In brief: Senate approves protections for federal whistle-blowers
WASHINGTON – The Senate on Tuesday gave final congressional approval for a bill that would significantly expand protections for federal employees who expose fraud, waste and abuse and make it easier to punish supervisors who try to retaliate against the whistle-blowers.
The whistle-blower protection measure, approved by voice vote and sent to the president, was the product of 13 years of work by organizations pushing for greater protections for the federal workforce.
The legislation closes loopholes created by court rulings, which removed protections for whistle-blowers. The new legislation expands whistle-blower rights and clarifies protections that were not explicitly clear.
Three people in aircraft die when plane crashes into house
JACKSON, Miss. – Authorities say all three people aboard a plane were killed when it crashed into a house in a Jackson, Miss., neighborhood.
The Piper PA-32 single-engine plane went down Tuesday evening in a neighborhood of single-family homes near Hawkins Field Airport.
Hinds County Coroner Sharon Grisham-Stewart confirmed three people died. She said dental records or DNA would be needed to confirm their identities.
Wrongly convicted woman settles for $2.7 million
BUFFALO, N.Y. – A New York woman who spent more than 13 years in prison after being wrongfully convicted of killing her teenage daughter has reached a $2.7 million settlement with the state, her attorney said Tuesday.
Lynn DeJac Peters, whose conviction was overturned in 2007 on the basis of DNA evidence, initially sought more than $10 million in a written demand in 2009 but lowered the amount as time went on. Earlier this year, she accused the state of dragging its feet on her wrongful imprisonment claim, hoping to wear her down.
While imprisoned at the maximum-security Bedford Hills Correctional Facility, DeJac Peters wasn’t allowed private visitation with her twin sons, born just before her trial, because she maintained her innocence, her lawyer said.
DeJac Peters, who was not at Tuesday’s news conference, was convicted in 1994 of strangling her 13-year-old daughter, Crystallynn Girard, in their Buffalo home on Valentine’s Day 1993.