16 November 2003

Out in the Blogosphere:

(1) If you are interested in the Lubbock plague trial Sleepless in Midland is providing coverage here.

(2) SW Virginia Law points to a story about the outlaw tradition in Eastern Tennessee.

(3) This posting over at I respectfully dissent talks about the contempt power inherent in the judiciary. This caught my eye because I am currently working on an appeal of a contempt charge from Juvenile and Domestic Court to the Circuit Court (everything in Virginian courts not of record can be appealed to a Circuit Court). My client was sentenced to 10 days in jail (the max summary contempt punishment in Virginia) and appealed. I must admit this was the first time I have dealt with one of these so I had to hit the books. I knew that the judge could not be called to testify under the laws of Virginia so I was wondering how they would prove it. I quickly learned that under the laws of Virginia all the proof required is for the lower court judge to write a letter to the higher court judge saying why she convicted the Defendant of contempt - so much for the right to cross examine the complaining witness. Who cares about that musty old Constitution anyway? But WAIT, there's more . . . You are also forbidden a jury trial. See Baugh v. Commonwealth. Because, who would want a jury to intervene when one judge is given a letter by a colleague in the same circuit and is expected to weigh that against the word of the Defendant? Arrrgggg!!!

(4) Curmudgeonly Clerk was guest blogging over at Crescat Sententia and had a couple of posts which caught my eye primarily because I spent 6 years as an interrogator in the U.S. Army. Not going to comment on the charges because I haven't been following the story he's commenting on so I don't know all the facts but you can check it out here and also here.

(5) Hey, somebody dared to ticket a blawger.

(6) What's the lesson of this post over at The Legal Reader? If you are going to break the law make dang sure that you are the worst of all the bad guys and that you have lots and lots of underlings whom you can offer up as sacrifices to the federal prosecutor. That way you can get a sweetheart deal and avoid the punishment you deserve by transferring it to people who deserve it less than you do.

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