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News Scan

Insanity Defense in Psychiatrist's Slaying:  NYDailyNews.com reports that trial is set to begin tomorrow for David Tarloff, accused of murdering Dr. Kathryn Haughey with a cleaver in 2008.  Tarloff admitted to the crime, claiming he killed Haughey in an attempt to rob another doctor in the same office.  Despite this confession, Tarloff's attorney plans to present an insanity defense at trial.  Although Haughey's family members are weary that Tarloff will succeed in showing the jury that he did not know right from wrong at the time of the killing, the article reports that such a defense is unsuccessful 80% of the time.  

Arkansas DNA Collection Law :  Arkansas's "Juli's Law," requiring DNA collection of those arrested for several of the most serious felonies, has failed to increase the state's DNA database as expected, reports the Texarkana Gazette.  Although projected to result in the collection of 1,400 samples per year, only 73 have been submitted since the law went into effect in July 2009.  Little Rock Police Chief Danny Bradley admitted that compliance is expected to be low during the first year of a new law, as law enforcement officers attempt to keep up with the state's frequently-changing criminal laws.

Meth Pipe + Blowtorch + Gunpowder:  Made for a a bad day for John Blanchard, whose approach to meth-smoking caused a storage yard fire earlier this month in San Mateo County, California.  Blanchard used a blowtorch to light a meth pipe, then left the torch near a container of gunpowder that subsequently exploded.  The SF Chronicle has this story.

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