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A first-of-its-kind court is making inroads at solving problems, not just punishing wrongdoing, in a densely packed Brooklyn neighborhood. The Red Hook Community Justice Center, brainchild of Judith Kaye, chief judge of New York state’s Court of Appeals, and Kings County District Attorney Charles J. Hynes, does sentence criminals — but also offers on-site GED classes, childcare, job training, social workers and drug counselors to help get at the root causes of crime … The University of Michigan’s freshman class this fall looks a little whiter than last year’s, according to data released last week. Enrollment deposits for black students in the incoming class — the first admitted since the U.S. Supreme Court’s Gratz v. Bollinger decision ended the school’s policy of awarding admissions points based on race — are down 13 percent … Set weapons to “stun!” Police in England and Wales may soon begin carrying Tasers, now that a yearlong study of their use in limited districts has been evaluated positively. But the officers aren’t going totally “Pulp Fiction” on us — as police Commander Mike Messinger said, “The good thing about Taser is as soon as you take your finger off the trigger, everything is back to normal.” … Closing arguments are set for today in the trial of a University of Idaho Ph.D. student accused of providing material support to terrorist groups — not with arms, but with computer skills. The case is a test of a Patriot Act provision targeting “secondary” terrorists who provide “expert advice or assistance;” prosecutors insist Sami Omar Al-Hussayen, from a prominent Saudi Arabian family, acted as Webmaster for sites used to recruit terrorists, raise money and disseminate inflammatory rhetoric, while his supporters say Al-Hussayen is merely being prosecuted for his Islamic beliefs. –Lydia Markoff

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