More homeless people being murdered, brutally injured

The murdering of homeless people hit its highest point in a decade, according to a new report from the National Coalition for the Homeless. Although violent crime nationwide is decreasing, murders of homeless people went up from 27 people in 2008 to 43 people last year. The study cites the popularity of "bum fight" videos and tougher economic times as probable causes of the trend. Legislators and advocates are fighting back, proposing everything from closer tracking of violence against the homeless to treating them as hate-crime victims.

Also:

  • Colorado Republicans are following Arizona's controversial footsteps by cracking down on undocumented immigrants. They plan to introduce new legislation that nearly mirrors Arizona's immigration law, which passed last month. Colorado's version ups the penalties for employers who hire illegal immigrants.
  • Illinois residents are being charged with a crime after attempting to detect police misconduct. In Champaign, activists recently taped public police interactions in predominantly-black neighborhoods to monitor behavior. Now, they're among several people being prosecuted for violating Illinois' eavesdropping law, which says everyone being recorded must have consented to the recording. The ACLU has come to their defense, asserting any public interaction with law enforcement shouldn't be protected, especially when police are permitted to audio record civilians during situations like traffic stops.  
  • New jobless claims climbed to their highest point in nine months, underlining the fact that people are still getting laid off and the U.S. labor market is not improving.
  • A new survey of big employers shows they're predicting a 9 percent increase in health care costs next year, and more than 60 percent of them plan to share the burden with their employees.

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