At a Glance

SBM president speaks to Rochester Bar

The Rochester Bar Association will feature State Bar of Michigan President Bruce A. Courtade as the guest speaker for its Thursday, November 15, meeting at the Rochester Mills Beer Company.
The meeting is scheduled from 11:45 a.m. to 1 p.m. The restaurant is located at 400 Water Street in Rochester.
Non-members are welcome. 
Space is limited so registration is required. 
To register, email Jenny Swiatowy at swiatowy@oakland.edu. 
For additional information, contact Rochester Bar President Boyd C. Farnam at 248.370.3110 or farnam@oakland.edu.

 

Court orders new trial in quintuple killing

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — The Arkansas Supreme Court says a man convicted in the 2009 shooting deaths of five people deserves a new trial.
Samuel Lee Conway had been convicted of five counts of capital murder, plus other charges, and sentenced to life in prison without parole.
But the high court on Thursday reversed his convictions and sentences and ordered a new trial.
Conway argued that he deserved a new trial because a judge didn’t get rid of a juror who said he couldn’t be fair to Conway.
The high court sided with Conway, saying that the judge abused his discretion in failing to dismiss that juror.
The justices also said Conway didn’t have a fair and impartial trial last year.
 

Fort Hood shooting victims file lawsuit

WASHINGTON (AP) — On the third anniversary of the Fort Hood rampage, 148 victims and family members sued the government last week for compensation for the attack allegedly carried out by an Army psychiatrist who is awaiting trial.
The shooting at the Army base in Texas killed 13 people and wounded more than two dozen others.
The lawsuit alleging negligence by the government said that the Defense Department is avoiding legal and financial responsibility for the killings by referring to the shootings as “workplace violence” rather than as a terrorist attack.
The group also is suing the estate of Anwar al-Awlaki, a radical U.S.-born Islamic cleric who the victims say inspired the Army psychiatrist, Maj. Nidal Hasan, to carry out the attack. The two men exchanged emails before the shootings.
Al-Awlaki was killed in Yemen last year by a U.S. drone strike.
 

Teen’s alleged confession questioned

NEW BOSTON, Texas (AP) — A judge in Bowie County is deciding whether law enforcement legally obtained an alleged confession from a teenager accused in a triple killing.
The Texarkana Gazette reports that District Judge Leon F. Pesek Jr. heard testimony last week on statements made by 18-year-old Rachel Pittman.
Pittman is charged in the 2011 deaths of 34-year-old Amanda Doss and her two children, 11-year-old Guinevere Doss and 8-year-old Texas Johnson.
Sheriff James Prince testified that Pittman called police and said she had information about the killings. The sheriff testified that when he met with the teen, she said, “I killed Amanda.” Prince said he then read Pittman her Miranda rights.
Pittman’s attorneys are challenging the confession.