Second Judge OKs Suit Against LAPD as Racketeering Enterprise
U.S. District Judge Gary A. Feess has ruled that the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) law can be used in the case against the Los Angeles Police Department Rampart Division, where officers have been charged with murder, perjury, cover-ups, planting false evidence, theft, assault, and rape. This is the second case in seven months in which a Federal Judge has allowed RICO to be used against the LAPD. “Judge Feess’ decision is a major milestone in the struggle against police corruption and violence,” says Katherine Spillar, executive vice president of the Feminist Majority Foundation. “RICO will be key in breaking up the systematic cover-up by the LAPD of the criminal activity of its own officers, and in prosecuting officers involved in the widespread conspiracy to commit crimes.”
The Feminist Majority Foundation and its National Center for Women in Policing (NCWP) have been pressing for an investigation by authorities into the role the underrepresentation of women in the LAPD has played in the Rampart and other police scandals. “We have been disappointed that, to date, no such study has been undertaken,” says Chief Penny Harrington, director of NCWP. “Sadly, a huge underlying component of police violence and corruption has been ignored.” In its own analysis of the LAPD and police corruption cases, NCWP revealed a significant gender gap in police liability cases, with LAPD payouts on male officers for excessive use of force and assaults exceeding payouts on female officers by a ratio of 23:1.
12/11/2013 Human Rights Day Celebrated Around The World - Yesterday marked International Human Rights Day, a day to celebrate human rights advances and to assess the challenges that lie ahead in protecting them.
"The fundamentals for protecting and promoting human rights are largely in place: these include a strong and growing body of international human rights law and standards, as well as institutions to interpret the laws, monitor compliance and apply them to new and emerging human rights issues," said United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay in a statement. . . .
12/11/2013 UConn Under Federal Investigation For Mishandling Sexual Assault Cases - The US Department of Education's Office of Civil Rights informed the University of Connecticut on Monday that it will investigate the school for allegedly mishandling sexual assault cases and violating Title IX, the federal law that requires colleges to eliminate gender-based discrimination.
The investigation was sparked after seven women filed a formal complaint in October alleging that UConn had failed to protect them from sexual assault and exposed them to a sexually hostile environment.One woman says her attacker was expelled from campus but later readmitted without her knowledge. . . .
12/11/2013 Massachusetts Democrat Katherine Clark Wins Congressional Seat - Democrat Katherine Clark will become the fifth woman to represent Massachusetts in the US House Tuesday, after easily defeating three opponents in a special election.
"Six years ago, there wasn't a single woman representing Massachusetts in Congress," said Niki Tsongas, the only other woman representing Massachusetts in the House. . . .