When you tell people who know little of our criminal justice system about civil asset forfeiture, they often don’t believe you. And it isn’t difficult to see why. It’s a practice so contrary to a basic sense of justice and fairness that you want to believe someone is pulling your leg, or at least exaggerating.
No exaggeration is necessary. Civil asset forfeiture is based on the premise that a piece of property can be guilty of a crime. Under the theory, if the police suspect that cash, a car, a house or even a business was obtained through proceeds of a crime (usually a drug crime), or was in any way connected to the commission of a crime, they can seize said property. The burden then falls on the property’s owner to prove that they either acquired it legally, weren’t using it in the commission of a crime, or that someone else used it illegally without the owner’s knowledge (though not all states offer the “innocent owner” defense).
Today more than 75 conservative groups and leaders sent a letter to congress, united in opposition to any carbon tax.
Mississippi Justice Institute Director Aaron Rice has been named a recipient of the 2019 Buckley Award, given annually by America’s Future Foundation. Aaron received the award for recognition of his work in helping to defeat the renewal of administrative forfeiture in the legislature this year.
“There is perhaps no honor greater for a young conservative than to receive an award in the name of William F. Buckley,” said Jon Pritchett, President and CEO of the Mississippi Center for Public Policy.
The Fresh Start Act aims to make it easier for a person who was convicted of a crime to get a professional license. According to Brett Kittredge with the Mississippi Center for Public Policy, the bill will require licensing boards to have “clear and convincing standard of proof” in determining whether a prior criminal conviction is cause to prevent someone from receiving a license.
Now, you may be thinking people who have committed crimes or been addicted to drugs should just bear the weight of past mistakes indefinitely, or that these people should not take jobs away from those who have never convicted of a crime, but I think we all know someone who wears the scars of addiction or poor choices.
Mississippi Justice Institute Director Aaron Rice visited the Gallo Show to talk about a new rule that will expand emergency telemedicine in the state.
Telemedicine is connecting doctors and patients from afar all over the state. But regulations have been limiting the possibilities of using telemedicine in more emergency rooms. There’s only one way you’ll see telemedicine in a Mississippi ER - if UMMC is the provider. But that could soon change. Mississippi-based T1 Telehealth has been providing telemedicine in clinics and hospital but decided it wanted to offer its services in ERs.
“We wanted to do it in a way that we thought was a little bit less expensive, a little bit faster," explained T1 Teleheath CEO Todd Barrett. "So, we put together technology to allow us to be able to do that. We were blocked by this regulatory burden. We had a difficult time navigating this labyrinth of regulations.” They brought on the Mississippi Justice Institute to help navigate it. It’s a Board of Medical Licensure regulation that has prevented an expansion in this area of telehealth.