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News Scan

Suspected Cole Bomber to Face Military Tribunal:  Richard A. Serrano and David G. Savage of the LA Times report Abd al Rahim al Nashiri, the suspected mastermind of 2000 bombing of the Cole destroyer, is expected to the the first Gitmo detainee to face a military tribunal during Obama's presidency.  Al Nashiri will be tried under the 2009 revised rules for military tribunals, which tightened the standards for the admissibility of hearsay statements and prohibits military prosecutors from admitting "statements obtained by torture, or cruel, inhuman or degrading statements."  Pentagon officials believe al Nashiri's trial could begin by this summer.

Florida Imposes Waiting Period for Felon Voting:  Florida Governor Rick Scott and other state officials voted unanimously today to impose a waiting period for convicted felons to regain their right to vote.  The previous rule enacted by then-Governor Charlie Crist in 2007 restored the right to vote almost automatically upon a felon's release from custody.  Under the rules passed today, violent felons must wait seven years before applying for their civil rights, while nonviolent felons must wait five.  Peter Wallsten of the Washington Post has this story.

Blagojevich: The Economy's Bad, So Let's Cancel the Retrial: 
Rod Blagojevich has asked a federal judge to cancel his retrial and immediately sentence him for his previous conviction, reports the Chicago Sun-Times.  Last summer, Blogojevich was convicted of one out of 24 counts against him, with the jury deadlocking on the rest.  The former governor's defense team claims "A second prosecution of this case is an irresponsible use of taxpayer funds in light of the current economic crisis and Blagojevich's imminent sentencing on the conviction from the first trial."  His attorneys also claim they haven't been paid for their work on his case.  

Burglar Locked in House Calls Police for Help:   After breaking into a house in Portland, Oregon, Timothy James Chapek 24, locked himself in the bathroom and called 911 because he feared the homeowner might hurt him.  When discovered by an occupant of the home, he assured her he had already notified the police.  The Portland Tribune has this story.  Click here to listen to the intruder's 911 call.

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