16 March 2005

Around the Web

1) Good to know I wasn't the only one having problems with Blogger. For about three days I couldn't get it to act right at all. Of course, as soon as I wrote the nastygram to Blooger telling 'em it was broke everything started working again (kinda like taking your car to the mechanic - that sound will never happen in the garage).

2) Okay, I've been doing this for a while and have had all sorts of clients ranging from first timers, to pros, to raving luantics but even I'm a little bit wary of "the client who allegedly guillotined grandma and put her in the soup." If possible I'll probably arrange that at least the first meeting be non-contact.

3) The Lord Chancellor may change from head of the judiciary to head of the Bar but the Lords are demanding that he remain a peer and a lawyer. Aw c'mon. Why would you need a lawyer to lead lawyers? I say you give the job to some low level party hack as a reward for his delivery of the votes in his county. After all, a guy who's spent the last three years rounding up the party faithful and stumping in local politics, all the while maintaining his job as a postal supervisor, can regulate lawyers as well as a lawyer can. Can't he?

4) Skelly's keeping track of the PD's who screw up. Depressing.

5) Indefensible posits that since "white collar" criminals are the only ones who are rational actors among criminals that their punishment should be extreme in order to make the next guy think twice (or at least hide it better).

6) You know, if you are a 53 year old sex crimes prosecutor you should know better than to profess your love to a 16 year old girl (at the very least you should know better than to do it via email, creating a record).

5) Y'know, I probably wouldn't take a couple of kids in exchange for my TV and VCR either.

6) A former prosecutor in Alameda County, California, has stated in a sworn declaration for a habeas case that black women and jews were excluded from juries in capital cases as "standard practice."

7) I really don't think you can name the greatest criminal lawyer. The problem is that one way or another the ones which come to mind are the people who are publicized either through print or video media or self-aggrandizement. My experience has been that most of the really good lawyers I've seen aren't publicity oriented. I can name the five attorneys I would hire in Virginia if I were charged with a crime but none of them receive any great amount of publicity. I suspect that it has ever been so.

8) Move sand around on your property and the federal government may be able to force a judge to convict you but it cannot force him to send you to prison (at least since Booker). However, it can still make every effort to bankrupt you.

The Money Quote: "U.S. District Judge Lawrence Zatkoff accused the government of going overboard with their insistence on prison in part because of Rapanos' personality.

'We have a very disagreeable person who insists on his Constitutional rights,' Zatkoff said. 'This is the kind of person the Constitution was passed to protect,' Zatkoff added

9) If you are a judge convicted of fixing tickets don't drink NyQuill while on home arrest.

10) ViaSWVaLaw:

The Court ruled, 5-4, that the police may open fire on vehicles speeding through the TollTag lanes provided they first fire "an attention-getting" warning burst into the air.

In Gonzalez v. Texas Interstate Authority, a San Antonio man sued when his car was riddled with bullets after he went through the TollTag lane at 38 miles per hour. Writing for the majority, Justice O'Connor noted, "While the presence of 187 bullet holes suggests zeal, even delight, on the part of the officers who disabled Mr. Gonzalez's vehicle, their actions were consistent with existing local statutes providing for 'extraordinary measures' when dealing with TollTag lane violators."

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