Friday, July 16, 2010

Whose fault is it?

Attorney Jeff Gamso over on Gamso - For the Defense has written about the bad reputation that attorneys have among just about everyone, including other attorneys. Read about it here and you'll learn that in Ohio, your attorney is legally bound to put your best interests in second or third place. I think most attorneys thankfully ignore this in favor of representing their client.

From the honorable Mr. Gamso's article: ...those people who'll lie and cheat and blow smoke in their passion to unleash killers, rapists, and terrorists on the streets of America so they can continue their depredations.

It's always the attorney, isn't it? The guy was guilty, but the attorney got him off. It wasn't the arresting officers who didn't follow the chain of custody rules, and in fact wouldn't know the chain of custody if their soon to be blood sucking ex-wife used chain of custody to extract another $400 a month in alimony. Nope, not them. They're ignorant and damned proud of it.

It couldn't have been the eye witnesses, either. One who has the DTs so bad he started swatting cockroaches during the cross examination and had to be excused. The other one who, as it turned out, had an adversarial relationship with the accused that went back to a civil suite that our observant bystander to the crime lost rather badly and is still paying off five years later, and who was found guilty two years ago of criminal trespass and aggravated menacing, and who now, under a reasonable cross examination, can't keep his story straight for ten minutes in a row. Then there was the third eye witness, purported to be a Church Deacon, Scout leader and pillar of the community, but who was being paid to testify and actually believed that was the way things worked. You came to court, said what you were supposed to say, and collected your money right afterward. Right? (This last actually happened to a friend of mine, an attorney in Kentucky who discovered this little factoid during questioning, which produced a moment of silence while everyone looked at each other).

No, it wasn't the witnesses. It was that damned slick attorney. Guys like that, there's not a name for 'em.

It couldn't have been the prosecutor, either. The one who was sworn in last month and who has a three foot stack of cases on his desk sitting on top of the 'IN' basket. The prosecutor who got the carpet jerked out from under him each time he tried to question a witness and got answers he hadn't planned on. The prosecutor who kept having to refer to his notes so as to remember the name of the accused, and who kept getting the facts of the case mixed up with the case he is scheduled to try tomorrow. Nope, not a chance it was the prosecutor.

And it wasn't the lead detective's fault, either. This would be the aged, stoop shouldered man with the trembling hands and blood shot eyes who was caught signaling the prosecuting attorney as to when to object. (Another true story - no, I'm NOT making this up.)

It's not the jury, either, one of whom was found sleeping through most of the trial. And, by the way, this is not hyperbole or fiction. I actually saw this happening during a murder trial. No one objected.

Nope. It's that slick attorney every time.

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