News

Celebratory Press Release Following Trial Protected By Privilege


May 20, 2016 Uncategorized

After a jury returned a verdict in favor of plaintiffs in a false claims action, plaintiff’s lawyers issued a 3 ½ page “celebratory press release” headlined, “JM Eagle faces billions in damages after jury finds JM liable for making and … Continued

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NTIA Best Practices for Drones


May 19, 2016 Uncategorized

The National Telecommunications and Information Administration, charged by President Obama, has developed voluntary best practices for privacy, accountability and transparency issues related to the use of drones (unmanned aircraft systems or UAS).  Recognizing the strong First Amendment interests held by … Continued

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NEW LOCAL RULE GOVERNING SEALING SEARCH WARRANTS


May 4, 2016 Uncategorized

Wake County Senior Resident Superior Court Judge Don Stephens and Chief District Court Judge Robert Rader have signed a new administrative order relating to search warrants and the procedures for sealing warrants.  See Order:  Wake Order re Sealing  The administrative … Continued

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Railroad Owned by North Carolina Taxpayers Won’t Provide Records


May 3, 2016 Uncategorized

SMVT partner Amanda Martin weighs in concerning the North Carolina Railroad, which is owned by the State of North Carolina but refuses to provide records explaining how it is financing large land acquisitions. To read the Carolina Journal’s story, click … Continued

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Judge Orders Public Records Case Against McCrory Administration to Proceed


May 3, 2016 Uncategorized

Superior Court Judge Joe Craig, who is overseeing a lawsuit in which media companies and advocacy groups allege that Governor McCrory and several of his cabinet agencies are systematically and purposefully refusing to provide timely and complete access to public … Continued

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News Media v. McCrory et al.


April 28, 2016 Uncategorized

A coalition of news media and advocacy groups have sued Governor Pat McCrory and a host of state departments for alleged violations of the public records law.  Read the complaint here:  N&O v McCrory Amended Complaint

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US House of Representatives Passes Email Privacy Bill 419-0


April 28, 2016 Uncategorized

The U.S. House of Representatives passed H.R. 699 by a vote of 419-0.  The law requires law enforcement to get a warrant before asking service providers to turn over emails that are more than 180 old.  The bill does not … Continued

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CONVICTED NC DEFENDANT PETITIONS SCOTUS ON FREE SPEECH ISSUE


April 27, 2016 Uncategorized

Lester Packingham has petitioned the U.S. Supreme Court to strike down a North Carolina law that limits the speech rights of convicted sex offenders.  Read the Packingham Petition here.

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Important Free Speech Case from Supreme Court


April 27, 2016 Uncategorized

In an important 6-2 decision, the United States Supreme Court held that a demoted employee could pursue his Section 1983 action against his employer.  At the heart of the case was the significance of whether “a government official demoted an employee because … Continued

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Winston-Salem Journal Wins Fight to Keep Courtroom and Records Open


April 26, 2016 Uncategorized

The Journal, represented by SMVT partner Amanda Martin, persuaded Superior Court Judge Eric Morgan to deny closure motions filed by the Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Board of Education in a civil suit arising out of an incident in which a school board … Continued

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