Archive for the ‘attorneys’ Tag

04-17-2014 The Search for Justice and Fairness!   2 comments

I can’t even begin to remember just how many times over the years I’ve taken attorneys, the ACLU, and the court systems to task.  I feel I’m as qualified as anyone to bitch and complain about the system because of my long career of working with hundreds of attorneys, judges,and a host of criminal and civil defendants.  Everyday that goes by we hear strange stories about  how screwed up things have become  with the courts and unfortunately the weirder the story the more likely it is to be true. 

I received the following information from a friend who is a retired law enforcement individual with more years of experience than anyone I know.    I pass it along for your amusement and  with a great deal of sympathy for us all.

th1FOSWEKL

THE STELLA AWARDS

It’s time again for the annual ‘Stella Awards’! For those unfamiliar with these awards, they are named after 81-year-old Stella Liebeck who spilled hot coffee on herself and successfully sued McDonald’s in New Mexico , where she purchased coffee. You remember, she took the lid off the coffee and put it between her knees while she was driving. Who would ever think one could get burned doing that, right? That’s right; these are awards for the most outlandish lawsuits and verdicts in the U.S. You know, the kinds of cases that make you scratch your head.

Here are the Stella’s for year — 2013:

* SEVENTH PLACE *   

Kathleen Robertson of Austin, Texas was awarded $80,000 by a jury of her peers after breaking her ankle tripping over a toddler who was running inside a furniture store. The store owners were understandably surprised by the verdict , considering the running toddler was her own son

* SIXTH PLACE *

Carl Truman, 19, of Los Angeles , California won $74,000 plus medical expenses when his neighbor ran over his hand with a Honda Accord. Truman apparently didn’t notice there was someone at the wheel of the car when he was trying to steal his neighbor’s hubcaps .  

* FIFTH PLACE *  

Terrence Dickson, of Bristol , Pennsylvania , who was leaving a house he had just burglarized by way of the garage. Unfortunately for Dickson, the automatic garage door opener malfunctioned and he could not get the garage door to open. Worse, he couldn’t re-enter the house because the door connecting the garage to the house locked when Dickson pulled it shut. Forced to sit for eight, count ’em, EIGHT days and survive on a case of Pepsi and a large bag of dry dog food, he sued the homeowner’s insurance company claiming undue mental Anguish. Amazingly, the jury said the insurance company must pay Dickson $500,000 for his anguish.

* FOURTH PLACE *

Jerry Williams, of Little Rock, Arkansas, garnered 4th Place in the Stella’s when he was awarded $14,500 plus medical expenses after being bitten on the butt by his next door neighbor’s beagle – even though the beagle was on a chain in its owner’s fenced yard. Williams did not get as much as he asked for because the jury believed the beagle might have been provoked at the time of the butt bite because Williams had climbed over the fence into the yard and repeatedly shot the dog with a pellet gun .  

thXENQROFR

* THIRD PLACE *  

Amber Carson of Lancaster, Pennsylvania because a jury ordered a Philadelphia restaurant to pay her $113,500 after she slipped on a spilled soft drink and broke her tailbone. The reason the soft drink was on the floor: Ms. Carson had thrown it at her boyfriend 30 seconds earlier during an argument .

*SECOND PLACE *   

Kara Walton, of Claymont , Delaware sued the owner of a night club in a nearby city because she fell from the bathroom window to the floor, knocking out her two front teeth. Even though Ms. Walton was trying to sneak through the ladies room window to avoid paying the $3.50 cover charge, the jury said the night club had to pay her $12,000 plus dental expenses.

And last but certainly not least:

* FIRST PLACE *

This year’s runaway First Place Stella Award winner was: Mrs. Merv Grazinski, of Oklahoma City , Oklahoma , who purchased new 32-foot Winnebago motor home. On her first trip home, from an OU football game, having driven on to the freeway, she set the cruise control at 70 mph and calmly left the driver’s seat to go to the back of the Winnebago to make herself a sandwich. Not surprisingly, the motor home left the freeway, crashed and overturned. Also not surprisingly, Mrs. Grazinski sued Winnebago for not putting in the owner’s manual that she couldn’t actually leave the driver’s seat while the cruise control was set.

The Oklahoma jury awarded her  $1,750,000 and a new motor home. Winnebago actually changed their operator’s manuals as a result of this suit. 

I could continue telling these kind of stories for hours but the point has already been made.  Sue anyone for anything at anytime regardless of the circumstances.  Welcome to the “Land of the Free” and the home of the “Incredibly Stupid”.

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11-24—2013 Our Judicial System at Work   Leave a comment

Having worked in and out of this country’s judicial system (I use the term loosely) for decades I feel I’ve earned the right to be as critical of the players in that systems as I care to be.  For me it’s a given that most defendants are borderline idiots or they wouldn’t be doing the sort of things requiring arrest. The attorneys are almost as bad and deserve whatever criticism they get as well.  The judges and the remainder of the system are flawed as well but as it’s always said, “our system may a mess but it’s better than all of the others.” That’s a paraphrased quote that I didn’t intentionally butcher, it just kind of happened.

Todays posting includes a few on the record questions and answers from a combination of stupid, inept, and well educated individuals.  They’re questions and answers are pitiful if they weren’t so ridiculous and at times funny.  That these were taken from actual court transcripts is really the scariest part.

  • Q: So the date of conception (of the baby) was August 8th?
    A: Yes.
    Q: And what were you doing at the time?

  • Q: She had three children, right?
    A: Yes.
    Q: How many were boys?
    Q: None.
    A: Were there any girls?

  • Q: How was your first marriage terminated?
    A: By death.
    Q: And by whose death was it terminated?

  • Q: Can you describe the individual?
    A: He was about medium height and had a beard.
    Q: Was this a male or a female?

  • Q: Is your appearance here this morning pursuant to a deposition notice which I sent to your attorney?
    A: No, this is how I dress when I go to work.

  • Q: Doctor, how many autopsies have you performed on dead people?
    A: All my autopsies are performed on dead people.

  • Q: ALL your responses MUST be oral, OK? What school did you go to?
    A: Oral.

  • Q: Do you recall the time that you examined the body?
    A: The autopsy started around 8:30 p.m.
    Q: And Mr. Dennington was dead at the time?
    A: No, he was sitting on the table wondering why I was doing an autopsy.

  • Q: Are you qualified to give a urine sample?

  • Q: Doctor, before you performed the autopsy, did you check for a pulse?
    A: No.
    Q: Did you check for blood pressure?
    A: No.
    Q: Did you check for breathing?
    A: No.
    Q: So then it is possible that the patient was alive when you began the autopsy?
    A: No.
    Q: How can you be so sure, Doctor?
    A: Because his brain was sitting on my desk in a jar.
    Q: But could the patient have still been alive, nevertheless?
    A: Yes, it is possible that he could have been alive and practicing law somewhere.

My only advice is to avoid the judicial system at all costs.  It’s flawed just enough to make it possible for totally innocent people to be convicted and confined.  It’ doesn’t happen all that often but it does occasionally occur. Clean living and avoiding criminal elements is my best advice, it just isn’t worth the risk.  You’ve been warned.

09-29-2013   Leave a comment

If you count my years as a police officer, my time in retail investigations, and seven years working in an assortment of state jails and courthouses, you’d think I’ve seen and heard just about everything.  If you thought that you’d be right.  Those facilities offer up a list of experiences that most people would never experience or want to.  People give me strange looks at times and really have a hard time believing some of those stories.  Odd, weird, and unusual are everyday occurrences there whether they like to believe it or not.

I spent seven years, five days a week sitting in courtrooms and listening to testimony and statement by attorneys that were stupid, funny, and pitiful all at the same time.  For the most part the judges were just highly paid referees between the attorneys and their ever so stupid defendants and witnesses.

These items were actual statements made under oath and recorded by court reporters.  It’s a small sampling of how our criminal justice system really works.

* * *

Q: Are you sexually active?
A: No, I just lie there.

* * *

Q: What is your date of birth?
A: July 15th.
Q: What year?
A: Every year.

* * *

Q: Do you know if your daughter has ever been involved in voodoo or the occult?
A: We both do.
Q: Voodoo?
A: We do.
Q: You do?
A: Yes, voodoo.

* * *

Q: Now doctor, isn’t it true that when a person dies in his sleep, he doesn’t know about it until the next morning?
A: Did you actually pass the bar exam?

* * *

Q: The youngest son, the twenty-year-old, how old is he?

* * *

Q: What gear were you in at the moment of the impact?
A: Gucci sweats and Reeboks.

* * *

Q: This myasthenia gravis, does it affect your memory at all?
A: Yes.
Q: And in what ways does it affect your memory?
A: I forget.
Q: You forget? Can you give us an example of something that you’ve forgotten?

* * *

Q: How old is your son, the one living with you?
A: Thirty-eight or thirty-five, I can’t remember which.
Q: How long has he lived with you?
A: Forty-five years.

* * *

Q: What was the first thing your husband said to you when he woke up that morning?
A: He said, "Where am I, Cathy."
Q: And why did that upset you?
A: My name is Susan.

* * *

Q: Were you present when your picture was taken?

* * *

I really can’t explain to you the look on some of the defendant’s faces when they hear some of the questions their own attorneys ask.  It doesn’t fill them with confidence that their court appointed attorney has no clue about what’s going on.  The attorneys seem speechless at times when they hear their own clients testimony.  I found my jaw dropping on many occasions when a defendant said just enough to convince the jury he was an idiot and a guilty one at that.

09-02-2013   2 comments

As is painfully obvious from many of my earlier posts I’m not a huge fan of attorneys.  I wouldn’t broad-brush all of them because I know many that do their jobs well.  Unfortunately they’re in the minority since we as a nation have become over-run with a ridiculous number of lawyers.  They’ve spent decades slowly and deliberately turning the United States from a common sense way of thinking country to our current levels of lawsuit paranoia.  The fact that ninety percent of judges are either former politicians or attorneys easily explains our country’s litigious difficulties.

They’ve managed to weasel their way into every facet of our lives.  Suing one and all with a landslide of frivolous lawsuits that have clogged up our court system for years to come.  Here are just a few examples.

* * *

  • A convicted bank robber on parole entered a bank, went up to the teller, and said, "Give me the money. I’ve got a bomb." The bank teller did as instructed, except that hidden in the rolls of money turned over to the robber was an anti-robbery device that released tear gas. The device functioned as intended .. and the robber sued the bank.
  • Sometimes, being frugal can cost you more than anticipated. While apparently trying to steal a soft drink from a vending machine in 1998, 19-year-old Kevin Mackle was rocking it dangerously. Suddenly, the weight shift was too hot to handle and the contraption fell on him. The man died following the accident. His relatives sued Coca-Cola Co., two other companies, and Bishop’s University in Lennoxville, Quebec (for about $660,000 US in damages and funeral costs) alleging that the machine was not secured and bore no warning signs.
  • A minister and his wife sued a guide-dog school for $160,000 after a blind man learning to use a seeing-eye dog stepped on the woman’s toe. She sought $80,000 for medical bills, pain & suffering, humiliation and disability. Her husband sought the same amount for loss of his wife’s care, comfort and consortium.
  • A 27-year-old man from Michigan was involved in a rear-end collision. Four years later, he sued the owners of the truck that was responsible for the accident. Having suffered minor injuries, he stated that from then on, his sexual relationship with his wife deteriorated, as he was unable to maintain their sex life. He claimed that he had been so affected by the crash that his personality had been forever changed. In fact, he maintained that the accident turned him into a homosexual. He left his wife, moved in with his parents, began hanging out in gay bars, and became a fervent reader of gay literature. He won his case and was awarded $200,000, while his wife received $25,000.
  • A woman went to her friend’s house and asked for a haircut. Unhappy with her new look, she claimed her friend had willfully, intentionally and maliciously cut her hair without her consent … and sued him for $75,000.

I could continue with hundreds more of these useless and costly lawsuits but what’s the point.  In the majority of these cases the  attorney is paid a large percentage of the money won.  It’s called taking a case on contingency.  The same strategy used for those individuals suing the government for disability benefits for a variety of addictions, both drug and alcohol related.  These attorney believe if you throw enough crap against a wall, some of it is bound to stick.  Free money . . . . Yeah!

These so called attorneys-at-law have also forced companies to over label our everyday products due to fear of lawsuits.  I actually saw an aluminum step ladder for sale in a nearby Home Center that had a sticker on the top step.  Of course it stated an important and secret fact that we weren’t aware of:  This is the Last Step – Don’t Stand Here.  The “Nanny State” strikes again.  Not only is the advice on many of these labels utterly obvious, many are just plain stupid.  Here are a few of those.

  • On a string of Chinese-made Christmas lights:
    For indoor or outdoor use only.
  • On a package of peanuts:
    Warning: contains nuts.
  • On a child’s Superman costume:
    Wearing of this garment does not enable you to fly.
  • On Sears Hairdryer:
    Do not use while sleeping.
  • On a bar of Dial soap:
    Directions: Use like other soap.
  • On some Swann frozen dinners:
    Serving suggestion: Defrost.
  • On frozen food package:
    Product will be hot after heating.
  • On packaging of an iron:
    Do not iron clothes on body.
  • On Nytol sleep aid:
    Warning: may cause drowsiness.

We’ve allowed this to go on for so long it’s now become the norm.  We have only ourselves to blame when we’ve allowed the pursuit of possible free money to completely corrupt our judicial system.  It was never meant to a be a gravy-train for those less than scrupulous attorneys who finally got tired of chasing ambulances.

07-13-2013   Leave a comment

Earlier this week I spent some time ridiculing attorneys and criminal witnesses as to their unbelievable stupidity.  I wouldn’t want anyone to think for a minute that my posting was meant to be malicious, just funny and ridiculous.  I thought today I would include in my musings the behavior of really stupid criminals who make their attorney’s look like geniuses.

You have to admit that people who choose a life of crime aren’t too bright to start with.  The following stories are actual tales about actual stupid criminals arrested within the last few years.  You just can’t make this stuff up.  Many years ago in my rookie year as a police officer my partner told me some valuable words of police wisdom. Since he was my training officer and had almost twenty-five experience on the job I listened intently.  His philosophy about police work was this, "If it wasn’t for the stupid fucking criminals we’d never catch anyone."  Here’s a few of them that were caught.

  • A stupid thief pled guilty to the attempted robbery of a convenience store in Detroit Lakes, Minnesota. The thief told a passerby he was going to rob the store, gave the man a dollar, and asked him to go inside and buy a scarf to help him hide his identity during the crime. The bystander took the dollar, went inside the store… and called the police.
  • During a high school break-in in Plymouth, North Carolina, two really stupid burglars found a camera in one of the classrooms and amused themselves by taking pictures of each other committing the crime. When they couldn’t figure out how to get the film out of the camera, they concluded it wasn’t loaded and left it behind. The men apparently didn’t realize they’d been fooling around with a digital camera that allowed police to downloaded the snapshots to a computer and got a complete photographic record of the break-in. The suspects were quickly arrested.
  • A woman reported her car stolen and mentioned there was a car phone in it. The policeman taking the report called the telephone and told the moron that answered that he had read the ad in the newspaper and was interested in buying the car. They arranged to meet, and the thief was arrested.
  • A dumb ass criminal on trial for drug possession in Pontiac, Michigan, said he’d been searched without a warrant. The prosecutor said the officer didn’t need a warrant because a "bulge" in Christopher’s jacket could have been a gun. "Nonsense," said Christopher, who happened to be wearing the same jacket that day in court. He handed it over so the judge could see it. The judge discovered a packet of cocaine in the pocket and laughed so hard he required a five minute recess to compose himself.
  • A 21 year old idiot, walked up to two patrol officers who were showing their squad car computer felon-location equipment to children in a Detroit neighborhood. When he asked how the system worked, the officer asked him for identification. He gave them his drivers license, they entered it into the computer, and moments later he was arrested because information on the screen showed a two-year-old armed robbery warrant from St. Louis, Missouri.  A huge dumb ass.

What did I tell you?  I guess my old training officer was right on the money with his advice.  Some things are just wisdom for the ages.

07-11-2013   Leave a comment

For most of my working life I’ve had the misfortune to work with hundreds of attorneys.  Some great, some good, some average, some incompetent, and some just plain stupid.   As the overall number of attorney’s increases the likelihood of hiring an incompetent or dumb attorney increases as well.  My job working in state government for seven years placed me in an uncomfortable position directly between the accused defendants and a small army of public defenders. Talk about a rock and a hard place!  A thankless job to be sure but OMG did I get an education.  I think I actually learned more from the criminals than from their representatives.

I also was exposed to hundreds of witnesses whose sole purpose was either to help  free an accused or to put him/her away for as long as possible.  The only common denominator I found throughout the judicial and correctional systems was a massive amount of DUMB.  These following quotes are actual statements between attorneys and people called to the witness stand in a plethora of criminal matters.  Enjoy them and be glad they aren’t representing you.

Attorney: Did you ever sleep with him in New York?
Witness: I refuse to answer that question.
Attorney: Did you ever sleep with him in Chicago?
Witness: I refuse to answer that question.
Attorney: Did you ever sleep with him in Miami?
Witness: No

Attorney: What is your date of birth?
Witness: July 15.
Attorney:. What year?
Witness: Every year.

Attorney: This myasthenia gravis, does it affect your memory at all?
Witness: Yes.
Attorney: And in what ways does it affect your memory?
Witness: I forget.
Attorney: You forget. Can you give us an example of something that you’ve forgotten?

Attorney: How far apart were the vehicles at the time of the collision?

Attorney: What did the tissue samples taken from the victim’s vagina show?
Witness: There were traces of semen.
Attorney: Male semen?

Attorney: Is your appearance here this morning pursuant to a disposition notice which I sent to your attorney?
Witness: No, this is how I dress when I go to work.

Believe me when I tell you that these are just the tip of the “stupid” iceberg when it comes to the criminal justice system.  It’s no joke when someone tells you that the term “Criminal Justice System” is the ultimate oxymoron. It is scary stupid every minute of every day especially when you spend two days a week inside a jail.  I spent during my time with the State Judicial Branch close to seven hundred days inside jails interviewing prisoners and watching the system at work.  Every time I walked from a jail at the end of the day I breathed a sigh of relief and thanked God I was not incarcerated and needed no help from an attorney.  DUMB AND DUMBER!