CourtSide - The FindLaw Breaking Legal News Blog


Former Essex County College professor Lisa Durden was defending the decision of Black Lives Matter to exclude white people from a Memorial Day Event to Fox News' Tucker Carlson last year when she said: "What I say to that is, 'Boo hoo hoo.' You white people are angry because you couldn't use your 'white privilege' card to get invited to the Black Lives Matter's all-black Memorial Day celebration."

Two days later she was told to cancel a class and suspended, and three weeks after her television appearance, she was fired. Durden is now suing the school and administrators, claiming it violated her free speech rights, created a hostile work environment, and breached her contract. Here's the lawsuit.

The New York Police Department settled another lawsuit involving widespread surveillance of Muslim communities in New York, New Jersey, and beyond. The spying program, which spanned a decade and targeted hundreds of individuals, businesses, and mosques, failed to produce a single, actionable lead in a criminal investigation.

It did, however, consist of several constitutional violations, which the NYPD has promised to correct under the settlement, as well as compensate victims monetarily. You can read the full settlement, along with the allegations, below.

Nearly four years after Orange County's comprehensive jailhouse snitch program came to light, the American Civil Liberties Union is suing in an attempt to finally end it. For decades, sheriff's department personnel have cooperated with the district attorney's office in placing well-groomed informants next to unsuspecting criminal defendants in an effort to extract incriminating information.

The only problem is that these efforts likely violated those defendants' constitutional rights, and those involved are accused of lying under oath to keep the entire program concealed. You can see the ACLU's lawsuit below.

Bill O'Reilly Sued for Defamation by Former Fox News Anchor

Almost one year ago, Fox News host Bill O'Reilly lost his job when it came to light that he had paid over $13 million to keep quiet sexual harassment lawsuits from women at the television network. It appears that O'Reilly's troubles haven't ended as one of these women, ex-anchor Laurie Dhue, has filed a federal defamation lawsuit against O'Reilly after he denied mistreating her.

Atheist Sues to Avoid Alcoholics Anonymous Treatment

Alcoholics Anonymous is an important part of recovery for many addicts. But, according to James Lindon, it's "rooted in monotheistic spirituality," which is a problem for him as an atheist. Convicted of drug charges, he claims that he was forced by the judge and treatment providers to participate in Alcoholics Anonymous as part of his sentence. Well, Lindon has sued the judge, a treatment center and program, and Cuyahonga County departments and officials claiming:

"Defendants' policies, customs, and actions amount to state-endorsed and impermissible interference with plaintiff's free exercise of religion, or impermissible establishment of religion or endorsement of religion, entanglement with religion, promotion of one religion over another religion, or promotion of religion over non-religion."

Stone Brewing Co. Sues MillerCoors in Brewing Battle

It's a David versus Goliath fight brewing in the beer world. Stone Brewing Co., the San Diego based craft beer brewer, is suing industry giant MillerCoors. The recently filed lawsuit claims that MillerCoors' rebrand of its "Keystone" beers as simply "Stone" violates Stone Brewing Co.'s trademarks.

James Brown gave the world a trove of classic soul music before he passed away in 2006. But he also left quite a mess in his personal life and estate. And now six of Brown's biological children are suing his allegedly bigamous surviving spouse, claiming she "embarked on a series of duplicitous business machinations calculated to deprive Brown's children of their rightful interests in Brown's music under the Copyright Act and divert the financial proceeds from such interests to herself."

You can read the full lawsuit, along with some salacious allegations, below.

Last month, Devin Kelley gunned down 26 people in a church in Sutherland Springs, Texas. At the time, we wondered whether the Air Force may be liable for the shooting, as it failed to report Kelley's court-martial for domestic violence to the National Criminal Information Center database, a conviction that would have barred him from purchasing the military-style rifle he used in the shooting.

This week, two families of victims slain in the shooting filed a lawsuit against the store that sold Kelley a Ruger AR-556, despite a "possibly disqualifying issue" tied to his permit to carry. The suit claims that, because he listed a Colorado address on his Firearms Transaction Record, "[t]he Ruger should have never been placed in Kelley's hands in Texas."

Kayla Cuevas' mother claims her daughter was "subjected to continuous and ongoing bullying" for years while a student in Brentwood, New York. The numerous incidents happened on school grounds in the Brentwood Union School District and were perpetrated by MS-13 gang members, Evelyn Rodriguez claims, with full knowledge of the school district.

Cuevas was killed, allegedly by MS-13 members, in September 2016, and Rodriguez is suing the school district, claiming it failed to stop the bullying and protect her daughter from gang violence. You can see the lawsuit below:

Just because a currency is digital doesn't mean it can't be taxed. And the Internal Revenue Service is looking for cryptocurrency buyers and sellers come tax time.

A federal court in California has ordered one virtual currency exchange, Coinbase, to hand over identifying records for almost 10,000 users who bought, sold, sent, or received more than $20,000 of digital currency through their accounts. And those users will likely need to pay taxes on those transactions. You can read the full order below: