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News in Brief

High court extends emergency (access required)

The Supreme Court of Virginia has again extended its declaration of a judicial emergency by another three weeks. The court’s 12th COVID-19 order pushes the possible emergency end date to Nov. 22, although extensions have become routine. The latest emergency ...

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No immediate ruling after Lee statue trial (access required)

(AP) A judge heard hours of arguments and witness testimony but did not immediately issue a ruling in a lawsuit seeking to prevent Virginia’s governor from removing an enormous statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee in Richmond. “It’s a ...

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High scores noted for July bar exam (access required)

The pass rate for the July Virginia Bar Exam was the highest in 22 years – by far. Of the 431 applicants who sat for the July 28-29 exam in Roanoke, 87.47% passed, according to the Virginia Board of Bar ...

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Roanoke-area courts win jury trial approval (access required)

Despite an earlier setback over the need for individual courthouse plans, a Supreme Court panel now has approved jury trial resumption plans for courts in Roanoke, Roanoke County and Salem, the chief circuit judge reported Oct. 16. Judge David Carson ...

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Lawmakers pass new budget amid coronavirus pandemic

(AP) Virginia lawmakers all but wrapped up a special legislative session by approving a new state budget that gives bonuses to police, pays for a host of new criminal justice reforms, and extends moratoriums on evictions and utility shutoffs during the ...

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Progress on police reforms gets mixed reviews

(AP) Almost five months after George Floyd was killed in police custody in Minneapolis, the Virginia General Assembly has passed a host of police reforms as it nears the end of a special session. The reforms include legislation that bans ...

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Park Police officers indicted in shooting of unarmed driver

(AP) Two U.S. Park Police officers have been indicted on manslaughter charges in the 2017 shooting death of an unarmed motorist who led officers on a stop-and-go chase outside Washington, capping nearly three years of inquiry into a case that ...

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Federal judge extends Virginia voter registration deadline

(AP) A federal judge extended the deadline for registering to vote in Virginia by 48 hours after the state’s online voter registration system went down because of an accidentally severed cable. The Oct. 14 order by U.S. District Judge John ...

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Cut cable shuts down Virginia voter portal; lawsuit filed

(AP) An accidentally severed fiber optic cable that shut down Virginia’s online voter registration system for several hours on the last day to register before the November general election has prompted a lawsuit from a civil rights organization. The Virginia Department ...

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Court rejects circuit-wide jury trial plan (access required)

The Roanoke Valley will wait a bit longer for the resumption of jury trials, according to Chief Circuit Judge David Carson. In an update for lawyers on Oct. 13, Carson said a Virginia Supreme Court panel notified Carson a week ...

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