All over the country, lawyers who defend poor people in criminal cases have been sharing their stories about painful budget cuts. Some federal public defenders have shut their doors to new clients after big layoffs. And in many states, the public defense system has operated in crisis for years.
But an unprecedented recent court filing from the Justice Department has cheered the typically overburdened attorneys who represent the poor and could have dramatic implications for the representation of indigent defendants.
Everyone who uses a computer these days likely agrees to many "terms and conditions" agreements every year. But what are you really signing? Ross Reynolds interviews director Cullen Hoback, who takes a closer look at questions of privacy and consumer rights in a new documentary.
Fran Simon, left, and her partner Anna Simon, flanked by their son Jeremy, display their Colorado civil union license. They were the first couple to receive their license as the Colorado Civil Union went into effect on May 1.
Last November Washington became the first state to legalize same sex marriage at the polls but today we want to check in on what is happening with the same-sex marriage debate in and out of the Evergreen State.
According to the Centers for Disease Control, the average drunken driver has driven drunk 80 times before their first arrest. Here in Washington after a rather horrific spree of drunk driving related deaths, the governor is getting tough on drunken drivers by proposing tougher penalties for first-, second- and third-time offenders. One of the governor's more strident proposals would ban third-time offenders from purchasing alcohol. In this segment of the conversation listeners share their thoughts on these new and tougher proposed penalties.
Pete Holmes is Seattle’s city attorney and that means his clients include the mayor, the City Council, the police and the public. Pete Holmes previously worked as a private attorney in Seattle for almost 25 years before being elected city attorney in November 2009. He was also an original member of the Seattle Police Department's Office of Professional Accountability Review Board (OPARB) and served as chairman from 2003 to 2008. Ross Reynolds talks with Seattle City Attorney Pete Holmes about the recent retirement of Police Chief John Diaz, the Department of Justice and what he was doing in Copenhagen.
Washington Governor Jay Inslee wants to crackdown on drunken drivers in the wake of some recent tragedies involving intoxicated drivers. Today, Ross Reynolds talks with New York University Langone Medical Center professor, Baron Lerner about how DUI laws and enforcement in Washington compare nationally.
NPR's Nina Totenberg: On what happens if the court declines to decide.
(We most recently updated the top of this post at 1:45 p.m. ET.)
There seem to be four solid votes on the Supreme Court — and possibly a fifth — to strike down the Defense of Marriage Act that bars federal recognition of same-sex marriages, NPR's Nina Totenberg told us after Wednesday's oral arguments before the nine justices.
But there's a big "if."
As in: There's possibly a 5-vote majority to strike down the law if the court first decides it should even issue an opinion.
Last November, Bob Ferguson became Washington state’s 18th attorney general. One of the biggest issues he faces is how the federal government will approach legalized marijuana in Washington state. Ferguson met with Attorney General Eric Holder in January and so far, a clear policy has yet to emerge. Ferguson says if legalized marijuana is challenged by the feds, he'll defend it. What questions do you have for Attorney General Bob Ferguson? What should his priorities be? Call us at 800.289.5869 or email email@example.com.
Advances in forensic technology are showing that what used to be considered clear-cut proof of guilt may be nothing of the kind. A California case highlights a growing problem facing courts: what to do when an expert witness changes his mind because of better science and technology.
William Richards was convicted of brutally murdering his wife and is serving 25 years to life. The evidence against him was mostly circumstantial and two different juries were unable to reach a verdict. A third trial was aborted because the judge recused himself.
Gun control advocates are regrouping this week. They’re looking at their options, now that a bill to broaden background checks for gun sales failed in the Washington Legislature. They want to seize a moment when they believe public sentiment is on their side.
Robert Clark opens donated Christmas presents at the Innocence Project's offices in Atlanta in 2005. It's Clark's first Christmas in the free world since he was exonerated of a rape charge by DNA evidence and released from prison.
Yesterday in Olympia the House Judiciary Committee passed a bill that would compensate people who served time in prison for crimes they didn’t commit and were exonerated of. The exonerated people would be given $50,000 for each year spent behind bars. This isn’t the first time this legislation has been proposed but it is the first time that it has bipartisan support. Ross Reynolds takes a closer look at the bill and who it's intended to help.