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Legal News Roundup: February 24

Here’s a roundup of recent legal stories in the news.

Grand jury declines to charge officers in Daniel Prude’s death

CBS News – New York’s attorney general announced no officers will be charged following an investigation into the death of Daniel Prude, a 41-year-old Black man who died after being restrained by Rochester police last year.

Daniel Prude

Daniel Prude – image via AP

Letitia James said Tuesday that her office presented the “strongest case possible” to a grand jury, but the panel decided not to indict any officers in the case. James’ office is required to investigate police-involved deaths of unarmed civilians under state law.

“While I know that the Prude family, the Rochester community, and communities across the country will rightfully be devastated and disappointed, we have to respect this decision,” James said.

It is believed that Prude was experiencing “excited delirium,” a condition often associated with ingesting drugs that can cause erratic behavior and an increased risk of death. James called on the state legislature to pass policing reforms to prevent the deaths of unarmed civilians, especially those experiencing excited delirium.

Read the full story.


Defunct Ohio online charter school fights order to repay $60M

ECOT

ECOT continues its appeal of a $60M refund order.

EIN News – A defunct online charter school is fighting an order to refund $60 million in taxpayer money that had been paid to the school.

In 2016, the Ohio Department of Education determined that the Electronic Classroom of Tomorrow (ECOT) could not back up its student participation claims for the 2015-16 school year when it received $108.9 million in state funds. ECOT was ordered to repay $64 million—a figure that was later adjusted down to $60.35 million.

ECOT fought the order through the courts and State Board of Education and lost. They are making another run at overturning the repayment order.

The Ohio Supreme Court will hear oral arguments for the case on March 2.

Read the full story.


Wife of drug kingpin El Chapo arrested on US drug charges

Emma Coronel Aispuro

Emma Coronel Aispuro was arrested earlier this week.

AP News – The wife of Mexican drug kingpin Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman was arrested Monday in the United States. She is accused of helping her husband run his multibillion-dollar cartel and plot his audacious escape from a Mexican prison in 2015.

Emma Coronel Aispuro, a 31-year-old former beauty queen, was arrested at Dulles International Airport in Virginia.

Her arrest is the latest twist in the bloody, multinational saga involving Guzman, the longtime head of the Sinaloa drug cartel.

Guzman, whose two dramatic prison escapes in Mexico fed into a legend that he and his family were all but untouchable, was extradited to the United States in 2017 and is serving life in prison.

Read the full story.


Bruce Springsteen pleads guilty to public drinking

Bruce Springsteen

Bruce Springsteen was charged with drunk driving.

CNBC – A federal prosecutor dropped charges of drunken and reckless driving against rock legend Bruce Springsteen.

However, the musician pleaded guilty to a charge of drinking alcohol in a national park late last year. An officer said he spotted the rock star doing a shot of tequila and mounting his motorcycle at a New Jersey beach.

Springsteen, 71, was charged with driving while intoxicated, reckless driving and consuming alcohol in a closed area, all federal code violations because they allegedly occurred at the National Park Service’s Gateway National Recreation Area.

A Park Service spokeswoman said Springsteen was “cooperative throughout the process” when he was cited at Sandy Hook, a strip of beach that extends into the Atlantic just south of New York City.

Read the full story.