U.S. Fourth Circuit - The FindLaw 4th Circuit Court of Appeals Opinion Summaries Blog

November 2017 Archives

If you've ever known a public defender personally, or worked the job yourself, you probably know it's a thankless, stressful job with a heavy workload. But for the two federal public defenders representing convicted murderer Dylann Roof in his Fourth Circuit Appeal, it's that last part that's really proving to be more challenging than ever anticipated.

The pair of defenders recently filed a motion requesting an extension to the briefing schedule due to the sheer volume of the record and some other, more significant issues. Given the severity of Roof's crime, his death sentence, and the bumpy ride he put the world through by making inflammatory statements throughout the entire process, all eyes are on Roof's newest set of attorneys.

A lawsuit that reads like some sort of edge-of-your-seat political thriller has just been dismissed by the federal court in the Eastern District of Virginia. Plaintiff, Sharyl Attkisson, a former CBS News investigative reporter, claimed that she was subject to unlawful wiretapping for over a year.

Raising massive credibility questions, the plaintiff's claim asserted that the wiretapping was initiated by the Obama administration after she published stories critical of the federal government. She specifically named high level officials, including Eric Holder and Postmaster Ron Donahue, as defendants.

Court: 'Peace Cross' on Public Land Is Unconstitutional

Somewhere, hippies are rolling over in their graves.

"The Peace Cross," a 40-foot monument in Maryland, has been ruled unconstitutional. A divided federal appeals court said it "has the primary effect of endorsing religion and exclusively entangles the government in religion."

It doesn't matter, the court said, that it has been there for 90 years as a memorial to men who died in World War I. Actually, the soldiers may be rolling over in their graves.