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Author Archives: J. Brooks Davis

In S.C.’s lowest criminal courts, the poor suffer without attorneys, study by ACLU, lawyers finds

By Andrew Knapp, The Post and Courier Poor defendants in South Carolina are sometimes put on trial without the attorneys they need in the state’s lowest criminal courts, where jail sentences can be short but have long-lasting consequences, legal advocates said in a new study. Others are never told of their Sixth Amendment right to a… Read More »

The FAA Relaxes Some Rules for Commercial Drone Pilots

By Andrew Liptak Earlier this week, the Federal Aviation Administration issued updated rules for commercial unmanned aircraft, doubling their operational ceiling and streamlined the online application process for pilots registering their drones. The first update applies to Section 333-exempt aircraft – aircraft which the Secretary of Transportation has determined doesn’t need an airworthiness certificate to… Read More »

Lufthansa jet and drone nearly collide near LAX

By Joseph Serna, Los Angeles Times The pilot of a commercial jetliner said his plane nearly collided with a drone while approaching Los Angeles International Airport on Friday afternoon, sparking a search by L.A. police and sheriff’s officials for the owner of the unmanned aircraft. The near-miss was reported before 2 p.m. about 14 miles east… Read More »

Federal Government Expands UAS Partnerships

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and key government agencies involved in unmanned aircraft operations are expanding participation in the Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) Executive Committee (EXCOM). The committee provides federal agencies with a forum to share information and reduce redundancies on UAS research and development, and resolve policy and procedural issues on safe UAS integration… Read More »

Will S.C. lawmakers lick ‘liquorcycle’ exemptions?

By Robert Behre, The Post and Courier South Carolina still provides one legal option for driving drunk, and it’s unclear if state lawmakers will put a cork in it this year. The state’s current moped laws are a lax and confusing hodgepodge that essentially allow those riding motorized scooters with smaller engines to operate as… Read More »

Pilot’s friend in ‘disbelief’ over NTSB report on Wichita plane crash

By Lauren Seabrook, KWCH NEWS A new video provided by the NTSB shows a small plane crashing into a building at Wichita’s airport. “He only had a matter of seconds to do the right thing and it sounds like maybe he didn’t,” said Ron Ryan, aviation expert and friend of pilot Mark Goldstein. Such a… Read More »

Drone-Mounted Handgun, Flamethrower Reignite Lawmaker Debate

By Susan Haigh, Associated Press HARTFORD — The quiet whirring of the drone’s propellers gives way to the sound of gunshots — pop, pop, pop, pop — in the 14-second video titled “Flying Gun.” The YouTube video of a drone-mounted handgun firing rounds into the Connecticut woods — and a companion video of a flying flamethrower… Read More »

FAA, DHS, CACI, UMD Perform UAS Detection Work

Each month, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) receives more than 100 reports from pilots and others who spot what appears to be an unmanned aircraft (UAS) flying close to an airport or a manned airplane. It’s become a serious safety concern for the agency, and a potential security issue for the Department of Homeland Security… Read More »

House panel advances “stand your ground” bill

By Andrew Knapp and Cynthia Roldan, The Post and Courier COLUMBIA — A House panel has advanced a bill that transfers appeals of “stand your ground” hearings directly to the state Supreme Court, and requires prosecutors to prove a defendant’s use of deadly force wasn’t justified. The bill, which passed the House Judiciary Committee on a… Read More »

Appeal in N. Charleston stabbing may decide how ‘stand your ground’ law applies in domestic killings

By Andrew Knapp, The Post and Courier South Carolina’s “stand your ground” law should not protect someone who kills a romantic partner in self- defense if the deadly confrontation happens in a home they share. The law states that a person is presumed to have a fear of death and can use force if an intruder… Read More »