Latest State courts News

Manhattan Bomber Ahmad Khan Rahimi talks with his attorney during sentencing at the Union County Courthouse, Friday, Jan. 24, 2020, in Elizabeth, N.J. Rahimi, an Afghan-born U.S. citizen already serving life in prison for a bombing Manhattan's Chelsea neighborhood,  was sentenced Friday to an additional life term for a shootout with police in New Jersey as he attempted to avoid arrest in 2016. (Steve Hockstein/NJ Advance Media via AP, Pool)

Convicted NYC bomber gets life term for New Jersey shootout

Jan. 24, 2020 12:05 PM EST

ELIZABETH, N.J. (AP) — An Afghan-born U.S. citizen already serving life in prison for a bombing in New York City was sentenced Friday to an additional life term for a shootout with police in New Jersey as he attempted to avoid arrest in 2016. State Superior Court Judge John Deitch sentenced Ahmad Khan...

Florida Supreme Court on the death penalty: We got it wrong

Jan. 23, 2020 11:20 PM EST

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — The Florida Supreme Court said Thursday it erred in 2016 when it ruled a jury must be unanimous in deciding a convicted murderer should be sentenced to death, announcing a dramatic legal reversal that could affect dozens of death row cases. The opinion pulled back from the court's...

Pennsylvania high court upholds old precedent in fracking

Jan. 23, 2020 2:28 PM EST

PITTSBURGH, Pa. (AP) — The Pennsylvania Supreme Court has ruled to uphold a legal principle that allows drillers to drain oil and natural gas from outside their property lines. The court overturned a 2018 decision by the lower Superior Court on Wednesday that said the “rule of capture" does not...

Top Arizona court: Divorced woman can't use frozen embryos

Jan. 23, 2020 2:01 PM EST

PHOENIX (AP) — A woman can't use her frozen embryos to have a baby over opposition from her ex-husband under terms of the contract they signed with a fertility clinic, the Arizona Supreme Court ruled Thursday. The high court ruling ends a case that drew support from social conservative groups for the...

This is an undated Mississippi booking photo provided by Department of Corrections shows Willie Nash. . The Mississippi Supreme Court confirmed Nash's 12-year prison sentence for carrying his mobile phone into a county jail cell,  on Jan. 9, 2020. The ruling on the 2018 sentencing is being slammed by some people as a brutal example of racial injustice. (Mississippi Department of Corrections via AP)

New appeal filed in 12-year sentence for cellphone in jail

Jan. 23, 2020 1:42 PM EST

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — The Mississippi Supreme Court should overturn an “astonishing” 12-year prison sentence given to an African American man who took a mobile phone into a jail cell when he was arrested on a misdemeanor charge, attorneys argued in court papers filed Thursday. The state's...

Kansas Supreme Court dismisses judges' lawsuit over funding

Jan. 22, 2020 8:28 PM EST

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — Kansas' high court on Wednesday dismissed a lawsuit over funding for the state's court system filed by six trial-court judges against the Republican-controlled Legislature. The state Supreme Court said in a short order signed by Chief Justice Marla Luckert that it's...

Members of a Kansas House committee indicate whether they want to be recorded as voting yes or no on a proposed amendment to the state constitution on abortion with thumbs-up and thumbs-down signs, Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2020, at the Statehouse in Topeka, Kan. The measure cleared committee on a 15-6 show of hands and would reverse a Kansas Supreme Court decision declaring access to abortion a

Abortion rights backers unsure of strategy in Kansas fight

Jan. 22, 2020 7:48 PM EST

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — Abortion rights backers grappled with how to derail a proposed anti-abortion amendment to the state constitution as abortion foes marked Wednesday's anniversary of the U.S. Supreme Court's Roe v. Wade decision by advancing two versions of the proposal in the Republican-controlled...

FILE - This June 7, 2018, file photo shows Lloyd Barrus, left, alongside his defense attorneys Craig Shannon, right, and Greg Jackson, not pictured, appearing before Judge Kathy Seeley in the Lewis and Clark County Courthouse in Helena, Mont., for a status hearing regarding charges stemming from the killing of Broadwater County Sheriff's Deputy Mason Moore in 2017. Barrus who was charged for his alleged role in the shooting death of Mason can be forcibly medicated after he was found mentally unfit to stand trial, the Montana Supreme Court ruled Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2020. (Thom Bridge/Independent Record via AP, File)

Montana Supreme Court: Suspect can be forcibly medicated

Jan. 22, 2020 6:23 PM EST

HELENA, Mont. (AP) — A man charged in the shooting death of a Montana sheriff's deputy can be forcibly medicated after he was found mentally unfit to stand trial, the Montana Supreme Court ruled Wednesday. Lloyd Barrus, 63, is charged with accountability to deliberate homicide in the 2017 shooting death of...

NC appeals court hears arguments over voter ID challenge

Jan. 22, 2020 5:55 PM EST

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — North Carolina's voter photo identification mandate already may be blocked for the upcoming March primary by a federal judge, but others are still trying to fight the ID requirement in state courts. Lawyers for five voters who sued over the newest ID mandate and for the Republican...

Man claims fired agency director paid him less than women

Jan. 22, 2020 5:45 PM EST

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — A state employee at the Iowa Finance Authority is suing the state for wage discrimination and sex discrimination, alleging the agency's fired former director paid women significantly more than him. Steve Ferguson, 68, said in court documents filed Monday in state court that former...