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» Entries tagged with "court"

An Interesting Morning

When I arrived at court earlier this week, the courtroom for my hearing was still locked. A group of defendants and defense lawyers began to congregate. One defense lawyer walked up to the door and tried to open it. He began walking off when a defendant called to him, “hey, you a famous lawyer, ain’t you?” The lawyer puffed up his chest a little and smiled, obviously noting the presence of other defense counsel within earshot. The defendant nodded his head and explained, “I thought so. I seen you on tons of buses. Tons.” The lawyer’s chest fell and his smile disappeared. I felt a little bad for the guy. Later on, I was in another courtroom when a settlement conference was … Read entire article »

Filed under: Courts, lawyers

I Probably Take Myself Too Seriously

In one court, I regularly run into a lawyer who amuses me to no end. He’s a big, boisterous guy with thick gray hair and a deep, booming voice. His general demeanor reminds me of the ghost of Christmas present from the Muppet Christmas Carol. He always wears loud ties, most of which I believe feature some minor Disney character, and he only partially tucks his baggy dress shirts into what I suspect to be a pair of Dickies work pants. It isn’t uncommon for him to wear a jean shirt to court, and I don’t think I’ve ever seen him wear a belt. None of that really sets him apart from a lot of other lawyers though. What really separates him from the rest is … Read entire article »

Filed under: lawyers, Practice in General

No Current Registration

When an officer stops you and requests to see your registration, there are a number of possible outcomes. If you give the officer your registration and everything checks out, you’re obviously okay. On the other hand, if you do not have proof of registration because the car is not registered, you will owe hundreds of dollars. If you don’t have your registration in the vehicle but it is registered, you will likely owe well over a hundred dollars even if you provide the court with proof of registration. Although I personally think it’s absurd to fine someone for not having proof of something an officer could easily look up, the law is at least logical. You were obligated by law to carry something in your vehicle, and … Read entire article »

Filed under: Arizona Statutes, Government Rants

Terrible Policies

I won’t name names here, but there is one prosecutor’s office in Arizona that has particularly rigid and often ridiculous office policies regarding plea bargains and a number of other important things that, in my opinion, should be left to the sound judgment of individual prosecutors. Some of the office’s policies are so draconian and inflexible that they are known by pretty much anyone who is even minimally involved with Arizona’s criminal justice system. I imagine 99% of people reading this post instantly knew which office I meant after reading the first sentence. Anyway, in two cases this year where I wrote the assigned prosecutors letters presenting overwhelming exculpatory evidence and requesting the cases be dismissed, I had conversations like this: Me: Have you looked over what I gave you? Them: … Read entire article »

Filed under: Practice in General, Professionalism, Prosecutors

Courtroom Manners

In a certain jurisdiction where I regularly find myself practicing, defense attorneys line up to call their cases. Generally, it works out well. If I have a quick matter, like a continuance, the other attorneys let me go first. If I know I’m going to be there for a while, I’ll let other attorneys go ahead. Of course, my primary concern is what my client wants. If my clients want me to call the case as soon as possible, unless there’s a compelling reason not to, that’s exactly what I do. A couple months ago, an attorney showed up (I was the first person in the courtroom, but I was speaking with the bailiff) and went straight to the front. His entire demeanor was arrogant … Read entire article »

Filed under: Practice in General, Professionalism

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