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Timothy J. Quick, P.C.
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Safety concerns over larger trucks proposal
Check out this article about how lawmakers in Virginia are considering a pair of bills that would task the Virginia Department of Transportation with studying the effects of allowing 91,000-pound trucks on the road. The current weight limit on trucks is 80,000 pounds. Safety advocates are concerned that the bills could be a first step towards allowing the “monster trucks” to operate in Virginia. They point out that those trucks have higher crash rates and can cause damage to roads and bridges.
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Pot decriminalization not coming in 2018
Check out this article about marijuana decriminalization efforts in Virginia. While there had been hopes that 2018 would be the year Virginia lawmakers finally decriminalize marijuana, those hopes have been dashed after Senate leaders announced they would pursue a more watered down bill instead. Rather than decriminalize marijuana, the bill will eliminate jail time for first-time marijuana offenders and make expungements easier.
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Surge in traffic deaths may be due to apps
Take a look at this article about a recent study into whether Pokemon Go may have caused an increase in traffic accidents across the country. The researchers found that in one county accidents were 26.5 percent higher near so-called PokeStops. Based on that data, they estimate that close to 150,000 vehicle crashes were linked to the app soon after its release, leading to more than 250 deaths across the country and billions of dollars’ worth of economic damage.
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Two important changes to Virginia’s DUI laws
Check out this article about recent changes that were made to Virginia’s breath-test refusal and commercial DUI laws. The Commonwealth recently increased penalties for refusing a breath test for second offenses. Furthermore, drivers convicted of DUI while driving a commercial vehicle now face tougher penalties, including higher fines and mandatory minimum jail sentences for high BAC readings.
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Too many witnesses agreeing is a red flag
Check out this article about a recent study that could have serious implications for the criminal justice system. That study found that if more than three witnesses identify the same suspect in a police lineup then their testimony should automatically be distrusted. That’s because such unanimous agreement is so unlikely that when it happens it is more likely to be a result of systemic bias.
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U.S. Attorney General announces criminal priorities
Read an article about remarks by the U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions about his priorities for federal criminal prosecution. He favors a focus on violent crime, especially involving firearms, drugs and gangs.
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License suspensions addressed in recent bills
Check out this article about two bills that were recently passed by the Virginia Assembly. The bills remove an automatic license suspension for those with a first conviction for marijuana possession and make it a bit easier for those who have court debts to avoid having their license suspended. Currently, about one-sixth of drivers in Virginia have had their licenses suspended because of unpaid debts, a situation that disproportionately affects poor people.
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What is in Virginia's new gun law?
Check out this article about how Virginia is currently passing significant gun control measures. Referred to as the Virginia Compromise, the new measures are the result of bipartisan negotiation and support over recent months. The resulting agreement could have a significant impact on people with out-of-state carry permits, those under a permanent protective domestic abuse order, and private sellers conducting background checks at gun shows.
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Proposed law: Expunge some drug convictions
Check out this article about how Virginia lawmakers will soon consider a proposal to allow some young offenders to expunge convictions for marijuana and alcohol possession. The proposal would apply to first offenses committed by offenders under 21 who have completed their sentences. Supporters of the proposal say it will help ensure offenders can find work opportunities without being unfairly held back by mistakes they made while they were young.
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Social media and drunk driving cases in Virginia
Take a look at this article about social media and DUI arrests. Read more to learn how the authorities may use people’s posts against them. People commonly post pictures, status updates and videos to their social media accounts, which may include references to how much they have had to drink. More and more, law enforcement officers are using these posts as an investigative tool to identify drunk drivers, as well as to further prove that a motorist was intoxicated prior to his or her arrest for DUI.
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