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News in Brief

Court releases criminal discovery report

A Virginia Supreme Court study panel recommends allowing defense attorneys to routinely examine police reports, including witness interviews, in criminal cases. Discovery of those reports could be limited by withholding, redacting or restricting disclosure of witness statements for good cause, ...

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Justices could reconsider major product liability verdict

The Supreme Court of Virginia may be taking a second look at its decision to overturn a $14.14 million verdict for a Pulaski County man who blamed an alleged air bag defect for his car crash injuries. The court ruled ...

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Lawyer for media fights gag order in mine disaster case

(AP) A gag order in the criminal case of the West Virginia coal mine explosion that killed 29 men violates the First Amendment by barring virtually anyone from discussing it publicly, a lawyer for media organizations said Monday. David Schulz ...

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McDonnell appeal cites broad bribery definition

(AP) Former Gov. Bob McDonnell said in court papers Monday that his conviction on several counts of public corruption was based on an overly broad definition of bribery and a flawed explanation of what constitutes an “official action” by an ...

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Assembly elects 42 trial court judges

The General Assembly elected the following as trial court judges on Feb. 25. Unless indicated otherwise, their terms begin July 1. Circuit Court Newport News General District Judge Gary A. Mills to the 7th Circuit Williamsburg attorney Richard H. Rizk ...

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Judge serving Amherst and Nelson counties retires

AMHERST (AP) A circuit judge serving Amherst and Nelson counties is retiring after 24 years on the bench. Judge J. Michael Gamble’s retirement was official on Saturday, but he will continue to serve until a successor takes over. Gamble has ...

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4th Circuit to hear media’s gag order appeal in mine case

(AP) A federal appeals court in Virginia will hear a dispute over a gag order in former Massey Energy CEO Don Blankenship’s criminal case. Blankenship was CEO when the Upper Big Branch Mine in West Virginia exploded in 2010, killing ...

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Va. governor OKs marijuana oils for treating epilepsy

(AP) — Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe has signed into law a measure that allows the use of derivatives of the marijuana plant for treating severe epilepsy. The governor signed the bill Thursday at a Capitol ceremony featuring families with epileptic ...

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Courts announce closings, delays for Thursday

Thursday’s snow storm has closed a number of courts across the commonwealth. The Supreme Court of Virginia has posted the list of state court closings on its website. The court also announces: “Due to inclement weather, the Richmond offices of ...

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Hellwig to be new W&L law school dean

Washington & Lee President Kenneth P. Ruscio announced the appointment of W&L Law Prof. Brant Hellwig, an expert in the field of federal taxation, as dean of the law school, effective July 1, 2015. Hellwig succeeds Nora V. Demleitner, who ...

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