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February 21, 2014 | By Joe Flint
The practice of competing local television stations sharing resources needs tougher regulations, the Justice Department warned Friday. In a filing to the Federal Communications Commission, the department said agreements between local television stations to partner on business and editorial operations "often confer influence or control of one broadcast competitor over another. " It added that that such arrangements can also allow broadcasters to circumvent the FCC's rules limiting the number of television stations one company can own. Known in the television industry as joint sales agreements, shared service agreements or local news service agreements, such arrangements have become commonplace, particularly in small and midsize markets.
February 16, 2014 | By David G. Savage
WASHINGTON - The legal campaign for marriage equality is picking up speed, moving at a pace that has surprised even longtime advocates and increasing the likelihood of a definitive Supreme Court test as early as next year. Efforts by some lawyers to plan a careful strategy for which cases to push forward to the high court have largely been put aside amid a rush of lower-court rulings striking down bans on same-sex marriage. The most recent came Thursday in Virginia, the first such ruling in the South.
February 16, 2014 | By Maura Dolan
SAN FRANCISCO - Jessica Manosa was 20 when she decided to throw a party at an unoccupied rental home her parents owned - without their permission. Word of the bash in Diamond Bar spread by text message, and many who showed up did not even know Manosa, according to court records. They drank liquor, danced and got drunk. One of the partygoers was asked to leave after he began dropping his pants while dancing. As he drove away, he ran over another inebriated guest, a 19-year-old student, killing him. Now the grieving family wants to hold Manosa - via her parents and their homeowners insurance - liable for his death.
February 11, 2014 | By Maura Dolan
SAN FRANCISCO - Justice Joyce L. Kennard, a Republican appointee who forged a largely liberal path on the California Supreme Court, announced Tuesday she will retire April 5, giving Gov. Jerry Brown another chance to put his mark on the state's highest court. Kennard, 72, is the court's longest-serving justice, with a 25-year tenure. She has been regarded as a highly independent judge, often siding with the underdog. Though she owed her place on the top court to former Gov. George Deukmejian, a law-and-order conservative, she bucked expectations and sided so often with the late liberal Justice Stanley Mosk that the pair was dubbed "the odd couple.
February 11, 2014 | By Abby Sewell
Los Angeles County supervisors are considering an overhaul of the county's system for defending juveniles accused of crimes. Under-age criminal defendants who can't afford a lawyer are generally represented by someone from the county public defender's office. But when that office is already representing another defendant in the case or a special circumstance arises, lawyers from a separate panel step in to remove the potential conflict of interest. Advocates argue that the switch creates another problem: The private lawyers the county contracts with for these cases, known as panel attorneys, are paid less - a flat rate of $319 to $345 per case - and may not represent their clients as vigorously.
January 29, 2014 | By Ricardo Lopez
Atty. Gen. Eric H. Holder Jr. confirmed the Justice Department is investigating the theft of financial and personal information of 110 million Target customers. In a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing Wednesday, Holder said that while the Justice Department doesn't generally discuss specific cases, the department is working to track down and prosecute the hackers who stole Target customer data late last year. “We are committed to working to find not only the perpetrators of these sorts of data breaches but also any individuals and groups who exploit that data via credit card fraud,” Holder said Wednesday.
January 29, 2014 | By The Times editorial board
Last year, as the Supreme Court was considering cases on both Proposition 8 and the Defense of Marriage Act, this page urged the justices to issue a ruling making it clear that state bans on same-sex marriage violated the Constitution. Instead, the justices handed down two decisions that, while they advanced the cause, stopped short of what should have been a resounding affirmation of marriage equality. If they thought they could delay a definitive ruling for a few more years, they were probably mistaken.
January 27, 2014 | By Sergei L. Loiko
KIEV, Ukraine -- Ukraine's justice minister threatened retaliation Monday as protesters continued to occupy one of the ministry's buildings in central Kiev in a bid to shut down the government of President Viktor Yanukovich. “If, within half an hour, the protesters don't leave the ministry's building, I will demand that the National Security Council immediately declare a state of emergency,” Elena Lukash said in televised remarks early Monday. Hours passed without any such declaration.
January 27, 2014 | By Claudia Luther, This article has been corrected, as indicated below.
Pete Seeger was a teenager in the 1930s when he heard an Appalachian balladeer perform on an old-fashioned, five-string banjo and fell in love with the instrument, the timeless melodies and, most of all, the words. "Compared to the trivialities of most popular songs," he said later, "the words of these songs had all the meat of human life in them.... They seemed frank, straightforward, honest. " In time, Seeger would arm himself with a banjo, a guitar and the transformative power of music to battle injustice in America and become the folk legend behind numbers such as "We Shall Overcome," "Where Have All the Flowers Gone" and "Turn!
January 25, 2014 | By Anh Do and Christopher Goffard
She was beaten and stomped to death in the early morning hours outside a Santa Ana nightclub amid a group of fellow Vietnamese Americans. Some of her friends may have seen who knocked the 23-year-old Huntington Beach woman to the ground or who kicked her in the head as a crowd encircled them. Some may hold the clues that could bring Kim Pham's killers to justice. But as Santa Ana police detectives try to make sense of the melee that led to her death, the investigation is running into a wall of silence.
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