Measures to Fix Prop. 47 Held Back in Assembly: Two measures aimed at restoring the opportunity to charge firearm theft and the possession of date rape drugs as felonies, after both crimes had been downgraded to misdemeanors under California's Proposition 47, were held back Thursday in the California Assembly. Melanie Mason of the LA Times reports that AB 150, which would have made the theft of a firearm valued at $950 or less a felony, and AB 46, which would have made it a felony to possess date rape drugs with intent to commit sexual assault, did not pass the Assembly Appropriations Committee. However, a similar date rape drug bill, SB 333, did pass the Senate Appropriations panel.
TN City at Risk for Biker Gang Violence: The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives say that Chattanooga, Tennessee, is at an increased risk for motorcycle gang violence, following the May 17 shootout in Texas that resulted in the deaths of nine biker gang members. Shelly Bradbury of the Times Free Press reports that the brawl at the Twin Peaks restaurant in Waco, Texas, has intensified clashes between rival outlaw biker gangs, and more of them are out on the roads now. Chattanooga's location in the South, on the way to several major cities, means that many outlaw bikers will likely ride through. The city's police department has confirmed that there are at least 10 active biker gang members in the area, who are heated rivals with the Waco gang members.
Lawsuit Seeking Probe of Ferguson Shooting Back in Court: A lawsuit seeking to independently investigate county prosecutor Robert McCulloch's handling of the grand jury proceedings in the Ferguson police shooting of Michael Brown last year is back in court. The AP reports that the lawsuit, filed by an activist, alleges that the grand jury's decision not to indict Darren Wilson in the shooting was "inappropriately influenced by McCulloch's desire for Wilson not to face charges." St. Louis County judge Joseph Walsh III will continue hearing the case.
Cuba Off U.S. Terror List: Cuba has been officially removed from the United States' list of countries that sponsor state terrorism after 33 years, opening up the possibility for the two nations to fully renew diplomatic ties. Kevin Liptak of CNN reports that the Obama Administration announced in April of the recommendation for Cuba's removal from the list, and the 45-day window in which Congress could have blocked the move is closed. Many lawmakers are critical of the president's decision, accusing him of cozying up to a "brutal dictatorship." Iran, Sudan, and Syria still remain on the list as countries that are state sponsors of terror.