“I was wrongly convicted of murder. I spent nearly 17 years in prison fighting my case. When I finally won a new trial, I chose Greg Robey to be a part of my defense team. He found an FBI agent who had worked on the case in the 1980s, along with critical pieces of evidence that we thought were long lost. After a long and very hard-fought trial, I was found Not Guilty of all charges. I owe my freedom to Greg Robey and my defense team.” -R.R., Ravenna, Ohio
Mortgage Fraud on the Rise
Over the past year mortgage fraud has risen. After examining about 7 million home loans made by hundreds of lenders, the research firm CoreLogic found that losses from mortgage fraud rose 17% last year after declining 57% in the two years following its 2006 peak. Industry experts say the kinds of schemes that contributed to the housing crisis were relatively simple, but as a result of more restrictive lending standards...
Ohio Officials Urge Death Row Review and Possible Moratorium on Death Penalty
Several high-ranking Ohio officials have called for a comprehensive review of all death penalty cases in the state, and possibly a moratorium on executions while the review is being carried out.
Congress Erases Disparity in Crack/Powder Cocaine Sentencing Laws
The U.S. House of Representatives approved a measure to reduce the disparity between prison sentences for crack cocaine and powder cocaine offenses.
U.S. Dept. of Justice Officials announced charges against 94 people across 5 states, in what authorities are calling the largest health-care fraud sting in U.S. history.
The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that juveniles who commit crimes in which no one is killed may not be sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.
The Court ruled that the Federal Bureau of Prisons correctly calculates that federal inmates should receive 47 days off for each year of a prison sentence actually served. Previously, federal inmates had been receiving 54 days off for each year of the sentence imposed by the court.
The U.S. Supreme Court held that immigrants who are convicted of minor drug offenses, such as possession of marijuana, need not be automatically deported and should be allowed to make a case for leniency before immigration judges.
A divided U.S. Supreme Court held that suspects must specifically invoke their Miranda right to remain silent during questioning to preserve it. The high court split 5-4 in Berghuis v. Thompkins, ruling that police could use admissions of a shooting suspect who refused to sign a paper acknowledging that he had been given a Miranda warning, but didn't expressly state that he was invoking his right to remain silent.
A new trend in Ohio is courts ordering the use of alcohol sensor bracelets to monitor a person's alcohol consumption. The bracelet is being ordered in drunk driving and other alcohol-related cases. The bracelet measures an individual's perspiration for alcohol content.
Opening statements were made on Friday, May 7th, 2010, in the murder trial of Kent State University student Christopher M. Kernich. Christopher M. Kernich died at the age of 23 at the hands of 20-year-old Ronald Kelly of the University of Akron.
The court reasoned that the seriousness of deportation for non-citizens makes it effectively a second penalty that results from a guilty/no contest plea, in addition to possible penalties for the underlying criminal offense.
U.S. Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens announced his retirement following the end of the summer term. Justice Stevens, who is 90 years old, is the leader of the court's liberal wing. President Obama must now nominate a replacement for Stevens, who will then face confirmation hearings this summer.
The Ohio Supreme Court ordered the review of the case of a former Akron police detective who was convicted of murdering his ex-wife in 1998. The court ordered a determination to be made on whether or not new DNA testing could detect information that previous testing could not. What is at issue is whether new DNA tests could reveal the presence of another male's DNA in the bite marks left on the victim.