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The U.S. Department of Justice has joined a lawsuit against an Idaho ordinance which bans sleeping in public places.  The DOJ has argued that it unconstitutionally targets homeless people and violates the 8th Amendment protection against cruel and unusual punishment.

Maryland Governor, Larry Hogan, has developed a redistricting commission which will be charged with reviewing Maryland’s congressional lines.  The lines have been in dispute since the last two redistricting cycles. 

Former inmates in California will be able to vote after a decision from the Alameda Superior Court reinstated voting rights.  Former inmates who have left prison and are in county-run programs are the only ones eligible for voter restoration.  

There is an effort among Oklahoma’s all-black towns to increase tourism and population in an effort to revive them.  Residents have been pushing to be included in Oklahoma’s tourism efforts and tours to educate visitors on the role African Americans played in Oklahoma’s history.

A 3-judge panel held that Texas’ voter ID law violated Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act (VRA).  The court ruled that while it was not tantamount to a poll tax, it did have a discriminatory effect.
A week after Sandra Bland, an African American woman who was stopped by police for not using a turn signal was found dead in a jail, protestors have taken to the streets.  The young woman was arrested for allegedly assaulting a police officer and was held in jail for three days before committing suicide the officers stated.  In what seems to be a running trend, protestors are demanding answers in what looks like a suspicious death in police custody.
The Ferguson Police Department has selected a new police commander.  Andre Anderson, will be serving as the interim police chief in Ferguson.  The previous police chief stepped down following protests and national attention surrounding the death of unarmed 18 year-old Michael Brown.
Hepatitis C, which is spread through blood, has seen more treatment options in the last year. Kentucky is facing a growing population of Hep C sufferers among IV drug users.
In an attempt to fulfill his promise to close Guantanamo Bay, President Barack Obama is committed to vetoing bills that make it harder to close the detention center.
Dylan Roof, the man charged with the deaths of nine members of an AME church has been indicted on federal charges, including hate crimes.  The Department of Justice will be pursuing a case against Roof, it is not yet clear if they will be seeking the death penalty.