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News in Brief

Lobby bar for law firms extends to consulting firms (access required)

The Supreme Court of Virginia says ethics guidelines that prevent lawyers from lobbying the General Assembly if another law firm member is a state legislator also extend to firm-owned consulting units. The court on Sept. 30 approved a legal ethics ...

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Hope, relief for transgender military families in new policy

ALEXANDRIA (AP) Like many transgender teens, Jenn Brewer faced bullying when she came out. Some classmates called her “tranny,” and a few teachers refused to address the 13-year-old by anything other than her male birth name, she said. But she ...

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Gregory credits Wilder for inspiration

(AP) For Roger Gregory, serving as the first African-American chief judge of the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Richmond takes on even greater meaning when he thinks of who else has walked the halls of the building he ...

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Attorney wants former officer’s conviction tossed

PORTSMOUTH (AP) An attorney for a former Portsmouth police officer convicted of voluntary manslaughter for fatally shooting an unarmed teenager is asking a judge to set aside the jury’s verdict. A jury found former officer Stephen Rankin guilty in connection ...

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Retailer agrees to settlement with states

NORFOLK (AP) A retailer based in Norfolk that sold furniture and other products on credit to military families has agreed to a settlement that will result in nearly $100 million of forgiven debt and restitution. Attorney General Mark Herring said ...

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Caregiver in ‘baby fight club’ gets 33 months in jail

MANASSAS (AP) A former daycare worker convicted of child cruelty in what prosecutors described as a “baby fight club” was sentenced to nearly three years in prison, the maximum term the judge could impose. A jury convicted Kierra Spriggs, 26, ...

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Man convicted in same-sex kidnap case

BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) A Virginia businessman was convicted Thursday of international parental kidnapping and conspiracy for helping a mother take her daughter out of the country to avoid losing custody to her former partner. A federal jury in Buffalo returned ...

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Bar Council to consider impairment guidance

The Virginia State Bar’s Ethics Committee has approved proposed LEO 1886, which will be submitted to the VSB Council for consideration next month. The proposed LEO concerns the duty of partners and supervisory lawyers in a law firm when another ...

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Lawyer revoked for cover-up (access required)

A suspended Fairfax lawyer has lost his license after an ill-advised appearance in a Loudoun County courtroom and his efforts to cover up his mistake. Michael A. Ward’s license was suspended in February of last year for 12 months. Nearly ...

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Woman charged in toddler’s death not competent for trial

(AP) A judge has ruled that a woman charged with first-degree murder in the beating death of a toddler is not competent to stand trial. The Richmond Times-Dispatch reports that defense attorney Leonard McCall requested an evaluation of 25-year-old Danielle ...

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