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2013 NDAA Summer
Board, Conference & Committee Meetings
and Board Meeting
July 11-13, 2013
BoD/Committee Meetings Agenda
July 13-16, 2013
San Diego, California
Omni San Diego Hotel
Please note that this reflects a change in our regular summer conference schedule. We begin and end one day earlier than usual.
Summer Conference Agenda
Register for NDAA's 2013 Summer Conference
Victims' Rights Amendment Information
At the meeting last month at Hilton Head, the Board voted unanimously to support the proposed United States Constitutional Amendment to embody Victims’ Rights into the US Constitution. At that time we urged those present to contact their congressional delegation urging them to “sign on” as co-sponsors. We believe that if we can get 100 co-sponsors it will get a vote on the House floor.
The NDAA Victims’ Committee took on the task of getting this information out to you. Short delay, but here it is.
Victims deserve this and I’m proud that NDAA is taking a strong lead in this proposal.
Let me know if you have any questions,
- California Senate backs requiring warrants when police want emails
- Colo. authorities to get cellphone locations during emergencies without warrants with new law
- Judges concerned Idaho recommending probation over prison to save money (Idaho)
- Bill abolishing the death penalty could be in peril (Nebraska)
- Efforts to pass gun bills founder (Nevada)
- N.J. Senate advances gun legislation, but 2 key measures stalled
- NC jury trials could be waived in amendment change
- Wyoming legislative committee considers compensation for inmates exonerated by DNA evidence
- Wyoming lawmakers take serious look at South Dakota’s 24/7 Sobriety Program
- Lawmakers awaiting decision from Kan. Bar Association before moving on judicial selection plan
- Bill would allow domestic violence victims in Nevada to break leases
- Groups say HIV case before Minn. Supreme Court violates man’s rights; prosecutors disagree
- Review of 50 Brooklyn Murder Cases Ordered (New York)
Clip Synopses and Links
California Senate backs requiring warrants when police want emails
The state Senate on Monday approved a measure that would expand instances in which law enforcement officers in California would have to get search warrants before they can access the public’s email.
Sen. Mark Leno (D-San Francisco) won Republican support for his privacy measure after including an exemption for emergency situations in which there is a risk of the destruction of evidence.
Leno said clear rules are needed to provide the same protection to email that is extended to regular, paper mail in state law. Leno said there are gaps in federal law that could allow access to emails more than 180 days old without a warrant.
Colo. authorities to get cellphone locations during emergencies without warrants with new law
Colorado authorities will have expanded access to cellphone locations without a warrant in cases of emergencies under a new law.
The measure requires phone companies to give authorities call locations in certain cases. Authorities would have to show that the time required to obtain a search warrant could put a person at risk. Law enforcement would have to show a court within 48 hours that they had probable cause after the fact.
Gov. John Hickenlooper signed the bill into law Monday.
Judges concerned Idaho recommending probation over prison to save money (Idaho)
Two Idaho state judges have raised concerns the Department of Correction is recommending probation for convicted criminals, rather than prison time, to manage its budget for keeping people behind bars.
The Idaho Statesman reports 4th District judges Mike Wetherell and Cheryl Copsey recently rejected probation recommendations by the state prison agency, one for a sex offender and another for a man convicted of assault.
Copsey says IDOC’s “recommendations for probation... lack credibility.”
In the sex offender’s case, prison employee Naomi Laurino told Wetherell the prison system was out of space and her superiors wanted her to be “very judicious” when recommending prisoners be incarcerated, rather than placed on probation.
Bill abolishing the death penalty could be in peril (Nebraska)
For the first time in 34 years, a majority of Nebraska lawmakers seems to support abolishing the state’s death penalty.
But a bill they considered Monday to do so appears to be going nowhere since a ”test vote” showed there probably is not enough support to stop a filibuster.
Lawmakers began debate on the bill (LB543) by Sen. Ernie Chambers of Omaha to change the death penalty to life in prison without the possibility of parole -- Chambers’ 37th attempt to do so.
Las Vegas Review-Journal
Efforts to pass gun bills founder (Nevada)
No matter what side of the issue Nevada legislators favor, most of the dozen or so bills related to the Second Amendment are falling by the wayside in the 2013 session.
A few measures, including one seeking to keep guns out of the hands of the mentally ill and another proposing to implement universal background checks for gun purchases, remain alive, just barely, as the session winds down.
But other measures, from allowing people to carry concealed weapons on college campuses to taxing gun and ammunition sales to fund mental health and victims of crime programs, are already dead.
N.J. Senate advances gun legislation, but 2 key measures stalled
The state Senate passed 10 bills aimed at curbing gun violence Monday, but neither the Senate president’s centerpiece background check legislation nor the Assembly Democrats’ bill limiting magazine capacity were among them.
The legislation that passed includes tougher penalties for drug traffickers, a provision allowing the state to seize cars used to transport illegal weapons and a requirement that New Jersey send mental health records to the federal background check system.
But the background check bill was delayed after the version given to lawmakers for their vote Monday mistakenly omitted a paragraph from the original measure passed by committees. Senate President Stephen Sweeney, D-Gloucester, has called that bill a “national model” because it would create a new electronic system for instant background checks. It would also mandate background checks for private gun sales, require prospective gun owners to attend a safety training course and criminalize the purchase of ammunition for people already barred from buying firearms.
NC jury trials could be waived in amendment change
North Carolina’s constitution gives every criminal defendant the right to a trial and to be convicted by a unanimous jury. Now, some lawmakers want to change that.
The Senate voted unanimously Monday evening in favor of giving defendants the right to waive their jury trial if they agree in court and the trial judge signs off. It wouldn’t apply to capital cases. Voters would have to approve the constitutional change in a statewide referendum in November 2014.
Casper Star Tribune
Wyoming legislative committee considers compensation for inmates exonerated by DNA evidence
A state legislative committee endorsed a bill on Monday that would ensure compensation for prisoners exonerated by post-conviction DNA testing.
The bill states that if there is proof of innocence, a person will be entitled to $75 per day for every day he or she was in prison — up to a maximum of $300,000.
Natrona County District Attorney Michael Blonigen told the Joint Judiciary Interim Committee at a meeting in Jackson that the bill could limit the state’s liability in these rare but extreme situations.
“It’s a relatively low maximum payout of $300,000 ... where at the same time you could have it easily go into the millions of dollars,” he said.
Moreover, Blonigen said the state has an obligation to help these people get back on their feet after a mistake has been made.
“It’s not just legally smart, it’s a moral imperative that we do something to help these people,” he said.
Casper Star Tribune
Wyoming lawmakers take serious look at South Dakota’s 24/7 Sobriety Program
A state legislative committee chairman requested that a bill be drafted that would keep repeat offenders of alcohol-related crimes out of jail and instead subject them to stringent testing.
The Joint Judiciary Interim Committee in Jackson on Monday heard details about the 24/7 Sobriety Program, which was developed in South Dakota and has since been adopted by several other states.
After the discussion, committee Chairman Sen. John Schiffer, R-Kaycee, asked that legislation be prepared in time for the next committee meeting in July.
On its most basic level, the 24/7 program would allow those convicted of a second or subsequent DUI to avoid incarceration by consenting to a twice-daily breath test or wearing a monitoring bracelet.
Wyoming Attorney General Greg Phillips, Mike Reed from the Governor’s Council on Impaired Driving and South Dakota’s 24/7 Sobriety Program Coordinator Bill Mickelson presented the program to the committee and spoke in glowing terms about its success in other states.
Lawmakers awaiting decision from Kan. Bar Association before moving on judicial selection plan
Legislators are waiting to hear from the Kansas Bar Association’s board before deciding whether to move ahead with a proposal to change how members of the state Supreme Court and Court of Appeals are chosen.
A proposed amendment to the Kansas Constitution would require Senate confirmation of the governor’s appointments to the state’s two highest courts.
The Bar Association’s Board of Governors scheduled a Tuesday afternoon teleconference to discuss the proposal.
Las Vegas Review-Journal
Bill would allow domestic violence victims in Nevada to break leases
Las Vegas police and the Republican leader of the Senate gave their support Friday to a bill that would allow domestic violence victims to break rental leases, even if they have not filed a police report against their abusers.
Police officer Chuck Calloway and Senate Minority Leader Michael Roberson, R-Las Vegas, backed Assembly Bill 284, a proposal by Assemblywoman Lucy Flores, D-Las Vegas, to allow victims to break leases.
The bill specifies three ways victims could end a lease without suffering financial consequences from the landlord: by filing a police report, securing a restraining order, or by a third-party affidavit signed by a psychologist, nurse, social worker, volunteer board member of a domestic violence organization, a member of the clergy or another person.
Groups say HIV case before Minn. Supreme Court violates man’s rights; prosecutors disagree
Prosecutors are asking the Minnesota Supreme Court to reinstate the conviction of an HIV-positive man accused of passing the virus to another man, in a case that has drawn attention of medical and civil rights groups who say it violates the defendant’s constitutional rights.
It likely will be late this year before the Minnesota Supreme Court rules, but Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman argued before the high court Tuesday that Daniel Rick was appropriately convicted for criminally transmitting a contagious disease.
“There is no fundamental right to knowingly transfer a communicable disease to another,” Freeman told the five justices.
Rick’s attorney, Grant Smith, argued that the Minnesota Court of Appeals decision overturning the jury’s guilty verdict should stand because the law is ambiguous.
The law was passed in 1995 and made it illegal to knowingly expose a person to a communicable disease through the transfer of blood, sperm, organs or tissue. Rick, who had unprotected sex with another man in 2009, even though he knew he was HIV-positive, was the first person in Minnesota to be charged under the statute. Rick, 31, of Minneapolis was charged by Freeman’s office.
In 2011, a Hennepin County District Court jury acquitted him on another part of the statute that requires making the other person aware he had the disease, but found him guilty of attempted first-degree assault under the transfer part of the law.
The justices spent most of the time asking both Freeman and Grant questions about the grammar and the meaning of the words in the statute. But after answering the questions on grammar, legislative intent and a hypothetical about a married hetrosexual couple with HIV trying to conceive and why that isn’t covered by the statute, Freeman summarized why Rick was different.
“Clearly, Mr. Rick knew what he was doing, he knew he had a communicable disease, he was told how to avoid transmitting it to others and he ignored it,” Freeman said.
The New York Times
Review of 50 Brooklyn Murder Cases Ordered (New York)
The Brooklyn district attorney’s office has ordered a review of some 50 murder cases assigned to an acclaimed homicide detective, an acknowledgment of mounting questions about the officer’s tactics and the legitimacy of the convictions.
The office’s Conviction Integrity Unit will reopen every murder case that resulted in a guilty verdict after being investigated by Detective Louis Scarcella, a flashy officer who handled some of Brooklyn’s most notorious crimes during the crack epidemic of the 1980s and 1990s.
The development comes after The New York Times examined a dozen cases involving Mr. Scarcella and found disturbing patterns, including the detective’s reliance on the same eyewitness, a crack-addicted prostitute, for multiple murder prosecutions and his delivery of confessions from suspects who later said they had told him nothing. At the same time, defense lawyers, inmates and prisoner advocacy organizations have contacted the district attorney’s office to share their own suspicions about Mr. Scarcella.
The review by the office of District Attorney Charles J. Hynes will give special scrutiny to those cases that appear weakest — because they rely on either a single eyewitness or confession, officials said. The staff will re-interview available witnesses, and study any new evidence. If they feel a conviction was unjust, prosecutors could seek for it to be dismissed.