Public Safety

Virginia Governor Was Also Considered in Kidnapping Plot, Federal Agent Says

STATE AND LOCAL ROUNDUP | Men accused in Michigan governor kidnapping also discussed kidnapping Virginia governor … Anchorage mayor resigns after admitting texting relationship with news anchor … Court-packing efforts at the state level.

Emboldened Far-Right Groups Challenge Cities, States

Armed vigilantes have shown up at protests, sometimes with the tacit support of police.

Why We Need to Pay Attention to Police Officers’ Mental Health

COMMENTARY | A new study found that as police are under more scrutiny than ever, their mental health struggles remain profound.

Dismiss Minor Misdemeanors During the Pandemic

COMMENTARY | The business-as-usual approach to minor offenses is immoral and dangerous.

In Missouri, a Rift Over Local Murder Prosecutions

Missouri’s governor wants the state attorney general to take over prosecutions for uncharged homicides in St. Louis.

Do All Face Masks Offer Similar Protection? New Test Offers A Way to Compare

The limited findings raise doubts about the effectiveness of neck gaiters and bandanas in preventing the spread of the coronavirus.

Chicago Leaders Condemn Looting As ‘Brazen and Extensive Criminal Destruction’

STATE AND LOCAL NEWS ROUNDUP | A judge sides with California in lawsuit about new gig worker law … New York lawmakers to probe storm power outages … Texas AG says state legislature likely needs to decide about moving a statue of a former Texas A&M University president and Confederate general.

Immigrants Might Be Reporting Crimes Even Less Now. Here's Why

COMMENTARY | The Trump administration’s decision to create doubt about the validity of U visas that protect crime survivors hurts already vulnerable immigrant populations.

Progressive Prosecutors Push for Reform in Response to Protests

Some say that the current moment has taught them the need for a thorough examination of the “historic impact of harmful policies” on certain communities.

Can Civilian Oversight Change Police Behavior?

COMMENTARY | Cities across the country are looking at creating police oversight bodies. That makes questions about their efficacy and value more important than ever.

Cities' New Unanimity: The Need for Police Reform

COMMENTARY | In a major turnaround, there's broad agreement and public support in cities across America to change policing.

When Cities Replace Police with Social Workers

City leaders across the country are considering how to rethink police departments. They have many examples to look to—from brand new pilots to programs decades in the making.

Three More States Say Yes to Hands-Free Laws for Drivers

New laws aimed at reducing distracted driving are going into effect in Idaho, Indiana and South Dakota.

Fire Departments Anticipate Busy Fourth of July as Fireworks Sales Skyrocket

In a normal year, fire safety officials encourage people to attend public fireworks displays instead of attempting to create them at home. But most fireworks shows are canceled this year because of coronavirus.

Texas and Florida Restricting Bars Amid Coronavirus Surge

Gov. Greg Abbott ordered Texas bars to close, while a state official said Florida is planning to suspend on-premises alcohol sales. Both states are grappling with trying to control the virus, while allowing businesses to operate.

Saharan Dust Sweeps Into Gulf Coast Region

The atmospheric event isn’t uncommon, but this time the plume is unusually large. It could pose some health risks for people with preexisting respiratory conditions.

Power to Rework Criticized Police Contracts Lies With Elected Leaders

In the wake of protests over police brutality, new attention is being focused on police unions and their contracts, known to stymie reforms. Will mayors and city council members force changes?

Coronavirus Sparks New Debate Over City's Fireworks Ban

City officials in Bismarck, North Dakota may ask voters whether they'd like to repeal a ban on home fireworks within the city limits, a proposal the mayor said was partially motivated by his desire to provide families with more activities to do together at home.

Multiple Gun Cases Rejected By Supreme Court

The court hasn’t handed down a major Second Amendment ruling in about a decade. On Monday, it for now put off the possibility of changing that anytime soon.

Police Reform Is Popular. Rioting Is Not.

COMMENTARY | Once the fires are out, what is the best way to secure justice?