Legal Grounds - The FindLaw Legal News with an Attitude Blog

April 2017 Archives

It's no R2-D2, but the Knightscope Autonomous Data Machine is a pretty cool droid. According to its manufacturer and this dubstep-soundtracked trailer, the K5 can use 360-degree video, thermal imaging sensors, a laser range finder and radar, and even air quality sensors to detect and prevent crime. The K5 can contact law enforcement and even scare off sexual predators prowling around your Tesla in the parking lot.

But the K5 has one apparent vulnerability: 40-something drunk dudes in Silicon Valley shopping mall parking lots.

Is Your Uber Driver Sober?

Probably not the question you want to ask yourself as your rideshare rolls up, but after California's Consumer Protection and Enforcement Division (CPED) fined Uber $1.13 million for failing to investigate reports of inebriated drivers, you might want to double check your driver's breath.

A CPED investigation found that Uber's California operation received 2,047 complaints about drivers being under the influence in just one year between August 12, 2014 and August 31, 2015, and only deactivated drivers in 574 of those complaints, or less than one-third of all allegedly drunken drivers.

You know that feeling -- you're eight years old and craving that McDonald's cheeseburger, and you're four-year-old sister wants one too, but your parents are asleep and can't get you to the drive thru. Now, some of us might've just suffered with our hunger pangs, or tried to cobble together some cheeseburger substitute. But that's only because we lacked the ambition of one Ohio boy, who hopped into the family van with his baby sister and headed for the Golden Arches.

And they might've gotten away with it too, if it weren't for those meddling adults, who called the cops on our young heroes. But not before they got their tiny, toddler hands on those sweet, sweet cheeseburgers.

Harrisburg High School's new principal wanted to get the attention of students who were skipping class and their parents. "Many parents send their kids to school and they're thinking they're going to class," Lisa Love told the Patriot-News. "I needed to reach out because of the enormous number not going to class." The school therefore sent suspension notices to 500 of its 1,100 students last week, punishing kids for not going to class by not allowing them to attend class.

While this may seem an odd punishment, it was designed as part of a larger effort by the Pennsylvania school to improve test scores, a plan school officials intended to present to parents and the news media had not a fire alarm been pulled during that presentation.

Harrisburg High's Lean on Me-esque efforts got us thinking about some other crazy high school legal stories, so here are some of our favorites, from our archives:

In what is being heralded as major win for those that want to eat healthier, but not too much healthier, nearly two dozen Dunkin' Donuts locations in Massachusetts will stop giving customers margarine, or butter substitute, when those customers order buttered bagels. Unfortunately, it took a lawsuit filed by one disappointed Dunkies devotee to get the chain to stop churning out bagels with fake butter.

While many might be surprised to learn that Dunkin' Donuts even sells bagels (we've all seen them, but never knew anyone actually bought 'em), those customers that ordered their bagels buttered have been tricked. Although the donut dealers have real butter, it is refrigerated and not left at the comfortable spreadable room temperature that true butter aficionados prefer, for food safety reasons. When customers order a buttered bagel, employees have been spreading margarine, or vegetable spread, on the bagels instead, all because those spread easier than chilled butter.