Criminal Defense

What We Can Learn From Lindsay Lohan’s Courtroom Notes

First and most importantly, when covering your face with notes you have taken in court, the side you have written on should face toward you:   Second, Lindsay has excellent handwriting, the downside of which is that your notes may be legible from…


Fools Convicted

Conviction affirmed, technically, but I liked the sound of this headline better. Kurt Johnson and Dale Heineman were accused of scamming homeowners by promising to get rid of their mortgage debt for a fee.  They did get rid of it,…


No Waiting for Dubious Arguments at the Blagojevich Trial

The corruption trial of former Illinois governor Rod Blagojevich started this morning, but he fired the first salvo before even walking in the front door.  It missed. His lawyers filed a motion prior to opening statements arguing that Blagojevich had…



Scott Rothstein: Why Come Back From Morocco?

Back to the Scott Rothstein story.  Last time, we discussed why Rothstein fled to Morocco specifically.  I guess ultimately the answer depends on whether you believe it was a coincidence that not long before the fleeing started, he assigned somebody…


Police Dog: The Meat-Smuggler’s Nemesis

In August, police in Framingham, Massachusetts, responded to a report that a gas station had been robbed.  They brought along a tracking dog and released it in the direction in which witnesses said the robber had gone.  Just a few…



Jury Finds Florida Man Was Not “Too Fat to Kill”

Edward Ates "looked down and shook his head in court" as he listened to the jury's verdict against him on November 6.  As he did, his ponderous jowls wobbled slowly from side to side.  Or, at least, ponderous and wobbly jowls would…


Gang Member to Get Makeover for Trial, Says Attorney

"Clothes make the man, and a mustache couldn't hurt either," will apparently be the trial theme in Richard Rodriguez's case against the city of El Monte, California.  Rodriguez sued the city in July, alleging that a police officer used excessive…


“Grand Theft Auto” Insanity Defense Fails Again

I know this has been tried before, and I'd be surprised if it has ever worked, but it didn't work this time.  In an opinion issued on October 14, the California Court of Appeal held that an insanity plea to…