Keeping Score in Room 113

If ever I fancied the notion of becoming a judge, I changed my mind after spending another day in domestic violence court last week. The judge in Room 113 of D.C. Superior Court – where civil protection orders… Read More

God Comes Before a Good Defense

It is supposed to be a three-fer for Wayne my investigator and me. It is a domestic violence case in which the defendant and complainant are still living together. This means that Wayne and I can re-interview the… Read More

Sizing Up Opposing Counsel

Opposing counsel’s praecipe arrives in the mail.  I am representing the respondent in a civil protection order hearing; he the petitioner. I google the lawyer’s name to find a self-made website and a less than professional photograph of… Read More

Empathizing with the Accuser at a Civil Protection Order Hearing

“Oh,” says the witness to the judge.  “There is one other thing I would like to say.” The witness is the father of the respondent in a civil protection order hearing.  He is an old man and he… Read More

The “Back Story” in a Civil Protection Order Hearing

I took a break yesterday afternoon from losing to Norm Pattis at Words with Friends to finish up a civil protection order hearing in D.C. Many colleagues eschew any case involving a domestic dispute.  The cases are messy. … Read More

When The Complaining Witness Refuses To Testify In A Domestic Violence Case

A couple of weeks ago, I described a number of myths about the U.S. criminal justice system. One popular misconception I did not address was the question of who actually prosecutes a criminal case. You often hear people… Read More