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Monday, March 18, 2024 1:14 PM

"I have concerns": Gov. Walz weighs in on Hennepin County attorney's case against state trooper

  • It marked Moriarty's first prosecution of a high-profile shooting by law enforcement since winning election in 2022 on a platform that included holding police accountable for misconduct.

The latest: Critics of the case raised concerns after Londregan's defense attorney claimed in a court filing last week that Moriarty's charges went against her own use-of-force expert's opinion that the trooper didn't commit a crime.

  • A spokesperson for Moriarty called the assertion that the expert came to a formal legal opinion "simply false" and accused the defense of cherry-picking quotes to stir up pre-trial publicity.

Results from Current Page:

  • Mary Moriarty, the Hennepin County Attorney, is handling a high-profile shooting case involving state trooper Ryan Londregan.
  • Moriarty won the election in 2022 with a platform that emphasized holding police accountable for misconduct.
  • Critics have raised concerns after Londregan’s defense attorney claimed that Moriarty’s charges contradicted her own use-of-force expert’s opinion that the trooper did not commit a crime.
  • A spokesperson for Moriarty refuted this claim, stating that the assertion about the expert’s formal legal opinion is “simply false” and accused the defense of selectively using quotes to generate pre-trial publicity.

Summary: The case involving Trooper Londregan has become contentious due to conflicting opinions from experts and the legal dispute between the defense and the county attorney.

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Monday, March 18, 2024 1:10 PM

2 Black men tortured by Mississippi officers call for toughest sentences

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — Two Black men who were tortured by six Mississippi law enforcement officers last year called Monday for a federal judge to impose the strictest possible penalties at their sentencings this week.

The former law officers admitted in August to subjecting Michael Corey Jenkins and Eddie Terrell Parker to numerous acts of racially motivated, violent torture.

Prompted by a neighbor's complaint in January 2023 that Jenkins and Parker were staying in a home with a white woman, the group of six burst in without a warrant and assaulted Jenkins and Parker with stun guns, a sex toy and other objects.

After a mock execution went awry when Jenkins was shot in the mouth, they devised a coverup that included planting drugs and a gun. The Rankin County Sheriff's Department then supported the deputies' false charges, which stood against Jenkins and Parker for months.

U.S. District Judge Tom Lee will sentence two defendants each day, on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday after twice delaying the proceedings.

An attorney for Jenkins and Parker called Monday for the “stiffest of sentences.”

“Michael Jenkins and Eddie Parker continue to suffer emotionally and physically since this horrific and bloody attack by Rankin County deputies,” Malik Shabazz said in a statement. “A message must be sent to police in Mississippi and all over America, that level of criminal conduct will be met with the harshest of consequences.”

  • Officers Charged: Former Rankin deputies Bret McAlplin, Christian Dedmon, Hunter Elward, Jeffrey Middleton, Daniel Opdyke, and Joshua Hartfield, along with a former Richland police officer, pleaded guilty to various charges including conspiracy against rights, obstruction of justice, deprivation of rights under color of law, discharge of a firearm under a crime of violence, and conspiracy to obstruct justice.
  • Legal Representation: Most of the officers’ lawyers did not immediately respond to emails requesting comment. Jason Kirschberg, representing Opdyke, acknowledged Opdyke’s responsibility for his actions and expressed remorse for the pain caused to the victims.
  • Sentences: The former law enforcement officers agreed to prosecutor-recommended sentences ranging from five to 30 years, although the judge is not bound by that agreement. Time served for separate convictions at the state level will run concurrently with potentially longer federal sentences.
  • Investigation and Charges: An investigation by The Associated Press linked some of the deputies to violent encounters with Black men since 2019, resulting in deaths and injuries. The false charges against the victims were dropped in June when federal and state investigators closed in on the deputies.
  • “Goon Squad”: Prosecutors say some of the officers nicknamed themselves the “Goon Squad” due to their willingness to use excessive force and cover up attacks.
  • Sheriff’s Response: Rankin County Sheriff Bryan Bailey called the crimes committed by his deputies the worst case of police brutality he had ever seen. After the officers pleaded guilty, Bailey promised to change the department.

Summary: Former law enforcement officers have pleaded guilty to serious charges related to their actions, including violence against Black men. The case has drawn attention to police brutality and the need for reform within the department.

Saturday, March 16, 2024 5:00 PM


MINNEAPOLIS—Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) today announced endorsements ahead of the 2024 DFL Precinct Caucuses. The endorsements include Speaker Melissa Hortman and 14 Minnesota State Representatives from the Fifth District, four Minnesota State Senators from the Fifth District, Hennepin County Commissioners Irene Fernando, Marion Greene, and Angela Conley, Minneapolis Council President Elliott Payne and eight other members of the Minneapolis City Council, and eight City Council Members from Fifth District suburbs. She previously announced the endorsement of every leader of the U.S. House Democratic Caucus in August 2023.

“I am honored to have the support of the people who represent my district at all levels of government, as well as the Democratic leaders in the U.S. House I work with every day in the Capitol.” Rep. Omar said. “Throughout my time in Congress, I have been driven by a commitment to co-governance. Our state, county, and local officials are on the frontlines of democracy and good governance, and I am proud to work with them to invest in public infrastructure, transition to a green economy, expand opportunities for affordable housing, create a just immigration system, and protect our civil rights. These partners rely on the collaborative relationships I have built in Washington to advance our shared priorities locally.”

“When I worked with Ilhan in the Minnesota legislature, she was a tireless advocate for her constituents, and an unshakable progressive voice on the Floor,” Minnesota House Speaker Melissa Hortman said. “Ilhan was a leader on fighting for reproductive rights, addressing the climate crisis, confronting gun violence, and delivering for her district. Nothing has changed. She was a leader then, and she’s a leader now. We need voices like hers in Washington. I’m proud to endorse her for reelection.”

“Congresswoman Omar is a champion for environmental justice and climate action,” Minnesota House Majority Leader Jamie Long said. “Her leadership in the Congressional Progressive Caucus helped pass the largest climate action package in world history. The Fifth District deserves someone who fights for us – and for future generations – in Washington, and that person is Congresswoman Omar. I am proud to endorse her for re-election.”

“I am honored to lend my voice in support of Congresswoman Ilhan Omar for re-election to represent our district,” Hennepin County Board Chair Irene Fernando said. “In the time that I have had the privilege to work alongside her, I have witnessed firsthand her unwavering commitment to advancing equity, ensuring safety, and promoting the vibrancy of our community.”

“In Ward 1, my neighbors and I are working to build a Minneapolis where everyone belongs, everyone is safe, and we all have what we need to live in dignity,” Minneapolis City Council President Elliott Payne said. “So many of our most pressing local issues are impacted by national politics — whether it’s ensuring safe and stable housing for all our neighbors or working to combat climate change. That’s why it’s so important that we have a congressperson who represents our progressive Minneapolis values. Representative Omar shares our commitment to the belonging, safety, and dignity of all of us and that’s why I’m proud to endorse her for re-election.”


You can find a full list of endorsements below.

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Monday, October 30, 2023 1:55 PM

Top state leaders, ACLU-MN accuse Mille Lacs County judge of undermining Restore the Vote Act

The two people whose names topped a 2019 lawsuit that led the way for Minnesota to restore voting rights to people released from incarceration have asked to intervene in a lawsuit aimed at reversing those gains.

Jennifer Schroeder and Elizer Eugene Darris were among the formerly incarcerated Minnesotans who still couldn’t vote because they remained on probation or parole. While their lawsuit against Secretary of State Steve Simon was rejected by the Minnesota Supreme Court in February, the four-year legal battle brought wide attention to the issues of disparate probationary periods and questions over when voting rights should be restored. After the court ruled, the DFL-controlled Legislature voted to return voting rights to people once they leave prison or jail.

An estimated 50,000 people no longer in prison or jail but still under federal, state or local supervision since June 1 have been able to register to vote. Both Schroeder and Darris registered on that day, with Schroeder being the first to sign up at an event sponsored by advocates and Simon.

Less than a month later, an action was filed in Anoka County to block the law as an unconstitutional action by the Legislature.  The Minnesota Voters Alliance filed suit against Simon, Anoka County elections officials and the warden of the state prison at Lino Lakes. The Voters Alliance has filed other suits challenging election laws, including use of absentee ballots and a ban on wearing campaign-related apparel at polling places.

Monday, October 30, 2023 1:53 PM

Judge weighs challenge to Minnesota felon voting law

A Minnesota judge is weighing whether people with felony records may vote in next week’s elections even if their full sentences aren’t complete.

Anoka County District Court Judge Thomas Lehmann heard arguments Monday in a challenge to a new state law that more quickly restores voting rights. Under it, voting eligibility kicks back in when incarceration ends, regardless of a person’s supervised release or probation status.


The Minnesota Voters Alliance, a conservative group, argues that the state constitution requires that all aspects of a person’s sentence be completed before their civil rights, including voting, are restored.

James Dickey, an attorney for the Alliance, said state lawmakers exceeded their authority, and that more steps are required before a person’s rights may be restored.

Wednesday, September 20, 2023 4:03 PM

Report Ranks Minnesota's Most, Least 'Effective' U.S. Representatives

MINNESOTA — Angie Craig was Minnesota’s "most effective" representative in the U.S. House during the first two years of President Joe Biden's term in office, according to a new report.

The Center for Effective Lawmaking recently updated its rankings for the 117th Congress, which lasted from Jan. 3, 2021 through Jan. 3, 2023.


Craig scored 1.898, the highest of any representative from Minnesota.

"I’m humbled that the Center for Effective Lawmaking has ranked me as Minnesota’s most effective Member of the U.S. House. I’ll keep working across the aisle to make life better for Minnesotans," Craig said in a statement.

  • Democratic Rep. Angie Craig ()
  • Democratic Rep. Dean Phillips (1.335)
  • Republican Rep. Tom Emmer (1.133)
  • Democratic Rep. Betty McCollum (1.018)
  • Democratic Rep. Ilhan Omar (.917)
  • Republican Rep. Pete Stauber (.754)
  • Republican Rep. Michelle Fischbach (.706)
  • Republican Rep. Brad Finstad (Won special election on Aug. 12, 2022) (0)

Wednesday, September 20, 2023 3:58 PM

Will Court and Legislative Delays Threaten CA’s Solitary Confinement Limits?

Truthout is an indispensable resource for activists, movement leaders, and workers everywhere. 

The movement against prolonged solitary confinement in California is facing new challenges on two different fronts.

First, on August 24, a three-judge panel handed down a ruling ending a federal magistrate’s ability to monitor and limit California’s use of prolonged solitary confinement. However, prisoners’ rights advocates aren’t giving up – they appealed the ruling and continued pressing lawmakers to pass the Mandela Act, limiting isolation to no more than 15 days.

The California State Assembly had passed the bill by 56 to 16 in May and the California State Senate by 21 to 12 in mid-September.

Wednesday, September 6, 2023 9:44 PM

Lockdown at Stillwater prison

 Advocates for the incarcerated report that prisoners had been on lockdown on and off for the past two months due to inadequate staffing and have not had access to ice, clean water or showers. 

Wednesday, September 6, 2023 9:13 PM

Supportors call for water retesting at Stillwater Prison

The Minnesota Department of Health and the Minnesota Department of Corrections released water testing data for Stillwater prison, after protesters and family members of offenders at Stillwater prison expressed concerns about drinking water safety Sunday following an eight-hour protest by inmates Sunday who refused to go back to their cells.

Wednesday, September 6, 2023 9:10 PM

Stillwater Prison Press Conference

Activist Marvina Haynes, founder of MN Wrongfully Convicted Judicial Reform, and David David Boehnke, a spokesman for the Incarcerated Workers Organizing Committee, speak at a press conference outside Stillwater Prison Monday, Sept. 4, a day after inmates protested the lack of clean water. (Kristi Miller/Pioneer Press)

Wednesday, September 6, 2023 8:38 AM

FBI Jan. 6 Wanted List in Full as Growing Number of Capitol Rioters Escape

"We have deployed our full investigative resources and are working closely with our federal, state, and local partners to aggressively pursue those involved in these criminal activities," the agency said.

It comes after CBS News reported on a hearing regarding Eric Bochene, who failed to appear at a pretrial conference in July on four federal charges relating to his actions on January 6 and was apprehended in New York at the start of August. At the hearing, he appeared remotely from jail after absconding from the court proceedings.

Bochene, who was pictured in the halls of the Capitol next to Jacob Chansley, the "QAnon Shaman," was charged with two counts of knowingly entering a restricted building and two counts of violent entry and disorderly conduct on the Capitol grounds.

He pleaded guilty to one charge of entering a restricted building and faces up to a year in prison when sentenced in November.

Wednesday, August 9, 2023 9:55 PM

US Supreme Court allows 'ghost guns' to fall under federal purview.

3D printers beware, Biden's on the Build-Your-Own-Blunderbuss beat

The Biden administration's crackdown on 3D-printed gun parts can be allowed to be enforced, at least temporarily, after the US Supreme Court voted to let the rule to stand.…

The one-page order [PDF], which was issued yesterday after a 5-4 vote, strikes down a decision from a Texas court in July that vacated the regulations on the grounds that they exceed the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) authority and would need congressional approval.

Ghost guns are unserialized, privately made firearms often produced with a 3D printer. They are increasingly being found by ATF agents in violent crime investigations. According to the White House, law enforcement across the US recovered approximately 20,000 suspected ghost guns in 2022 alone, which it said is a tenfold increase compared to six years ago.

Wednesday, August 9, 2023 2:34 PM

Court cuts down Hawaii knife ban in controversial Second Amendment case

Apanel of federal judges ruled a Hawaii law banning butterfly knives violates the Second Amendment under the Supreme Court's new history-and-tradition standard.

"Hawaii has not demonstrated that its ban on butterfly knives is consistent with this Nation’s historical tradition of regulating arms," Judge Carlos Bea, an appointee of former President George W. Bush, wrote in the U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals opinion on Teter v. Lopez, which was released Monday. 

"We conclude that section 134-53(a) violates Plaintiffs’ Second Amendment rights. We reverse and remand."

The decision overturns a lower court summary judgment in favor of Hawaii, a state which has had a ban on butterfly knives in place since 1993 and has since expanded to the ban to the manufacture, sale and possession of the knives in the state.


Tuesday, August 8, 2023 10:21 PM

55,000 non-incarcerated felons will soon be eligible to vote in Minnesota.


As many as 55,000 formerly incarcerated people in Minnesota will become eligible to vote under a bill that's about to become law. It's part of a broader voting access push in a state where Democrats now fully call the shots. Brian Bakst of member station MPR News reports.

BRIAN BAKST, BYLINE: Even with a major snowstorm bearing down, a large contingent showed up at the state capitol to urge passage of a law giving Minnesota felons a right to vote after leaving custody. Since the 1960s, parole and probation have disqualified thousands of people.


UNIDENTIFIED CROWD: Fifty-five thousand people. Fifty-five thousand people.

BAKST: Non-incarcerated felons locked out of voting in Minnesota tried to regain access in the courts, but failed. A legislative push 20 years in the making ultimately succeeded last night, propelled forward in a state House now fully in Democratic control. Lawmakers sent the felon voting bill to Governor Tim Walz, who plans to sign it next week.


BOBBY JOE CHAMPION: We should not continue to perpetually punish individuals.

BAKST: Senate President Bobby Joe Champion represents a diverse Minneapolis district and helped lead the drive. He says denying voter eligibility shoves felons trying to rebuild their lives to the side and does little to further public safety.


CHAMPION: We know that when people do structured and pro-social things, that good things happen. And why should we deny someone the right to vote? We want them to be connected to the community and a part of the fabric of our community.

BAKST: But most Republicans say with crime a concern, it's the wrong time to reduce consequences, and they sought to keep restrictions for people convicted of election fraud, sex crimes and murder. Senator Andrew Mathews says there needs to be distinctions, like in Delaware and Florida.


ANDREW MATHEWS: People that commit the crime of murder or manslaughter, they have permanently taken away their victim's right to vote.

BAKST: Minnesota will join 21 states in automatically granting voting rights after incarceration ends. Community organizer JaNae Bates, who led those chants in the capitol hallways, says it's personal. Her husband is currently serving time, and she predicts the Minnesota law will invite people back to the polls beyond those made newly eligible.


JANAE BATES: Because there's a lot of folks who actually can vote. They're off of probation, off of papers, and they don't realize that they have the right to vote.

BAKST: Democratic Secretary of State Steve Simon says his team is ready to do its part.


STEVE SIMON: This is a really big law change, so we're going to be there with our nonpartisan voter outreach folks, making sure everyone gets word.

BAKST: Other proposals before Minnesota's legislature go hand in hand. Lawmakers could soon make voter registration automatic upon issuance of a driver's license or application for government programs. Advocates say that step will take one more hurdle out of the way for people who haven't had the chance to vote due to their past. For NPR News, I'm Brian Bakst in St. Paul, Minn.


Copyright © 2023 NPR. All rights reserved. Visit our website terms of use and permissions pages at for further information.

Tuesday, August 8, 2023 2:12 PM

Lawyers successfully argued that a Jim Crow-era law banning felons from voting is cruel and unusual punishment



A spokesperson for Lynn Fitch — the state's attorney general — told the Post she plans to seek further review of the case. Fitch's options include seeking an en banc review, which allows a larger pool of 5th Circuit judges to review the case, according to the Post.

There are 11 states that have similar voting laws for people convicted of a felony — and each of them strip voting rights until they have completed their sentences, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

Additional requirements in these states include indefinite bans for some crimes or additional waiting periods after someone completes their sentence.

Tuesday, August 8, 2023 2:07 PM

Florida, DeSantis sued after rollout of felon voting rights restoration.

Published July 19|Updated July 20
 Nearly five years after Floridians voted to allow people with felony convictions to restore their voting rights, the coalition that pushed for the change is suing the state, arguing Florida created a system that impedes the will of the voters.

The Florida Rights Restoration Coalition pushed Amendment 4, a constitutional amendment that allowed people with most felony convictions to regain their right to vote. Voters approved the measure in 2018, with about 65% in support.

The amendment’s passage was hailed as a major civil rights victory, set to undo the post-Civil War prohibition designed to remove Black people from the voter rolls. At the time the amendment passed, it was estimated nearly 1.4 million Floridians would be eligible for restoration.

Friday, August 4, 2023 1:09 PM

Investigators identify Minnesota trooper who killed Black driver, activists call for charges

Minnesota officials on Thursday identified the state trooper who shot and killed a 33-year-old Black man during a traffic stop this week, as activists and family members called for the officers involved to be fired and charged.

Minnesota State Patrol Trooper Ryan Londregan shot Ricky Cobb II early Monday during a tense confrontation seen on body-worn camera footage released this week, according to the Minnesota Public Safety Department’s Bureau of Criminal Apprehension.

The three troopers have been placed on administrative leave. But Cobb's relatives and several activists groups gathered in Minneapolis this week to demand they be fired and prosecuted. Nyra Fields-Miller broke down at a news conference as she described the pain of losing her son in the latest deadly traffic stop to spark backlash.

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“I’m very confused and very, very hurt,” she said Tuesday.

“I want justice for my son."

Friday, August 4, 2023 1:04 PM

US judge rejects challenge to Connecticut assault weapons ban

By Nate Raymond

(Reuters) - A federal judge on Thursday rejected a gun rights group's challenge to an assault weapons ban the state of Connecticut adopted after an armed gunman in 2012 killed 20 children and six educators at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown.

The National Association for Gun Rights filed a lawsuit in September, arguing the 2013 ban violated the right to bear arms under the U.S. Constitution's Second Amendment, citing a major U.S. Supreme Court ruling last year that expanded gun rights.

That decision, New York State Rifle & Pistol Association v. Bruen, was issued by the court's 6-3 conservative majority and held the Second Amendment protects a person's right to carry a handgun in public for self-defense.


The decision also announced a new test to assess the legality of gun restrictions, saying they must be "consistent with this nation's historical tradition of firearm regulation." NAGR said Connecticut's law failed to meet that standard.

Friday, August 4, 2023 1:01 PM

Minnesota unveils new program to provide 'reparations' to communities over-policed for marijuana offenses

n addition to legalizing marijuana for recreational users, Minnesota is initiating a new program that will invest millions of dollars into communities disproportionately affected by enforcement of the law when the drug was illegal. 

Some state lawmakers have dubbed this initiative to be a "form of reparation," as it is designed to provide economic relief to residents who had been convicted of marijuana possession and other weed-related offenses.

Called "CanRenew," the grant program was enacted as part of the state’s new recreational marijuana law which allows residents to use the drug without a license, though it is still illegal for unlicensed dispensers to sell.

Pot was legalized as of August 1 this year, while the CanRenew program will go into effect in 2026. Once implemented, it will award $15 million to eligible organizations in communities, that have, as "The Star Tribute" reported, "high concentrations of people who were convicted for a marijuana offense or had family members who were convicted."

Friday, August 4, 2023 12:46 PM

Trump pleads not guilty to 4 felony charges in 2020 election case?

Former President Trump pleaded not guilty Thursday to four federal charges in connection with accusations that he engaged in a multi-part conspiracy to overturn the will of voters and stay in power despite losing the 2020 election, resulting in an unprecedented attack on the U.S. Capitol.

Trump appeared before Magistrate Judge Moxila A. Upadhyaya at the E. Barrett Prettyman U.S. Courthouse in Washington, about a quarter-mile from where rioting supporters first attacked police officers and pushed down barriers on the west lawn of the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021.

The judge took the bench at just after 4 p.m. Eastern time, and the clerk called out: "Twenty-three dash 257, the United States of America vs. Donald J. Trump." The former president shook his head when the criminal case name was read aloud.

"Good afternoon, Mr. Trump," the judge said, moments after Trump's attorney John Lauro introduced him as "President Trump."

Upadhyaya informed Trump of the maximum sentences for each of the four counts: conspiracy to defraud the United States, conspiracy to obstruct an official proceeding, conspiracy against rights, and obstruction of or attempting to obstruct an official proceeding. The maximum sentences range from five to 20 years and each include up to $250,000 in fines


Thursday, July 27, 2023 9:49 AM

Florida, DeSantis sued after rollout of felon voting rights restoration

Nearly five years after Floridians voted to allow people with felony convictions to restore their voting rights, the coalition that pushed for the change is suing the state, arguing Florida created a system that impedes the will of the voters.

The Florida Rights Restoration Coalition pushed Amendment 4, a constitutional amendment that allowed people with most felony convictions to regain their right to vote. Voters approved the measure in 2018, with about 65% in support.

© 2023 Justice Impact Individuals Voting Effectively (J.I.I.V.E) is a 501(c)(4) registered non-profit social welfare organization and does not support or oppose any political candidate or party.
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