They Never Learn Because the Courts Don’t Teach

I wonder if the Sheriff’s Department will ever learn.

By now, it should be well-knownvery well-known — how I feel about shackling children. I personally think it takes a special kind of SICK FUCK to put children in shackles. Especially when there’s no real reason for it.

Not only that, it’s AGAINST THE LAW. But then, we don’t really expect the Fresno County Sheriff’s Department to actually follow the law, do we?

And so, today, another client — you may recall this happened last week, or the week before (I forget exactly) — was brought to juvenile court in shackles. Read more

Toys, But It’s Not A Game

One of Fresno’s top criminal defense lawyers, Rick Berman, was arrested yesterday. The circumstances of the arrest are unsurprising to me: I’ve often told my wife as I leave for work in the morning that it could happen to me.


Because Fresno’s law enforcement officers — particularly in courthouses — are no different than those elsewhere in the country. As Fresno attorney Peter Sean Bradley put it:

The militarization of the police is a problem. It seems to have fostered the attitude among the police that they are a kind of occupying power in a conquered nation of people who are criminals who have just not been caught yet.

Or to be more blunt about it, in the minds of law enforcement: “Our job is subjugation. We have no legal restraints. Resistance is futile.”

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First, We Kill All The Lawyers

A lot of what goes wrong in America today is the fault of the lawyers.

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How Cops Think

Scott Greenfield, the New York criminal defense attorney with the Simple Justice blog, provides today two interesting examples of how cops think.  Or don’t, as the case may be.

Fresno County Sheriff Mims provides her own example.

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The War on Rights

Well, I’m sure you noticed that this place you’ve arrived at is known as “Fresno Criminal Defense.”  So I’m also sure you’re not expecting me to write about the War in Iraq, or Afghanistan, nor will I — as I did yesterday — have anything to say about the Mexican-American War, although actually all those countries have some kind of tie-in with the War about which I will write: a War we are losing in every possible way.

A War, in fact, which we cannot win.  Because to win, you see, we’d have to be something other than what we are…

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The Worship of Law Enforcement

For those looking for a post bashing the police, you will be disappointed.  For those looking for a post praising the police, you will likely be disappointed, also (but only because you’re never happy when my praise is not unqualified).  This post is not exactly about the police, although it necessarily discusses them quite a bit.

This post is something I began thinking about writing on the day two law enforcement officers were killed in Minkler (2015 update: I should learn not to link to Fresno Bee stories; they always disappear after a short time) and another was wounded by a deranged individual who planned their deaths, as well as his own.  This post is about my worship of law enforcement.

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Time to Fight Back?

Today’s newspaper brings the inane story of attorney Rick Berman being threatened with criminal charges for attempting to get into a courthouse without removing his watch.

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The Very Definition of a Police State

Yesterday afternoon, I stood in the backyard at the home of friends, waiting.  The day before, my friends were married in that backyard; yesterday the reception was held there.  People were arriving; the reception was just getting underway.

The beginning noises of the reception were drowned out by the buzz of a small airborne black-and-white vehicle.  I watched as the helicopter appeared to be repeatedly circling the yard in which I was standing. I could just read a few of the words on the tail.  One stood out in capitals: “POLICE.”

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W[h]ither Freedom?

Maintaining multiple blogs has turned out to be more difficult than I thought, primarily because of the way I write.  Those who read Probable Cause: The Legal Blog with the Really Low Standard of Review may notice that I tend to support my comments with citations.  I suppose if I simply write what’s on my mind, my own thoughts, ideas and opinions, without attempting to “support” my points in this way, I can get more blogging done.  So far, though, I’ve found myself constitutionally unable to do that.

Bloggers elsewhere have been suffering a different fate.

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Shooting Holes in the U.S. Constitution

Mary was angry as she waited in line at the grocery store in the rain.  Ahead, she could see the cause of the delay: some stupid older dude with long gray hair, struggling to empty his pockets into the bowl before going through the metal detector.

Where did he find jeans with pockets in the first place?!

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