What Would You Do?

How About a Week in Cabo for a Death Penalty?

April 1, 2011

As a criminal appeals lawyer, I have noticed a disturbing trend developing in a number of prosecutor offices around the country.  Supervisors and elected prosecutors are offering prosecutors in their offices bonuses based on their conviction rates or number of cases tried in a given year resulting in criminal convictions.  The bonuses have taken the [...]

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A Criminal Appeals Lawyer’s Foolish Client

March 4, 2011

An article in the American Bar Journal caught my attention this week.  It was about a law student who foolishly decided to be her own criminal appeals lawyer. A fool for a client The law student was ticketed for a traffic offense.  She represented herself at trial.  She then served as her own criminal appeals lawyer [...]

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Communicating The Plea Offer, or “I Thought I Told You About That”

December 5, 2010

Plea bargaining is a fact of life in the criminal justice system.  Over 90% of all criminal prosecutions are resolved by means of a plea agreement between the prosecution and the defense. Plea bargaining can be an ongoing process with multiple plea offers over a protracted period of time.  Once an agreement is reached between [...]

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What Would You Do? Excluding Dog Tracking Evidence.

November 19, 2010

Okay, let’s assume there was an armed robbery of a convenience store.  The clerk is unable to identify the robber because she never got a good look at him but she is able to describe his clothing and she identifies a shotgun as the weapon used.  The robber fled the scene after the crime, and [...]

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