A Texas judge refused Tuesday to quash on technicalities two criminal felony indictments for abuse of power against Gov. Rick Perry, ruling that the potentially embarrassing case against the possible 2016 presidential hopeful should proceed.
The governor’s defense team had sought to have the matter thrown out, arguing that the special prosecutor, Michael McCrum, wasn’t properly sworn in and that some paperwork wasn’t correctly filed. But a written ruling from District Judge Bert Richardson, who, like Perry, is a Republican, sided with McCrum.
An Austin grand jury indicted Perry in August on charges of abuse of official power and coercion of a public servant. He is accused of publicly threatening, then carrying out, a veto of state funding for public corruption prosecutors after the unit’s Democratic district attorney refused to resign following a drunken-driving conviction. Perry calls the case a political witch hunt and says he’d issue the veto again.
— Associated Press
An undocumented immigrant on Tuesday moved into a Philadelphia church as part of a national civil disobedience action aimed at pressing President Obama on immigration reform.
Honduran-born Angela Navarro, 28, said she will remain with her family in West Kensington Ministry until a deportation order against her is lifted. She was caught trying to cross the border into the United States when she was 16, and has defied a deportation order issued against her for more than 10 years, avoiding authorities as she worked as a cook, married a U.S. citizen and gave birth to two children.
Navarro is the ninth undocumented immigrant who has taken refuge in a church recently as part of what activists are calling the New Sanctuary Movement. Organizers offer sanctuary in churches because federal guidelines prohibit arrests in sensitive areas unless there is a threat to public safety or national security.
Churches in Chicago, Phoenix and Tucson have begun sheltering immigrants, and organizers say the plan is eventually to include some 24 churches or synagogues in 10 cities.
Gay marriage ban struck down: The U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit declined on Tuesday to stay a District Court ruling from last week that struck down the gay marriage ban in South Carolina, meaning that same-sex unions could happen there as soon as Thursday. South Carolina Attorney General Alan Wilson said he planned to appeal the ruling to the U.S. Supreme Court.
Officer to stand trial for assaulting 13 women: A judge has ordered an Oklahoma City police officer to stand trial on dozens of charges alleging he sexually assaulted 13 women while on duty. During the two-day preliminary hearing, prosecutors filed an additional four sex assault charges against Daniel Holtzclaw based on testimony, bringing the total number of charges to 36. The charges include six counts of first-degree rape, which carries a maximum sentence of life in prison, as well as sexual battery, forcible oral sodomy and indecent exposure. Holtzclaw, 27, has pleaded not guilty to each count. Oklahoma County Special Judge Fred Doak allowed Holtzclaw, who is on leave, to remain free on $609,000 bail.
Man shoots self while being evicted: A New Mexico man shot himself in the chest after being evicted from his home by police, authorities said on Tuesday. The San Juan Sheriff’s Office said one of its deputies visited the house in Farmington on Monday and told the 59-year-old occupant he was the subject of a court-ordered eviction. The man agreed to gather his belongings and vacate the premises, but emerged with a small wound to his chest. Officers said the man told them he tried to take his life because he could not face being homeless.
— From news services