Courts & the Law

Organizers plan rally at the Capitol before Supreme Court hears voter ID, redistricting arguments

BY: - March 13, 2023

Organizers from across North Carolina will meet in downtown Raleigh Tuesday ahead of the state Supreme Court re-hearing two voting rights cases that a previous iteration of the high court decided last year. Dubbed the “People’s Rally at the Capitol,” a group of advocacy organizations calling themselves “A People’s Coalition” will demonstrate to “sound the […]

North Carolina to be represented on national life-without-parole webinar

BY: - March 9, 2023

The Sentencing Project will host a webinar next Tuesday titled “Life Without Parole in the Era of Mass Incarceration” — and North Carolina will feature prominently in the discussion. Among the panelists are Anthony Willis, who served 26 years of a life-without-parole sentence before Gov. Roy Cooper commuted his sentence last year, and Rep. Marcia […]

Lawmakers file bill to eliminate cash bail for NC’s lowest-level crimes

BY: - March 8, 2023

Democratic legislators from some of the state’s biggest counties — and busiest courthouses — have filed a bill that would prohibit judges from imposing cash bail on a person charged with one or more Class 3 misdemeanors. Class 3 misdemeanors are the least serious types of misdemeanors in North Carolina, punishable by up to 20 […]

Crime Commission publishes new figures on domestic violence in North Carolina

BY: - March 6, 2023

A new report from the state’s Criminal Justice Analysis Center sheds light on the prevalence of domestic violence in North Carolina. Analysts broadened their definition of domestic violence as they gathered the data for the report. Researchers classified all crimes against people committed by current or former intimate partners or family members as domestic and […]

Wyoming legislature passes bills to ban medication abortion and exempt abortion as health care

BY: - March 3, 2023

New law seeks to create path around state’s constitutional health care provision adopted in 2012 Wyoming legislators approved two bills related to abortion this week, including a ban on medication abortion and a bill stating abortion is not health care, as a means of skirting the Wyoming Constitution in a court challenge to its abortion […]

A fentanyl bottle

Stein to keynote summit on fentanyl as legislature considers related bills

BY: - March 3, 2023

Attorney General Josh Stein will be the keynote speaker at a “Family Summit on Illicit Fentanyl Fatalities in North Carolina” this Saturday. Fentanyl, a powerful synthetic opioid used to manage pain that has become popular in the illicit drug market, is a scourge in North Carolina and across the country, responsible for more than 13,000 deaths […]

How the judge who could ban the abortion pill won confirmation in the U.S. Senate

BY: - March 1, 2023

WASHINGTON — The U.S. District Court judge who could end more than two decades of legal access to medication abortion underwent extensive questioning about LGBTQ equality at his December 2017 confirmation hearing — and very little about his views on abortion. Matthew Joseph Kacsmaryk, appointed by former President Donald Trump earlier in 2017, spent much […]

Experts debate affirmative action in admissions at UNC as Supreme Court weighs the issue

BY: - March 1, 2023

Last week, UNC-Chapel Hill’s Program for Public Discourse began its 2023 series of public discussions with a panel on affirmative action in university admissions. This week, that discussion is available in its entirety on the program’s YouTube channel.   In late October the U.S. Supreme Court heard oral arguments in cases over affirmative action in […]

A sign for Asheville's Aston Park

Newly released body cam footage shows Asheville Police arresting journalists

BY: - February 27, 2023

Shortly after Aston Park had closed on Christmas night 2021, several Asheville Police officers surveyed the tents on the park grounds and strategized how they were going to get everyone off city property. “Why don’t we deal with the standing first, since they’re videotaping?” one officer asked. The people who were standing were Matilda Bliss […]

Literacy tests are still in the North Carolina constitution. Lawmakers want to change that.

BY: - February 27, 2023

Legislators have raised a bill that would repeal the literacy test requirement as a condition to vote in North Carolina, provided voters approve the constitutional amendment in a future election. The use of literacy tests is not enforceable because of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, but they are still a part of the North […]

Four years ago, a whistleblower and I broke NC’s ag-gag law. The environment and public health are better for it.

BY: - February 26, 2023

Now that the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled North Carolina’s ag-gag law — as it applies to news-gathering — is unconstitutional, I can tell you that I violated it. To be clear, I did not trespass, but I checked several of the law’s boxes. Likewise, the worker who agreed to document and obtain […]

Federal court of appeals rules NC’s ag-gag law is unconstitutional, signals a win for whistleblowers

BY: - February 24, 2023

In a split decision the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals has upheld a lower court ruling that North Carolina’s “ag-gag law” is unconstitutional and infringes on free speech. The three-judge panel ruled 2-1: Justices Henry Floyd and Albert Diaz, both appointed by President Obama, wrote for the majority. Judge Allison Jones Rushing, an appointee of President […]