On Carrying Pictures of Chairman Mao

For the most part, the Assistant U.S. Attorneys here in D.C. seem to have things right. For one thing, they return your phone calls, usually on the same day, and I have to give them credit for that…. Read More

The “Stet Docket” in D.C.

One of the best programs for first-time offenders in D.C. is the “stet processus” or “stet docket.” Stet is Latin for “let it stand.”  Stet processus means “let the process stand.” The terms of a “stet docket” are… Read More

On Foot Pursuits and Police Officer Safety

I have a tremendous amount of respect for what police officers are required to do.  An admitted chicken/scaredy-cat myself, I want to be running from the scene, not toward it, when bad things start to happen. I was,… Read More

On A “Person of Interest” and Other Euphemisms

My father hates euphemisms.  A retired English professor, he is a purist when it comes to language.  He believes you should say what you mean to say. This distaste for euphemisms has sometimes led to discomfort on my… Read More

Everyone Should Have An Identical Twin

For over 20 years, Detective Wynn conducted line-ups at the Curran-Fromhold Correctional Facility (CFCF) in Philadelphia.  The line-ups were carried out in a little triangular-shaped room just beyond the main reception area. You know the way it looks… Read More

Demand To See Your Lawyer. Then Shut Up. Really.

With thanks to Randy England of Mississippi Criminal Defense Lawyer, below is an amusing and informative YouTube video spelling out the reasons that you should never, ever speak to the police when under investigation for a criminal offense…. Read More

Protecting The Rights of Camera-Toting Tourists in D.C.

Anyone who has ever visited the Internet is now familiar with the large number of videotapes capturing police officers running amok on hapless citizens.  A couple of weeks ago, for example, I posted a video of the Toronto… Read More

Debunking Popular Myths About The U.S. Criminal Justice System

With thanks to both Don Ramsell and Rick Horowitz for the heads up, Cracked.Com has done a humorous but informative piece debunking popular myths perpetuated by T.V. and the movies about the U.S. criminal justice system. Below is… Read More

On the Tyranny of Court Personnel

Although Philadelphia is famous for the corruption within its government and police force, my wife and I were still taken aback to encounter it in person upon moving to the city in 2002.  I, for example, was surprised… Read More

Arraignment in D.C. Superior Court

The arraignment is usually the first court appearance for a criminal defendant in Washington, D.C. and, as such, tends to cause particular anxiety for clients. Do I need a lawyer at the arraignment? What do I say? Should… Read More