Cops aren’t entitled to kill dogs during search just because they are unlicensed, 6th Circuit says–ABA Journal

Police officers who fatally shot a couple’s dogs during a home search weren’t entitled to kill the animals just because they were unlicensed, a federal appeals court ruled Monday.

In a 2-1 decision, the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals at Cincinnati ruled that the couple who owned the dogs could proceed with their Fourth Amendment suit against two of six officers.

The two officers had shot two of the couple’s dogs during their search of the home for marijuana.

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One of the two officers had testified he had previously shot 39 dogs. As of July 2016, he had shot at least 69 animals, the lower court opinion said.

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A suspect is forced by the FBI to unlock an iPhone using facial recognition–ABA Journal

An Apple iPhone X user, suspected of possessing child pornography, was forced by the FBI use facial recognition to unlock their phone.

ForbesEndgadget and CNET all have coverage.

Forbes reports this is the first known case where law enforcement in any country has compelled someone to unlock their phone using Apple Face ID.

On Aug. 10, the FBI searched the Columbus, Ohio, home of Grant Michalski. Using his face, Michalski unlocked his phone at the FBI’s request, at which point the agent was able to go through chats, photos and any other accessible material.

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A.G. Underwood Announces Agreement With Avvo | New York State Attorney General

NEW YORK – Attorney General Barbara D. Underwood today announced an agreement with Avvo, an online legal directory, to reform its attorney rating system and improve its disclosures to consumers after an investigation by the Attorney General’s office revealed that the content and limits of Avvo’s rating system were not clearly disclosed. Avvo relied on attorneys to voluntarily provide additional information to their profiles to determine rankings – resulting in those that added information to their profiles generally having higher ratings than those who did not participate. In addition to changing its practices, Avvo will pay $50,000 to the State.
 

The Legal Fight For Yellowstone’s Grizzly Bears | Earthjustice

Federal safeguards for Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem grizzly bears were reinstated on Sept. 24, after Judge Dana L. Christensen ruled that THE TRUMP ADMINISTRATION’S DECISION TO STRIP ENDANGERED SPECIES ACT PROTECTIONS FROM THE GRIZZLIES WAS ILLEGAL.

Military spouse denied waiver for bar admission gets another chance to make her case–ABA Journal

BY DEBRA CASSENS WEISS

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The Georgia Supreme Court has vacated a decision that denied bar admission to a lawyer seeking to practice in the state under a waiver program for military spouses.

The court sent the case back to Georgia’s Board of Bar Examiners, directing it to clearly apply the state’s military waiver policy and explain in writing why Harriet O’Neal did or did not meet the requirements for a waiver of the bar exam.The Sept. 10 opinion is here.

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Read more about this program for military spouses who are lawyers…

Woman sues US Customs over data copied from seized iPhone – Naked Security

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On Thursday, the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), a Muslim civil rights group, announced that its New Jersey chapter had filed a case in federal court challenging the CBP’s “warrantless and unconstitutional seizure” of an American citizen’s phone.

Lazoja formally asked a federal judge to force border officials to delete data copied from her iPhone 6S Plus – a legal filing that’s formally known as a Rule 41(g) Motion, or as a Motion to Return Property.

It’s not her physical phone that she wants back. She got that back after 130 days.

Rather, she specifically wants assurances that copies of her data are deleted. As CAIR points out, Rule 41(g) motions are generally used for tangible items, as opposed to easily copied data. But it’s those easily made copies that she wants wiped out: copies that were taken without the CBP explaining its reason for seizure.

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Suspended Prenda lawyer pleads guilty in scheme to sue porn downloaders–ABA Journal

BY DEBRA CASSENS WEISS

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Hansmeier admitted that he and Steele created sham companies to obtain the copyrights to pornographic movies, including some they filmed. The lawyers uploaded the movies to file-sharing websites like Pirate Bay, then filed copyright lawsuits for illegal downloading that concealed the lawyers’ role in distributing the movies, and their personal stake in the outcome of the litigation, according to prosecutors.

The suits were filed against “John Doe” downloaders. When a downloader’s identity was revealed in discovery, the lawyers threatened legal action unless the downloader paid a settlement of about $3,000. The lawyers created a company called Under the Bridge Consulting to transfer to themselves $1 million in money gained by the scheme, the plea agreement says.

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In horrifying detail, women accuse U.S. customs officers of invasive body searches – The Washington Post

By Susan Ferriss | Center for Public Integrity

 
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The government has settled some of these cases before they could go to trial, thus avoiding potentially incriminating testimony from CBP officers accused of wrongdoing. Six of the lawsuits resulted in financial settlements costing taxpayers more than $1.2 million. Others are pending. One claim lost in a jury trial.

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If they can justify suspicions, federal officers at U.S. ports of entry are authorized, without the need for warrants, to require some disrobing for genital and rectal inspections, and monitored bowel movements to check for drugs, according to a CBP handbook. At the same time, the detention-and-search handbook instructs officers to record a solid justification for every step beyond a frisk, and to respect detainees’ dignity and “freedom from unreasonable searches.” The handbook also warns against what could be considered a “visual or physical intrusion” into body cavities.

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DAs Plan Constitutional Challenge to Prosecutorial Misconduct Commission | New York Law Journal

By Dan M. Clark

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The state’s district attorneys may torpedo a proposed commission to investigate prosecutorial misconduct if a bill creating the group is approved by New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo.

In a letter sent to the state’s prosecutors Tuesday, Albany County District Attorney David Soares said the District Attorneys Association of the State of New York will be advancing an expedited constitutional challenge to the bill. Soares is president of the DAASNY.

Soares also urged the district attorneys and their assistants to decline any appointment to the commission until the litigation is resolved, which would leave the body without four of its members required by the statute.

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Judge halts mother-daughter deportation, threatens to hold Sessions in contempt – The Washington Post

Arelis R. Hernández

“This is pretty outrageous. That someone seeking justice in U.S. court is spirited away while her attorneys are arguing for justice for her?” So said a federal trial judge in open court in Washington, Thursday, shortly before he threatened to hold Attorney General Jeff Sessions in contempt of court. The judge found out, during a hearing, that immigration agents had moved to deport the mother and daughter whose case was before him. WASHINGTON POST
 
 
More: “Turn that plane around,” furious judge orders. WASHINGTON TIMES