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Court Finds ACLU Challenge Of “Vicious Dog” Ordinance Likely To Succeed; Orders Dogs Returned

Posted: Apr 24, 2015 |Category: Active Case Due Process

The two pitbulls seized in October by North Kingstown officials despite the owner’s compliance with all relevant state laws will be returned home while the American Civil Liberties Union court case challenging the seizure of the dogs moves forward.

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ACLU Files Lawsuit Over Unlawful Six-Year Seizure of Weapons by North Smithfield Police

Posted: Apr 23, 2015 |Category: Due Process

The ACLU today filed a lawsuit in federal district court on behalf of a North Smithfield resident, seeking the return of lawfully possessed weapons that were seized from him over six years ago by the local police department and which the department still refuses to return to him. The lawsuit, filed by RI ACLU volunteer attorney Thomas W. Lyons on behalf of Jason Richer, argues that the North Smithfield Police Department has violated his right to due process and his right to keep and bear arms by retaining his property without just cause. 

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ACLU Blasts Agreement Between Police and Motel 6 To Share Motel Guest List

Posted: Apr 15, 2015 |Category: Privacy

When visitors go to a hotel for the night, they expect to be treated like guests, not potential criminals. Yet the blanket agreement between the Warwick police and the motel – sharing the guest list of all of its patrons on a daily basis – is hardly the sort of ‘hospitality’ one anticipates from such an establishment.

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ACLU Calls For In-Depth Investigation Of Pawtucket Police Department Traffic Stop Practices

Posted: Apr 08, 2015 |Category: Discrimination Racial/Ethnic Discrimination Police Practices

The American Civil Liberties Union of Rhode Island is urging the Pawtucket Police Department to conduct an in-depth examination of some of its policies and procedures in light of “disturbing” allegations of racism among its officers described in a recent news article.

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ACLU President To Visit RI To Discuss Urban Policing

Posted: Apr 06, 2015 |Category: Criminal Justice Police Practices

ACLU President Susan Herman will participate on the panel “Policing Urban America: Who, What, Where, Why, How?” hosted by the University of Rhode Island Feinstein Providence Campus this Wednesday, April 8, at 7 p.m. URI sociology professor Leo Carroll, Roger Williams University professor of criminal justice Yolanda M. Leott, and Providence Commissioner of Public Safety Steven Paré will also participate in the discussion.

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ACLU Calls For Repeal Of Gag Order In Pension Settlement Case

Posted: Mar 23, 2015 |Category: Free Speech Open Government

The American Civil Liberties Union of Rhode Island has requested the “gag order” issued for the settlement discussions in the pension case be lifted now that plaintiffs are voting on a possible settlement agreement. In a letter delivered Friday to R.I. Superior Court Judge Sarah Taft-Carter, the ACLU said that since the “broadly written” gag order was issued to protect the confidentiality of the mediation process, it is “counter-productive and unduly intrusive on basic First Amendment values to allow it to remain in effect” now that that task is completed.

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ACLU Sues Drug Enforcement Agency For Public Records Local Journalist Requested 3 Years Ago

Posted: Mar 18, 2015 |Category: Open Government

The ACLU of Rhode Island filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit today on behalf of local journalist, Philip Eil, who has been stymied for more than three years in his effort to obtain access to thousands of pages of public evidence from a major prescription drug-dealing trial.

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