Super Lawyers
The Netional Trial Lawyers - Top 40 Under 40
Martindale-Hubbell
Avvo Clients Choice
Avvo Top Contributor
Avvo Rating

Articles Tagged with alabama

Published on:

alabama-1611179_1920-300x287After the Supreme Court ruled last month that the Excessive Fines Clause of the Eighth Amendment applied to states—essentially outlawing excessive police seizures—lawmakers in Alabama are moving forward with reforms of civil asset forfeiture in the state.

Civil asset forfeiture is the legal process where police can seize an individual’s property, cash, or any other assets if they are suspected of being used in a crime. In Alabama there are no requirements for law enforcement to report seizures, so the scale of civil asset forfeitures in the state is hard to assess. Additionally, in order to take an individual’s assets, law enforcement only needs to demonstrate the property’s involvement in a crime to the court’s “reasonable satisfaction.” This is a far lower bar than the “beyond a reasonable doubt” that is required in criminal cases.
Continue reading

Published on:

Civil asset forfeiture has become a central issue in the Republican races for attorney general and governor in Alabama. While incumbent Attorney General Steve Marshall has expressed support for the process and Governor Kay Ivey has shown little enthusiasm for reform, their opponents in the primary agree reform is needed.

The Alabama legislature recently attempted to reform civil asset forfeiture in the state. The first draft of the legislation would have required a criminal conviction before property could be seized. Law enforcement opposed this approach. In response, a revised bill was proposed, one which was more limited in scope but would have given more oversight to the process. However, even this limited bill failed.
Continue reading

Published on:

This spring, lawmakers in Alabama looked set to reform civil asset forfeiture. However, even though politicians and interest groups across the political spectrum supported reform, the reforms failed.

The libertarian Institute for Justice rates Alabama’s current civil asset forfeiture laws as “among the worst in the nation.” Civil asset forfeiture is the process where law enforcement can seize an individual’s property if it is suspected of being involved in a crime. In most states, a criminal conviction is not required before property is seized. In Alabama, profits from civil asset forfeiture are used to fund law enforcement. This has led to accusations of abuse and “policing for profit.”
Continue reading

Published on:

With all of the controversy revolving around civil asset forfeiture in recent years, support for such policies is hard to find. In fact, any story that mentions the policies is almost sure to talk about a grave injustice has been done to the victim of the forfeiture.

To be sure, the actual of examples of abuse of civil asset forfeiture laws are plentiful. However, that does not stop proponents of civil asset forfeiture from remaining adamant that the laws are an overall good for society. An Alabama District Attorney and an Alabama Sheriff are the latest to speak out in defense of civil asset forfeiture, which comes as the Alabama Legislature begins considering legislation that would drastically change the way civil asset forfeitures are handled in Alabama in favor of civilians. Continue reading

Published on:

A $2 million dollar per year business was cut down in one swift stroke from Alabama law enforcement earlier this year.

Alabama resident, entrepreneur, and Rotary Club ambassador Jamey Vibbert lost his business when he was branded a felon for selling two cars reportedly purchased with drug money. The heavy-handed Alabama police lieutenant and District Attorney’s office strung Vibbert’s case along until it had ruined his business, despite the fact that the case was thrown out by two separate judges. Continue reading