My client’s name isn’t important so we’ll call him C.H. He was minding his own business in Pensacola, Florida when he was arrested. The police claim he’d mugged several people in town over the previous week.
One of the purported victims was peculiar. He wasn’t peculiar by virtue of his long hair or beard. Nor was he peculiar in that he was wandering the dark streets alone at night with no real destination in mind.
I’m not comfortable with the idea of Donald Trump as president. On the other hand, I’m not comfortable with the idea of Hillary Clinton as president, either.
I tend to have a different set of priorities than those in the national spotlight. I’m primarily concerned with issues like putting teeth into the confrontation clause, figuring out how the ancient language of “unreasonable searches” applies in a world not imagined by those who invented the phrase, and wondering if I’m the only one who actually sees the term “excessive bail shall not be required…” to kick off the Eighth amendment. You know, issues of freedom.
That’s not to say that matters of national debate don’t concern me. They just tend to fall lower on the list of pressing things. Because of that, I tend to vote 3rd party. It’s been that way since I cast my first vote (for Ross Perot, duh) in 1992.
How many of you could use help with the internet? Today we’re happy to have an “expert” that can help you market on the world wide web. He’s an accomplished twitterer with over 11,000 impressive tweets, the back of his head was featured on Huffington Post, and he’s even got his very own web page! We are pleased to have Matt Haiduk today to tell us how you should market your pracrice on twitter!
The Awkward Ice Breaker
Happy to make it here today, although I know the intro was unnecessary because you saw me tweet about how I’d be here, right? [feigned laughter by 3 polite people] Show of hands, how many of you here today use twitter in your law practice. [3 people raise hands] Ok, 3? That’s pretty good. Normally it’s nobody. How many of you 3 let a marketing company post your tweets? [2 people raise hands] Well, after today that’s going to change! It’s so simple and easy you won’t want to waste the money. Continue reading “The Twitter Law Seminar That Never Will Be.”
“What do you think about Making a Murderer?” By the end of December I had to answer that question several times a week. The answer was, of course, “I don’t know.” I hadn’t really planned to watch another criminal trial documentary.
I don’t own the remote, though. I bought the remote. Paid for it with my own money, even. I don’t get to touch it in any substantive way other than passing it over to The Boss, though.
It wasn’t particularly easy, but many things in the world of criminal defense aren’t.
The shame of Draughn’s legal problems isn’t really the absurdity of possession crimes, though. While the hypotheticals do a great job highlighting that absurdity, the root of their difficulty is in a couple of much more pervasive aspects of the system. Continue reading “Ponderings on Possession, Part Two.”
To make it more concrete, suppose I’m walking down the street, minding my own business, when a stranger confronts me, thrusts a duffle bag into my hands, and runs away. When I open a duffle bag, I find a tightly wrapped kilo of cocaine, a pile of child pornography, and a MAC-10 submachinegun. As I look up, I notice several police officers coming down the street, obviously searching for someone or something. They haven’t noticed me yet. What should I do next?
I’ve written a lot of posts that haven’t been published. That’s a problem. It’s a problem of being too reserved, too cautious, or concerned about what I’ve written to offer it up for public consumption.
Early this year- in January- I wrote a post called “10 years.” It spoke to my decade of private criminal defense work since leaving the Office of the Public Defender. I wrote about how much I loved this job, how fun it’s been, and how lucky I’ve been to have an extremely helpful group of talented colleagues.
More importantly, I talked about the stark and grave realization of how grating this profession can be. How depressing it is knowing that, as much as you can fight for that guy standing next to you in front of the judge, the system isn’t designed for change even if the system has it wrong. It will be wrong over and over and over and over Continue reading “I’m Down But Not Out.”
Actual Effects Are More Important Than Theoretical Debates
Law and politics are, sadly, too much like Philosophy- lots of people with strong opinions sitting around in a room talking about what should (or will) happen in the “out there” world if everybody in the world acted (or was forced to act by passage of law) in the way they wanted. “Cut taxes and nobody will starve.” Or, “raise minimum wage and nobody will s Continue reading “Actually preventing DUI is the goal, right?”
I’ll admit to not paying a ton of attention to every minute detail of Snowden’s disclosures when they were fist reported. I knew he’d blown the top off of electronic spying. I knew he fled the country, and I knew he’s facing charges that will likely land him in prison the rest of his life if the U.S. intelligence committee ever catches up with him.
I didn’t need to know much more in order to connect the dots. So, I’ll probably forget a lot of what is in the movie, which is fine- it’s completely aggravating.