Court Roundup

Testing old rape kits leads to first indictment

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — A convicted rapist in Kentucky has been the first person indicted in authorities’ statewide effort to test more than 3,000 old rape kits.

The Courier-Journal reported on Sunday that 58-year-old Cornelius Miller is accused of raping a woman in July 2012 after Louisville police were notified in March about a lab-tested rape kit linking him to the case. Miller was indicted July 17 on charges that included one count of first-degree rape.

Miller was already in custody awaiting trial in another case to which he’s pleaded not guilty of assaulting two women in 2015.

Court records show Miller was released on parole in 1981 from a 15-year sentence and in 2009 from 20 and 10-year sentences, all rape cases.

Miller will be arraigned July 31 on the latest charges.

Woman charged in death of body found in closet

BROCKTON, Mass. (AP) — A Brockton woman charged in connection with the discovery of her boyfriend’s dead body in a closet is headed to court.

Kathryn Podgurski is scheduled to be arraigned Monday on a charge of accessory after the fact of murder in the death of 44-year-old Joseph Shaw.

The Plymouth district attorney says Shaw’s body was found in his apartment Friday night after authorities got a call from a nearby motel. It’s not clear if the 33-year-old Podgurski made the call.

Shaw had been stabbed and had been dead a significant period of time. His family had reported him missing earlier last week.

The death was Brockton’s sixth homicide of the year.

It could not immediately be determined if Podgurski had a lawyer.

Charges dropped in police shooting of black motorist

CINCINNATI (AP) — A judge in Cincinnati has dismissed charges against a white police officer who fatally shot an unarmed black motorist, after a prosecutor declined to pursue a third murder trial.

A Hamilton County judge on Monday declined to acquit former officer Ray Tensing in the July 2015 shooting of Sam DuBose during a traffic stop. But the judge dismissed the murder and voluntary manslaughter charges in a way that blocks retrial on those counts.

Tensing has said he feared he could be dragged or run over as DuBose tried to drive away. Two juries couldn’t reach unanimous agreement on the charges, leading to mistrials.

DuBose’s family and civil rights groups wanted a third trial. They’re now hoping federal authorities reviewing the case will conclude that DuBose’s civil rights were violated.

South Carolina
Couple settles roadside cavity search case

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — A black South Carolina couple has settled a lawsuit filed after they accused police of subjecting them to illegal body searches.

Documents filed in federal court late last week show Lakeya Hicks and Elijah Pontoon stipulated to the dismissal of their lawsuit against police officers for the City of Aiken.

The couple sued the city and its officers in 2015, a year after they were pulled over. Officers searched their car for drugs but found none.

Hicks said her breasts were exposed as she was detained and searched. Pontoon said police searched his anal cavity on the side of the road.

The city has maintained its officers did nothing illegal.

Court papers didn’t include an amount of the settlement. City officials didn’t return a phone message seeking comment.