We can think of no better way to start off the 2015 blogging season than to refer you post-haste, to Roy Black's blog and his coda to F. Lee Bailey.
Go here, now, and read, and learn.
Lee Bailey's life reads like a Shakespearean tragedy, with a sad ending of disbarment, the roots of which were planted in one of his greatest achievements- the cross of detective Mark Furman in the OJ Simpson trial. Roy Black wrote that at the time he didn't think Bailey had done much damage during the cross. But in a rare instance of your humble blogger seeing more than the Jedi-Master of Cross-examination, we immediately saw what Bailey had done. The greatness of the cross was that Furman was finished, only he and the prosecution didn't know it yet. Like a ninja, Bailey had slipped in the knife without anyone knowing it. And the lesson there was, as Roy Black wrote: "A great cross reverberates across the entire scope of the evidence and takes on a life of its own." Indeed.
For us, constant worriers about the fate of the world, the ending of Bailey's career re-enforces a belief (nee fear) we have had for sometime- the legal careers of old criminal defense attorneys often end badly. Maybe it's because the vast sums lawyers occasionally collect cause them to forget the hard times, and they fail to save.
As equally as likely is the superman complex- we walk into the belly of beast and save the damned. The rules don't apply to us.
Or so we think.
Until we make that one fatal mistake. We ignore that nagging pain until a health care disaster strikes us down. We spend like the cases and clients will never stop.
Or as Roy Black wrote about Bailey's downfall : "The man who protected everyone didn't protect himself."
Stop. You. Reading this. Stop. The texts and emails will wait.
Read that again. "The man who protected everyone didn't protect himself."
If it can happen to one of the greatest criminal defense attorneys of the last sixty years, it can happen to you.
Rumpole's first admonition for 2015.
See You In Court.
WELCOME TO THE OFFICIAL RICHARD E GERSTEIN JUSTICE BUILDING BLOG. THIS BLOG IS DEDICATED TO JUSTICE BUILDING RUMOR, HUMOR, AND A DISCUSSION ABOUT AND BETWEEN THE JUDGES, LAWYERS AND THE DEDICATED SUPPORT STAFF, CLERKS, COURT REPORTERS, AND CORRECTIONAL OFFICERS WHO LABOR IN THE WORLD OF MIAMI'S CRIMINAL JUSTICE. THIS BLOG HAS BEEN CALLED "THE DEFINITIVE BLOG ON MIAMI CRIMINAL LAW" BY THE NY TIMES, THE WASHINGTON POST, THE POPE, AND DONALD TRUMP WHO ALSO ONCE SAID IT WAS "REALLY GREAT". POST YOUR COMMENTS, OR SEND RUMPOLE A PRIVATE EMAIL AT HOWARDROARK21@GMAIL.COM