National Roundup


@ROUND UP Briefs Headline:Tucson ­paramedic wins $3.8M in lawsuit over pumping milk

TUCSON, Ariz. (AP) - An Arizona paramedic has been awarded $3.8 million after a jury said the city of Tucson failed to provide her with a private place to pump breast milk and retaliated against her when she complained, court records show.

Carrie Clark sued the city in 2014, saying Tucson Fire Depart­ment officials and human resources staffers denied her requests to transfer to fire stations that could accommodate her as she pumped, the Arizona Daily Star newspaper reported .

After she informed the city that the department may have violated federal labor standards, Clark says city officials retaliated and continued to harass her.

City spokeswoman Lane Mandle said Tucson would not comment on the verdict but was evaluating a possible appeal.

Federal labor standards require that employers provide break time and a private place, other than a bathroom, for employees to pump breast milk for one year after a baby is born, the U.S. Department of Labor website shows.

Clark gave birth in 2012 and requested a transfer to a station with a private area for pumping, along with refrigerator space for storing her milk.

She found a colleague willing to transfer out of a station with those accommodations to free up a spot for her, but Tucson Fire Department officials ignored the request, court documents show.

Clark, who returned to work as a swing paramedic, began to bounce around fire stations that weren't equipped with appropriate spaces.

When she voiced her concerns, the department and city officials ignored her, saying she didn't deserve special accommodations and questioned her need to pump every two to three hours, documents say.

Officials kept retaliating against Clark after the lawsuit was filed, including giving her educational counseling for "not being in harmony with others" and transferring her in 2016, court records show.


@ROUND UP Briefs Headline:<t-1f$>State's high court <t$>won't reconsider baby death case appeal

LEBANON, Ohio (AP) - Ohio's Supreme Court has declined to reconsider an appeal by a former high school cheerleader charged with killing and burying her newborn baby.

The court declined in February to hear Brooke Skylar Richardson's appeal after a lower court ruled doctors can testify in the Warren County case. The state Supreme Court declined Wednesday to reconsider the appeal.

Richardson's attorneys wanted prosecutors barred from presenting testimony from an obstetrics-gynecology practice's staff, citing physician-patient privilege.

A lower court ruled public interest in detecting crimes to protect society outweighed doctor-patient privilege in the case.

Prosecutors say the now 19-year-old buried the full-term baby shortly after giving birth in 2017.

She has pleaded not guilty to charges including aggravated murder.

Richardson's attorney, Charles H. Rittgers, says the defense is prepared to go to trial.

@ROUND UP Tagline:New York

NY courts: No ICE arrests in courts without judicial warrant

NEW YORK (AP) - Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents looking to make arrests inside courthouses in New York can't do so without judicial warrants or orders, according to a directive from the New York State Office of Court Administration that took effect Wednesday.

The move was hailed by immigration advocates, who said courthouses in New York and elsewhere under the Trump administration have increasingly become places where immigrants appearing on unrelated matters have been taken into federal immigration custody.

A report by the Immigrant Defense Project said there were 178 arrests in New York state courthouses last year compared to 11 in 2016, and advocates have said immigrants are increasingly fearful to visit courts as a result.

Lawyers who represent immigrants have engaged in walkouts and protests over the issue.

Chief Administrative Judge Lawrence Marks said the state courts had been asked to adopt the policy for some time, and the report was convincing enough to spur the change.

"Judges can't do their jobs unless people come to court," he said.

ICE did not immediately comment.

Under the policy, ICE officials must present a warrant or order issued by a federal judge which would be reviewed by a New York judge or court attorney before making an arrest.

Judicial warrants are separate from administrative warrants, which ICE also uses in its operations but that are not signed by judges.

The rules apply to inside courthouses, and don't impact ICE operations outside of them.

"This new rule will truly help protect immigrant New Yorkers from the pervasive and rampant immigration enforcement at courthouses that we have seen on a regular basis since the start of the Trump Administration," said Janet Sabel of The Legal Aid Society. "In order for our judicial system to function properly, all immigrants - including our clients who have been accused of a crime, parents appearing in family court, and survivors of abuse, among others - must have unimpeded access to courts."

Advocates called on elected officials to pass legislation that would put similar protections into law.


State ­congressman's son sentenced to 9 years in prison

BENTONVILLE, Ark. (AP) - The son of an Arkansas congressman has been sentenced to nine years in prison after pleading guilty to drugs and weapons charges.

James Phillip Womack was sentenced last week in northwest Arkansas. The 31-year-old is the son of Republican Rep. Steve Womack, who represents northwest Arkansas' 3rd Congressional District.

The younger Womack was arrested last year on multiple charges, including possession of methamphetamine or cocaine. His attorney, Shane Wilkinson, says his client is "just a young man that has an addiction."

The congressman said in a statement that he loves his son unconditionally and that he respects the decision of the court.

Published: Fri, Apr 19, 2019