Editor’s Choice: Top Five Legal News Stories of the Day

Posted September 23, 2011 in Jury Awards by David Baarlaer

Here are some news items we thought would interest you.


  • NY City cops face criminal charges for fixing tickets.For three years, Internal Affairs officers in the New York City police department investigated a wide-spread ticket-fixing scheme involving hundreds of officers and police union officials. In the end, 17 officers – some of them union officials – face criminal charges and over 550 officers face administrative or disciplinary action at work.


    While it’s unclear what, if anything, may happen to the people whose tickets were fixed – yes, they know some names from wiretaps and statements from officers involved – they probably can be forced to pay the tickets.

    No one likes to get speeding or other traffic tickets. We can help you beat your ticket, the legal way.

  • Missing woman’s father-in-law arrested. Susan Powell, a married mother of two, was reported missing in 2009 when she didn’t show up for work at her job in Utah. Since then, there have been very few breaks in the case – until now.


    Police in Washington state just arrested Susan’s father-in-law, Steven Powell, after discovering he had thousands of sexually explicit pictures and videos of women and young girls. Among them, pictures of Susan and videos of two very young neighbor girls bathing. Whether or not he’s involved with Susan’s disappearance, Powell could face years in prison for the child pornography alone, not to mention the charges of voyeurism.

    In other new developments, police in Utah are searching the dessert near where Susan’s husband, Josh, said he went camping the night before Susan’s disappearance. Burnt wood chips have been discovered near where cadaver dogs detected the presence of human remains.


    Learn more about Susan Powell’s case and what to do when an adult goes missing.

  • Your new hair-do may be dangerous. The US Department of Labor sent out a hazard alert warning people who own or work in hair salons about the dangers posed by some hair straightening products. The alert steps-up a warning letter sent by the FDAin August to the importer and distributor of one product that contained formaldehyde, but was labeled “formaldehyde fee.”


    Formaldehyde can cause eye and skin irritation, as well as cancer. The alert makes clear that salon owners are required to make their premises safe and healthy for their workers. They also owe a duty to keep their customers safe, too. Ignoring the government’s warnings and alerts and continuing to use the formaldehyde-laced products could spell big legal problems for a salon owner.

    Also, keep in mind that the products’ importer and distributor may be liable in products liability if you’re injured by using or coming into contact with their dangerous products. Learn more about products liability and product defects and recalls.

  • Extra holiday cash may be hard to come by.Each year, scores of people take on part-time, temporary jobs during the holiday months, mainly in the retail sector. Some work for some extra cash to spend on gifts, others need the extra cash to get by each month. Unfortunately, there may be fewer jobs to be had this year.


    For years, maybe even decades, there were more seasonal jobs than you could shake a stick at. This year, however, the sluggish, ever-recovering economy has many retailers planning on hiring fewer temp workers. But there are jobs, and hiring may start soon – have you noticed Halloween decorations in the stores already? We can help land and maybe even keep that temporary job, or any other job, for that matter.

  • Government shutdown-showdown, part 2? Here we go again. The federal government will shutdown unless Congress can come up with a stopgapspending measure by next Friday. It’s basically the same thing that happened this past April that ended with a last-minute deal and avoided a shutdown. The latest saga has a new twist.


    Without immediate funding by a stopgap bill, FEMA may go broke next week, making it unable to lend any assistance if a disaster strikes. The US has already been battered and torn by storms and tornadoes this year – and we’re still in hurricane season. Meanwhile, members of Congress are fighting and bickering.

    As you may know a government shutdown doesn’t mean everything comes to grinding stop. But it shouldn’t happen at all. If you agree, call your Representatives and Senators in D.C. and let them know.


Need more to read? Try these headlines:

Dave Baarlaer writes for Lawyers.com

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