Montgomery Settles Debtors Prison Lawsuit

Aug 27, 2014

The city of Montgomery is settling federal lawsuits that accuse it of wrongfully jailing people who can't pay fines.  The Southern Poverty Law center represents two people involved in the suits and calls the agreement a victory for low-income residents.  The settlement results from lawsuits filed by people who were jailed for accumulating thousands of dollars of unpaid court fines and fees.  The suit claims the practice of jailing debtors violates a past U.S. Supreme Court ruling.  A federal judge still must approve the settlement.  The Southern Poverty Law Center will discuss the lawsuit at a news conference today. 

Convictions Upheld

The Alabama Court of Criminal Appeals has upheld the convictions of three men found guilty of separate murder cases in Montgomery.  The appeals court upheld the conviction of 31-year-old Karvis Dennis of Shorter for the fatal shooting of Byron Tubner in October 2012 at a residence in Montgomery County. 

A second case involved the conviction of 33-year-old Angelo Fraizer.  He was convicted of killing David Stinson in Grady in January 2011 and was sentenced to 25 years.

The state appeals court also upheld the conviction of 39-year-old Milas Smith of Montgomery.  He is serving a 35 year prison term for killing David Hall in November 2010. 

MPS Evaluation Process

A new evaluation process for the Montgomery County School superintendent has been approved.  The Montgomery County Board of Education approved the procedure Tuesday evening.  The evaluation report card calls for assessing Superintendent Margaret Allen's performance in areas including finance, communication skills and training.  Allen has mostly received positive reviews form the public and the school board. 

Labor Day

Alabama law enforcement officials say they're planning to beef up enforcement on state highways and waterways during the Labor Day holiday weekend.  Officials from the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency say part of the enforcement effort will involve officers riding in unmarked vehicles on state highways and waterways.