I'm a 1985 graduate of the University of Alabama. I am married and have a son in college. I am the courts reporter for Alabama Media Group and @aldotcom

Study: Mobile, Jefferson counties 'outliers' with death penalty

al.com — Two Alabama counties are among 16 "outlier" counties across the nation that are plagued by problems of overzealous prosecutors, ineffective defense lawyers, or racial bias when it comes to the prosecution and imposition of the death penalty in capital murder cases, a report issued Tuesday by a Harvard Law School project states.

FBI testimony restricted in Morris murder case; man pleads guilty

al.com — A man on Tuesday pleaded guilty in the February 2015 shooting death of a Morris man and agrees to testify against his ex-girlfriend, who was the victim's wife. The plea came after a judge refused defense attorney's request to be able to cross-examine an FBI agent about cell phone tracking technology.

Inmate who killed when he was 16 resentenced; gets chance at parole

al.com — Nathaniel Scroggins was 16 years old when he killed 19-year-old Richard Fields while the two sat in a car parked in a Birmingham neighborhood in December 1995. Scroggins, who was convicted of capital murder because the shooting happened inside a car, faced serving the rest of his life in prison without a chance of ever being released on parole.

Man who served time for role in 1991 triple slaying acquitted in 2012 death

al.com — A Birmingham man, who once served time for his guilty plea to a role in a triple slaying nearly 25 years ago, was found not guilty last week in the 2012 shooting death of another man inside in Ensley apartment. Carlos Omar Smith, 43, was found not guilty in a trial before Jefferson County Circuit Judge Bill Cole.

Gardendale challenges federal judge's authority over school system formation

al.com — Gardendale is challenging the authority of a federal judge to decide whether it can form its own school system. In a Friday court filing attorneys for the Gardendale Board of Education (GBOE) also say it is time for the federal court to end oversight of Jefferson County schools under a decades old federal desegregation order.

Alabama Senate approves bill that would block Birmingham City Council pay raises

al.com — The Alabama House of Representatives again passed a bill Thursday that would block a 233 percent pay raise for the Birmingham City Council passed by the council last year. The bill will now go to the Alabama Senate for approval.

Judge stays former ALEA director's wrongful termination lawsuit

al.com — A judge this morning ordered a stay - or hold - in the litigation of a wrongful termination lawsuit filed by former ALEA Secretary Spencer Collier. Montgomery Circuit Judge Eugene Reese ordered the stay in the lawsuit filed against Alabama Gov.

Alabama Senate expected to vote on one lottery bill today

al.com — A vote on a new version of State Sen. Jim McClendon's lottery bill is expected early this afternoon, senators said. Senate President Pro Tem Del Marsh, R-Anniston, said he expects McClendon, R-Springville, to present his bill, with amendments, for a vote right after lunch.

Federal judge approves Hoover's sale of old Berry High School to Vestavia Hills

al.com — A federal judge on Wednesday gave Hoover schools the okay to sell the old W.A. Berry High School campus to the Vestavia Hills Board of Education. U.S. District Court Judge Madeline Haikala stated in her order approving the sale that the sale does not harm the desegregation goals of a more than 40-year-old desegregation order issued in a Civil Rights era lawsuit.

Court hears Birmingham police appeal over use of pepper spray in city high schools

al.com — The U.S. 11 th Circuit Court of Appeals on Wednesday heard arguments in the appeal by Birmingham police of a federal judge's order that includes requiring new training and decontamination procedures for School Resource Officers' use of pepper spray at city high schools.
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Aug 23, 2016

FBI testimony restricted in Morris murder case; man pleads guilty  http://s.al.com/Gd1XsUH 

Aug 22, 2016

Man who served time for role in 1991 triple slaying acquitted in 2012 death  http://s.al.com/oowVFqO 

Aug 22, 2016

Gardendale challenges federal judge's authority over school system formation  http://s.al.com/s8JVvXR 

Aug 19, 2016

RT @SenCamWard: Tide has turned. With amendments adds it looks like lottery will pass AL Senate tonight. #alpolitics

Aug 19, 2016

State senate committee approves bill limiting municipal raises  http://s.al.com/eDuk1PZ 

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