u.s. department of justice

Kristin Gourlay / RIPR

Two polling precinct areas in Rhode Island will be part of the federal Department Of Justice’s effort to enforce voting rights laws. The agency plans to deploy some 500 workers in 28 states across the U.S. to make sure elections are run fairly. Federal workers are set to monitor polls in Providence and Pawtucket.

The monitors are tasked with helping protect against fraud, as well as incidents of voter harassment or intimidation.

It’s been a little more than a year since Rhode Island signed an agreement with the U.S. Department of Justice to stop segregating and underpaying developmentally disabled workers. Fulfilling the terms of that agreement remain a work in progress.

The murder case that pitted Gov. Lincoln Chafee against federal prosecutors over the issue of the death penalty has been closed with a life prison sentence for Jason Pleau, who shot and killed a Woonsocket gas station manager in 2010.

Pleau was sentenced to life without parole in U.S. District Court by Judge William E. Smith. Pleau, 35, of Providence, shot David Main at close range as Main approached the doorstep of a Woonsocket bank where he was to have deposited the gas station receipts.

Kristin Gourlay / RIPR

Westerly Hospital has reached a settlement with the U.S. Department of Justice over agreements it made with doctors not to compete for business. Westerly officials haven’t admitted wrongdoing, but the hospital’s arrangement with doctors may have contributed to higher patient costs.