Leaving no coal-ash-encrusted stone unturned:
The session at the federal courthouse in Raleigh comes as environmental groups amp up pressure on regulators and lawmakers to force Duke to clean up the leaky, unlined ash pits polluting North Carolina's waterways. Prosecutors have issued at least 23 grand jury subpoenas to Duke executives and state officials.
The subpoenas seek records from Duke, the state Department of Environment and Natural Resources and the state Utilities Commission. They include reams of documents, including emails, memos and reports, related to the Feb. 2 spill into the Dan River and the state's oversight of the company's nearly three dozen other coal ash dumps spread out at 14 current and retired power plants.
Not to be dramatic, but: there will be blood. Grand juries have pretty broad subpoena powers, and while they might occasionally stray off into crazyville, it's virtually impossible to subvert their process from the outside. Or so we can hope.