New rules for constables in Pennsylvania

Wednesday, 29 May 2013 02:00 PM Written by

20121224 pasupremecourtlogo 150The PG's Paula Reed Ward has a report on new standards released by the state Supreme Court governing constables who work across the Commonwealth:

"The statewide committee included judges from magisterial and common pleas courts, administrators and constables from across Pennsylvania. They met several times over a two-year period.

"Among the new requirements in the policies announced Tuesday: Constables must transport prisoners in cars that have a permanent cage separating the front and back seats; they must wear clothing that clearly identifies them as constables carrying out judicial duties; and when transporting a prisoner, at least one constable must be certified and carry a firearm."

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20130527 lauraditka150The Post-Gazette Business/law package starts the work week with a profile by the PG's Paula Reed Ward of Laura Ditka, the longtime Allegheny County prosecutor now joining the Pennsylvania Attorney General's office as the senior deputy attorney general in Western Pennsylvania.

With the initial hiring boom and slump now in the rear view mirror, The Legal Intelligencer's Zack Needles takes another look the shale gas industry's impact on Pennsylvania's legal sector.

20130526 amazonlogo60And from the weekend, the Panic Street Lawyer's Jay Hornack, inspired by the UEFA Champions soccer final, has an all-German law and culture update, from's labor relations circumstances to the regulatory fate of Justin Bieber's monkey.

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On the Docket: May 27, 2013

Monday, 27 May 2013 05:00 AM Written by

Who is the new associate at Leech Tishman? Who are the two new associates at Burns White? Who is the member of Eckert Seamans Cherin & Mellott recently honored with a 2013 Pennsylvania Bar Association Special Achievement Award?

Discover the details and more in our notes on career moves and news in Western Pennsylvania's legal community in this week's On the Docket.

And here's how to share career news from your practice:

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Panic Street Lawyer: Improbable Germany

Sunday, 26 May 2013 07:00 AM Written by

20130526wap bayernmunichwins480

Ah, that was exciting: playoff elimination, international players, enthusiastic fans, distinctive jerseys, talented scorers, questionable officiating, and solid goaltending. But what else would you expect from a UEFA Champions League final?

The 2013 “Spring Bank Holiday” weekend match at a neutral site (London’s Wembley Stadium) was between FC Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund - the first ever all-German Champions League football final. In celebration of this rather improbable occurrence, PSL submits this all-German collection of recent news stories:

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20130324 beerglass photocom123212003 150One drink may soon be the limit if you’re driving. One standard drink, on average 14 grams of alcohol, will increase the average person’s blood-alcohol content (BAC) to roughly 0.02 percent to 0.05 percent. The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) wants .05 percent to be the legal limit.

Alcohol related crashes account for nearly a third of all U.S. traffic deaths and 146,000 injuries each year. Impaired driving fatalities have dropped sharply since the early 1980s; however, the death rate has remained flat between 30 and 32 percent since 1995.

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20130517wap gosnell 150This week, Philadelphia abortion doctor Kermit Gosnell was convicted of first-degree murder in the deaths of three babies authorities said were born alive before having their spinal cord snipped with scissors.

Philadelphia District Attorney Seth Williams called the case "arguably the most gruesome" he's seen. "I will not mince words, Kermit Gosnell is a monster.

Last week, three young women were rescued from a Cleveland home after being held captive for nearly ten years by Ariel Castro. The women were allegedly sexually assaulted, physically abused, tortured and at least one woman was beaten and starved in order to terminate multiple pregnancies.

"The first thing I said was, 'I knew it, I knew it,' " Fernando Colon, Castro’s neighbor, told the Los Angeles Times, "He's a monster. He's the opposite of what people thought he was."

These guys aren’t just criminals, they’re monsters -- no punishment is adequate -- extermination is the only recourse…right?

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20130516du appellatestudents480

Two Duquesne law students appeared and argued Verde-Rodriguez v. Faber, an immigration case, before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, on Tuesday of this week. In addition, another Duquesne law student argued Washington v. Secretary, PA Department of Corrections, a criminal case, before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit on Wednesday.

Second-year day student Jesse Drumm and third-year day Stephanie Noel argued before the court Tuesday, and third-year evening student Charles P. Sapienza, III, argued before the court Wednesday.

In announcing their appearances, the university noted it is a rare opportunity for law students to argue before the appeals court.
Drumm , Noel and Sapienza are part of Duquesne’s Federal Practice Clinic, in which students, under the supervision of licensed attorneys, provide legal representation in civil rights matters for inmates and other indigents with appeals that the federal courts deem potentially meritorious. The clinic is part of the School of Law’s Clinical Legal Education program aimed at providing the students with court room experience before they even leave law school.

(Image: (L-R) Charles P. Sapienza, III; Duquesne Law School Dean Ken Gormley; Stephanie Noel; Jesse Drumm; Adjunct Law Professor Adrian N. Roe and Law Professor Laurie Serafino, director of clinical legal education. Duquesne University photo)

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20130513 digitallegacy150The Post-Gazette Business/law package starts the work week with a report by the PG's Tim Grant about a new, emerging category of personal property known to estate planners as "digital assets."

The Legal Intelligencer's Amaris Elliott-Engel and Zack Needles look in on the prospects for action by Gov. Tom Corbett on the vacancy on the Pennsylvania Supreme Court in the wake of former Justice Joan Orie Melvin's conviction and sentencing on political corruption charges.

20130512 pittsburghseal150And from the weekend, the Panic Street Lawyer's Jay Hornack offers his views on the Pittsburgh mayoral contest.

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