Shelby County Man Arrested for DUI, Drug Possession Following Chase

According to a recent news article for Alabama Live, a man was arrested in Shelby County for DUI and possession of a controlled substance following a police chase. Authorities say sheriff’s deputies allegedly saw defendant swerving across marked lanes of traffic and attempted to pull him over for a moving violation.

At this point, defendant allegedly failed to stop for the deputies and led them on a “relatively low speed” chase on State Highway 119 through Motevallo, Alabama and eventually into the downtown area, where additional officers arrived to assist with the pursuit of the suspect. After about 30 minutes of allegedly fleeing from officers, albeit at a slow speed, defendant is said to have stopped his car in the downtown area and was apprehended by law enforcement.   Continue Reading

Rapper Rick Ross Charged with Assault, Kidnapping

Rapper Rick Ross in no stranger to the criminal justice system. In fact, he actually worked as a corrections officer in Florida for 18 months. (He initially vehemently denied his employment record when it became public, but eventually did admit it.)

Now, according to a recent article from Alabama’s News Leader, Ross is on the other side of the system. He was just arrested on kidnapping and assault charges. Authorities say Ross forced a man into the guesthouse at his mansion located in an Atlanta suburb. After he had the man in the guesthouse, he allegedly beat the man in the head with a pistol, resulting in chipped teeth and a severely damaged jaw. Authorities say the victim is unable to chew food as of this time. Continue Reading

Birmingham Man Arrested for Child Porn

According to a recent news article from Alabama Live, a man from Birmingham was recently arrested and charged with multiple counts of child pornography offenses. The defendant is 42 years-old and being held on $160,000 bond.  It is important to note defendant is presumed innocent unless and until he is found guilty in a court of law, as these are merely criminal allegations.

Child pornography cases are much different from ordinary criminal cases for a variety of reasons. First, there is the obvious stigma associated with being arrested for child pornography. Everyone assumes defendant is guilty and is some kind of dangerous sexual predator. Continue Reading

Alabama Federal Judge Resigns over Domestic Violence Allegations

According to a recent news article from AL.com, a federal judge who presides over the court in Alabama has recently tendered his resignation to President Barack Obama. It is suggested his resignation was a direct result of the domestic violence charges filed against him last year in connection with an alleged assault of his then wife in an Atlanta hotel.

The judge was arrested on misdemeanor charges of assault and battery in a domestic violence context. Media reports indicate he was not convicted of any charges in connection with the allegations, as he entered into a pretrial diversion deal. He was required to undergo counseling and participate in a domestic violence intervention program. After completing the pretrial diversion, his case was dismissed, and the court allowed his record to be sealed.

Despite the sealing of his record, the judicial code of ethics required him to report his arrest to the federal court system. Following his arrest, all of the cases over which he was presiding were reassigned to other judges, and he was placed on paid administrative leave. Continue Reading

US Attorney Takes New Approach to Reduce Gun Crime in Birmingham

According to a recent news article from AL.com, the United States Attorney in Birmingham, Alabama has developed a new strategy to reduce gun violence and crime.

guncloseupMost people are aware that Birmingham, like many other cities across America, suffers from more than its fair share of gun violence. Young people, who authorities say need more structure and positive support to leave this way of life behind and become responsible members of the community, allegedly commit many of these crimes.

A recent study by the United States Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) ranks Birmingham in the top 10 most violent cities in the United States. More than 80 percent of all homicides in Birmingham are the result of gun violence. In an effort to slow this increasing problem of gun violence in our area, state, local, and federal authorities are working together to create and implement a new strategy to help fix this serious problem. Continue Reading

Woman Arrested for DUI after Allegedly Getting High From Whipped Cream Cans

According to a recent news report form the Tennessean, authorities recently arrested a woman for driving under the influence (DUI) after she allegedly got high from inhaling the propellant gas in whipped cream cans.

banana-split-close-up-930066-mAuthorities say they were first called to the scene around 9 in the morning when a woman crashed her SUV into a mailbox. When officers arrived on the scene, they observed defendant, a 28-year-old woman, who appeared to be high on drugs. They supposedly noticed her car was filled with whipped cream cans, and ultimately recovered 13 cans from her SUV.

After conducting an initial investigation, authorities believe suspect first ran off the road into a ditch and then drove out of the ditch and crashed into the mailbox. Authorities placed suspect under arrest for driving under the influence and also charged her with failing to report a car accident, and issued citations for other moving violations. Continue Reading

Alleged Food Stamp Theft in Birmingham Areas Leads to Major Investigation

According to a recent news story for Al.com, an arrest for a minor theft of EBT benefits (food stamps) has turned into a major criminal investigation in Jefferson County, Alabama. Authorities say it all began when a couple allegedly stole steaks from the Gardendale Wal-Mart a few months ago. The investigation ended in large part with the execution of over 250 arrest warrants during 11 closely coordinated police raids throughout the county. So far, 17 suspects are in custody.

steaks-1278099-mAuthorities report “Operation T-bone” focused on suspects alleged to be stealing from the EBT program and sending at least a portion of the profits to Yemen. The investigation was performed by a taskforce consisting of Gardendale Police, The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), Jefferson County District Attorney’s Office, United States Secret Service, United States Marshals, United States Treasury agents (T Feds), FBI agents, Wal-Mart global security, and other state, local and federal law enforcement agencies.

Specifically, the allegations involve the use of Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) cards, which have replaced traditional paper food stamps. While police were interviewing the suspects who allegedly stole the steaks, one suspect supposedly told police he was stealing the steaks to give them to two local convenience stores, which he named to police. Continue Reading

Alabama Teacher Arrested for Alleged Sex With Student

In recent years, we have been hearing more reports of teachers having sex with underage students than we have in years past. It is not clear whether there are actually more instances of this conduct occurring, or if the police and media are becoming more interested in making arrests and reporting the events.

According to a recent news article from AL.com, a teacher in Ohatchee was just arrested for sexual abuse and having sex with a student. Authorities are alleging defendant, a 32-year-old teacher, touched one of his high school students in an inappropriate manner. As part of their investigation, they arrested defendant on three counts of sexual abuse and one count of sex with a student. Immediately following their initial interviews, police contacted the school board through their student safety director and the district attorney’s office to notify them of their recent arrest. Defendant, who recently resigned his position, had been working at this particular school for six years as an English teacher. He had been working at another school in Shelby County prior to taking the job at Ohatchee.

Defendant is currently being held in county jail while awaiting trial on a bond of $76,000. It appears defendant was well respected by students and staff alike, as he has been a three-time finalist for the Alabama Teacher’s Hall of Fame. It is important to note, defendant has not been convicted of any crime in connection with this case and is presumed innocent unless and until he is found guilty in a court of law. Continue Reading

Police Target Sex Trafficking in Alabama

Prostitution or solicitation of prostitution is unlike many other crimes. In many cases, the police consider these cases “quality of life” matters, in that the only true victim is society. On the other hand, there are, of course, cases where young men and women are brought to this country illegally and forced to work as prostitutes. This is known as human trafficking, and there are obviously real victims in these cases.

motel-1168546-mHowever, police tend to group all incidents of prostitution into the category of human trafficking, even when such a connection does not really exist, because it is easier to get public support, state and federal funds, and the attention of news media when dealing with incidents of human trafficking.

According to a recent story from the Montgomery Advertiser, Montgomery police are on the alert for sex trafficking, and local police intend to step up their enforcement efforts with regard to alleged human trafficking offenses. Authorities say they received a call from very concerned out-of-state parents who had reason to believe their child was being held in a local motel. They learned of her whereabouts when their daughter managed to call them from the motel. Continue Reading

3 Teens, 1 Adult Charged with Murder in Decatur

According to a recent article from AL.com, Decatur police made a series of arrests Sunday night involving several violent incidents. In one of these cases, a 20-year-old defendant and his 16- and 17-year-old co-defendants were all charged in connection with an alleged murder. The 20-year-old defendant was charged with capital murder, and his three teenage co-defendants were charged with murder.

guncloseupAuthorities say the alleged victim was shot multiple times while he stood under a carport at a friend’s house and died as a result of his injuries. In addition to this alleged murder, the defendants were also charged with four counts of felony first-degree robbery, in connection with a robbery alleged to have occurred earlier in the same week.

Police say they are also investigating a separate homicide in which a male victim was shot and killed in a local park. Investigators believe this murder may have been related to the other murder, or at the very least, may involve the same defendants who they recently arrested. Continue Reading

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