A judge denied a request to dismiss charges Wednesday against Rodney Brossart, a man arrested last year after a 16-hour standoff with police at his Lakota, N.D., ranch. Brossart’s lawyer argued that law enforcement’s “warrantless use of [an] unmanned military-like surveillance aircraft” and “outrageous governmental conduct” warranted dismissal of the case …
…District Judge Joel Medd wrote that “there was no improper use of an unmanned aerial vehicle” and that the drone “appears to have had no bearing on these charges being contested here,” according to the documents… Court records state that last June, six cows wandered onto Brossart’s 3,000 acre farm, about 60 miles west of Grand Forks. Brossart allegedly refused to return the cows, which led to a long, armed standoff with the Grand Forks police department. At some point during the standoff, Homeland Security, through an agreement with local police, offered up the use of an unmanned predator drone, which “was used for surveillance,” according to the court documents… via US News and World Report.
In a case attorneys say has no precedent in New Hampshire, a federal appeals court is weighing whether the owner of a handgun used to kill three people at a Conway military surplus shop in July 2007 could be held liable for their murders.
Lawrence Secord didn’t do enough to secure the .22-caliber handgun he kept at his camp in Wentworth Location, enabling his grandson, Michael Woodbury, to steal it and open fire in the Army Barracks store several days later, according to a lawsuit brought by the mother of one of the victims.
A federal judge decided Secord didn’t have a duty to store his gun in a different manner, citing the circumstances of the case – that Woodbury had broken into Secord’s cabin – and a New Hampshire Supreme Court ruling that individuals ordinarily can’t be held liable for crimes committed by others. Continue reading
Virginia Appeals Court Expands Use of Roadblocks. Court of Appeals in Virginia gives police a free hand in setting up roadblocks to search motorists not suspected of any crime.
Police in Virginia may block off roads to search and interrogate motorists as long as a vague “plan” is filed in advance, the state Court of Appeals ruled last Tuesday. Michael Anthony Desposito challenged his May 27, 2009 arrest at a checkpoint run by the Hanover County Sheriff’s Office on the ground that the department allowed its officers to run open-ended roadblocks in violation of the Fourth Amendment. Continue reading