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Articles by Douglas Ankney

Maryland Court of Appeals Rules That Courts Must Ask Non Compound ‘Strong Feelings’ Question Upon Request During Voir Dire

by Douglas Ankney

The Court of Appeals of Maryland reaffirmed that, upon request, trial courts must ask non-compound “strong feelings question” of potential jurors during voir dire in the following form: “Do any of you have strong feelings about [crime with which defendant is charged]?” 

During voir dire in Gordon ...

Minnesota Supreme Court Holds ‘Stalking-by-Mail’ and ‘Mail-Harassment’ Statutes are Facially Overbroad

by Douglas Ankney

The Supreme Court of Minnesota held that Minn. Stat. § 609.749(2)(6) (“stalking by mail”) and Minn. Stat. § 609.695(1)(3) (“mail harassment”) are facially overbroad. Juvenile defendant “A.J.B.” was convicted of stalking by mail and mail harassment stemming from a series of vicious “tweets” he simultaneously sent to ...

Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court: Consent to Search Does Not Attenuate Seized Evidence From Taint of Illegal Search of CSLI

by Douglas Ankney

The Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts suppressed illegally obtained CSLI, ruling that the Commonwealth failed to meet its burden under the Fourth Amendment of proving police did not exploit the illegally obtained evidence to obtain the defendant’s consent to search. 

After Josener Dorisca was indicted for ...

Snohomish County Pays $1 Million Settlement in Death of Man in Chemical Cloud

by Douglas Ankney

Snohomish County, Washington, agreed to pay Michelle Vincent $1 million to settle her claim that the county killed her husband Michael with a chemical cloud.

On April 21, 2011, Sergeant Rogers of the Snohomish County Sheriff’s Department (“SCSD”) led Deputies Chad Humphries, Michael Valfeados, and Michael Sutherland ...

Caught by the Hair: New Forensic Tool Could Differentiate People

by Douglas Ankney

A new study published by a team from the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (“LLNL”) in California concludes their method of proteomics sequencing of short, single strands of hair will revolutionize the forensic criminalistic science of the future.

“Protein-based human identification has the potential to be a powerful ...

Police, Prosecutors Use Asset Forfeitures to Lease SUVs, Customize Motorcycles, Install WiFi at Home, and More

by Douglas Ankney

Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, District Attorney Craig Stedman spent more than $21,000 of drug forfeiture money to lease a 2016 Toyota Highlander. After Stedman was ordered to release records of hundreds of thousands of dollars in additional expenditures from “drug-related” forfeitures, he appealed to the Court of Common ...

Another Life Ruined as a Result of a Bad Cop and Failure to Follow Policy

by Douglas Ankney

Michael Ryan spent 29 years of his life dedicated to instructing the youth of Hammonton Public Schools. Instead of a retirement party and send off, he was suspended and hauled off the premises by school officials. 

Easthampton Police Officer Michael Musser accused Ryan of committing a ...

$250,000 Awarded to Woman Who Spent 96 Days in Jail

by Douglas Ankney

A jury in Aberdeen, Mississippi, awarded Jessica Jauch $250,000 after she spent 96 days in jail without seeing a judge. Jauch was arrested on traffic charges in 2012 but was held in the Choctaw County Jail after being served with a drug indictment. While locked up, Jauch ...

Misconduct Suits Against New York City Police Department on the Rise

by Douglas Ankney

After two years of being on the decline, misconduct suits against New York City’s Police Department (“NYPD”) are on the rise. In 2018, there were 1,586 claims filed compared with 1,391 submitted in 2017. There has been a downward trend since 2014 when 3,084 claims were filed. ...

Study: Technology Creates and Embeds Bias in the Criminal Justice System

by Douglas Ankney

Automatic License Plate Readers (“ALPR”), facial recognition technology, and predictive policing are some of the new weapons in the arsenal of the police state. And minority communities are caught in the crosshairs.

The failures of facial-recognition technology are widely known. According to a study by the Massachusetts ...



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