recent action taken by the International Organization for Standardization —  a worldwide federation of national standards bodies — that […]

Parents file class-action suit against Virginia Department of Education, Fairfax School Board over disability hearings

BY: - September 21, 2022

A federal class-action suit has been filed against the Virginia Department of Education and Fairfax County School Board claiming they are violating the rights of disabled students under the federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. The plaintiffs in the case — the parents of an anonymous Fairfax County student and their nonprofit, Hear Our Voices, […]

U.S. Senate report says government failed to properly count deaths of incarcerated people

BY: - September 21, 2022

WASHINGTON — The Department of Justice did not properly count nearly 1,000 deaths of incarcerated people in jails and prisons, according to a bipartisan report released Tuesday by a U.S. Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs subcommittee. The 10-month investigation by the U.S. Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations, chaired by Georgia Sen. Jon Ossoff, found that […]

Virginia prison agency discriminated against female employee in tampon case, jury rules

BY: - September 20, 2022

A jury found Monday that the Virginia Department of Corrections discriminated against a former employee who was fired after a body scanner detected a tampon she was wearing and officials suspected she was carrying contraband into the prison.  The jury, which heard the case in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Virginia, […]

COMMENTARY
Image of banned books

Obscenity suit exposed an outdated law and a society too reliant on government to raise kids

BY: - September 6, 2022

Last week, a court in Virginia Beach was asked to find two books depicting sexual activity obscene and ban their sale at a Barnes & Noble store to people younger than age 18. The court declined, largely sidestepping the question of whether the content was legally obscene and instead deconstructing the anachronistic state obscenity law […]

COMMENTARY

No solution, but gun buybacks can be a small part of overall crime prevention

BY: - September 1, 2022

They’re easy to sponsor and hold. They allow residents, especially in crime-ridden communities around the commonwealth, to feel encouraged. They take a handful of tools of murder off the streets. Many localities in Virginia have sponsored gun buybacks this summer. They include Richmond, Portsmouth, Suffolk and Roanoke. The town of Dumfries adopted an ordinance paving […]

ACLU of Virginia sues Department of Corrections over earned sentence credits

BY: - August 16, 2022

The ACLU of Virginia is suing the director of the Virginia Department of Corrections and a state prison warden to try to force the release of an inmate, arguing the agency incorrectly blocked him from being let out early for good behavior in response to a last-minute change in the state budget that rolled back […]

U.S. attorney general says DOJ asked for public release of search warrant for Trump estate

BY: - August 11, 2022

WASHINGTON — U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland said Thursday that the U.S. Department of Justice has moved to release the search warrant a federal judge issued earlier this week that allowed federal agents to enter former President Donald Trump’s residence at Mar-a-Lago in Florida. DOJ, Garland said, filed a motion in the Southern District of Florida […]

Potential overdoses, death at privately run Lawrenceville prison spur state investigation

BY: - August 10, 2022

The Virginia Department of Corrections is investigating a rash of potential overdoses and a death at the privately run Lawrenceville Correctional Center in Brunswick County.  Christopher Ferreira, a spokesperson for The GEO Group, the prison operator, confirmed Wednesday that one inmate died Aug. 6 after prison staff “observed several inmates who appeared to be lethargic […]

Statewide police conduct standards will soon be enforceable almost two years after law passed

BY: - August 8, 2022

From 1999 to Feb. 2021, just 81 law enforcement officers lost their ability to work in Virginia because of unacceptable conduct on the job.  Since then, numbers have surged. Between March 2021 and Aug. 5 of this year, 103 Virginia police officers have been decertified, largely as a result of a law passed in 2020 […]

COMMENTARY

Dogwood Dell: a massacre foiled or a tale too good to be true?

BY: - August 8, 2022

If you don’t live near Richmond and get your news from its regional media market, the last time you probably heard of a place called Dogwood Dell was a little over a month ago when Virginia’s capital city made national news for boldly claiming to have foiled a mass shooting. The claim by Richmond’s police […]

Court ruling on suicidal man’s trip to ER broadens Virginia’s overdose amnesty law

BY: - August 4, 2022

Virginia’s Court of Appeals overturned a drug conviction for a man who told police he was trying to go to a Richmond-area emergency room in 2020 to get help after smoking crack and feeling suicidal, a ruling that widens the state’s medical amnesty law for drug and alcohol overdoses. That law is meant to give […]