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San Francisco
Full-time attorney, part-time . . . something.
Interests: bike riding, writing, litigating, conjugating, arguing about useless trivia, trans-atlantic rowing (solo), trans-atlantic rowing (as part of human pyramid), nude civil-war reenacting, team cite-checking (european summer league).
Recent Activity
Here are some reading recommendations for the holiday weekend (this assumes, of course, that you have already read carefully and in full each of the 3,396 posts and one book that I have spewed forth to date): Former federal prosecutor... Continue reading
Posted 2 days ago at Lowering the Bar
You hopefully recall the case of Tamir Rice, the sixth-grader killed by a Cleveland police officer last November even though the 911 caller who reported that the boy had a gun told the dispatcher it was "probably fake." This is... Continue reading
Posted 3 days ago at Lowering the Bar
The caption in this KGMH report oversells the story a bit, but then so does my headline. The Aspen Times reported on May 19 that a man who was accused of violating a protective order brought a stuffed owl along... Continue reading
Posted 3 days ago at Lowering the Bar
Those of you who specialize in octopus law already know this, of course, but I just learned that at least in the European Union the octopus is treated as a vertebrate for certain legal purposes. If knowing this doesn't seem... Continue reading
Posted 4 days ago at Lowering the Bar
Anybody? <crickets> Somebody's gotta go do it, guys. Oral argument's coming up in the Sixth Circuit.... No, we can't just dismiss the charges. Yes, you have to do it with a straight face. <crickets> C'mon. I need a volunteer here.... Continue reading
Posted May 16, 2015 at Lowering the Bar
Actually, this is not likely to become an ongoing series, because I'm confident that most Australians are quite capable of stealing an ATM if they wanted to. No, this one wasn't. That's true. Neither is the guy in today's clip.... Continue reading
Posted May 15, 2015 at Lowering the Bar
And why has your client not appeared today? the court asked Edinburgh solicitor Roy Harley. Harley said he didn't know, but noted that "[t]o be frank, My Lord, when he arrived at my office [last week] he was wearing a... Continue reading
Posted May 13, 2015 at Lowering the Bar
That ruling might seem either really stupid or worthy of Solomon, but it's actually just what the DNA evidence showed. In what is said to be only the third such paternity case in the U.S., a New Jersey judge ruled... Continue reading
Posted May 11, 2015 at Lowering the Bar
Woe unto you, lawyers! for ye have taken away the key of knowledge: ye entered not in yourselves, and them that were entering in ye hindered. Luke 11:52 (KJV) Well, the Lord's lawsuit against all similarly situated homosexuals lasted just... Continue reading
Posted May 7, 2015 at Lowering the Bar
I know exactly what you're thinking—one god isn't enough gods for a class action. That makes no sense at all! And even if there were more than one, how likely is it that they would be similarly situated so that... Continue reading
Posted May 6, 2015 at Lowering the Bar
The Associated Press reported last week that a Greek court had convicted a 46-year-old man of stealing electricity, although at the time of trial he had been dead for a couple of weeks. Normally, being dead is a pretty good... Continue reading
Posted May 4, 2015 at Lowering the Bar
Amazingly, this is not from an episode of South Park, but rather is actual testimony from a DEA agent before the Utah Senate in February. (Washington Post) At the time, Utah was considering a bill to legalize the medical use... Continue reading
Posted May 4, 2015 at Lowering the Bar
What's your favorite government program? Mine's the one where the government takes your truck without asking, uses it in a drug sting, botches the operation, refuses to pay for the damage caused by drug dealers filling it (and your driver)... Continue reading
Posted May 1, 2015 at Lowering the Bar
Many remarkable legal documents land in my inbox, and I try to mention as many as I can. Of that group, only a select few are remarkable enough to make it into the Hall(s) of Fame. I don't think any... Continue reading
Posted Apr 29, 2015 at Lowering the Bar
I now return to the critical project of covering the often-ridiculous official stuff of all 50 U.S. states, and, I have now decided, all our non-states as well. This time, it's the District of Columbia. Although D.C. only has four... Continue reading
Posted Apr 27, 2015 at Lowering the Bar
In this Facebook post, Tamah Jada Clark, the author of the now-legendary pleading entitled "To F— This Court And Everything That It Stands For," expresses puzzlement as to why that pleading "has now, apparently, become a 'big deal.'" She also... Continue reading
Posted Apr 24, 2015 at Lowering the Bar
What was I just saying about the bottomless well of human stupidity? (That's the well I was talking about.) The examples are both endless and varied. Here's another brief, for example. At only nine pages, this one is well within... Continue reading
Posted Apr 23, 2015 at Lowering the Bar
People sometimes ask where I find "all this stuff" as if there were a limited amount of such material. There is not. It is endless. The well is deep, my friends. Nay, do not seek the bottom, for it cannot... Continue reading
Posted Apr 23, 2015 at Lowering the Bar
When Michael Daly wrote at The Daily Beast that convicted murderer Saul Rodriguez "bawled like a psychopathic baby" at his sentencing, he probably meant that Rodriguez is a psychopath who bawled like a baby, not literally that he bawled like... Continue reading
Posted Apr 22, 2015 at Lowering the Bar
Few details are available regarding this incident, but then how many do you need? Last week in Tulsa, a woman noticed a man "covered in blood" stumbling around the parking lot of an apartment complex at about 1 a.m. When... Continue reading
Posted Apr 21, 2015 at Lowering the Bar
From a recent Courthouse News Service report of cases filed in central California: Christianne M. v. Robert M. dba [Redacted] Apartments 4/17/2015 TN2202 Habitability. Defendants' apartment had mold, water intrusion, contaminants, and mushrooms growing out of the bathroom ceiling. Download... Continue reading
Posted Apr 21, 2015 at Lowering the Bar
Facing a Monday trial on two misdemeanor counts of owl harassment, Dell Schanze decided to plead guilty instead. Schanze, who also goes by the nickname "Super Dell," became (in)famous in Utah some time ago as the TV pitchman for his... Continue reading
Posted Apr 20, 2015 at Lowering the Bar
Although such items can certainly be terrifying, in this particular case an appellate court in New Jersey decided that throwing one at a corrections officer did not constitute "attempted assault with a weapon." According to the report (thanks, Robert), Gerald... Continue reading
Posted Apr 17, 2015 at Lowering the Bar
It still hasn't caught any terrorists, but it has managed to root out a conspiracy of gropers (maybe sub-conspiracy is a better term) within its own ranks, according to this report. After another employee reported that a screener at Denver... Continue reading
Posted Apr 15, 2015 at Lowering the Bar
Hey, your taxes are due this week—or are they? Yes, they are, that was a figure of speech and not a suggestion that you should treat federal taxes as optional. That is one of the many arguments you should not... Continue reading
Posted Apr 13, 2015 at Lowering the Bar