Professional Responsibility/Ethics

Life Lessons for My Law Practice

October 2, 2014 Law Practice

I am in Nairobi.  Kenya is famous, among other things, for its malachite jewelry, and I would like to buy my wife a malachite necklace.  I check at the hotel store and see that the necklaces there sell for well over $100.  So I go out to a market on the street with cash. A […]

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Judge Easterly Lets The Facts Speak For Themselves In Damning the Government for Brady Violations

August 1, 2014 Evidence

You suspect it happens all the time:  the prosecutor withholds exculpatory information from the defendant, thereby preventing the defendant from mounting an effective defense.  The problem is that, with the government in sole possession of all the information, you have no way of proving it. And then there is Vaughn v. United States, __ A.3d […]

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Bronx Prosecutor Castigated for Withholding Exculpatory Evidence

April 8, 2014 Criminal Procedure

According to the New York Daily News, a prosecutor in the Bronx failed to turn over exculpatory information to the defense in a rape case.  The evidence in question was an initial statement by the accuser that the sex had been consensual. The statement was not disclosed until after the defendant sat in jail for […]

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Lawyer Advertising: “Thanks Dan!!!”

March 7, 2014 Law Marketing/Networking
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When Police Officers Shade Their Testimony

March 1, 2014 Professional Responsibility/Ethics

“Runner!” This is what one police officer yells to the other two officers, and all three officers take off in pursuit of a suspect who has decided to flee. According to the officer’s testimony at trial, the officers are 20 feet behind the suspect and “closing fast” when the suspect suddenly comes to full stop.  […]

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Taking The Fall For A Client

October 11, 2013 Law Practice

If you work for the federal government, you have a boss. Depending on the structure and size of an organization, staffers normally work for a branch chief.  The branch chief reports to a division director who, in turn, reports to an office director.  The office director works for an undersecretary or an assistant secretary, and […]

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Thank You For Not Coaching Your Witness

October 2, 2013 Professional Responsibility/Ethics

We should be able to take it for granted that the other side will not coach its witnesses.  But this is not an ideal world.  A couple of years ago, for example, police officers in D.C. accused prosecutors from the Office of the Attorney General with having asked them to lie on the stand in […]

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Busy, Busy, Busy

September 17, 2013 Law Practice

Back when I worked for the federal government, there were some employees who were really, really busy.  You knew this because their offices were a mess.  Their telephones were no longer accepting messages.  They had that harried look.  And they always talked about how busy they were, especially when you came in to give them […]

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These Are The Prosecutors I Respect

September 6, 2013 Professional Responsibility/Ethics

The prosecutor emails me one evening during trial to let me know that one of her witnesses has just conveyed exculpatory information to her.  This is the third time in just a couple of days that the prosecutor has contacted me with this type of information. Although this is my first case against this prosecutor, […]

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Pet Peeves: On Prosecutors and Professionalism

August 28, 2013 Law Practice

Whenever you walk into a store, it doesn’t matter how busy the staff may be, the clerk should immediately acknowledge your presence.  Good afternoon, sir, the clerk should say.  I will be right with you. You forgive a lot once these words have been spoken. Please, you respond graciously.  Take your time.  And you mean […]

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