Crime in the News - FindLaw Blotter
FindLaw Blotter - The FindLaw Crime and Criminals Blog

Recently in Crime in the News Category

A California couple has been charged for an alleged conspiracy to make and distribute pot on the recent incarnation of a black-market website, Silk Road 2.0.

David Schell, 54, and Teri Schell, 59, of Durham, were indicted by a federal grand jury on Thursday for conspiracy to make and distribute marijuana on the illicit Internet hub. According to Sacramento's KXTV, the couple were charged with 11 criminal counts relating to their alleged scheme to sell pot and pot products online.

So how do these pot growers fit into Silk Road 2.0?

Retrial over the punishment of convicted murderer Jodi Arias resumed Wednesday, after legal issues with the defense's case caused testimony to be delayed for almost two weeks.

Part of this period was spent addressing legal arguments that media outlets should be excluded from court during testimony in Arias' retrial to accommodate a "skittish defense witness" to testify in private, reports The Associated Press. The judge in Arias' case also denied a defense motion to delay the trial based on allegations that police altered or deleted evidence on the victim's computer.

As the retrial resumes this week, what should those interested in Arias' retrial look for?

A recent Gallup poll finds that about one in four American households includes someone who's been victimized by crime -- a figure that's remained fairly constant over the past decade.

According to a Gallup study from 2000 to 2014, between 22 and 27 percent of households have reported being victimized by crime over the last 14 years. Victimization on the individual level has been slightly less reported, with between 14 and 19 percent of Americans claiming to be individual victims of crime.

What do these numbers mean for the average American, and which crimes are the most common?

The young father behind a DUI crash that led to the amputation of a motorcyclist's leg was sentenced to 15 years in prison Thursday.

Angel Morales, 22, of Claremore, Oklahoma, had pleaded guilty to DUI in the 2013 crash, reports the Tulsa World. In addition to the DUI charges, Morales was also charged with three counts of child endangerment for having three of his children in his relative's Cadillac Escalade at the time of the crash.

What did the victim do in this case to encourage the judge to put Morales behind bars?

A man accused of running Silk Road 2.0, a revived Internet black market, was arrested by the FBI on Wednesday in San Francisco.

Blake Benthall, 26, also known as "Defcon," is accused of attempting to resurrect the infamous Silk Road, a somewhat-secret website which allowed visitors to purchase anything from illicit drugs to murder-for-hire contracts. According to Ars Technica, the FBI reports that Benthall is facing charges of narcotics trafficking, computer hacking, money laundering, and fraudulent document trafficking, all of which carry weighty prison sentences.

What was Benthall doing with Silk Road 2.0, and what is he facing in federal prosecution?

A Virginia mom who took a photo of her 1-year-old son hanging by the shirt from a planter hook was arrested after the photo was posted to Facebook.

The photo shows a 14-month-old boy crying while suspended in mid-air with his shirt bunched around his neck. The boy's mother, 18-year-old Alexis Breeden was arrested and charged with felony child abuse after authorities were alerted to the photo's presence on the social network, reports WTVR-TV.

How did the photo end up online, and what kind of criminal sentence is Breeden potentially facing from this unfortunate photo op?

Several suspects are under arrest in connection with the hit-and-run killing of three trick-or-treaters on Halloween.

Three 13-year-old girls were struck and killed by a driver while moving across a crosswalk in Santa Ana, California, on Friday night. According to the Los Angeles Times, police report the driver of a Honda CR-V was "going at a high rate of speed" when the SUV struck the girls; the vehicle was later found abandoned in a nearby parking lot.

What charges could the arrested individuals face for the Halloween hit-and-run deaths?

You may be too old to worry about overdoing it on Halloween candy, but Halloween may have an ever scarier trick in store for adults: an arrest for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

With Halloween falling on a Friday this year, the large number of Halloween parties and other festivities offer plenty of opportunities for celebrants to get themselves into downright spooky legal predicaments. And with potential criminal penalties for DUI arrests including jail time, costly fines, and a driver's license suspension, avoiding a DUI is certainly in your best interest.

How can you do yourself (and everyone else) a favor and avoid a Halloween DUI? Here are a few suggestions:

The California Highway Patrol is being investigated for an alleged "game" in which officers shared nude photos of women stolen from suspects' cell phones.

In a search warrant affidavit, CHP Officers Sean Harrington and Robert Hazelwood are accused of snagging near-naked selfies from arrestees' phones and then trading them like baseball cards. The Contra Costa Times reports that Harrington confessed to stealing explicit photos from a DUI suspect's phone as part of a sophomoric "game" between other officers.

If true, what charges could these allegedly pervy CHP officers face?

After the hatchet attack on NYPD officers in Queens last week, the alleged attacker was shot and killed. But what about the innocent bystander who was accidentally shot by police?

A 29-year-old woman was struck in the back by officers' bullets as she was walking about half a block away, The New York Times reports. The woman remained in the hospital over the weekend.

The woman's ordeal raises questions about what happens when innocent bystanders are accidentally shot by a police officer's stray bullets.