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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
The officer's explanation to the lawyer at the time was that if she didn't stop objecting to what he wanted to do, "I will arrest you for resisting arrest." That either made sense to him or he just didn't care.... Continue reading
Posted yesterday at Lowering the Bar
Hey you guys, the TSA has released its annual Look What We Found summary, and it turns out they found a lot of things! Like this cannon! Cannons are prohibited, of course, because of the obvious risk that the enemy... Continue reading
Posted 2 days ago at Lowering the Bar
"Drunken trombone-playing clown fires gun from garage, police say." A great headline and also basically the entire story. What more do you need? Speaking of headlines, how about "Accused crayfish thief caught 'waving it down Melbourne street'"? He was waving... Continue reading
Posted 3 days ago at Lowering the Bar
The chapter on the law of carpooling that I'm planning to include in my next book is coming along nicely now. It'll be more interesting that it sounds, I think. Some time ago we learned that the argument "but I... Continue reading
Posted 4 days ago at Lowering the Bar
The lead-in by ABC13 News in Houston pretty much sums it up: The Rosenberg Police Department admitted that this might be a "long shot," but decided to release the sketch anyway, because you never know. On the department's Facebook page,... Continue reading
Posted 6 days ago at Lowering the Bar
In covering some of these stories, I sometimes wonder whether I am potentially helping to deter future conduct of that kind or possibly just encouraging it. It depends a lot on what the particular conduct is, of course. I would... Continue reading
Posted Jan 23, 2015 at Lowering the Bar
A jury in Syracuse needed just 61 minutes to deliberate on this one, making it all the more puzzling to me why Rick Springfield's attorneys thought they needed a mistrial the first time around. As you may recall, Vicki Calcagno... Continue reading
Posted Jan 21, 2015 at Lowering the Bar
The BBC asked its legal correspondent to weigh in on the case of Alex Nash, the five-year-old who was billed £15.95 for failing to show up for a friend's birthday party. Although the party organizers (the friend's parents) have allegedly... Continue reading
Posted Jan 20, 2015 at Lowering the Bar
Randy Spencer is an attorney who bills himself as "the only stand-up comic to specialize in insurance," and—oh, well, here he is performing at Caroline's, Mr. Skeptic. You don't think that's possible and yet here you are reading a "legal-humor... Continue reading
Posted Jan 20, 2015 at Lowering the Bar
This is a couple of weeks old, so avert your eyes if you object to that. Also avert them if you are a male lawyer with a really deep masculine-sounding voice, because this may make you cry like a little... Continue reading
Posted Jan 16, 2015 at Lowering the Bar
"Knowing Joe, it wasn't really a surprise," said one of Joe's friends about the news that Joe had robbed two banks. "I don't think he meant anything by it other than he was just trying to get some good footage."... Continue reading
Posted Jan 15, 2015 at Lowering the Bar
Seems to me like this would be incredibly awkward, but then I'm not a nudist (except on very special occasions, like Thursdays). Maybe to them it's no big deal. It seems likely, though, that the citizen arrested in this citizens'... Continue reading
Posted Jan 14, 2015 at Lowering the Bar
This happened somewhere out there: Some of you may be surprised to learn that "annoyance" is in fact a valid legal objection. See Fed. R. Civ. P. 26(c)(1) (authorizing court to issue protective order to prevent "annoyance, embarrassment, oppression, or... Continue reading
Posted Jan 12, 2015 at Lowering the Bar
Just a quick update to say that those of you out hunting for Bobby Chen (see "Could Someone Ask Bobby Chen to Call the U.S. Supreme Court?" (Dec. 20, 2014)) can call off the search. Although the Court had agreed... Continue reading
Posted Jan 12, 2015 at Lowering the Bar
"Dubuque is overflowing with things to see and do," says, in a statement that's apparently also supposed to apply in January, when the average temperature there is about 26 degrees (-3 in Canadian degrees). Officials are trying to cope... Continue reading
Posted Jan 11, 2015 at Lowering the Bar
"That's my question about these guys," said the talking head about the Charlie Hebdo attackers, in a discussion about police militarization and racial profiling. "[I]f they had ski masks on, do we even know what color they were, what the... Continue reading
Posted Jan 9, 2015 at Lowering the Bar
I'm a little late to this party, but I didn't want to pass up a chance to mention Kirby Delauter, the county councilman who threatened to sue the Frederick News-Post if it used his name without his permission. It not... Continue reading
Posted Jan 8, 2015 at Lowering the Bar
Filed yesterday in Shreveport: Brandon C.; Michael G. v. Bossier Parish Sheriff Julian Whittington and Chief Deputy Charles Owens, No. 5:15-cv-7 (W.D. La. filed Jan. 5, 2014) Employment discrimination. Plaintiffs were demoted because of their agreement to live with each... Continue reading
Posted Jan 6, 2015 at Lowering the Bar
Okay then: A Florida reptile store owner made notorious after a man died during a 2012 insect-eating contest at the business is behind bars after he smacked employees with a bearded dragon lizard and even put it in his mouth... Continue reading
Posted Jan 5, 2015 at Lowering the Bar
Just a quick update on the continuing controversy in India over the status of His Holiness Shri Ashutosh Maharaj Ji, the Hindu holy man who since January 2014 has been—well, let's do a quiz (choose one): (a) in a deep... Continue reading
Posted Jan 5, 2015 at Lowering the Bar
Literally, as in this effort earlier this week by a thief in Darwin, Australia. Looks like he pumped some sort of gas into the machine, then struck a match—you can guess what happens next but the video is worth 20... Continue reading
Posted Dec 31, 2014 at Lowering the Bar
In a lovely ceremony last week, the president of Argentina, Christina Fernández de Kirchner, became the godmother of Yair Tawil (second from left). Contrary to some reports, this had nothing to do with him turning into a werewolf. Not directly,... Continue reading
Posted Dec 29, 2014 at Lowering the Bar
Several of these items deserve special treatment, but I am way behind and still have to finish my Christmas shopping. Please accept this list therefore as my Christmas gift to you. An IRS spokesperson stated that yes, the criminal charges... Continue reading
Posted Dec 24, 2014 at Lowering the Bar
Yep. Well, I guess it depends on what you mean by "in Congress." Nothing in the Constitution disqualifies a felon from serving in Congress. That doesn't mean he or she can avoid serving time in prison, but conviction doesn't necessarily... Continue reading
Posted Dec 24, 2014 at Lowering the Bar
Well, this may be a new low, even for Siberian tax collectors. The Itar-TASS news agency (via the BBC) reported in August that cотрудники Томского управления Федеральной службы судебных приставов, не найдя у должницы другого имущества, наложили арест на четырех... Continue reading
Posted Dec 20, 2014 at Lowering the Bar