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Author Archives: Deborah Elkins

Lawyers’ contempt convictions reversed  (access required)

The Supreme Court of Virginia has overturned summary contempt convictions and jail terms for two Virginia Beach lawyers and their law clerk. The contempt findings arose during a felony jury trial in which law partners Claude M. Scialdone and Barry ...

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4th Circuit on bolstering, Batson

A Richmond federal prosecutor crossed a line during closing argument in a weapons trial when she told the jury that two government witnesses “told the truth,” the 4th Circuit says. Federal precedent says it is improper for a prosecutor to ...

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Insurance – UIM – Stacking – Motorcycle-Car Accident (access required)

A Chesapeake Circuit Court says a man injured in a motorcycle accident cannot “stack” UM/UIM coverage from his policy that covered two separate vehicles he owned, neither of which was involved in the accident with a driver of another vehicle. ...

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Criminal – Proffer of Testimony – Harmless Error v. Structural Error (access required)

A contention that the denial of a request to call a witness amounted to structural error does not excuse the failure to proffer the testimony of the witness, the Court of Appeals holds in affirming convictions for obtaining money by ...

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Employment Discrimination – Title VII – Teacher – Retaliation – ‘Employer’ – Limitations (access required)

Where a school teacher alleges adverse job actions as retaliation for a racial harassment complaint, the school board’s motion to dismiss based on the 300-day limitations period is denied by a Roanoke U.S. District Court where at least one alleged ...

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Search & Seizure – Felon In Possession – Pat-Down Search – Gunshots (access required)

Where a suspect acted in a furtive manner as he drove away from the area where an officer heard six gunshots, the officer had cause to require the suspect to exit his vehicle and submit to a pat-down, and the ...

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Criminal – Threatening Communications – Intimidation – First Amendment (access required)

A Roanoke U.S. District Court grants the activist defendant’s motion for acquittal as to one count of making threatening communications to a civil rights lawyer; jury findings of guilt are allowed to stand on two other charges of making threatening ...

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