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News & Events

Rutgers Law in the News > 2012

Professor Bernard Bell, explaining his proposal for expanding liability laws to create a no-fault liability for gun owners, said: “It’s essentially an incentive to gun owners that you can maybe reduce insurance rates if you take precautions that are effective in reducing gun deaths.” (Houston Chronicle, 12/23/12)

Clinical Professor Laura Cohen
 was quoted in an article about the upcoming sentencing of a 52-year-old man convicted as a juvenile for a murder committed when he was 15. (New York Times, 12/21/12)

Professor Frank Askin was interviewed about efforts to strengthen the country's gun control laws. (nj101.5FM, 12/19/12)

Interviewed about Gov. Chris Christie’s veto of the health insurance exchange bill, Assistant Professor Christina Ho said: “I think now there’s going to be a lot of bureaucratic inconsistencies and inefficiency.” (WNYC.org, 12/7/12)

“I think that education in our prisons is the key to preventing recidivism," said Dean John J. Farmer, Jr. at a conference sponsored by The Education From the Inside Out Coalition and titled Pell Grants and Prison Education: How Pell Grant Access in Prison Transforms Lives. (Juvenile Justice Information Exchange, 12/10/12)

“We thought it was really critical to know what actually happened with all those ballots that we cast and whether or not the state was going to follow the protocol that was announced,” said Clinical Professor Penny Venetis about the Constitutional Litigation Clinic’s OPRA request for information related to Election Day Internet voting. (Associated Press, 11/28/12) “Without the paper ballot to protect the integrity of the vote, the voting process does not follow the rules for overseas voting and leaves displaced voters with the most insecure method of Internet voting.” (New Jersey Law Journal, 12/4/12) 

An article about the successful use of the “duress defense” by a gang member in a Camden County murder case included comments by Professor George Thomas. (Philadelphia Inquirer, 11/26/12)

Charis Orzechowski ’13
 is profiled in the article “Law Student Finds Adventure on the Road.” (ABA’s Student Lawyer, November 2012) 

Commenting on a petition calling on New Jersey to secede from the union, Professor Frank Askin said that the Constitution is silent on the ability of states to do that. (Record, 11/13/12)

The Constitutional Litigation Clinic report, “Counting Votes 2012: A state-by-state look at voting technology preparedness,” co-authored by the Verified Voting Foundation and Common Cause, was cited in several media reports leading up to Election Day. (CNN, Record, 11/12) 

“Computerized voting is a bad idea during any circumstance, especially emergency circumstances where you don’t have enough staff,” said Clinical Professor Penny Venetis of the difficulties faced by New Jersey voters in the wake of Hurricane Sandy. (nextgov.com, 11/7/12) Venetis’s recommendation that those who vote by email also mail a paper ballot to their county clerk was cited by the Star-Ledger in a Nov. 6 editorial.

Neisser Public Interest Program Director Jessica Kitson was interviewed about New Jersey Chief Justice Stuart Rabner’s decision to consider requiring adoption of a pro bono requirement for prospective attorneys. (ThomsonReuters, 10/22/12)

Stephanie Richman, Assistant Dean for Career Services, commented on unpaid legal positions such as the New Jersey Attorney General’s Volunteer Associates in Public Service program and the Special Assistant U.S. Attorney’s positions at the U.S. Attorney’s office. (New Jersey Law Journal, 10/19/12)

Professor Gary Francione was interviewed about the abolitionist versus animal welfare approach to animal rights for the podcast series Philosophy Bites. (10/13/12)

“Though we we will not know for sure until the Court hands down its opinion in Fisher next June,” said Professor Carlos Gonzalez, “it may turn out that the key will lie not in the facts of the case, but in the changing personnel on the court.” (Ebony.com, 10/11/12)

Professor Bernard Bell was interviewed about the hiring of a former U.S. solicitor general by five major sports organizations in their lawsuit to stop New Jersey from instituting sports betting. (Press of Atlantic City, 10/8/12) 

“If your sole mantra is ‘Keep labor costs low,’ then it’s just a few steps down to enslaved labor,” said Professor James Pope, speaking at the law school’s Sept. 28 symposium on human trafficking. (Star-Ledger, 9/30/12) Neisser Public Interest Program director Jessica Kitson was interviewed about the local aspects of human trafficking. (Record, 9/28/12) 

A study co-authored by the Constitutional Litigation Clinic on states’ readiness to handle Election Day voting machine failures was cited in the editorial “Electronic voting is the real threat to elections.” (USA Today, 9/19/12)

“It’s a mechanism to correct injustices,” explained Professor Louis Raveson of a trial judge’s decision to set aside a jury's guilty verdicts. (Record, 9/13/12)

Professor Stuart Green discussed some of the common features of commercial bribery among multinational corporations and approaches for dealing with the problem. (China Radio International, 8/14/12)

Professor Frank Askin was interviewed about what’s at stake in Fisher v. University of Texas at Austin, the case involving the consideration of race in higher education admissions decision that will be heard by the U.S. Supreme Court in October. (WBGO, 8/14/12) 

Adjunct Professor Abed Awad
, discussing the growing movement to ban state courts from considering Islamic law, said: “This vast net that is being cast to prevent state judges from considering any foreign law is catching in its net Jewish law, Canon law, Hindu law.” (PBS's “Religion & Ethics Newsweekly,” 8/3/12)

Commenting on the Borough of Carteret’s notice that it plans to sue the owners of a former smelting factory under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act to force testing for contaminated soil on nearby public and private properties, Associate Professor Steve Gold said that “there is a potentially powerful tool in this type of lawsuit, but one that has been relatively underused.” (USA Today, 7/31/12)

Professor Frank Askin
 commented that “There’s a lot of law that says policemen have to have thick skins” when asked about a man who has filed a federal civil rights suit over his arrest for making an obscene gesture at a police officer. (Star-Ledger, 7/29/12)

Co-authorship by the Constitutional Litigation Clinic of a new report on the readiness of states to handle voting machine problems on Election Day was noted in numerous media reports around the country, including USA Today, the Associated PressSalt Lake TribuneABC NewsPalm Beach PostShreveport TimesHuffington Post, and CBS News. (7/25/12)

Vice Dean Ronald Chen discussed a bill under consideration by the New Jersey Legislature that would make it easier for the children of illegal immigrants born in the U.S. and State residents for at least a year to receive financial aid for college. (Star-Ledger, 7/13/12)

The NJ Supreme Court decision in Sussex Commons Assoc., LLC v. Rutgers, the State University, in which the Court held that the case files of the Rutgers Law Schools' clinical programs are not subject to the requirements of the Open Public Records Act, was covered by, among other media, the ABA JournalNew Jersey Law JournalAssociated PressStar-LedgerChronicle of Higher EducationNJ SpotlightNew Jersey HeraldWHYY, and NJBIZ. (7/5-6/12) 

In an interview about the campaign finance system, Professor Frank Askin called the recent U.S. Supreme Court ruling in American Tradition Partnership, Inc. v. Bullock “a blow to democratic governance.” (U.S. News & World Report, 7/4/12)

Assistant Professor Christina Ho explained what she identified as some unanswered policy questions and a few unanswered legal questions in the U.S. Supreme Court decision on the Affordable Care Act. (wsj.com, 6/28/12) Ho also was interviewed by msnbc.com and Rutgers Today.

“What concerned me was that one-third of them ended up being U.S. citizens,” said Vice Dean Ronald Chen of the New Jersey directive requiring law enforcement officials, if they have “reason to believe” that a person arrested on an indictable offense or driving while intoxicated is in the country illegally, to report the person to federal immigration authorities. (Record, 6/25/12)

In “On the side of angels or devils,” a political opinion page essay on the topic “Is it morally wrong to eat animals?” the writer cites the scholarship of Professor Gary Francione and states “We are, all of us, angel and devil. Francione’s is perhaps the angel voice, and we need these voices.” (Brisbane Times, 6/23/12) 

Interviewed about President Obama’s immigration policy announcement, Vice Dean Ronald Chen said: “This is sort of a transitional step that defers deporting people until Congress, which I think everyone hopes, is able to address this matter in a comprehensive way.” (NJTV, 6/18/12) 

“The key to our education problem is integration of communities, not just schools, if we want to do the best for the children,” wrote Professor Paul Tractenberg as part of the Sunday Dialogue: Schools for Rich and Poor. (New York Times, 6/16/12)

Professor Frank Askin celebrated the free-speech victory in the New Jersey Supreme Court’s decision that a ban on political signs in windows of condominium residents violated constitutionally-protected free speech. The Constitutional Litigation Clinic wrote the brief for amicus ACLU-NJ and Askin participated in the oral argument. (Associated PressStar-Ledgernewsworks.org, 6/13/12) 

Child Advocacy Clinic Director Randi Mandelbaum praised the work of the Junior League of the Oranges and Short Hills and the Junior League of Montclair-Newark in partnering with the clinic to host an Education & Career Fair for teens about to age out of the foster care system. (Independent Press, 6/11/12) Mandelbaum was interviewed about criminally negligent charges brought against two former caseworkers for a child whose mother and grandmother were found guilty of the child’s death. (WNYC, 6/7/12)

“While to me it looks like a clear case of ethnic and religious profiling, courts are very reluctant to challenge government claims of national security,” said Professor Frank Askin in comments about the Muslim Advocates’ suit over the New York City Police Department surveillance of Muslims in New Jersey. (Star-Ledger, 6/7/12)

Speaking of a proposed protocol published in the American Journal of Bioethics to remove kidneys for transplant from patients with severe irreversible brain damage who are near death, Emeritus Professor Norman Cantor said: “Any medical action potentially accelerating death, even by a few minutes and even for a gravely debilitated patient, demands a legally recognized justification.” (abcnews.com, 6/6/12) 

When thinking about if the law is adequate to the development of new forms of property, Professor Stuart Green said the question is whether “the equation of misappropriation of tangible property with misappropriation of intangible property is a reasonable kind of analogy to make from a legal perspective and from a moral perspective.” (Public Ethics Radio, 6/3/12)

Clinical Professor Robert Holmes was interviewed for the StoryCorps project about the experience of being one of the first African-American families in integrate his New Jersey neighborhood. (NPR, 6/1/12)

In “Misinformation fueling attacks on disability program,” former Congressman Charlie Melancon cited “Scapegoating Social Security Claimants (and the Judges Who Evaluate Them,” the American Constitution Society issue brief by Associate Dean Jon Dubin and Penn State–Dickinson Law Professor Robert Rains, for drawing attention to "the societal costs when people with disabilities are improperly denied SSDA benefits.” (http://thehill.com/blogs/congress-blog/economy-a-budget/229819-misinformation-fueling-attacks-on-disability-program, 5/29/12) The issue brief has been selected by the University of Miami Law School peer-reviewed journal JOTWELL as “one of th best works of recent scholarship relating to Administrative Law.” 

Beach badge fees can only be used for things like maintaining and policing the beaches and not for the general fund, said Vice Dean Ronald Chen. (Associated Press, 5/29/12)

Professor George Thomas
 said that a murder retrial of Alex Blueford, which in its Blueford v. Arkansas decision the U.S. Supreme Court said is not prevented by the double jeopardy clause, was intuitively unjust. (Wall Street Journal, 5/25/12) 

Professor Carlos Ball talked about his new book, The Right to be Parents: LGBT Families and the Transformation of Parenthood, on WNYC’s Brian Lehrer Show. (5/24/12)

“Probation in and of itself can be a substantial consequence,” said Clinical Professor Laura Cohen in commenting on the sentencing in the Dharun Ravi case. (Record, 5/23/12) Of the likelihood that the State will be successful in appealing the 30-day jail sentence, Professor Louis Raveson said: “I don't think they have much chance.” (New York Daily News, 5/22/12)

Commenting on the upcoming sentencing in the bias crime trial of Dharun Ravi, Professor Louis Raveson said: “Ravi failed to come to grips with the fact that he picked on this kid, he bullied this kid.” (NPR, 5/21/12)  Dean John J. Farmer, Jr. said: “My sense of this case is that what Ravi did fits within the letter, perhaps, of the bias intimidation law and the letter of the prosecution obstruction of justice law, but it’s not within the spirit of either one of them.” (Asbury Park Press, 5/20/12)

“This request for marriage is, in effect, sort of asking the government to regulate our relationships, or at least give gay people the opportunity to be regulated by the government,” commented Professor Carlos Ball in the article “Gay marriage: The ‘unthinkable’ became reality, for some.” (Washington Post, 5/10/12)

Commenting on the regulation of home schooling in New Jersey, Professor Paul Tractenberg said, “I don’t know whether anyone does anything to really evaluate in a comprehensive way what's going on with home schooling.” (Asbury Park Press, 5/10/12)

“My personal view is you’re buying a lot of problems when you make available public funding to support parochial schools,” said Professor Paul Tractenberg. (Asbury Park Press, 5/1/12) 

Adjunct Professor Abed Awad
 was interviewed about the case of a U.S.-born mother whose three children have been relocated to the Gaza Strip by their Palestinian father, the subject of federal charges of illegally moving the children in violation of the couple’s divorce decree. (Associated Press, 5/2/12)

“I don't know of another statute that has an element based on the mental state of the victim,” said Professor Louis Raveson in commenting on the application of the bias statute in the trial of Dharun Ravi. (Star-Ledger, 5/2/12)

Professor Mark Weiner
 was one of the signers of a letter to the editor pointing out that, in response to the sinking of the Titanic, the international community decided to “create a better legal and regulatory structure to ensure public safety.” (Wall Street Journal, 4/27/12)

Rutgers Law School students hope to build on their recent trip to Israel, where they studied the country’s child welfare system, by hosting some Israeli students in Newark next fall. (New Jersey Jewish News, 4/25/12) 

Assistant Professor Anjum Gupta
, commenting on the Arizona immigration enforcement law which is the subject of Arizona v. United States, to be heard by the U.S. Supreme Court on April 25, said such statutes “would encourage racial profiling and cause immigrants to be less willing to report crimes or otherwise cooperate with the police for fear of drawing attention to themselves or their family members.” (Record, 4/22/12)

Illegal downloading is more similar to the crime of trespass than theft, said Professor Stuart Green  (Australian Broadcasting Company, 4/20/12) 

In his speech at the Rutgers Law Review symposium, U.S. Assistant Attorney General Thomas Perez identified concerns with recent redistricting efforts effecting the Texas state House and congressional maps. (San Antonio Express-News, 4/18/12)

The Community Law Clinic’s assistance in setting up the job seekers’ group Neighbors Helping Neighbors as a non-profit “will propel us to the next level,” said the creator of the group. (Patch, 4/17/12)

In a Help me Howard segment titled “Online sneaker deal was too good to be true,” Clinical Professor John Kettle explained that the law generally finds that such a transaction based on the mistakes of others is “not an enforceable contract.” (WPIX, 4/16/12)

Speaking after the announcement of Robert L. Barchi as the next president of Rutgers University, Dean John J. Farmer Jr., who was a member of the presidential search committee, said of Dr. Barchi: “He had a real vision for what the university's role is in the state and the region and the country, which we all shared.” (Star-Ledger, 4/12/12)

Human Rights First reported on the attention drawn by the conference “Immigrant Detainees: Alone, Unrepresented & Imprisoned,” held at the law school on March 23, to the need for additional pro bono legal services for immigrants detained in New Jersey. (4/10/12) 

Interviewed about the shooting death of Trayvon Martin and Florida’s Stand Your Ground law, Professor David Troutt said: “The very clear lesson that comes out of this terrible episode is that this law is a categorical mistake and has to be repealed wherever it exists.” (Rutgers Today, 4/5/12)

“When you charge someone, particularly a public figure, you essentially ruin their life,” said Dean John J. Farmer, Jr. in an article about public officials linked to a public corruption sting who either were never charged or whose charges were later dismissed. (Associated Press, 4/1/12)  

Professor George Thomas was interviewed for an article about a New Jersey Supreme Court case involving whether a warrant was needed to search a house occupied by college students that was the subject of a noise complaint. (Asbury Park Press, 4/1/12)

If the Supreme Court strikes down the individual mandate and the provisions of the Affordable Care Act, “the next question becomes whether there is enough pressure on Congress to salvage portions of the law,” said Assistant Professor Christina Ho. (Asbury Park Press, 3/28/12) Ho also was interviewed by My9TV about the challenges to the Affordable care Act that are before the Supreme Court. (3/26/12)

“We saw the same exact issues we see in towns like Newark. This kind of service in the community should be part of the curriculum,” said Joy Durham ’12 of her exchange trip to Ben Gurion University. (New Jersey Jewish News, 3/27/12) 

U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez ’79 told the more than 200 attendees at the law school’s conference “Immigrant Detainees: Alone, Unrepresented & Imprisoned” that the current system “has no laws on the books about how the government treats people in detention, only nonbinding standards.” (Star-Ledger, 3/24/12) A representative from the ACLU Immigrants Rights Project said "A fundamental shift is needed in how we look at detention, and to see detention as a last resort." (Associated Press, 3/23/12)  

“There is a lot of risk of backfiring,” said Professor Louis Raveson about Dharun Ravi’s making media appearances in the lead up to his sentencing following the guilty verdict in the Tyler Clementi bias intimidation case. (Record, 3/23/12)

Professor Frank Askin commented on Gov. Christie’s nominees to the New Jersey Supreme Court. (NJPR, 3/22/12)

“We really want to highlight in the conference how much of a difference representation makes,” explained Assistant Professor and Immigrant Rights Clinic Director Anjum Gupta in talking about the March 23 conference at the law school titled “Immigrant Detainees: Alone, Unrepresented & Imprisoned.” (Star-Ledger, 3/23/12) 

Professor Stuart Green
 commented on the shooting of an unarmed Florida teenager and that state’s statute that can protect from arrest or prosecution a person who successfully claims self-defense. (BBC News magazine, 3/20/12)

Professor Louis Raveson and Clinical Professor Laura Cohen were quoted in articles about the Dharun Ravi cyberbullying trial verdict. (New Jersey Public RadioStar-LedgerRecordMSNBC, 3/16-17/12)

“The court is not going to overturn 70 years of decisions that have upheld the power of Congress to act on issues of interstate commerce,” said Professor Frank Askin of the U.S. Supreme Court’s consideration of challenges to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. (Star-Ledger, 3/13/12)

“It’s not often that you get three university institutions working with each other so closely like that,” said NJIT Assistant Dean Paul Dine of the service trip to the Dominican Republic organized by Associate Dean Andy Rothman. (Star-Ledger, 3/11/12)

Professor Paul Tractenberg commented on the Minority Student Program and the Fisher v. University of Texas affirmative action case. (Asbury Park Press, 3/9/12)

“I have no doubt that you will be regarded as one of the greatest jurists of your generation and perhaps of any generation,” Justice Barry Albin said of New Jersey Supreme Court Justice Virginia Long ’66 upon her stepping down from the court at the mandatory retirement age of 70. (Star-Ledger, 3/5/12) 

“There haven't been many prosecutions quite like this, so it’s hard to know how it will play out,” said Professor Louis Raveson of the hate crime trial of a former Rutgers University student. (New York Times, 2/25/12)

“My take is that the governor cannot do this under the reorganization act,” said Vice Dean Ronald Chen about the proposed realignment involving UMDNJ, Rutgers University, Rutgers–Camden, and Rowan University. (Asbury Park Press, 2/21/12) 

Professor Louis Raveson was quoted in an article about the hate crime charge in the case involving the suicide of Rutgers University student Tyler Clementi. (Star-Ledger, 2/19/12)

Professor Bernard Bell was interviewed about the likelihood that Pfizer could be held liable for unintended pregnancies resulting from packaging mistakes for its birth control pills. (Star-Ledger, 2/12/12) Bell also commented on a local citizen’s complaint that a Township Committee press briefing on its school district’s budget surplus violated the Open Public Meeting Act. (Asbury Park Press, 2/12/12)

The LGBTQ Caucus, headed by caucus president Iris Bromberg ’13, has written to the Council on State Mandates in support of the state’s new anti-bullying law. (Star-Ledger, 1/26/12)

Interviewed about the suggestion that the legalization of same-sex marriage should be put on the ballot as a referendum, Vice Dean Ronald Chen noted that women’s suffrage was defeated when put to a public vote in 1915. (Daily Record, 1/25/12)

Legal Research & Writing Instructor Barbara Hoffman, who is founding director of the National Coalition for Cancer Survivorship, was quoted in the article “Medical debt puts more at risk.” (Record, 1/22/12)

Commenting on a request by the Essex County Prosecutor’s Office that prosecutors be given the birth dates of potential jurors so they can conduct a criminal background check, Professor Louis Raveson noted that there is “a balance of interests between the privacy of jurors and the efforts of the justice system to have a fair process and accurate outcomes in cases.” (Star-Ledger, 1/13/12)