THE CAPTAIN REPORTS:
Thanks Dan ..... Did I mention I'm Jewish? .....
In case you have been living on the Planet Mars, and not yet heard about Attorney Dan Muessig, he is all the rage and his YouTube Video has gone viral over his self-promotional ad as a criminal defense attorney in the State of Pennsylvania.
Here is the video:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5KfACTAOPa0
And here is the recent interview Muessig gave to Slate.com about the video and the backlash it has been causing in the legal world:
COPS NEVER LIE .......
Next time you are in Court appearing before one of your favorite "state oriented" Judges who have never met a lying cop, just tell them to read this post:
So your client is pulled over for running a red light. A search is conducted and two grams of a green leafy substance is found along with ledgers indicating sales. Your client is arrested and charged with Possession W/Intent To Sell, a third degree felony. You interview your client and he insists he did not run the red light. He also tells you that the officers, from BSO, actually stopped him in the City of Boca Raton. What do you do?
Well, if you're top notch Broward criminal defense attorney Russell Williams, you go the extra mile. You pull police documents and police radio transmissions and you nail the lying scum (the cops) locking them in during a deposition.
From the radio transmissions:
In the recording, deputies can be heard saying they stopped Giunto "just south of Camino." Camino Real in Boca Raton is 1.7 miles away from 200 North Federal Highway; (the location the officers put on the "A" form).
"I'm gonna try to catch up to him," one deputy said. "I'm gonna say that's our infraction there is that he took the light. … Our only problem is, now, where we are," one of the deputies said. "What do you think?"
Here is the full article from the Sun Sentinel (HT JAABLOG):
PROBATIVE VALUE v. PREJUDICIAL EFFECT ... THE AUTOPSY PHOTOS .....
The Third weighed in on the issue this week in the case of Montes-Valentin v. State, http://www.3dca.flcourts.org/Opinions/3D12-2063.pdf
The case was a DUI/SBI before Judge Migna Sanchez-Llorens. Appellate Attorneys Richard Klugh, Jr and John Bergendahl argued two issues before the three Judge panel of Rothenberg, Emas, and Logue.
First Issue: Admission of the Blood Test Results. In the case, the State may have failed to present evidence that the blood was drawn by a qualified person pursuant to the statute. Only one problem; the defense attorney forgot to object. Well, they did object, but when they did so, they raised a general objection; "Improper predicate" and "lack of foundation" That's a NO NO; you must provide a specific argument, not a general objection, in order to preserve the issue. When they did finally provide a specific objection, they did so too late - during the JOA argument, after the evidence had already been admitted.
Second Issue: Admission of the autopsy photos. The defense argued that any Probative Value of admitting the photos was outweighed by the Prejudicial Effect. Surprise, surprise, the 3rd DCA agreed. But, they also concluded that "the error was harmless beyond a reasonable doubt".
What both the State Attorneys office, and our Robed Readers, need to learn from this opinion, though, is clear. Think long and hard before you introduce those gory, bloody, photos of the body of the victim. It is the rare occasion that the autopsy photos have much relevance to the elements of the crime; or at least those elements being challenged by the defense attorney. Judges and Prosecutors need to remember that, long after they finish this trial and move on to their next big case, they are sending home 6 or 12 very dedicated civic minded jurors who will remember those photos every time their heads hit the pillow; for many years to come. Those images are seared into their memories for eternity.
The court said, "We therefore agree with the defendant that the probative value of the photographs was outweighed by its prejudicial effect, and, thus, the trial court abused its discretion by introducing the photographs into evidence".
The weather is clear and cool, so enjoy our Magic City this weekend. I'll be hanging out in South Beach, people watching whilst sipping on a cold mojito.
CAPTAIN OUT .....