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Rochester officials have agreed to pay $12 million to the children of Daniel Prude, a Black man who died after police held him down until he stopped breathing after encountering him running naked through the snowy streets of the upstate New York city. A federal judge approved the settlement in a court document filed Thursday. Rochester Mayor Malik D. Evans said in a statement that the agreement was “the best decision” for the city. Attorneys said the settlement money, minus lawyers’ fees and costs, will go to Prude’s five children.

The Mississippi solicitor general has argued to a federal appeals court that the U.S. Justice Department overreached in suing the state over its mental health system. A Justice Department attorney countered that there’s ample precedent to show the department has the power to enforce the Americans with Disabilities Act. A three-judge panel of the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals heard arguments Wednesday in New Orleans. A ruling against the Justice Department could ultimately push the issue to the Supreme Court. The department sued Mississippi several years ago, saying the state violated federal law by confining people with mental illness in state hospitals instead of providing community-based services.

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The family of the victim in the murder case chronicled in the first season of the “Serial” podcast has asked Maryland’s intermediate appellate court to halt Adnan Syed’s court case pending the family’s appeal of a judge’s overturning of Syed’s murder conviction. Young Lee, the brother of victim Hae Min Lee, asked the Maryland Court of Special Appeals in a six-page motion filed late last month to suspend further proceedings, including an Oct. 18 deadline by which prosecutors must decide whether to drop the charges against Syed or retry him for the killing. He contends that the family was not given enough notice about a court hearing last month.

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A Wisconsin judge is prohibiting voters from canceling their original absentee ballot and casting a new one, siding with a conservative group that said the practice known as ballot spoiling is illegal. The ruling Wednesday from a Waukesha County judge who was a former Republican attorney general comes as voters in the battleground state are submitting their absentee ballots for the Nov. 8 election. Restoring Integrity and Trust in Elections filed the lawsuit last month. It challenged the guidance issued on Aug. 1 to more than 1,800 local election clerks by the state elections commission detailing how they can spoil an absentee ballot at the request of a voter.

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Kevin Spacey has arrived at a courthouse in New York City to defend himself in a lawsuit filed by Anthony Rapp, the actor who was the first in a string of people to publicly accuse the “House of Cards” star of sexual misconduct. Jury selection began Thursday in a trial expected to last about two weeks. The lawsuit involves an alleged encounter between the two men in New York City in 1986, when Rapp was 14 and Spacey was 26. Rapp said the older actor invited him to a party at his apartment, then tried to seduce him in a bedroom after the other guests left. Spacey's lawyers say it didn't happen.

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Country queen Loretta Lynn spoke honestly about teenage pregnancy, birth control and abortion. Her hit songs like 1975's “The Pill” reflected the lives of many rural women and mothers. In her home state of Kentucky, Lynn's songs and ideas about inequities tied to childbirth are proving as relevant as ever. Kate Collins grew up on Lynn's music, only realizing later in life the context of her songs. Collins volunteers as a case manager for the Kentucky Health Justice Network's abortion resources hotline. She said that Lynn's music still resonates today after the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade.

At least 66 clinics have stopped providing abortions in 15 states since the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe v Wade. That's according to a Guttmacher Institute analysis released Thursday. The institute is a research group that supports abortion rights.  The analysis examines the impact of state laws on access to abortion in the 100 days since that landmark decision on June 24.  As of October 2, there were no providers offering abortions in 14 of these 15 states. The number of clinics providing abortions in the 15 states dropped from 79 to 13.

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A federal appeals court has ordered a lower court to review an Obama-era program preventing the deportation of hundreds of thousands of immigrants brought into the United States as children. A Texas-based federal judge last year declared that the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program was illegal. But he left the program temporarily intact for those already benefiting from it, pending the appeal. Wednesday's appellate ruling in New Orleans upholds the judge's initial finding. But it sends the case back to him for a look at a new version of the rule issued by the Biden administration in late August.

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The Colorado baker who won a partial Supreme Court victory after refusing on religious grounds to make a wedding cake for a gay couple a decade ago is challenging a separate ruling that he violated the state’s anti-discrimination law — this time over complaints he refused to make a birthday cake celebrating a gender transition. A lawyer for Jack Phillips on Wednesday urged Colorado’s appeals court to overturn last year’s ruling in a lawsuit brought by Autumn Scardina, a transgender woman. Phillips rejected her request in 2017 to make a birthday cake that had blue frosting on the outside and was pink inside to celebrate her gender transition.

The Democratic governor of New Mexico is asking the U.S. Department of Justice to assign more FBI agents to the state in response to violent crime. Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham said Wednesday in a statement that she wants to replicate the success of a recent surge in FBI resources and agents in Buffalo, New York. The Sept. 15 letter to Attorney General Merrick Garland describes a recent spate of homicides in Albuquerque and says “additional federal agents are needed to alleviate the current strain on New Mexico’s law enforcement offices.” Lujan Grisham sent a similar request to FBI Director Christopher Wray in June.

Prosecutors and defense attorneys for two former Minneapolis police officers charged in the killing of George Floyd have filed more than 100 motions to limit testimony or evidence that will be allowed at trial. Many of the requests rely heavily on what happened at the previous two trials in Floyd’s death. J. Alexander Kueng and Tou Thao are charged with aiding and abetting second-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter. With jury selection to begin Oct. 24, both sides are using what they learned in the prior trials to try to shape the proceeding in their favor. Hearings on the requests are scheduled for Thursday and Friday.

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A dramatic family fight has clouded the GOP’s hopes in Georgia’s high-stakes Senate contest. Republican Senate candidate Herschel Walker is drawing criticism from his own son as Walker denies a report that he paid for a girlfriend’s abortion. But as the midterm campaign speeds into its final full month, leading Republicans believe the Senate majority remains firmly within their reach. Democratic strategists privately concede that their party's own shortcomings may not be outweighed by the GOP’s mounting challenges. Democrats have no margin for error as they confront the weight of history, widespread economic concerns and President Joe Biden’s weak standing.

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Former Gov. Paul LePage says he’d veto a bill banning abortions at 15 weeks — news that's disappointing to anti-abortion groups. The Republican who's seeking his old job back provided the answer during a labored exchange Tuesday evening in the first debate with Democratic Gov. Janet Mills and independent Sam Hunkler. Karen Vachon, executive director of Maine Right to Life, said it's disturbing that the governor doesn't support a 15-week limit on abortions. LePage said he supports current state law that bans abortions after a fetus becomes viable outside the womb, at roughly 24 weeks.

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A former government staffer has testified about being raped by a colleague in the Australian Parliament House and described her fears of not being believed because of the disparity in their workplace statuses. On Wednesday, Brittany Higgins became the first witness to testify against Bruce Lehrmann. He has pleaded not guilty in the Australian Capital Territory Supreme Court to a charge of sexual intercourse without consent in a minister’s office in March 2019. Lehrmann faces a potential 12-year prison sentence if convicted. Higgins said she was a 24-year-old staffer in an administrative role in then-Defense Industry Minister Linda Reynolds’ office while Lehrmann had a more senior role as a ministerial adviser.

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A former Seattle tech worker convicted of several charges related to a massive hack of Capital One bank and other companies in 2019 has been sentenced to time served and five years of probation. U.S. District Judge Robert S. Lasnik said Tuesday that sentencing former Amazon software engineer Paige Thompson to time in prison would have been particularly difficult on her “because of her mental health and transgender status." U.S. Attorney Nick Brown said in a statement that his office was “very disappointed” with the sentencing decision. In June, a Seattle jury found Thompson guilty of wire fraud, unauthorized access to a protected computer and damaging a protected computer.

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Supporters of abortion rights are suing to keep an old Arizona law that criminalizes nearly all abortions from being enforced. They argue in the lawsuit filed Tuesday that laws passed by the state Legislature after 1973′s Roe v. Wade decision should take precedence and abortions should be allowed until 15 weeks into a pregnancy. The 15-week law was passed this year and took effect a day after a Tucson judge said a pre-statehood law banning all abortions can be enforced. The lawsuit filed by a Phoenix abortion doctor and the Arizona Medical Association repeats many of the arguments made by abortion rights groups in their failed effort to get a judge to continue a 50-year-old injunction against enforcing the pre-statehood law.

Supporters of abortion rights are suing to keep an old Arizona law that criminalizes nearly all abortions from being enforced. They argue in the lawsuit filed Tuesday that laws passed by the state Legislature after 1973′s Roe v. Wade decision should take precedence and abortions should be allowed until 15 weeks into a pregnancy. The 15-week law was passed this year and took effect a day after a Tucson judge said a pre-statehood law banning all abortions can be enforced. The lawsuit filed by a Phoenix abortion doctor and the Arizona Medical Association repeats many of the arguments made by abortion rights groups in their failed effort to get a judge to continue a 50-year-old injunction against enforcing the pre-statehood law.

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Lawyers for former President Donald Trump have asked the U.S. Supreme Court to step into the legal fight over the classified documents seized during an FBI search of his Florida estate. The Trump team asked the court Tuesday to overturn a lower court ruling and permit an independent arbiter, or special master, to review the roughly 100 documents with classified markings that were taken in the Aug. 8 search. A three-judge panel last month limited the review to the much larger tranche of non-classified documents. A veteran Brooklyn judge, Raymond Dearie, is serving as special master.

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In Georgia’s pivotal U.S. Senate race, Democratic Sen. Raphael Warnock and his Republican challenger, Herschel Walker, have each sought to cast the other as an abortion extremist. At the same time, they deflect questions about the details of their own positions on the issue. The sidestepping reflects the sensitivity of abortion politics in a post-Roe v. Wade America, where the procedure is open to regulation by state governments and, potentially, by Congress. But Walker’s strategy may not work much longer after The Daily Beast reported Monday that he paid for a girlfriend’s 2009 abortion — a blatant contradiction of his claims that there’s “no excuse” for a procedure he characterizes as “killing.” Walker called the report a lie.

A federal judge has ruled prosecutors cannot present evidence to a jury about the most salacious parts of a flawed dossier alleging ties between former President Donald Trump and Russia at an analyst's upcoming trial. Igor Danchenko is scheduled for trial next week in Alexandria on charges of lying to the FBI. Special Counsel John Durham says Danchenko was a primary source of information for the Trump dossier. The judge ruled Tuesday it would be prejudicial to delve into the most salacious accusation in the dossier _ that Trump engaged in sexual activity with prostitutes at a Moscow hotel. Trump had called the dossier fake news and evidence of a political witch hunt against him.

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A judge has dismissed charges against seven people in the Flint water scandal, including two former state health officials blamed for deaths from Legionnaires’ disease. Judge Elizabeth Kelly took action Tuesday, three months after the Michigan Supreme Court said a one-judge grand jury had no authority to issue indictments. Kelly rejected efforts by the attorney general’s office to just send the cases to Flint District Court and turn them into criminal complaints. That's the typical path to filing felony charges in Michigan. In 2014, Flint managers took the city out of a regional water system and began using the Flint River to save money. The water wasn't treated to reduce corrosion of old pipes, resulting in lead contamination.

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A lawyer representing parents who sued the state of West Virginia argued in the state Supreme Court that a voucher program that would provide parents state money to pull their children out of K-12 public schools is blatantly unconstitutional. Tamerlin Godley said the enactment of the Hope Scholarship Program would disproportionately impact poor children and those with disabilities. Passed by the GOP-controlled state legislature last year, the program would have of the most far-reaching school choice programs in the country. It was set to go into effect this school year, but was blocked by a lower court judge in July.

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An attorney for the House committee investigating the Jan. 6 insurrection at the U.S. Capitol told a federal judge in Phoenix on Tuesday that Arizona Republican Party Chair Kelli Ward refused to answer the committee’s questions at a deposition. The comment from attorney Eric Columbus came during a Tuesday hearing where Ward’s lawyers urged a federal judge to block the committee from getting her phone records while she appeals. U.S. District Judge Diane Humetewa ruled on Sept. 23 that Ward's records should be released. Ward attorney Laurin Mills cast the phone records fight as one with major implications for democracy, on par if not bigger than the insurrection. The judge is considering the request.

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