Phil Howerton combined justice, mercy as NC judge

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Judge Phil Howerton, photographed in 1998, when he presided over a drug court that offered offenders a second chance to clean-up their act.

Observer file photo

Phil Howerton, a longtime Mecklenburg County judge who tempered justice with mercy and used his own trials with addiction to help others overcome theirs, died Friday of pneumonia related to Parkinson’s disease, his family said. He was 84.

A former Marine, Howerton was a lawyer, prosecutor, public defender and judge with degrees from Davidson, Princeton and the University of Virginia. He had eclectic interests. He was an unpublished novelist, a voracious reader, an expert

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Seattle judge to rule ‘as quickly as possible’ on whether to force Amazon to put Parler back online

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A federal judge in Seattle indicated Thursday she’s likely to take a more measured approach than Parler had wished in weighing whether to force Amazon to swiftly reconnect the conservative social media network to the internet.

Nonetheless, U.S. District Judge Barbara Rothstein said she plans to issue her order “as quickly as possible.”

Amazon suspended Parler’s cloud-services account last weekend — effectively pulling Parler offline — saying a proliferation of posts advocating violence violated Amazon’s terms of use. In court filings, Amazon included more than 100 Parler posts it had reported to the network as abusive, including many glorifying violence

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Reno Municipal Court judges jump the line for COVID-19 vaccinations

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Editor’s note: This story has been updated with comments from the Nevada COVID-19 Response Director and Dr. Andy Pasternak.

Reno Municipal Court judges and staff, including IT staff, lawyers, interpreters and drug testers, took advantage of a “unique and special opportunity” to receive COVID-19 vaccines Saturday outside of the vaccination priority rules established by Gov. Steve Sisolak’s administration.

According to emails obtained by the Reno Gazette Journal, Judge Dorothy Nash Holmes and Judge Shelly O’Neill helped arrange the vaccinations through a clinic for the elderly run by a Reno doctor on Jan. 9.

“We have been offered a unique and

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Michigan man faces life in prison for giving fentanyl to judge’s daughter

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A Michigan man has been found guilty of supplying a fatal dose of fentanyl to a retired judge’s daughter – and now reportedly faces up to life in prison.

Javontae Quintez White, 33, of Grand Rapids, was found guilty Thursday of one count of distributing fentanyl resulting in death following a three-day trial in US District Court in Kalamazoo, MLive.com reported.

White was found guilty in the July 2018 death of 33-year-old Elaine Christensen, the late daughter of retired Grand Rapids District Judge Michael Christensen and his wife Nancy, the outlet reported.

“Elaine made awful choices that were criminal,”

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Swiss supreme court details anti-China bias of Sun judge

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GENEVA — The Swiss supreme court explained Friday why it has ordered a retrial for Olympic swimming champion Sun Yang in a doping case, citing anti-China bias related to killing dogs for food by one of the judges in the case.

Hostile social media posts on Twitter by Court of Arbitration for Sport judge Franco Frattini persuaded the federal court he should not have presided over banning the Chinese swimmer.

Federal judges last month sent the case back for a second hearing at CAS, where Sun was previously banned for eight years for violating anti-doping protocols.

Frattini, a former Italian

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