Monthly Archives: January 2008
What Would Ronald Do?
Apparently, Mitt Romney knows exactly how Ronald Reagan would stand on all modern issues. In fact, in sixty seconds, Romney manages to name check the former president 15 times! And you know what, Mitt? If Reagan were alive today, you know what he’d do? He’d quote from the Boy Scout’s handbook, he’d secretly sell some arms to Iran, increase defense spending 40 percent, and then feign ignorance while running up huge deficits and quadrupling the national debt. But you know what? He wouldn’t have to say, “We’re gonna win in Iraq,” because he wasn’t dumb enough to get us involved in Iraq in the first place — that’s what the Iranians were for, after all.
Justice is Served!
I know the cops gotta meet their quota, but come on! This is just ridiculous:
Gina Boyd’s day already had soured when her 3-year-old daughter began vomiting in her Dodge Caravan. Then she got a traffic ticket.
Boyd, 27, got a $123 citation from a Hillsborough County deputy on Monday after she made an improper U-turn to attend to her vomiting daughter.
Boyd is a stay-at-home mother of three whose husband is in the Army. He is currently serving in Iraq.
You know what? If I were Gina Boyd, while the officer was writing out the ticket, I think I’d just hold up my daughter, tickle her underarms a little, and watch her spew all over the cop. That’s what he can do with his $123 ticket. Asshole.
At Porn’s End
Daniel Thompson — who operates one of those Clean Flix stores in Utah, which sanitizes films by removing graphic sex and violence from them (he gave away 400 “clean” copies of Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End just last month) — has been arrested for (ironically) having sex with underage girls. He apparently solicited them by telling the girls they would be in one of his porn films. And, in fact, a search of his business’ premises also uncovered a “large amount” of porn.
Huh. Apparently, by “cleaning” the movies, he was merely appropriating the graphic sex scenes — stockpiling them for his own personal use. Two birds. One stone. Smart, Mr. Thompson.
The Daily Memo - 1/31/08
“Chicken man for mayor! Chicken man for city council!” (KOAA)
Those young lawyers and their freewheeling, carefree wear whatever they want attitudes! Back in my day, we had to go up a snowy hill, both ways, in suits! (WSJ Law Blog)
It’s hard out there for the Biglaw partners, what with senior associates making more than some of them. (Above the Law)
Our new Attorney General is still keeping his mouth shut, rather than admitting that waterboarding is torture. (FindLaw)
The California Supremes have something to say about unlicensed managers representing actors in la-la. (Law.com)
VANITY FAIR versus VANITY INSANITY … fight! (The TTABlog)
Sometimes, it’s better just to do the time:
A serial sex offender who failed to convince a jury he could not be a flasher because his genitals were too small was jailed for 20 months.
Michael Carney, a married 41-year-old father of two, claimed he was too embarrassed about the size of his manhood to expose himself to women - and showed the jury at Teesside Crown Court photos as proof.
He was convicted in November of seven counts of outraging public decency and was also sentenced for four counts of indecent assault which he admitted earlier.
I mean, I would hope to never be a sex offender, let alone a serial sex offender. But if I did wind up facing such charges, there’s no way I’d argue my guilt on the basis of having a small manhood. I mean, just take your legal punishment, you know?
Is that what a gal’s life is worth these days?
In Missouri, Robert Macklin is facing a charge of first-degree assault or, alternatively, a charge of conspiracy to commit murder. The charge stems from Macklin wanting the girlfriend of a former lover killed. His roommate ratted him out to the cops, and a sting was setup. Macklin was busted after offering the undercover cop $5 and 90 pills of Oxycontin to kill the woman.
Five bucks and 90 pills? That’s all? Man, we really are sliding into a recession.
Cheap bastards get all the breaks
Up in Canada, aye, Thomas Wood was facing drunk driving charges from last March, when he was pulled over and blew a bit over the limit on a breathalyzer. During his trial, Wood argued that there was no way he could’ve been that drunk because he’s too cheap to drink that much:
On March 30, Wood admitted to consuming some alcohol that night, failed the police’s roadside breathalyzer test and was arrested. Further tests showed readings of 0.13.
Wood testified at his trial in December that he drank a pint and a glass of draft beer over the course of 2½ hours while talking with his employer at a hotel bar after work that evening.
As an aircraft mechanic, he does not drink on the job, he told the court, adding that he also doesn’t drink much after work.
“Mr. Wood says that he is ‘quite cheap,’ and that for that and other reasons, it is his custom to restrict his drinking, as he says he did that evening,” [Judge] Barnett wrote in his decision.
The Judge found that this raised enough reasonable doubt to get him out of the DUI charges. And misers everywhere celebrate by not buying a drink to hoist in the air.
Gimme Mitt Romney for the Red, White, and Blue!
We get a bad reputation on this site for being a couple of liberal punks, so today, it’s my pleasure to present this tribute to Mitt Romney. Choke on the earnestness, bitches.
Did the Punishment Fit the Crime?
According to Examiner.com, a California sheriff’s deputy shot a man with a Taser gun “for allegedly riding his bike at night without proper lighting.”
Well, that’s about right. I understand you can also get the death penalty for failing to signal before making a turn and tortured to death for riding on the sidewalk.
Keep Grandma Away from the Caddy
I love old people — they’re cute, cuddly, and smell like mentholated creme — but it’s time to start taking driver’s licenses away once a person reaches the age of, say, 75. I don’t mean to stereotype, but old people can’t drive for shit — and who pays? Good Samaritans.
Valerie Green, 83, pulled her 1990 Cadillac into a parking lot at the Apollo Beach Golf Club to ask for directions around 11:30 a.m.
Earl Hamm, 80, and his longtime golfing buddy, John Browning, offered to help her get turned around. As they stood near her car changing their shoes, Green apparently hit the accelerator and backed up.
Hillsborough County sheriff’s reports said she kept driving in reverse, dragging Hamm under her car and then hitting a tree and a building.
Just after the crash, Green sat nearby in a yellow lawn chair. She wasn’t injured.
Later, at her home, Green said she wasn’t sure how she hit Hamm.
“It was like my car was driving itself,” she said. “It was an accident. I’ll regret it until the day I die.”
Fortunately for Ms. Green, she won’t have a lot time left to spend regretting the mistake.
The Daily Memo - 1/30/08
The Blue Man Group is being sued for stuffing an esophagus cam down a dude’s throat. (STLtoday)
An Australian landlord is being called heartless because he sued a woman to get $600 from her on behalf of her dad, who broke his lease … by having a heart attack and dying. Said the landlord: “A tenant has died. Is that my problem?” No dickwad, but is $600 worth the lack of compassion? (Herald Sun)
Are judges for sale? (WSJ Law Blog)
Need money? Just tax illegal drugs, or setup a stripper pole tax. (FindLaw)
A New Jersey judge has quit, claiming it’s because of his health and no sir it has nothing to do with ethics charges he’s facing. (Law.com)
Oregon’s Supremes says that you might want to ask a 12-year-old boy if he wants a circumcision before deciding which divorced parent wins in the fight to keep/kill the boy’s turtleneck. (Supreme Dicta)
A Las Vegas lawyer skipped out on his client’s murder trial, because it interfered with his sabbatical. (The Legal Reader)
NBC is taking Dick Wolf to Court over their dispute about how much money he should be getting … CHUNG-CHUNG! (FindLaw)
It’s the biggest misuse of my trademark in the history of misusing trademarks!
Ouch - the Donald has been sued for $1 billion and a declaratory judgment to leave Nights at Vegas alone:
Nights at Vegas is a property management company that will rent out condos on behalf of their owners. Among the condos it promotes are those in Trump properties in Vegas. Trump (which also markets condos on behalf of owners) sent a demand letter, alleging that NAV had misused the TRUMP trademark (and made false statements in connection with marketing the condos). NAV has sued, requesting a declaratory judgment that its use of the TRUMP mark in non-infringing, and alleging that Trump has engaged in monopolistic practices in the marketing of these condos.
It’s really unfair
Baaaaahahahahaha. Poor poor T.O. First, his team loses a game no team has ever lost before (since the inception of the Wild Card, no number one team has lost their first playoff game). And now, an arbitrator has ruled that he owes my Philly Eagles almost $800,000. Sure, T.O. can afford this whopping payment, particularly since he’s about to get a $3 million roster bonus from the Cowgirls, but it still makes me giddy.
Suck a nut T.O., you crybaby asshat.
Public transportation does not a good wheelman make
Channel Monae Gaskin (awesome name!) pulled off a bank robbery that netted her a big ol’ bag of cash. Unfortunately, Gaskin didn’t have an accomplice waiting to drive her off for the quick getaway. So after dealing with a dye bomb that exploded all over her, Gaskin mosied on over to a nearby bus stop and hung out waiting for the next local to arrive. Unfortunately, the cops rolled past first and, matching her to the bank robber description, made a quick arrest.
The best thing about this is that Gaskin claims to have robbed another bank earlier this month, where she was able to make a successful getaway on the bus. Maybe she should’ve spent some of that stolen cash on a bike or a razor scooter or something, you know?
There’s Always Room for … Ah, Screw It
A Manhattan judge had the common sense this week to toss out a lawsuit brought by a NYU student who broke his hip at a Jell-O wrestling party.
Avram Wisnia was an NYU junior in 2004 when he and his dorm mates organized a party called “Beach Bash.” While horsing around a kiddie pool filled with gelatin, Wisnia was pushed and shattered his hip, his lawsuit said.
Wisnia’s 2005 lawsuit blamed NYU for allowing the event and for having the school’s food service provide the gelatin. But Manhattan Justice Carol Robinson Edmead ruled that Wisnia knew what he was doing.
Dude: If you break your hip while Jell-O wrestling, the last thing in the world you want to do is bring even more attention to it by filing a silly lawsuit. Your parents must be so proud.
Menacing, Isn’t He?
I’d hate to see what they do to this guy — who was arrested for suspicion of drug dealing and gunning down two men last month — in prison. What kind of drug-dealing, murderer gets pulled over and arrested while he’s wearing fuzzy lion’s slippers? I bet he’s the cuddly type of killer.
Where a Kid Can Be Blinded
Police aren’t sure what sparked a brawl among 80 people Saturday night at Chuck E Cheese in Flint, Michigan.
The first call came in at 8:53 p.m. concerning a fight among three teenage girls at the pizza parlor. A Genesee County Sheriff’s paramedic and state troopers quickly got the fight under control, and canceled other officers headed that way to back them up.
But a few minutes later, the officers sent out a second call as the fight erupted again, and quickly turned into “a knock-down, drag-out between 75 and 80 people,” said Flint Township police Sgt. Tim Jones.
Police from around the county poured into the restaurant shortly after 9 p.m. trying to control the crowd.
Pepper spray used to control the crowd may have added to the uproar.
“The biggest thing we did was just try to control the crowd. Once pepper has been sprayed, it’s floating in the air so we called in for medical help in clearing it. If people aren’t used to pepper spray, they get pretty scared and angry,” said Jones.
“If people aren’t used to pepper spray?” Who the hell gets used to pepper spray? We’re talking about a Chuck E. Cheese, here — ski ball, video games, and animatronic characters — not a freakin’ prison courtyard. Even in Flint, Michigan, it’s hard to imagine the diners at a family restaurant wouldn’t freak the shit out when the place was doused with pepper spray, though I bet it did add some much needed flavor to their pizza pies.
The Daily Memo - 1/29/08
Looking back on Roe v. Wade thirty-five years later. (Salon)
“Cheney wants surveillance law expanded.” I’m shocked. Shocked I say. (FindLaw)
Of reptile orifices and trademark art. Yes, orifices. (The Trademark Blog)
See, e.g., the case of Annie Hall. (Legal Antics)
Law school roommate shenanigans await your reading, if you can get past Lat’s infuriatingly ridiculous continued use of the royal “we” when telling stories from his own, singular, past. (Above the Law)
Ahhhh, Jersey: “A man who admitted dismembering his girlfriend and cooking her head in a pot had his murder conviction overturned Monday by the New Jersey Supreme Court.” (FindLaw)
Marie Cooley was flipping through a newspaper one day when she happened upon the classified ads. And lo and behold if she didn’t see a job listing that sounded an awful lot like her job. “Shenanigans,” she thought to herself. “Them sons of bitches are going to fire me.”
So Cooley did what any level-headed person about to get fired would do — she started pooling all her money together, making a little rainy day nest egg.
Naaaaah … she snuck into her office late on a Sunday night and hopped on the company server, where she proceeded to delete seven years’ worth of architectural drawings, valued at about $2.5 million!
If Cooley is looking for a job that lasts a while, she may wind up on kitchen duty for a good five years, now that she’s confessed to the second degree felony.
It’s a relatively happy, albeit pricey, ending for the architect firm at least, as they were able to have all the files recovered after spending a good hunka change.
And here’s the clincher: the firm’s owner says that Cooley wasn’t going to be fired! The job listing was for a business his wife runs.
Do I need to mention that Cooley is a Florida gal?
The FAA … we love ‘em!
Folsom, Pennsylvania is about a half-hour southwest of Philly, and pretty close to Philly’s International Airport (and not too far from where yours truly growed up). And that’s where Michael Hall and his girlfriend live (and she’s got a great name - Michaelene Buddy!). Turns out that Hall and Buddy* are sick of all the jets that have been flying over their home since the FAA changed departing flight paths last month.
Hall has had to resort to sleeping with earplugs, and when he and Buddy weren’t able to leave a message with the FAA’s noise-complaint hotline, that was the last straw! They took measures into their own hands, putting that little message on the left on their roof.
Unsurprisingly, the FAA spokesman had no comment.
* “Buddy and Hall” is a cop show waiting to happen, ain’t it?
Knight to rook 4? Knight to rook 4?! There’s no reason to live!!!!
A drunken chess game turned dangerous Wednesday night when one of the participants threatened to kill himself, grabbed a handgun and fired it, authorities said.
Greensburg police said Zachary J. Lucov and Dennis Kleyn were playing chess about 11:40 p.m. when Lucov raised a .40-caliber Glock handgun toward his head in Kleyn’s apartment at 504 W. Otterman St. The two struggled, the weapon discharged and Kleyn was struck near his left elbow, police said.
The blast passed through Kleyn’s arm and just missed Lucov’s 9-month-old son, who was playing on the kitchen floor, authorities said.
Lucov, 23, of 1638 Ridge Road, Penn Township, was arraigned Thursday on charges of aggravated assault, discharging a weapon in an occupied building, recklessly endangering another person, endangering the welfare of a child, public drunkenness and criminal mischief. He was jailed in lieu of $100,000 bond after his arraignment before Greensburg District Judge James Albert.
When asked by reporters whether or not he did try to kill himself, Lucov responded, “I don’t recall wanting to.” Of course, at the time of the incident, both players were rip-roaring drunk.
Uhm … ew?
Nineteen-year-old Ronnie A. Ballard is a real winner:
Repeated discoveries of human feces in clothing and other items left in an apartment building’s basement laundry room led to charges Thursday against a 19-year-old man.
Authorities said Ronnie A. Ballard was arrested after a woman whose laundry had been soiled chased him back to his apartment in an adjoining building.
Residents also reported finding feces in shoes and boots in an apartment hallway and in washing machines where it soiled a comforter, baby clothes and other items that had to be thrown out.
Ballard was charged with three counts of disorderly conduct, three counts of criminal damage to property and one count of bail jumping. Court records showed he also is facing charges of lewd and lascivious behavior in Waukesha and Lincoln counties.
Ballard was jailed in lieu of $1,400 bail.
The only thing I can figure is that Ballard’s only proper bathroom facility was an outhouse, and he decided it was just too cold up there in Madison, Wisconsin to be going outside to do his business. That’s the story I’m going with, in any event.
But “Eradicated” Could Mean So Many Things
Hey! Craigslist is not just for selling your used baby cribs or prostituting yourself anymore. Now, you can hire yourself a killer.
A Michigan woman is behind bars and facing extradition to Northern California, where FBI agents said she advertised on Craigslist for someone willing to kill the unsuspecting wife of a man she’d begun an affair with online.
Ann Marie Linscott, 49, offered $5,000 for the hit, had the name and work address of the woman she wanted dead and in e-mails with stunned job seekers described successful candidates as “silent assassins,” according to agents and court documents.
Linscott allegedly asked respondents to “eradicate a female living in Oroville, California,” and she provided additional information on the intended victim, including her physical description, age and employment address. On two separate occasions following the November ad posting, she offered payment of $5,000 upon completion of “the eradication task,” according to court documents.
$5,000? I figure the going rate for hire-for-murder was a lot more than that — that’s like hitman minimum wage.
Irony Lives On
Two vampire-loving lesbians kissed over a British girl’s semi-naked body after beating her to death with a rock, a court heard yesterday.
Jessica Stasinowsky, 20, and Valerie Parashumti, 19, giggled in court in Perth, Western Australia, at a pre-sentence hearing.
The pair abused and filmed Stacey Mitchell, 16 – killing her because she was “so annoying.”
Two giggly vampire-loving lesbians killed a girl because she was so annoying? That’s rich!
The Daily Memo - 1/28/08
Reason number 728 to avoid Virginia - it’s been illegal to serve authentic sangria in that state for over 70 years. (FindLaw)
In Spain, a speeding motorist who killed a teenage cyclist is now suing the kid’s parents because his fancy car was damaged. “Whatever with your dead teenage son, my Audi was dinged up damn it!” (Overlawyered)
Wait, you’re saying it’s a bad idea to bring my pimp to court with me? And no hollow dildo filled with urine? Come on! …Oh, only when it’s someone else’s urine. Phew! (a href=”http://nylawblog.typepad.com/legalantics/2008/01/trust-me-she-kn.html”>Legal Antics)
You sitting in my chair, punk? (The Trademark Blog)
Classy folks, IBM. In response to overtime lawsuits, the company cut base salaries by 15%. (Overlawyered)
Some of the geeks out there might dig Blawg Review #144’s “Lord of the Rings” theme. (Cyberlaw Central)
Using coins and touch to learn about wills and intestacy. (WT&E Prof Blog)
A District Court in Idaho has ruled that a lawyer’s cease and desist letter might be entitled to copyright protection (the claim of copyright protection was soundly ridiculed last fall, and it will continue to be ridiculed because, well, it’s fucking ridiculous). (Likelihood of Confusion)
The Big Dig contractors have settled their lawsuit with Massachusetts for over $450 million. (FindLaw)
Man, I need to go practice British law
The always entertaining GeekLawyer has shared the following wonderful quote with us all. He says that when he’s “faced with the inept decision of a court,” the following remedy is the path to follow:
Punch your opponent in the gut so that he doubles over in pain. Walk to his left ear. Unbutton yor trousers and masturbate into his left ear until emission.
The particular story that inspired GeekLawyer to share this gem involves a video game company losing an appeal to allow it to sell its highly graphic game. But whatever with all that. I can’t wait to try this shit out in court one day soon.
Note to QuizLaw readers: please start saving up to donate to the massive contempt of court fine coming my way one day soon.
It’s the dope-a-rope defense!
Up in Portland, Maine, Margie Dunson was facing up to 20 years in the clink for an elevated aggravated assault charge. Dunson is a former boxer who held the welterweight title in ‘77 and ‘78. But last year, she was watching the Super Bowl at her house along with John Jackson, and the two got into an argument. Drunken arguments often turn out poorly, and this one led to Dunson allegedly stabbing Jackson in the chest.
And the case against Dunson looked pretty good, until the prosecutor suddenly found herself dropping the charge, leaving Dunson a free woman. The reason for the dropped charge?
Jackson showed up to testify about the incident drunk (he blew a 0.12). And it turns ou prosecutors don’t like their victims showing up to court drunk. Fancy that.
(Hat tip to The Legal Reader.)
Stop the presses!!!
Hey kids, Dustin and I are back in our respective towns (or at least, I am — Dustin hit some air snafus and may not be quite home yet). And in answer to three elle’s comment, one of us is, in fact, Jewish [I raise my hand over my hook nose], but Jewish guilt stopped working on me a long time ago. So we don’t feel bad about leaving you with little new QuizLaw content for a couple of days. Somehow, hard though it may have been, I think y’all survived just fine.
In any event, lots of legal news to catch up on. We’ll start with the shocking — I say shocking — news that a nonprofit study has revealed that Bush and his lackies lied to us in the lead up to the war. They lied. Lied! Who would’ve thunk it?
This story broke on Wednesday and almost a week later, I’ve seen almost no coverage about this, aside from the initial AP report, nor have I heard folks talking about it. That’s the truly shocking part about this. I mean, what the fuck? Sure, we all knew this all along, but now we have some type of proof confirming that our fucking President lied in leading us into war, and nobody gives a shit? What does it take to get the fucking public’s attention?
…Maybe we need a study to reveal that Bush listens to old Britney Spears CDs, or collects her discarded panties or something. After all, the media and the public can’t seem to get enough of anything involving that crazy bitch, so maybe we need to tie her together with this crazy bitch.
(Hat tip to Indexed for the image.)
Oh, irony, thy art a cruel mistress…
See this magazine cover? It is from Blackhawk Technical College’s recent magazine-style advertisement. Take a good look. For some reason, nearby residents of Janesville, Wi were up in arms about said cover.
The cover featured two smiling adults and two children. Underneath the photo was this headline: “A Family Affair: BTC is the perfect fit for the White family.”
Perhaps most people understood immediately that the article was about a family whose name is White.
Apparently, others read it as an assertion that BTC is especially good for white people. Or at least, that it was insensitive.
Now it is quite clear it was not intentional, and it has been changed. And, if anyone bothered to open the magazine, they would have seen the story about James and Casey White, as well as several people of color. Still, the school had to field quite a few calls about the publication.
I can’t stop laughing, and I can’t quite figure out why. Someone get me some oxygen, please….
Hey Roy, so I got an idea. You know those new license stickers we’re supposed to give to the fishermen, for them to stick on their boats? Yeah, right. So after doing absolutely no research whatsoever, I decided to go with these stickers which disintegrate in salt water. I don’t see a problem with this plan, do you? …Excellent.
Fill ‘er up!
Okay, I feel pretty bad about the downer story from before, especially since the actual lawyers aren’t around and you are stuck with me until the weekend. So maybe I can rummage around in my bin of weird-ass news items to make up for it. Ah, here is something…
It seems a gas station clerk in Charleston, W. Va. got caught giving her family and friends a little “employee discount”. What the big deal? Well, that discount was from the regular $2.999 to about, say, $0.001.
That’s right. A tenth of a penny. PER GALLON. The clerk, her mother, brother, a cousin and two others were arrested through a sting operation after the station owner checked the books. With that kind of ingenious scam, how so ever did they get caught?
Fun fact: there is actually a name for that denomination - the mill (because it is 1/1000 of a dollar).
I had a feeling in my gut this would happen, but I actually held out hope….
I am sure most of you readers are familiar with the ridiculous antics of Fred Phelps and the loonies at the Westboro Baptist Church.
In an effort to both spread their filth and blatantly exploit a celebrity’s death, they intend on protesting at Heath Ledger’s funeral, due to his role in Brokeback Mountain.
To take a page from sister site WIMB:
Curb stomp (n): The act of taking a person, placing their face against a street curb, and then forcing their jaw into said curb with one’s foot as hard as possible. See: American History X.
As in: While I do not officially condone nor encourage such actions, I would not be overly upset if Phelps and Co. receive some righteous curb stomps.
Sometimes an eye-for-an-eye isn’t such a bad thing
A New York woman has been charged with punishing her 7-year-old son by putting him in a hot oven. The punishment was over the son’s heinous crime of losing his mom’s cell phone. He was burnt on his arms, hand, nose and leg. And although a day care provider noticed the burns, she didn’t fulfill her legal duty to report the incident, so she’s also been brought up on charges.
Now as a Jew, I really shouldn’t be promoting the notion of putting anyone in an oven. I get that. But this bitch? That mom needs some toasty-time. Twenty minutes a side at 450 degrees, or so, should do it.
Who’s That White Dude? Damn: He’s Hip.
Remember that Time that Old Lady Ran over Herself?
This story is actually from last year, but it warrants mention because, really, how often does a woman run over her own legs in a McDonald’s drive-thru Lane?
The Phoenixville Police Department is investigating a freak accident in which a borough woman ran over both of her legs in the drive-through lane at McDonald’s Friday afternoon.
According to Cpl. Pat Mark, a black Chevrolet Blazer, driven by a 53-year-old borough woman, was in the drive-thru lane at McDonald’s around 1:55 p.m. September 28.
“For some unknown reason, her legs were run over by her vehicle,” said Mark. “We are investigating how this accident could’ve happened.”
What police are trying to determine is how the woman exited her vehicle and how her vehicle rolled over both legs.
And, as you can see in the picture above, she was taken by helicopter to the hospital. Since the story is several months old, does anyone out there in QuizLaw land know how she managed to run over herself?
(H/T to WIMB’s Stacey)
Shhhhhh … be vewy vewy quiet
To all two dozen of our faithful QuizLaw readers, just wanted to give you a heads up that things are going to be relatively quiet here for the rest of the week. There may be a post here and there from Dustin or I, but don’t expect much. For instance, no more Daily Memos until next week. …I know, I know. Try to contain the tears.
Vermillion may be around to put a couple things up, but point is, think of QuizLaw like the Western Front for the rest of the week. All quiet, and such (and who says I can’t make literary references?). But we should be back at as good as it’s ever possible for us to be on Monday. In the meantime, feel free to talk amongst yourselves. Or not.
A Denver-area man has filed a lawsuit against the Kroger chain of grocery stores. Seems that Wayne Watson is a lover of the microwave popcorn. And he claims that his regular intake of the tasty treat and, in particular, its butter flavoring, has given him popcorn lung.
The condition is said to be caused by the artificial butter flavoring chemical that previously sickened only popcorn factory workers … Hundreds of workers have said they have severe lung disease or other respiratory illnesses from inhaling the chemical vapors while mixing large vats of flavors. The lawsuit, which seeks unspecified damages, states that the companies failed to warn consumers about inhaling the aroma.
Because it wasn’t obvious that the crap they put on popcorn probably isn’t so good for you?
And we wonder why our country is getting fatter and fatter and fatter.
What? The Motherfucker’s Tired
Keep your eye on Bill Clinton in this video during a Martin Luther King, Jr. service. Looks like he’s taking MLK’s “I have a dream” to its literal extreme.
A McDonald’s fry cook is suing Morgan Spurlock, claiming his documentary, Super Size Me, defamed her.
Former McDonald’s employee Evelyn Candelaria is suing in Brooklyn Supreme Court, alleging her self-esteem and reputation were damaged by her appearance in Spurlock’s 2004 documentary film, the New York Post reported Sunday.
Candelaria’s attorney, Hugh Jasne, said the 44-year-old former fry cook never signed a release allowing Spurlock to use footage of her in his film and therefore Spurlock should be held liable.
Dude. You work at McDonalds. As a fry cook. How much more can your reputation be damaged?
The Daily Memo - 1/22/08
Blawg Review #143 is a special MLK version (sure, this link is a day late, but I don’t hear him complaining, so neither should you). (Public Defender Stuff)
“A man was arrested Tuesday for walking on a highway with a 14-foot python wrapped around his body, police said.” (Breitbart)
An Oklahoma legislator wants drunk drivers to have a special DUI marking on their driver’s license. (KOCO)
Heee … “A man wearing only his underwear and brandishing an ax handle chased a burglar out of his home and down his driveway before thinking better of it.” (Denver Post)
A 54-year-old substitute teacher has gotten into some trouble for slapping each and every fifth-grader in her class over the misbehavior of a few. (Mainichi Daily News)
A man wakes up with a penis drawn on his face and winds up getting charged with aggravated assault. Turns out, he wasn’t such a fan of the prank. (The Murfreesboro Post)
“It’s one thing to dangle fuzzy dice from a rear view mirror, but decorating a trailer hitch with a large pair of rubber testicles might be a bit much in Virginia.” (Tri-City Herald)
In Chi-Town, the smoking ban is helping dudes get laid. (Sun Times)
Two-hundred twenty traffic offenders in Alabama caught a break when a judge threw out all their tickets after getting pissed off about not being able to find an open courtroom. (UPI)
We like-ah the sex!
Rome’s highest appeals acquitted a 49-year-old man who, unbeknown to his girlfriend, had recorded and kept films of them having sex.
It overruled two previous verdicts which had given him a four-month jail sentence.
The woman had agreed to the man using a video camera to project live images of them having sex on to the bedroom wall, but did not know he was recording the action.
The court acquitted the man because he had not distributed the films to other people.
When the relationship ended the man gave the videos to his partner in a package accompanied by a note saying: “These are my last thought for you.”
I know Jonathan Lee Riches. Jonathan Lee Riches is a friend of mine. And you, sir, are no Jonathan Lee Riches!
Over at Above the Law, David Lat thinks that a new pro se litigant is giving our favorite crazy man, Jonathan Lee Riches, a run for his money. Lat, you’re nuts. Riches is the best litigant, pro se or otherwise, ever. …Ever. Will never be beat.
Of course, that doesn’t mean that Gregory Newman’s new lawsuit isn’t a peach anyways. Last week, the District Court down in D.C. through out Newman’s complaint, which was filed against the Covert Action Air Operations and Satellite Operations Fl. Progress, some sort of shadow government entity in Florida which doesn’t exist (or so they’d have us believe!). Newman claims that he has held “secrets of this country” for 45 years, including a video tape of a magnetic tornado that touched down in his back yard. Only, now, that tape has been erased. The shadow government is erasing tapes, stealing light bulbs, and destroying evidence, all in an effort to keep Newman down.
And it’s not just the Government. “The Christians” apparently injected him with AIDS, which may not be a problem anyway, since Newman says that the earth is a nuclear bomb.
The earth. is. a. nuclear bomb.
So as I say, the Court threw Newman’s complaint out, saying that “[c]omplaints that describe fantastic or delusional scenarios are subject to immediate dismissal.” So Newman’s complaint is delusional?
The judge is in on it, people!
The mayors at night, steal your dogs on sight … deep in the heart of Texas!
This story is about as fucking nuts as they come. It involves a Shih Tzu name Puddles and a small-town mayor being indicted for stealing the dog. The mayor’s twin sister is also involved and as one reporter explains, the mayor even tried to pass herself off as her twin at some point. I just don’t think I can do this story justice, so if you’ve got the time, go read the two linked stories for yourself.
The Daily Memo - 1/20/08
QuizLaw’s taking the day off in honor of the good Reverend King, so this Daily Memo is all you’re getting for the day. See ya’ tomorrow….
The Supremes don’t like them some Dennis Kucinich. (FindLaw)
Now why would Virginia want to go and stop letting criminals and the mentally ill buy guns at gun shows? Makes no sense! (FindLaw)
Speaking of guns, who don’t love the law school gunners? (Above the Law)
Lawyers are people too. Do we not bleed like everyone else? Do we not key cars like everyone else? (Overlawyered)
A California sexual harassment twofer. (WSJ Law Blog)
The Supremes may not like Kucinich, but they love those light cigarettes. I hear the Scalia is all about the menthol Kools light. (Law.com)
The White House has contempt for the law? What? …Get outta here! (Washington Post)
Awww, the poor paparazzi here in LA are facing a crack down. (Zap2It)
I’ll see your Dance Party Friday, and I’ll pull its sweater over its head and beat the shit out of it!
Folks seemed to like last week’s Dance Party Friday, and I can’t blame them. But we’re going a different route this week. And I’m not even going to pretend that there’s any sort of connection between these two videos and the kind of stuff we typically cover here on QuizLaw, because there’s not. But whatever with that — these videos are just too much fun.
Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to Hockey Fight Friday.
Our first video comes from a Russian ice hockey match that went down last week. Some say it was the biggest hockey fight every. I dunno about all that. But I have no problem believing the claim that almost 400 penalty minutes were given out as a result of this mayhem:
You know, if the NHL instituted a rule where massive brawls like this had to break out once a game, I bet viewership would go way the fuck up. They could save the sport man, I’m telling you!
Anyway, watching that last video on YouTube, I also stumbled upon this one, from an English hockey match last year. It’s almost seven minutes of pure, unadulterated awesome:
Seriously, fuck synchronized ice dancing, why isn’t this shit an Olympic sport?
If you haven’t seen the dustup that Mitt Romney had with an AP reporter yesterday yet, then you’re missing arguably the highlight of the Republican’s campaign so far. The reporter catches Romney in a half-truth, and Romney gets all get-off-my-lawn on him. I loathe the thought of Romney being elected President, but he sure would make press conferences entertaining, or at least until his head explodes.
The Daily Memo - 1/18/08
Stupid Austrian Supreme Court, not allowing chimpanzees to be declared people. (FindLaw)
That’s a whole lotta cop. (Above the Law)
Reader Three Elle e-mailed us to point out how proud she is that one of her professor has yet to learn the fine art of the BCC. (Gawker)
Look, I’m all for a bill banning texting while driving in Boston, but trust me, they need to take it one step further and just ban driving in Boston, period. Folks up there can’t drive for shit, son. (Crackberry.com
Yet another cops-use-taser and bad-things-happen situation. (Star Tribune)
“When web presence creates jurisdiction.” (Law.com)
Eye Exams Now Come with Complimentary Toe Licks
Roman Tesfaye is suing an eye doctor and the doctor’s former assistant after she got more than she bargained for during a recent eye exam:
Tesfaye claims in the suit that when [Joseph] Vernell [the doctor’s assistant] came into the exam room, he said he had to perform “a strip test” which involved him placing a strip in her eyes, after which she had to keep her eyes closed for five to seven minutes.
But she felt something touching her toes and opened her eyes to find Vernell stand up and pull his shirt down.
“Did you just lick my toes? You licked my toes,” she recalls saying to him, according to her suit. “I’m sorry, I’m sorry, but I was checking your sugar level,” he reportedly replied.
Fact: You can tell a lot about a person’s sugar level by tasting her toe jam.
That’s a lot of hooch!
Late last month, sheriff’s deputies in Oregon found a Toyota sitting in a snowbank on a local highway at 11:30 a.m. It was still running and when they approached the car, 42-year-old Terri Comer was found sitting unconscious in the driver’s seat. The car window was broken and rescuers pulled Comer out of the car. As she was comatose, she was rushed off to the hospital where a blood test determined that she was drunk.
Really drunk — her blood alcohol level was a whopping .72! The Smoking Gun notes that this is the highest BAC it’s ever run across, besting the .69 an Indiana man blew in 2003, and this woman could very well be the drunkest driver ever (or, at least, the drunkest driver ever busted for drunk driving).
And of course The Smoking Gun also has a mug shot of Ms. Comer, although it’s from a 2006 DUI arrest, where “her BAC was recorded in the relatively minor .3 range.”
I’m Hot for Teacher
British commercials are way better than American ones. And so, apparently, are their teachers.
A teacher has been suspended from her post at an independent school after pupils identified her on the internet as a model shown simulating sex in a “raunchy” advertisement for workwear. Sarah Green, an English teacher, has been asked to stay away from Stockport Grammar School, in Greater Manchester, while staff investigate concerns raised by parents. She is alleged to be one of three women shown fully clothed but simulating sex with workmen in a promotion to sell Scruffs workwear.
[Holy hell, man! I need to get me some workboots ASAP! — Seth]
Five Arrests in Schenectady Prostitution Sweep
If prostitution sweeps were fishing trips, I think I’d probably throw them back in the lake. Ladies of Schenectady: Represent!
Packer Fans Bleed Crazy
If you’re a fan of the Green Bay Packers, but you can’t get your toddler son enthused about their playoff victory over the weekend, what do you do? Ask Mathew Kowald:
Upset that his 7-year-old son wouldn’t wear a Green Bay Packers jersey during the team’s playoff victory Saturday, a man restrained the boy for an hour with tape and taped the jersey onto him.
Mathew Kowald was cited for disorderly conduct in connection with the incident with his son at their home in Pardeeville, Lt. Wayne Smith of the Columbia County Sheriff’s Department said. Pardeeville is about 30 miles north of Madison.
The 36-year-old Kowald was arrested Monday after his wife told authorities about the incident. Kowald was taken to the county jail and held until Wednesday, when he pleaded no contest, paid a fine of $186 and was released.
Kowald’s wife filed a restraining order Wednesday, so Kowald will not be able to have contact with his family, Smith said. Smith said other domestic issues have surfaced, though he wouldn’t elaborate.
For the sake of that kid, let’s hope that Pack doesn’t win the Super Bowl.
The Daily Memo - 1/17/08
Oh man! Hasbro and Mattel are trying to put the kibosh on Srabulous, the Scrabble rip-off over on Facebook. That’s about the only thing I ever do with my stupid Facebook account. (Legal Intellects)
A settlement gets a big fat nothing for the plaintiff, but a juicy $9.5 million for the lawyers. Mmmmmm … attorneys’ fees. (Overlawyered)
Sadly, one of yesterdays’ Supreme Court decisions wasn’t about the Michael Knight but was, instead, about deductions and trusts and 2% floors and could’ve-would’ves and zzzzzzzzzz. (SCOTUSblog)
Meanwhile, the other Supreme decision was our boy the Scalia saying that New York’s party nominee process for state Supreme Court Judges, via delegates, is a-ok. (WSJ Law Blog)
As a good little alumni, I’ll plug the latest edition of the BU Law Review, which has articles on patents and mutual funds … try to keep your heart race down! (Concurring Opinions)
This Slate V video is fantastic. Just fantastic….
Forty-four year old Geraldine Magda recently sat next to her older sister, Mary Ulwelling, as she was dying in a nursing home bed. Geraldine held her sister’s hand and, one assumes, tried to comfort her. Shortly after Geraldine left, Mary passed, and other family members there began to mourn her loss.
Then they began to mourn the loss of something else, when they noticed that Mary’s $2,500 wedding ring was no longer on her now-cooling hand. The same hand which her caring sister Geraldine had been holding mere hours ago. The police were called and they went to have a little chat with Geraldine. She let them search here purse and, wouldn’t it you know it, they found the ring. Geraldine acted shocked — shocked, I say — and said she had no idea how the ring got there. The cops didn’t buy it, particularly given the fact that she had apparently stolen jewelry from family in the past, and she was hauled off and charged with theft and possession of stolen property.
Which one is the better headline?
“Cross-dressing groom turns up at his own wedding in a bride’s dress and tells guests ‘I’m a transvestite.’”
That’s the Honorable “No-Good Son of a Bitch!”
Man, a local judge down in Jacksonville is getting hammered right now. Seems that Circuit Judge Aaron Bowden decided to give his judicial assistant an early Christmas, firing her twelve days before the day of the birth of the Christ. The Chief Circuit Judge in Bowden’s court has since called him a “no-good son of a bitch,” and others are similarly hammering Bowden.
It’s not so much that he fired 54-year-old Christine Birch, who had been his judicial assistant for 17 years, just before Christmas. It’s more that she’s been on leave since August, fighting cancer, and now has no medical, life or disability insurance.
So yeah, Bowden kinda is a no good son of a bitch.
The Chief Circuit Judge has since put Birch back on the court’s payroll as a rotating judicial assistant, and other judges’ assistants took up a collection to cover Birch’s rent for the month.
Bowden, meanwhile, said he felt like he had to fire her on December 13 so that he could hire a new assistant before a two-month hiring freeze went into effect on December 15. As he put it in an e-mail last month, if she had died while on the court’s payroll, he would’ve been prevented from getting a new assistant for a whole two months.
So whatever with your cancer, lady — that’s true tragedy!
Law Firm Advertisements that Work
Soft synthesizer music? Splattered watermelon? Cute child’s testimony? Scare tactics?
Check. Check. Check. And Check.
You just can’t get sleazier than this.
Stop Yer Bitchin’: The Rectal Exam was a Freebie!
A construction worker who was hit in the forehead has filed a lawsuit against a NY hospital claiming that they forced a rectal examination on him.
Brian Persaud, 38, says in court papers that after he denied a request by NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital emergency room employees to examine his rectum, he was “assaulted, battered and falsely imprisoned.”
… Emergency room staffers insisted on examining his rectum and held him down while he begged, “Please don’t do that.” He said Persaud hit a doctor while flailing around and staffers gave him an injection, which knocked him out, and performed the rectal exam.
Persaud woke up handcuffed to a bed and with an oxygen tube down his throat, the lawyer said, and spent three days in a detention center.
What the hell are you filing a lawsuit for? You just got a rectal exam without having to get a referral. Do you have any idea how difficult it is to get your bum looked out without wading through weeks of bureaucratic red tape? You’re a lucky son of a bitch, Persaud. Don’t look a gift horse in the ass.
That’s Why the Stalls Have Doors!
Not Gay Senator Larry Craig’s continuing efforts to withdraw his guilty plea have taken a turn toward the unexpected:
Craig, of Idaho, is asking the Minnesota Court of Appeals to let him withdraw his guilty plea to disorderly conduct stemming from a bathroom sex sting at the Minneapolis airport.
The ACLU filed a brief Tuesday supporting Craig. It cited a Minnesota Supreme Court ruling 38 years ago that found that people who have sex in closed stalls in public restrooms “have a reasonable expectation of privacy.”
Exactly! This is what I’ve been trying to say for years: If the toilet seat’s a rockin’, don’t come-a-knockin’.
The Daily Memo - 1/16/08
This bitch needs to be locked away forever — a 25-year-old babysitter killed a 19-month-old toddler when she stuffed him in a sleeping bag and swung him around … for fun! (WFSB)
A British senior sales executive is going to receive a nice hunk of money now that she has won her sex discrimination claim. Get this — her pig of a boss told her she’d be “useless” now that she was pregnant, and that she’d “never be the same again.” (Times Online)
Well the paramedics deserved to be chased down by a crazy woman with a rolling pin. After all, when Crazy Lady called them to come help out with her chest pains, she told them not to use lights or sirens. (WWSB)
The Scalia lives next door to a pot grower who’s going to be busted by a federally funded janitor? …I’m so confuzzed. (WSJ Law Blog)
Sure, it’s totally the Dodgers’ fault when fans get drunk and fight with each other. (LAist)
The judge who doesn’t like cancer patients covering their bald heads has apologized after getting attacked for being an asshat. (Above the Law)
The Supremes say “that fraud claims are not allowed against third parties that did not directly mislead investors but were business partners with those who did.” (SCOTUSblog)
Congress would like to talk to Miguel Tejada about his maybe being a liar-liar-pants-on-fire. (Lawinfo)
Mike Huckabee scares the hell out of me
This is what he said on Monday:
And that’s what we need to do is amend the Constitution so it’s in God’s standards.
Uhm, thanks Huck, but I’m all set with God’s standards staying the hell out of my Constitution. Asshole.
In Arlington, Oregon, Mayor Carmen Kontur-Gronquist has embraced the MySpace. Turns out, some of her constituents (of which there are only about 500, making Arlington the definition of “backwoods”) aren’t a fan of the MySpace. Or, rather, they’re not a fan of the Mayor’s page on MySpace. More specifically, they kinda wish their Mayor hadn’t posted photos of herself in black lingerie.
While Mayor McBra-and-Panties’ page used to be viewable by all, now only her MySpace friends can see it. Still, some folks think the photos, showing her posing on a town fire engine, are inappropriate and reflect poorly on the town: “It’s a picture of her in bra and panties on a rural protection fire truck in a rural protection fire hall. This isn’t the way we want our city to be portrayed.”
Meanwhile, Mayor Kontur-Gronquist thinks her detractors should butt out: “That’s my personal life. It has nothing to do with my mayor’s position…. I’m not going to change who I am.”
Meanwhile, I’m sure you want to a picture, so here you go. Now, a snarky bastard might say that you probably don’t really want to see this picture. But, since she looks like she can kick my ass ten ways from Sunday, I ain’t saying no such thing.
Two great stories coming out of the Great White North:
In Whitehorse, Yukon, Thomas Wood pulled off a DUI defendant’s slam-dunk dream: He basically convinced a judge that he’s too cheap to have bought enough beer to give him a .13 reading.
And in Saskatchewan, a drug addict has won her lawsuit against her supplier for a particularly bad batch of crystal meth that sent her into a coma.
Man, even the crazy legal defenses are better up there!
I dunno man, the year’s still pretty fresh
South African police are laying claim to possibly having arrested the “dumbest criminal” of the year. As I say, it’s a bit early to start talking about the dumbest criminal of the year, particularly considering how quiet Florida has been lately. But this dude probably has a good claim to the title of Dumbest Criminal of January.
So this guy walks into a police station and reports that a gang held him up at gunpoint and snatched his mobile phone. A detective started talking with him and, wisely, asked him for his phone number. The detective then called the phone number, and the guy’s cell phone starts ringing. Because it was in his pocket. The 25-year-old jackass was promptly arrested for perjury.
I Got a Crush on Hillary
While I’m getting as tired as everyone else with the constant YouTube campaign videos, the latest, “I Got a Crush on Hillary” really does sort of belong in the upper echelon of crappy YouTube campaign vids. I mean: Shitty poseur rock! And calling Obama Girl a skank?
It’s catchy, too. Damn catchy.
Let’s Throw the Lawyers off the Empire State Building
Now, wait a second: Security guards, in 2006, prevented a daredevil from parachuting off the Empire State Building, possibly killing himself, and what do they get in return? A $30 million lawsuit.
The dopey daredevil who tried to parachute off the Empire State Building is coming down on the landmark with a $30 million lawsuit.
In the suit, which is expected to be filed today in Manhattan Supreme Court, Jeb Corliss says the security guards who thwarted his 2006 attempt at jumping off the building endangered his life and caused him “severe emotional distress.”
Corliss’ lawyer, Mark Jay Heller, said the suit also charges that the building’s brass defamed him by claiming his conduct was illegal, when they knew the criminal charge against him had been thrown out of court.
I wonder what kind of lawsuit the guy’s family would’ve brought had he been able to complete the jump, bounced off the Empire State Building, and crashed through some poor sap’s car windshield? I’m guessing the driver drenched in the guy’s blood would’ve had a helluva severe emotional distress cause of action.
QuizLaw’s Picture of the Day
From the Daily Mail:
Hurtling through the traffic, the cyclist probably thought he had got away with jumping a red light and nearly knocking over an elderly woman.
But the pedestrian in question was 84-year-old Tory peer Baroness Sharples who perhaps inspired by Lady Thatcher, swiftly delivered her own form of retribution.
The veteran peeress swung her handbag and landed a sharp blow to the cyclist as he whizzed past outside the House of Lords.
And she said her only regret was that she didn’t hit him harder.
Hells Yeah, Granny. Open up that jerk’s jugular … smug bicyclists and their flagrant disobedience of traffic laws, lack of consideration for walkers, and general douchebaggery.
Crazy by Copyright Infringement
With all the good ol’ original indie crazy out there, this guy has to rip off someone for his. And doesn’t even credit the original? What a world!
A man who believed he bore the biblical “mark of the beast” used a circular saw to cut off one hand, then he cooked it in the microwave and called 911, authorities said.
The man, in his mid-20s, was calm when Kootenai County sheriff’s deputies arrived Saturday. He was in protective custody in the mental health unit of Kootenai Medical Center.
“It had been somewhat cooked by the time the deputy arrived,” sheriff’s Capt. Ben Wolfinger said. “He put a tourniquet on his arm before, so he didn’t bleed to death. That kind of mental illness is just sad.”
Sounds kinda familiar, don’t it? What, is everyone doing remakes now, even crazy people?
And, because I never look a gift excuse to show skin in the mouth:
Slight tangent: How awesome a name is Wolfinger? Captain Wolfinger. Nice.
The Daily Memo - 1/15/08
“I don’t care if you’ve got cancer — you’ll show your chemo-bald head in my court or I’ll find you in contempt!” (Above the Law)
New Jersey joins Maryland in a compact that the states hope will eventually lead to the death of the Electoral College. (FindLaw)
The “supernote” counterfeit $100 bills have folks flummoxed the world over. (Kansas City Star)
Dear New Lawyer, Blawg Review #142 will learn ya. (Build a Solo Practice)
MySpace has entered into an agreement with 45 states to help cut down on the whole sexual predator thing. A good idea, surely, but still — good luck with that. Those pervs are crafty. (FindLaw)
“How the Justice Department misplayed the steroids investigation.” (Slate)
Microsoft’s getting sued over the Xbox Live outages that took place over the holiday season, forcing folks to — *shudder* — spend time with their families. (Gamespot)
A godless heathen of a federal judge in St. Louis has told a school district to stop allowing Gideons from distributing Bibles to students, something which the school has allowed for over 30 years. (MSNBC)
It’s about time - the House Energy and Commerce Committee is going to conduct a formal investigation into how the FCC is run because, you know, the FCC sucks. (ars technica)
Warning: Impending Pun Alert
Listen, I am not a big sports guy. I have no idea what the big deal is. One thing I do know is that the name Tom Brady elicits very strong emotions in people, including the two proprietors of this site. So when I found this, I figured it was crazy enough to go here. Whatever flames of passion are ignited, I apologize in advance.
To celebrate the team’s recent win against the New York Giants, Victor Thompson of Laconia, N.H., had the Patriots’ emblem tattooed on the left side of his shaved head - the first installment of an elaborate plan to turn his cranium into a replica of quarterback Tom Brady’s helmet.
“I’ve been thinking about doing this since I was 15,” Thompson, 39, said yesterday. “I think Tom Brady’s the best quaterback there is.”
I am really trying not to make the obvious joke here. Screw it:
“Talk about letting the game go to your HEAD! HAHAHA!!!!”
Well you gotta have priorities!
Last Sunday, a suspected drunk driver was tooling down the road going over 60 miles per hour. He apparently lost control and veered off the road, slamming into a tree. Luckily, nobody else was involved in the accident, so the only one injured was the fucknut of a drunk driver — he suffered serious head and body injuries.
So the cops took up an investigation to determine if drunk fucknut had been wearing his seatbelt. It seems unlikely, considering his injuries. And the fact that when they found him in the car, he was unrestrained. But here’s the kicker: when the cops did find him passed out in the driver’s seat with no belt holding him up, they then looked over to the passenger’s seat.
Where they saw a 12-pack of beer wearing a seatbelt!
What’re the odds?
Seriously, what are the odds? I mean, this video tells the story of a bizarre accident where a math teacher wound up dying in a relatively improbable way. Isn’t it incumbent upon the report to give us the actual probability, just to honor the teacher’s memory if nothing else?
Meanwhile, no word yet on whether charges will be filed. And sure, after watching the video you might say, “charges - don’t be ridiculous.” But Lord knows we’ve seen stranger shit.
You Gotta Pay the Po-Lice Tax
Steven Leavitt, the dude behind Freakonomics, has done a study on prostitution in Chicago and come up with a fascinating statistic:
They estimate that roughly 3 percent of all tricks performed by prostitutes who aren’t working with pimps are freebies given to police to avoid arrest. In fact, prostitutes get officially arrested only once per 450 tricks or so, leading the authors to conclude that “a prostitute is more likely to have sex with a police officer than to get officially arrested by one.”
You see that David Simon? This is why there should be another season of “The Wire.” Aside from a brief excursion into prostitution in Season 2, it’s been a relatively untapped field on the show, and I’m sure there’s plenty of folks who’d love to see Detective Bunk Moreland exchange free passes for hummers. Oh, and how good a pimp would Omar be? A gay, sawed-off shotgun wielding pimp!
Pop Quiz: How To Prevent a Bank Robbery
A few men with hoods and a handgun walk into a bank and demand all the money in the safe. If you’re a bank teller, what’s the best course of action if you’re hoping to avoid injury and keep the money from being stolen:
A) Hit the silent alarm, wait for police to arrive, and risk a hostage situation?
B) Pull gun out from money drawer, shoot robber in face, risk having your own face shot?
C) Scream gibberish words, fall to the ground, and fake seizure?
D) Calmly get up, walk into the next room, and shut the door behind you?
A bank robbery attempt on Sydney’s north shore was foiled when the bank’s tellers got up, walked into another room, and closed the door instead of handing over the cash, police report
Three men wearing dark hooded tops, one with a handgun, entered the Westpac bank in Northbridge at around 3pm today and demanded money.
But rather than acede to the robber’s demands, staff calmly left their seats, walked into a secure room and shut the door behind them.
“The branch has counter to ceiling plastic shields which are bullet-proof,” Inspector Jeff Bell from Chatswood Police told smh.com.au.
“So the men were unable to get at the tellers. The room they went into was key entry at the side so they couldn’t get in there either.”
With no way of getting the money, the robbers were forced to leave empty handed.
The Daily Memo - 1/14/08
A slew of protesters were arrested at the Supreme Court on Friday because their protests against Gitmo torture were disruptive, and the court is no place to exercise your rights to congregate and speak out against something. (SCOTUSblog)
Did you hear this? The phone companies cut off the FBI wiretaps because of unpaid phone bills. (AP)
I’m usually a pretty big fan of Overlawyered, but this post, spinning a sketchy-to-begin-with article about John Edwards and Nataline Sarkisyan, takes the article’s sketchiness at face value and then does some sketchy spinning of its own. (Overlawyered)
A NY judge has said “to hell with” with the doctrine of assumed risk, and is allowing a gal’s lawsuit against her former softball coach — who whacked her in the face with a swinging bat — to continue. (Law.com)
The Dems are thinking about doing some tax rebates to try to stimulate the economy — financial “tickling of the balls,” if you will. (FindLaw)
A scumbum convicted sex offender, who used to be a Big Firm lawyer, is suing his former law firm (“Death Star” Cravath) because he needs some cash. (Above the Law)
“Wesley Snipes owed taxes on $38 million (that’s a lot of cheddar).” Why yes, yes it is. (The Superficial)
Instead of getting a new federal courthouse, downtown LA may be getting its first lake. (blogdowntown)
What would Freud say about this?
The parents of a Carroll County Board of Education candidate who were granted a protective order against their son Monday had similar orders in Baltimore County in 2006 and 2007, according to court records.
The protective order granted to Homer and Beatrice Phelps of Westminster by a Carroll County District Court judge Monday forbids their son, Draper S. Phelps, 28, of Baltimore, from contacting them for one year.
It does not prevent him from running for office, and he will appear on the ballot for the Board of Education primary election Feb. 12.
According to an application filed by Homer Phelps on Dec. 31, Draper Phelps held him down and threatened him with a knife, and punched, shoved and threatened him and his wife last month.
Homer Phelps also wrote in the application for the protective order that his son is mentally unstable. In his worst phases, Draper Phelps wanted to kill his father in order to marry his mother, according to the application.
A Cynic’s Wet Dream
Hello and Happy New Year! I know, it has been a while since you saw me on this site. Well, in case you were wondering, I was busy prepping for my final semester! Graduating class of 2008, here I come! I wanted to make sure I found a story worthy of my return to QuizLaw. And boy, do I have a doozy.
Remember Hurricane Katrina? All that damage? All those people forced to flee, turned into refugees and such? Remember feeling really bad for them, thinking that they got royally screwed by the government? Well it looks like the Katrinas are screwing right back. Too bad their piss-poor education system didn’t teach them how to scam money effectively.
Katrina victims have been filing tons of claims (489,000 of them, and counting) — 247 of the claims ask for $1 billion or more, one asks for $6 trillion, and get this, one claim actually asks for $3 quadrillion. Seriously. That is a three, followed by 15 zeroes.
The claims are so massive the government could never hope to pay them. Rather, they are the hopeful — and at times inflated — requests of people reeling from losses.
Just the top filings add up to so much money that the entire annual output of the nation’s economy — $12 trillion — couldn’t pay them off, according to the corps’ listing. It is the first public accounting of the scale of damage demands the corps faces.
Holy Zombie Jesus. The claims outstrip the entire output of the economy of the United States of America. The scary part is that these are the same folks who will spend that money on Tyler Perry films.
Just so you get an idea of the kind of folks making these claims:
All across the nation, we trust in defecation
Last week, a North Carolina man was out for a nice leisurely drive in his black Camaro. But wouldn’t you know it, Josue Harrios-Coronilla swerved onto the wrong side of the road and wound up crashing into another guy’s yard. He apparently took off because, when the cops showed up, Herrios-Coronilla was nowhere to be found. But they did find some crushed bushes, the busted-up Camaro and a fence that said busted-up Camaro had plowed through.
But the homeowner owns four dogs so, wouldn’t you know, the cops also found a pile of dog shit with a nice fresh shoe print in it. So a cop followed the trail of poo that lead off from this pile, and while tracking the shit trail, a white van began driving toward the cop. He had it stop and when the van’s passenger got out, there was booze on his breath and shit on his shoes. So Herrios-Coronilla was arrested and charged with DUI and underage drinking (as he’s only 18).
I guess everything really does come down to poo:
Knock knock. Who’s there? Summons. Summons who? Sucker!
Judge Harold Eaton Jr., a local judge in St. Johnsbury, Vermont, had a problem. He was presiding over a sex case involving allegations that a man got lewd and lascivious with a kid, and the case was prepping for trial. Folks had been called in for jury duty, as usual, and there was an initial pool of 34 potential jurors. However, the attorneys in the case eventually whittled that pool down to 20, and Judge Eaton was a bit concerned that this was too small a pool. So he became an activist judge.
Eaton sent some sheriff’s deputies out to the streets to gather some folks up. The county sheriff and three of his deputies hit the sidewalk outside of the post office and started asking folks if they were over 18 and lived in the county. If they got a “yes and yes” in response, the lucky street walker got a summons to go to court! The sheriff said that most of the folks were pretty good about the whole thing: “99.9 percent were just excellent. They were great. We certainly appreciate that.”
The defendant’s attorney of course objected to this process, and asked for a postponement of the trial. Eaton told him to get bent.
The Voices in My Head Disagree
You know what I love about Roseanne Barr? She’s so eloquent. And knowledgeable. And coherent! She recently blogged about her feelings on the upcoming election and, specifically, Barack Obama. And I was just blown away with her mastery of the English language, fountain of political knowledge, and, well, her subtlety. Here, take a look (and here’s a handful of [sic]s to take with you):
barack obama is an empty suit selling “hope” in lieu of Truth. Oprah Winfrey helped to elect Arnold Swartzenegger. I have no doubt that she voted her purse by doing this, as she is a large land owner in California, and that ilk fears Dems because they do not want to pay their “fair share” of Cali tax. Oprah has given us Swartzenegger and Dr. Phil. If that was not offensive enough to decent thinking people, now she brings us Obama. He has no ideas, no plan and nothing to add other than the cynical pacification of the masses with bedtime stories about hope, while calling Unions “special interest groups” that need to be done away with.
Obama votes with Bush constantly funding this terrible endless war. Oprah, you play the race card and the gender card too.
You are a closeted republican and chose Barak Obama because you do not like other women who actually stand for something to working American Women besides glamour, angels, hollywood and dieting!
When Americans find out that Obama backs right wing corporate racist anti worker bullshit, they will not vote for him, and the victory will go to the most racist right wing republican ever…. Mccain, who is a fascist! That the culinary service workers in vegas have promised barak their vote,( he is anti union in his votes) over edwards, who is a pro-union man, just proves how stupid americans are and how they can be tricked so easily by the color of a person’s skin…exactly what MLK hated!
Obama doesn’t even back reproductive rights for any woman! It is historical that Oprah Winfrey, beloved of women, chooses a flashy man with small credentials over a seasoned woman politician with 35 years of experience…and sells that to the female demographic who look to her for inspiration!
Why don’t you run for President, Roseanne? Cause, really, you’re the perfect female role model and it might be fun to have a president in office dumber than our current one.
Everybody dance now!
Who says that the modern media complex is broken? To those people, I say: “To hell with you, good sirs and madams. To hell with you all.”
Jump to the rhythm jump jump to the rhythm jump, indeed.
The Daily Memo - 1/11/08
Dumbledore is probably spinning in his gay grave over an argument against J.K.’s copyright lawsuit against the Harry Potter Lexicon book. (Slate)
Uncle Sam doesn’t want you, unless you’d like to maybe, you know, stop being a lawyer, strap on a gun and head to the desert. (Above the Law)
A judge has dismissed the Tennessee Titans from the strip club employee’s lawsuit against Pacman Jones. (Lawinfo)
Lots of companies have asked the Supremes to put the kibosh on a bunch of cases over reparations for South Africa’s apartheid. (SCOTUSblog)
The Governator has proposed some big financial cuts to try to pump up Cah-li-fornia’s steroid-bulked deficit. (FindLaw)
Shame on the Pennsylvania State Police!
You know, over the years, I’ve seen the cops do a lot of shit that pisses me off. But this may take the motherfucking cake. Last week, the state police tracked down 18-year-old Stefan Kendal Cooper, a man wanted for allegedly shooting a 34-year-old woman whilst the two were involved in a domestic dispute. After the dispute, Cooper fled the scene, so the cops weren’t able to nab him. But they also wanted this guy because, on top of the domestic dispute, he was wanted for an incident back in October where he rammed two state cop cars after leading them on a high speed chase when he wouldn’t pull over to take his speeding ticket like a man.
Cooper’s a real peach, is the point.
Anyway, on Friday, the staties received a tip as to where he was stashed out, and when they search the residence in question, the cops found him hiding in a living room sofa, where part of it had been hollowed out. Cooper was arrested and hit with a slew of charges, and will likely find himself spending a nice long while in the clink.
So why am I so pissed at the cops, you ask? Because they found a man hiding in a couch … and they didn’t take any pictures. What the fuck, people? We need the comedy that comes with the photo of a man hiding in a frigging couch, know what I’m saying?
William Foster, a 64-year-old Des Moines man, would disagree with that sentiment. In fact, he recently had some folks staying with him, family of his common-law wife, who was in the hospital. And Foster got fed up with his houseguests and wound up in the clink as a result. He called the cops about 7 times in one night, claiming that he’d been repeatedly hit over the head with a frying pan and a flashlight. Cops were dispatched to Foster’s house three times and, on the third call, decided it was time for Foster to go to jail (largely because, while the cops were there, Foster threatened to kill one of his houseguests — probably not the smartest play).
My favorite part of the story is that the cops apparently told Foster that they couldn’t force the houseguests to leave because they’d done nothing illegal and because they were invited guests. So wait — once you invite guests into your home, you can never kick them out? Are they like vampires? (You’ll recall the valuable lesson from The Lost Boys that your defenses against vampires are largely worthless once you invite them into your home.)
Moral of the story? Family should always stay at a hotel.
Crystal Timparnaro, was hanging out on a golf course with her boyfriend in the summer of ‘06 when an accident happened. She caught a golf ball in the face. The ball macked into her left temple and eye while she was sitting in a golf cart, the result of a shanked shot from the hole next to the one she was at.
Now getting macked in the face with a golf ball isn’t a laughing matter. …Well, ok, yes it is. It’s generally pretty hilarious. But getting injured as a result isn’t a laughing matter. But that’s still no reason to bring a ridiculous lawsuit of the type Timparnaro is now bringing. She’s not just claiming that the course is laid out and maintained in a defective way but, get this, she also says that the golf course should warn spectators about the dangers of golf.
Ok lady. If you need to be told that when you go to a golf course there might be golf balls flying around, well, maybe you just need to stay the fuck home, because your idiocy is a danger to society.
Rehab’s for Ninnies
In Tennessee, the state legislature is considering a bill that would make it OK to take firearms into liquor stores and bars. But one of the bill’s biggest proponents, undoubtedly, missed the first day of the legislative session because he was completing a 30-day rehab. Rob Briley pleaded guilty to a DUI in December, after cops caught his DUI bust on their dash cam, which has subsequently been released for the whole world to see.
And here’s the evidence, which starts getting particularly good at around the 3-minute mark, when police handcuff the illustrious state representative, who starts weeping like a little bitch, as the cops tell him to “be a man.”
And, if you’re curious, Briley starts to unleash profanities on the way to the station in Part II of the video:
Obama’s Campaign Stalled
What’s the worst thing that could happen to an aspiring presidential candidate trying to win over the Democratic Party establishment? Win an endorsement from John Kerry.
Barack Obama is being endorsed by fellow Sen. John Kerry, the Democrats’ 2004 presidential nominee who lost to George W. Bush that year and gave up his own plans for a 2008 run a year ago.
This is just like a bachelor party I went to a decade ago, which featured a terribly unattractive stripper and 10 men paying her to give the other guys a lap dance. Said Obama, “No thanks, man. I appreciate the sentiment. But, I’m all set. Really.”
Where are you going to be on May 31st? I’ll tell you where I’m not gonna be: Copenhagen.
Pia Struck Madsen, a sexologist in the Danish capital, said her goal was to see men and women from all backgrounds come together — pardon the pun — and join an event that promises “pleasure, relaxation and sexual self-discovery”.
“Masturbation is positive, safe and an erotic alternative,” she told AFP ahead of the event on May 31, to take place at a yet-to-be-decided venue with separate rooms for men, women and those who don’t mind mingling.
If you’re looking for free hair gel, though, I know where you can score a load.
But then again, if the participants in the Masturbate-a-Thon simply ejaculate on canvas, then they can sell it as art.
The Daily Memo - 1/10/08
Grandma got carded-over by a reindeer. (Slate)
The honorable Judge Haberdasher will have none of this ascot business! Forsooth! (Supreme Dicta)
Ouch — a lawyer winds up owing both his own client and the opposing side. (Overlawyered)
I can’t believe it either. Joke’s on us, I guess …ha ha. (Legal Antics)
Yikes — Alabama authorities think that a fucking cocksucker of a father threw his four kids off a bridge. (Lawinfo)
….and shit. Four more kids (maybe related, maybe not) were found dead by U.S. Marshals in D.C. and the calm woman found at the house is now being questioned. Calm in a house with four dead kids? Good lord — if that ain’t guilty or cracked outta your head, I don’t know what is. (FindLaw)
Florida stories are old hat. So are trailer park stories. But machete stories? Never tired!
So yeah, two dudes got into a fight in a trailer park in Florida, and one of the guys came at the other with a friggin’ machete. The article is unclear as to whether there was any chop-chop however, as it says that other friends at the incident restrained the Rambo wannabe. Yet it also says the men did fight, and that the non-machete dude had to be flown out in a helicopter after the authority-types showed up.
As for the impetus of the fight?
Twenty-five bucks in beer money, naturally.
Those wacky Brits
Everything about this article from The Sun is great, from it’s headline (“My human right to be horny”), to the content of the article to the use of the word “willy:”
A divorcee has accused medics of breaching his human rights by prescribing him just one Viagra tablet a week.
Dad of two George Fryer, 54, has a bend in his willy which causes erection problems.
The security guard says he is a “stallion” when on the drug and romping with girlfriend Janice Roberts, 39, in Stoke, Staffs.
But he was heartbroken when he found NHS guidelines restricted him to four tablets a month.
George – whose marriage broke up due to his problem – fumed: “This is a ban on my sex life.”
A North Staffs Primary Care Trust spokesman said: “GPs would be expected to prescribe according to an individual’s clinical needs.”
Do you see what I see?
The Smoking Gun explains the origins of this gal’s festive eyes:
JANUARY 2—Facial bedazzling? Check. Lavender, raccoonesque makeup? Check. Outstanding warrant for failing to appear in court? Check. Tracy Gassel’s New Year’s revelry ended abruptly early yesterday morning when she was arrested by cops in Meridian, Idaho. The 30-year-old Gassel, pictured in the below mug shot, was popped on an FTA charge at 2:10 and is scheduled for a January 22 court appearance. According to her MySpace page, Gassel is co-founder of Burning Desire, a Boise-based fire-dancing studio that performed New Year’s Eve at a Boise club.
More Like: Awesomost Mom in the World
A Des Moines woman, who found alcohol in her 19-year-old son’s car, has decided to sell the damn thing, running this classified ad in the local newspaper:
OLDS 1999 Intrigue. Totally uncool parents who obviously don’t love teenage son, selling his car. Only driven for three weeks before snoopy mom who needs to get a life found booze under front seat. $3,700/offer. Call meanest mom on the planet.
Tough love works, man. At least, until the 19-year-old gets surly and starts hocking Mom’s jewelry at the local pawn show to pay for his alcohol addiction.
Whatever Happened to ‘Talking It Out?’
So, you turn to your wife and the mother of your children and say, “I”m going to kill you,” and then you stab her in the side, in the chest, above the eye, and on top the head, and then you run like hell. You’re eventually brought up on criminal charges. What’s your defense?
Haydar Guvec of Enfield, told police he accidentally cut his wife with a knife he had taken to the school as he was hoping to see his four-year-old son and peel an apple for him.
Accidentally cut his wife? Seven times, before the knife broke off in her flesh?
Fortunately, the wife survived. And it could’ve been worse, I suppose: A Nashville woman, upset with the way her roommate braided her hair, demanded that she redo it. When she refused, the woman shot her.
Department of Bovine Threats
A Pennsylvania man has been given probation and community service after pleading guilty to sending his wife’s lover a bloody cow head.
Police said [Jason Michael] Fife obtained the cow’s head from a butcher’s shop, claiming he wanted the dried skull for decoration. Instead, he mailed the head frozen, so as not to alert parcel carriers to the contents, police said. The box became bloody after sitting on the victim’s doorstep on a warm day.
My client did step over the line here, but one can certainly understand his frustration, given that the victim was carrying on an affair with my client’s wife,” [his lawyer] said.
But the story also had a happy ending, folks. Fife and his wife, who have a child together, later reconciled. And I can’t think of a better couple than an adulterer and a psychopath.
The Daily Memo - 1/9/2008
What’s the deal with copyright and defamation? (Defamer)
Definition of Genius: “man who complained to police that he was robbed of his gambling earnings [from shooting dice] was arrested for illegal betting. (FindLaw)
MoFo cost its client $1 million when traffic caused a messenger to be one minute late to court (and as someone who always files last minute, this decision scares the shit out of me, just a little bit). (WSJ Law Blog)
On Monday, the Supremes ruled that defense lawyers don’t need “to be physically on hand during every stage of a criminal court proceeding,” so it’s ok for them to participate in a plea hearing via speaker phone. (SCOTUSblog)
And yesterday, the Supremes said that folks have six years, and not a second more, to sue the federal government over property disputes. (FindLaw)
Lawyers are as uncool as accountants? Balderdash! (Above the Law)
Those fucking hoopleheads in St. Charles, Missouri are actually thinking about a fucking law that would prevent sons of bitches like me from saying whatever the fuck shit I want while in my own god damn bar? And while they’re at it, these fuck nut bags of shit have their cunt hairs so out of whack that they also want to ban fucking drinking contests, raunchy music and … table-dancing? Now without table dancing, how the fuck are my girls supposed to earn their fucking keep? Pussy lotion ain’t fucking free!
Shit! I need to soliloquize while getting my fucking prick sucked:
The stars at night, get high as a kite … deep in the heart of Texas!
Interesting story about the Texas legislature’s attempt to lower the number of marijuana arrests, and the fact that outside of Austin, most cops are ignoring it:
Texas lawmakers thought they could help ease jail overcrowding when they passed legislation allowing police to write tickets for misdemeanor marijuana possession and a few other nonviolent crimes, instead of hauling suspects to the clink.
But the new law, which went into effect Sept. 1, is being used only in Travis County. Prosecutors in Dallas, Tarrant and Collin counties never set up a system to process the misdemeanor citations and, they say, they have no plans to do so.
“I think the Legislature was very sensitive to the fact that there are so many jails that are overcrowded,” said Terri Moore, Dallas County’s first assistant district attorney. “This was a great idea, but it raises a lot more questions that we are not ready to answer.”
The new law gives officers the option to arrest, as they have been doing, or write tickets for possession of less than 4 ounces of marijuana.
Some supporters of the law say these nonviolent offenders could be treated the same as drivers who get caught speeding and agree to go before a judge.
But critics say these class A and B misdemeanors, although not violent crimes, could still result in jail time and require investigators to build a solid case for prosecution. As a result, the burden of making sure that suspects make it to court and no one is misidentified is higher.
For Greg Davis, Collin County’s first assistant district attorney, one of his qualms with the new law is the perception created by ticketing for a drug offense, instead of making an arrest.
“It may… lead some people to believe that drug use is no more serious than double parking,” Mr. Davis said. “We don’t want to send that message to potential drug users, particularly young people.”
You can read the rest of the article over at the Dallas Morning News, but my favorite bit is this little blurb from the end:
With the high price of gasoline, Mr. Wade said, writing citations also saves money because officers don’t have to drive into Austin from the county’s outskirts to put a suspect in jail.
Well hell - just imagine how great it would be for gas usage and the environment if marijuana were flat-out legalized?
Bank Robbing 101
Good morning class. Three lessons for you today. The first should go without saying, but I’ll say it anyway — try not to act terribly suspicious when you’re in the bank and getting ready to pull off your great heist.
More importantly, the second lesson — stay alert. Consistently alert. Even after you’ve passed your “gimme money” note to the bank teller. Because if you broke the first rule, your suspicious behavior might just have, I dunno, caused a uniformed police officer to be standing right behind you.
And third? Well, when there’s an armed and uniformed cop standing behind you in line, maybe you should postpone your heist for another day. That is, if you had the good sense to notice him in the first place.
The only real pleasure I’ve gotten out of the Bush presidency these last four years has been those ubiquitous Bushism, the slips, mispronunciations, and verbal gaffes that George W. Bush has treated us to, like arguably the best, featured in Michael Moore’s SiCKo:
“Too many good OB/GYNs aren’t able to practice their love with women all across this country.”
But here’s what’s frightening about the (increasingly unlikely) prospect of Rudy Giuliani rising to the presidency: He says some crazy shit, but it’s not because he’s a mangler of the English language, it’s because he genuinely means it. Take a look at what he said yesterday at a forum on urban crime:
“Freedom is about authority. Freedom is about the willingness of every single human being to cede to lawful authority a great deal of discretion about what you do.”
You know, when I think of “freedom,” the first thing that always pops into my head is “authority” and ceding to it. Just like, when I think of “liberation,” I think of handcuffs and duct tape.
Great Ideas in State Government
I guess Tennessee must be suffering some sort of overpopulation problem, because State Senator Doug Jackson introduced a bill today seemingly designed to thin the herd, so to speak.
State Sen. Doug Jackson, D-Dickson, said he will introduce a bill today to allow persons with handgun carry permits to carry their weapons into establishments that sell alcohol
Guns in liquor stores and bars? Great idea! I can’t think of anything that mixes better with whiskey than firearms!
The Big Belly Rule
Lawyers who read this site (all four of you) are probably familiar with the Eggshell Skull rule, which holds that a tortfeasor is liable for all damages that arise out of injuring a plaintiff, even if the plaintiff was a pansy, i.e., if you punch a hemophiliac in the nose and he bleeds to death, his death is on you, buddy.
And you know what? The Eggshell Skull rule (or some variation) ought to apply to all-you-can-eat buffets, as well. If you charge $10 for a buffet, it doesn’t matter who shows up, it’s on you, buddy. So, when Ricky Labit, a 6’3, 256 lb offshore worker comes into your restaurant and gets in the buffet line, you’re stuck with it, Manchuria Restaurant in Houma, Louisiana.
Indeed, though Labit frequents the restaurant as many as three times a week, the proprietors apparently got fed up with his appetite, so they double-charged him and banned him from the restaurant. Why? Well, as they waitress said, “Y’all fat, and y’all eat too much.”
After the waitress suggested that Labit’s wife’s cousin (who was eating with Labit) looked like he had a “baby in the belly,” the police were called in. And although Labit was offered a free meal, he was asked never to come back because, apparently, he dined on the more expensive items in the buffet, so says the accountant.
But, c’mon: If you put out an all-you-can-eat-buffet, you can’t expect finicky eaters to come in and pick at the rice all damn day. And you can’t complain about overweight people taking all the goodies if you are contributing to obesity by having a goddamn all-you-can-eat-buffet in the first place. It’s tantamount to tobacco companies blaming a loss of profits on the rise in lung cancer.
The Daily Memo - 1/8/08
How are lethal injections like talking to your future in-laws? (Slate)
Folks who own their own planes are pissed about states finding new ways to get tax money from them. I’d feel bad for them, if it wasn’t for the fact that they own their own planes. (Boston.com)
Sure, for right now it’s legal to drive up to 40, even though the posted speed limit is 30, but the cops don’t care about the technicalities of the law, silly fool. (Post Bulletin)
Remember that idiotic high-fee/tax Virginia decided to impose on speeders? While the lieutenant governor says it’s a disaster and should be revoked, the plan’s original architect wants to expand the fees. (The Newspaper)
“Two former jail inmates are back behind bars … accused of robbing two banks last month for bail money to get a third inmate out of jail.” (KWTX)
Well the Big Firms are at least half-represented here at QuizLaw. (Likelihood of Confusion)
Yeah, cause if you make it illegal, well then all the bestiality in Florida will stop. (tbo.com)
In Canada, an 85-year-old man has set the record for being the oldest person charged under Ontario’s street-racing laws. Congrats! (CBC News)
Yet another man facing a DUI charge showed up to his arraignment sauced. (Telegram)
“An inmate who twice escaped from the Pueblo County jail filed a federal lawsuit Thursday, alleging that guards abused him and didn’t do enough to stop him from breaking out.” (The Denver Channel)
Third time’s the charm!
Ernesto Ponce, an Oregon man, really ended 2007 with some bum luck. On the Friday between Christmas and New Years he decided to get himself a late Christmas gift by stealing a pickup truck from a Chevrolet lot. But dumb luck if he didn’t blow a damn tire. So the 19-year-old pulled the truck over and hopped out.
Lucky for him, there was a Subaru in a nearby driveway which was ripe for the stealing, so off he zoomed once again. But 15 minutes later, dumb luck struck a second time, this time in the form of an engine which got so overheated that it caught fire!
A local good samaritan, Jeff Herbert, saw the burning Subura and pulled over to help Ernesto. Ernesto repaid Herbert, who came running over with a fire extinguisher, by stealing Herbert’s pickup truck!
Third time wasn’t the charm however, as the cops were onto Ernesto’s spree by this point. So they had manged to set up some spike strips which Ernesto had the dumb luck of driving over, leading to punctured tires and a bad case of truck-in-ditch-itis.
Here’s to a better 2008 Ernesto!
That’s a-spicy chicken wing
Over at Concurring Opinions, there’s a link to a Reuters article about a Chicago pub that requires patrons to sign a waiver before eating the hot wings. Jack Melnick’s Corner Tap makes its buffalo wings with Red Savina peppers, e.g., a habanero. Habaneros are, if you don’t know, one of the hottest peppers on God’s green earth. Like eating fire.
But waiver business this isn’t a new idea. When I was back in college, I was visiting some friends up at Penn State, and we wondered into one of the local staples, a chain called Cluck You Chicken. And Cluck You had a “Wall of Flame,” where one could have their name appear if they ate a full 14-piece order of the chain’s hottest wings, the thermo-nuclear wings.
There were no names on the wall.
So cocksure of ourselves, myself and another friend wonder up to the counter and ask for two orders. The cashier asks us if we’re sure. We say yes. She asks us if we’d like to taste the sauce first. We say no. She says they usually have folks sign waivers (friends said this was true, but I suspect it was more for the sake of the gimmick than anything else), but they’re out at the moment — but seriously, are we sure we don’t want to try it first. We say no.
Two minutes later, a cook comes out of the back. He says he refuses to make these batches up until we try the sauce. So my friend and I each dip a finger into the sauce and taste. “Cook it up, man,” I say.
Hot sauce sometimes has a delay before kicking in, you know? So as the chef returns to the kitchen, shaking his head, my taste of the sauce — which I now know was made with habaneros — kicked in. One of my eyes melted a little bit. I turned to the group and suggested that this process was going to kill me.
Needless to say, neither my friend nor I got our names on “The Wall of Fire.” I don’t think he even made it through one wing, while I only managed to make it through two.
About a year later, I inexplicable decided to take a bite of a habanero, despite knowing their ferocity. It hurt. A lot. But I learned something valuable that time. Whatever with your milk. If your mouth is on fire from something like a habanero, find a good air conditioner and stick your tongue as close to the output as possible. That freon air is magic, I tell you. Magic.
Where dreams go to sleep, perchance to die
At my last firm job, I dreamed of putting a hammock into my office. I was actually given permission to do so, but my office wasn’t big enough, so I was waiting to move into one of the bigger associate offices. But then I left before getting that bigger office. Not that it mattered, as I would’ve only been living half the dream — while they said I could put in the hammock, they flatly denied my request to also have tiki torches and sand on the floor. Sadly, my current firm is a bit more square, and even the hammock alone probably wouldn’t fly.
But whatever with that, because a hammock, tiki torches and some sand isn’t the dream anymore. It’s kiddie play. Christopher Gillette, a Montana attorney, well he’s living the dream. Gillette is currently installing a large aquarium which will be used to hold venomous fish and sharks.
He’s installing a mother fucking shark tank in the office!
A QuizLaw Reminder
Hey Boys and Girls: A friendly reminder that “The Daily Show” and “The Colbert Report” return to the airwaves tonight with brand-spanking new episodes. Of course, with the writer’s strike still ongoing (and Stewart and Colbert, undoubtedly, taking the adlib approach, as opposed to Leno’s arguably scabbish approach to his monologue), who knows what sort of amusing train wreck we’re in for. What might Jon Stewart be like without his writers? Well, mayhaps this is a glimpse into what to expect on “The Daily Show” tonight:
QuizLaw’s Amateur Election Punditry
With one day until the New Hampshire primary, it looks like that Barack Obama has opened up a double-digit lead on Hillary Clinton, and with the prospect of getting manhandled in the next few primary states, things are looking decidedly grim for Hillary. In fact, the scuttleass over at The Drudge Report is speculating, based on his usual sources (the voices inside his head), that Hillary may even drop out.
But before those in the Barack camp (of which I am one) start celebrating their victory, Barackophiles might want to be careful what they wish for. Indeed, I think some — though certainly not all — of Barack’s appeal lies in his contrast to Clinton. He’s a great orator, an attractive candidate (some might say “hot”), and he’s got super-magical powers to uplift. And, when he’s figuratively standing next to Hillary, he seems like an easy alternative to an abrasive politician.
But, you take Hillary out of the equation, Barack would be standing next to Edwards. And, if the electorate is forced to take another hard look at Edwards, I honestly think that more than a few people may pick up on his appeal: he’s got a great message, one that is very similar to Obama’s, and he’s a bit more seasoned than Barack. In a head to head contest between Obama and Hillary, it looks like Obama would be a shoe-in, but if you put him next to Edwards, I think he’s gonna be in for a helluva contest, which may actually serve us all a little better.
And, I just pulled all that out of my own ass, but it sure sounded reasonable in my head.
I Think I’m Going to Skip the Fava Beans. Thanks.
Twenty-five-year-old Christopher McCuin had an unusual item on his menu over the weekend. When police responded to a 911 call at his East Texas home, they found “a human ear boiling in a pot on a stovetop and a hunk of flesh impaled on a fork sitting atop a plate on the kitchen table.”
The ear and flesh hunk belonged to his girlfriend, now dead, and while police cannot say for sure whether McCuin ate bits of his lady friend, the evidence — cooked body parts impaled on a fork — seems to suggest as much.
Officials believe the horrific chain of events began when Jana Shearer, McCuin’s girlfriend, was taken by McCuin from her home late Friday night and killed.
Smith said McCuin then drove to his estranged wife’s home, where he stabbed his wife’s boyfriend, William Veasley, 42. Veasley was in intensive care Sunday night.
McCuin was still in that home when deputies arrived, but he jumped into his car and escaped after a short chase, Smith said. “We did not know at the time that he had murdered anyone,” Smith said. “We thought it was a disturbance or an assault.”
McCuin wasn’t seen again until Saturday morning, when he arrived at the home he shared with his mother and called her into the garage so she could “come see what he had done,” Smith said.
His mother and her boyfriend saw the remains of Shearer, authorities said. McCuin’s mother and her boyfriend fled the home and flagged down a police officer. McCuin dialed 911 after they left and told an emergency dispatcher he had killed Shearer and was boiling her body parts, Smith said.
When sheriff deputies arrived, McCuin barricaded himself in the home for a short time before coming out. After he emerged, a tactical team entered and found Shearer’s body, Sgt. Gary Middleton said. They also found the grisly scene in the kitchen.
After McCuin was arrested and placed in the back of a patrol car, he kicked out the vehicle’s side window before being put in additional restraints, Middleton said.
You know you’re a messed up dude when your mother calls the cops on you, huh? Of course, cooking up your girlfriend and then showing your mother the scene were also some clues.
The Daily Memo - 1/7/08
Judge Judy is being sued by a former producer who says he was shitcanned when he tried to stand up against the show’s racial screening. (TV Squad)
Lots of folks are apparently being sued for alleged infringement of a patent which covers computer solitaire. (Slashdot)
It’s hard to feel bad for lotto winners who have been hit for millions in back taxes thanks to an Eleventh Circuit ruling, when it’s only because they were trying to avoid paying higher taxes in the first place. (Law.com)
“Do looks matter in the law?” Well you don’t think I became the fine lawyer I am today because of my lawyering abilities, do you? (WSJ Law Blog)
I love when Philly gets feel-good headlines like the one about the cops shooting innocent bystanders in response to New Year’s Eve revelry/gunfire for the second year in a row. (FindLaw)
Virginia’s governor hopes to toughen the state’s sexual and domestic abuse laws. (Washington Post)
Look like us, be like us, work like us. Welcome to the Cog, son. (Law.com)
A Texas man died while in police custody because he ate a bag of crack to, you know, get rid of the evidence. (Houston Chronicle)
Yet another shining example of good lawyering at work has wound up in the clink. (St. Petersburg Times)
Make a choice
This is cross-posted with If a TV Falls in the Woods…, a blog written by Becklyoo, a friend and contributor to our sister site. While Dustin and I have never tried to hide our lefty leanings, I’m not posting this particularly because of its political point of view. Rather, I think there’s something more moving about Becklyoo’s missive, regardless of which side of the political aisle you live on, namely that politics and the system as a whole can still, every once in a while, actually affect people. Kick ‘em in the ass and get them to do something. That’s an awesome notion to reacquaint oneself with, particularly in a time when the political machine generally has most of us saying “what-the-fuck-ever.”
I consider myself an expert on two things. Television and bullshitting. I am proud of the former. But while the latter comes in awful handy, I’ve been working hard over the last few years to know of what I speak — and when I don’t, to shut the fuck up. It doesn’t come naturally. I’m a passionate, performative girl. I get took awful easy and once I’m on a roll, you best get the hell out of my way. I could convince a room full of non-astrophysicists that I’ve got deep insight into the inner workings of our solar system even though I only passed pre-calc ‘cause my hilarious, acid-tripped-out teacher let me take tests with a text book in my lap (a killer story for another day). But the deeper I dig — the more I read and listen and learn — the more aware I am of how little I know. Of how my perspective on the world, while wide and willing, is but one of billions. And that each of them, like faces of a prism, refracts truth and certainty into a rainbow of maybes and what-ifs. It’s freeing and it’s maddening.
For the majority of my childhood, I planned to be the first woman President of the United States. I would go to Harvard Law, run for local office and take it from there. This was not a lofty goal. It was going to happen. I believe whole heartedly that, had I not changed my mind, I’d be well on my way. I bought hook, line and sinker into my parents’ teaching that I was capable of anything for which I was willing to work. Anything.
I changed my mind because I began to understand that I dealt with life in terms of metaphor and that the United States of America for which I was so passionate, the citizenship of which I was so proud, was a myth. A beautiful and important myth, one worth threading through daily life, but one that was in constant conflict with the practical workings of government. Thus began what I suspect will be a life long struggle between idealism, healthy skepticism and debilitating cynicism.
Recently, I said that I was seriously considering never voting again. That was no joke — I’ve been drowning in cynicism for a while now. These last few months, I’ve spent a fair amount of sit-and-stare time pondering whether or not I wanted to continue to engage and, if so, how. And now, after much reflection, I’m amazed to find that for the first time in a long, long while, I feel passionate about this country. Excited by possibility. Proud of our potential.
And it all started with a choice….
2004 was a huge bummer. I was all for Dean. Kerry interested me about as much as a re-run of “The Love Boat” but I loathed the alternative. I mean… Fuck. Lest we forget, I’m from Texas. Molly Ivins and Ann Richards are my heroines. I’ve hated that sumbitch since childhood. (And a big fat fucking “I told you so” to anyone with whom I conversated in 2000 who didn’t believe me when I said that yes, it really would get this bad.) I did my part for Kerry with some phone banking (which was, for the most part, torturous — I don’t like strangers calling me at home asking for money either). And though I believed whole heartedly that the majority of the country would reject Bush, I had no illusions that anyone was inspired by Kerry. I certainly wasn’t. …Guess I was right on one count.
But there was that speech. At the convention. I remember sitting on my couch, lump in throat, thinking, “This is the guy.”
Obama moved me. The only other politician who’s ever made me feel that way was Josiah Bartlett and I think we all know he’s no Jack Bauer. But my healthy skepticism kicked in. In that moment, with that speech, Obama was metaphor-made-man but, unfortunately, there has to be more to it than that. Otherwise you end up with “compassionate conservativism.”
I downloaded his second book and listened to him tell his story while driving across town everyday. It was inspiring. Everything he said naturally balanced between pragmatism and idealism. I kept an eye on him in the Senate and, aside from funding for E85, haven’t come across a vote of his with which I disagree. I brought it up with everyone who’d listen: “He has to run. This is the guy. If he runs I’m quitting my job and going to work for him.” He announced and I smiled. I went on the website and signed up, willing to do whatever. Call me when you get to Cali.
Then the political theater of the endless primary process began with the cornucopia of debates (where nothing was really debated) and the nonsensical yammering from the punditry. Shit wasn’t getting done in DC despite what had seemed like a clear message from the voters that, you know, not so much with the war and the waste and the dishonesty. Then I started getting these anti-Hillary emails from the Obama campaign and cynicism set in. I thought he was going to do this differently. What if he’s not for real? What if this is an act? What if the system is so fundamentally flawed that the only way to get to run for president is to be full of shit?
A couple of months ago folks from the campaign started calling to ask for my time. (Note: NOT my money.) I’d tell them he had my vote but I wasn’t sure how much time I was willing to give and could they please call back? I ignored the emails. I stopped reading political blogs, stopped watching cable news. I couldn’t make sense of the situation. I’d lost perspective.
But I knew this Thursday was the Iowa Caucus and the political junkie in me couldn’t ignore it. Driving back from Sacramento, half way home, NPR was predicting a statistical tie for the Democrats. By the time I got to LA, they’d called it for Obama. I have no illusions that as goeth Iowa, so goeth the country. It’s a bizarre process involving a small fraction of voters. So it’s merely 1 down, 49 to go. But I made the mistake of turning on MSNBC when I got home and the pundits sure didn’t see it that way. They were too busy remaking the myth of Hillary to put shit in proper context. (Curtsy to Rachel Maddow for being the lone voice of reason.) Myths only do their jobs as cultural touch stones when they spring naturally from the people. When they’re forced down lazy gullets by yammering toadies looking to fill 24 hours of dead air, they’re downright dangerous. They obscure truth and poison discourse. It’s a serious fucking problem. So I turned off Chris Mathews and turned to google to find Obama’s victory speech.
I am uncapable of cynicism when listening to him speak. He moves me. One phrase kept running through my head as I listened: “I want to believe.” Not just that he means what he says. I want to believe that the system can work. I want to believe that committed citizens can change the world. I want to believe.
The first thing I saw when I went to his website was , “I’m asking you to believe. Not just in my ability to bring about real change in Washington. I’m asking you to believe in yours.”
Uh… Get out of my head?
I spent the night reading all of his policy proposals. Just as I’d found with his voting record, it was almost impossible to find something with which I disagreed. What was my problem? Why was I still so hesitant to do everything in my meager power to try to get this guy elected?
Then I took the time to watch his “Call to Renewal” speech, delivered to a group brought together by Sojourners, a progressive Christian organization my family’s been involved with for some time. Much of it I’d heard before in his book. But in this new context of doubt and desire, the speech provided a tipping point.
It forced me to confront something I’d known since the convention speech in 2004. Barack speaks my language and shares my perspective in such a rare and fundamental way that to not support him, to not do everything I can to put him in a position of power, is to betray who I am and what I believe in. I’d been hesitant out of fear. Fear of disappointment. Fear of being wrong. Fear of misplaced faith and trust. Fear of finding out that we really are fucked. That our system is irreparably broken…
In the speech he tells a story about his late-in-life acceptance of the Christian faith: “It came about as a choice, and not an epiphany.” I thought back to my recent visit with my best friend, about to be a mom. I told her one of the gifts I was most grateful for from my parents was that of choice. Outside of the general boundaries of childhood, I was never forced to do anything. I was always given a choice. I was raised to believe happiness is a choice. Success is a choice. Change is a choice. And I realized, if I so desperately wanted to believe, I just had to chose it.
So I did.
Saturday morning, I spent three hours at a training session to be an Obama Precinct Supervisor. It was an amazing experience, 80 or so folks crammed into a little coffee shop which had closed down for the occasion. Smart, passionate, interesting folks of all ages, creeds and colors. An all volunteer army. None of the organizers I met were on salary and each of them was giving every spare second to the cause, giving out their cell phone numbers to strangers, willing to answer questions day or night. They spoke about their personal reasons for getting involved in the campaign before we broke off into groups and discussed amongst ourselves. It became clear that while everyone there believed in Obama, more importantly, they believed in this country and in our promise and potential to change it for the better. It was an empowering and affirming experience.
I’ll do my best to keep things light and TV-centric ‘round my blog, but being that the next month of my life is largely going to be about the California primary, I suspect the blog will be a tad more political than usual. While it’s obvious I’m passionate about an Obama presidency, I don’t have any interest in converting folks. As long as you’ve done your homework and believe strongly the person you chose deserves your vote – Amen. I have a hard enough time figuring out what’s right for me. I won’t dream of trying to cypher what’s right for you. But if you’ve been sitting on the fence, thinking you dig the dude but aren’t sure… Dig a little deeper. Make a choice.
And now, in keeping with the mission of my blog:
Gets me every fucking time.
Little Ralphie Wiggum’s candidacy was announced on last night’s episode of “The Simpsons.” While his campaign page is still a bit barren at this point, if he’s still in the race come the February 5 primaries, I don’t need to know anything beyond the fact that his cat’s breath smells like cat food — he’s got my vote.
Do you see people? The terrorists are winning!
Poor poor Bill O’Reilly. What’s a news anchor to do when when Barack Obama’s National Trip Director is in his way? Politely ask him to kindly move, naturally. And just because Papa Bear’s version of “polite” includes yelling and calling him a sunuvabitch — I ask you, is that any reason for the Secret Service to restrain the man? He’s just trying to do his job, people!
Rudy is right, man, the next crisis is a moment away! (Be warned — the following video is perhaps the most vile and offensive campaign ad you’ll ever see.)
One More Time with Feeling
Once again, we’d like to thank everyone for their votes over at the ABA Journal’s whojawhatchamacallit. As a result, we’ve now got that shiny new little badge over in our sidebar, recognizing how wonderfully Generally Speaking we are. But we’d also like to congratulate all the other folks who took home some ABA gold:
What About Clients? (Winner of the “All Business” category).
InstaPundit (Winner of the the “Politics for Sport” category).
The Volokh Conspiracy (Winner of the “Ivory Tower” category).
China Law Blog (Winner of the “Black Letter Law” category).
Legal Process Outsourcing (Winner of the “Lawyer’s Toolkit” category).
Ms.JD (Winner of the “Your So-Called Life” category).
Crime Scene KC (Winner of the “Crime Time” category).
There’s No Competition in Law School (Winner of the “JDs in Training” category).
Durham-in-Winderland (Winners of the “Lawyers Behaving Badly” category).
Above the Law (Winners of the “Gossip” category).
SCOTUSblog (Winners of the “Benched” category).
But the real reason I put up this post was just to have an excuse to use the awesome fireworks photo. It was taken just after midnight on New Years Eve in Oslo, Norway, and you can see the nice, big full-size version over on Foto.no. According to this story, Oslo doesn’t arrange officially fireworks because it’s too cold for everyone to go downtown. So folks just set shit up in their gardens and then watch from inside. Pretty damn cool.
Obama Girl is Back
Praise the Lord.
R U Ready for Halo?
Ever played the uber-popular video game, Halo? Yeah, me neither. However, I understand that the game’s alien civilization holds a “single-minded belief that a Great Journey awaits its faithful and that this Journey can be embarked upon by activating an array of vast, ring-like artifacts scattered throughout the Galaxy.” And apparently, Joshua R. Stetar felt that the “Great Journey” was a 40-hour trek across the country to try to rape two girls, ages 15 and 6.
Joshua R. Stetar, 20, a self-described “very conservative” Christian who hoped to someday be a Christian school teacher, used mobile text messages to threaten the girls as he drove near their home in Spokane, Wash., police said.
It came after months of stalking the older girl through hundreds of text messages, police said.
“Tell the cops that I’m gonna rape you and your sister,” Stetar allegedly wrote to the 15-year-old girl, last week.
Stetar sent packages and flowers to the older sister at her family’s home several times this year, flooded her cellphone with several hundred text messages — and even flew to Spokane on Oct. 23 to stake out the girl’s home, Kirkpatrick said.
The girl’s mother stepped in several months ago and changed her daughter’s phone number in an effort to stop Stetar’s barrage of calls and messages. But the Granville man allegedly resumed stalking the girl when he got her new number from a mutual friend, police said.
The situation came to a climax last week, when Stetar drove 40 hours west in his 1996 Oldsmobile. About 9:30 p.m. Friday, he sent a message to the 15-year-old saying that he was in a vehicle in front of her house, police said.
Six minutes later, police say, he sent the rape threat.
The girl’s parents spotted Stetar in his vehicle and called police. Officers traced the vehicle back to an Econo Lodge hotel, and arrested him there.
Stetar faces felony stalking charges. Also, he’s batshit.
Cold. So Cold.
Is it cold where you are? Yeah. I think it dipped down into the single digits where I’m from last night, and I can’t even be bothered to walk outside and bring the trash can in from the driveway.
But if you, too, are suffering from the bitter cold this weekend, you can take solace in this story: Out in Siberia, where it’s minus 30C (I dunno what that is is Fahrenheit, but probably something like -400), a 62-year-old woman slipped and fell on a railway track, and her hand froze to the rail. She was stuck there for an hour, until a passerby saw her. Rescuers had to use welding torches to remove part of the track and transport the woman to the hospital, where she was treated for hypothermia and, hopefully, had the track removed from her hand.
So, as you’re cursing that wind tunnel while walking to your car today, take heart: At least you’re not frozen to a railway line.
The Daily Memo - 1/4/08
A judge who uses “poppycock” will always be a-ok in my book. (WSJ Law Blog)
Folks help standing up and taking notice of our triumphant defeat of the Overlawyered gang. (LawJobsPipeLine)
Man, I would looooove to see Clemens get sued. Cheating, grumpy, miserable sot. (Deadspin)
A lady is suing because she let her self be recorded rolling around in bed and is now shocked — shocked I say — to find it being used orgasmicaly in a jewelry ad. (Overlawyered)
The Ninth Circuit says karaoke machine makers need to pay twice, but I say they can never pay enough. Stupid frakking karaoke. (Law.com)
Priest arrested on perjury charges in kiddie piddling case. … Oh wait, not kiddie piddling? A mob case! (CNN)
I can’t wait until I’m an idiot parent so I can try to cash in on my idiocy
Kedra and Brenda Dorsey may have been the parents of the year, 2003 edition. On a cold December day of that year, the two had to make a court appearance, so they parked their Ford Taurus at a meter outside of the court and went in for their business. However, it was illegal for cars to be parked at the meter between 4 and 6 p.m., so the car was towed during that time period. When the Dorseys came out to find their car missing, they weren’t just dismayed about the fact that the car had been towed, but that their four kids were still in the car.
Yeah, that’s right, the Dorsey thought it was a good idea to leave their four kids alone in the car while they appeared in court. They’re now suing the tow company, naturally, for hauling the car away with the kids, claiming it amounted to false imprisonment and caused the kiddies emotional distress. But leaving your kids locked up in the car for hours, no emotional distress there, right?
Words fail me
I’ll let this story speak for itself:
BREMERTON, Wash. (AP) - A 25-year-old woman was arrested for investigation of second-degree assault for getting into an argument with her boyfriend over whether his dog should be in the bathroom while the couple were taking a shower together.
A police report said the 26-year-old man wanted his dog to join them in the bathroom, but the woman objected on Thursday night.
She told him if the dog wouldn’t stay out, she didn’t want to be his girlfriend anymore. He replied that maybe his next girlfriend would appreciate the dog more, and called her a name.
The police report said the woman punched him in the face several times and the man dislocated his shoulder when the naked couple grappled. He told police his girlfriend threw a picture frame, which broke and cut him.
The woman was taken to the Kitsap County Jail in Port Orchard. Bail has been set at $50,000.
“Sen. Barack Obama swept to victory in the Iowa caucuses Thursday night, pushing Hillary Rodham Clinton to third place and taking a major stride in a historic bid to become the nation’s first black president.”
Somewhere in America, Obama Girl is touching herself.
“Mike Huckabee rode a wave of support from evangelical Christians to win the opening round among Republicans in the 2008 campaign for the White House.”
Somewhere in America, Chuck Norris is touching himself.
What’s on the Tape?
A Tennessee circuit court judge has been forced to resign his position after a tape leaked that included him making a recording of his graphic, lurid fantasies, so lurid in fact, that the police and FBI thought they were listening to a torture sessions linked to a murder case.
So, what’s on the tape?
“It sounded like someone being tortured,” Chattanooga police Sgt. Alan Franks testified Wednesday. “The content was so shocking. I have been a police officer for 24 years …”
Uh huh. And what was it?
“Investigators ultimately concluded the recording consisted only of fantasies.”
OK. But, you’ve got me intrigued now. What. is. on. the. tape?
“The description of it as containing ‘graphic fantasies’ … is an accurate and sufficient description and all any decent person would want to hear of it,” the judge said in a statement.
But what about those of us who aren’t decent? Huh? That’s not a sufficient description? What could one possibly put on a tape (apparently, it was given to his secretary along with some other legal dictation) that would sound like a torture session, embarrass the man’s family, and force a judge to resign? If it’s the most shocking thing a police officer has heard in 24 years, what could it possibly contain? Was he fantasizing loudly about raping a tiger? Dragons mauling babies? What? What?!
Music in the night, a dream that can’t be heard
Thirty-four year old Antonio Harris and 32-year old Aretha Thomas are in love. So when their at-home wedding ceremony was stymied because Harris was stuck in jail and couldn’t make bond, they had a little courtroom ceremony instead:
Instead of a tux, the groom wore jail-issue black and white stripes, his wrists cuffed in front of him. The bride’s ensemble was a polo shirt, jeans and tennis shoes.
The newlyweds were allowed a brief kiss before Harris was returned to his cell.
“I know it’s kind of unusual,” Thomas said. “But that’s everyday life. You never know what will happen.”
The couple had been engaged 11 years and have two children.
“I’m on top of the world,” Harris said. “It doesn’t matter what I am wearing, she makes me feel warm inside.”
He may not be so on top of the world after his trial, however, as he’s facing a possible 38 years in the clink for a variety of charges, including cocaine and marijuana trafficking, drug possession, and illegal gun possession.
I Love Me Some Me
Terrell Owens (pictured in Philly green, just for Seth), cocksure semi-talented, drop-prone wide receiver for the Dallas Cowboys, wins my vote for trademark application of the year, filing an app for the phrase, “I Love Me Some Me,” which I’m sure he plans to market on T-shirts, bumper stickers, and lubricant-heavy right hands everywhere.
It’s a good thing, too; it’ll serve as a handy reminder for T.O. that the only person in the world that will ever love him is him.
The Daily Memo - 1/3/08
Is the billable hour going the way of the dodo? (Above the Law)
The FBI is trying to turn up the heat on its hunt for D.B. Cooper because nothing is more important than tracking down a robber who vanished over three decades ago. (CNN)
“FBI Bug Mars Philly Mayor’s Legacy.” Wait … how does an FBI bug mar the legacy of a man who was already known to be corrupt and full of shenanigans? (FindLaw)
“Who would Anotonin Scalia torture?” (Salon)
Next time, they might want to hire a professional wheel man
Hell, even a fledgling wheel man would’ve avoided this kinda blooper:
Three men were apprehended by police officers in San Antonio after attempting to steal cases of beer and iced tea from a local convenience store. According to police reports, at about 3 a.m. the three men entered an EZ Mart and tried to make off with three 18-packs of beer and four cases of iced tea.
Local television station KSAT said that the men then entered their getaway car, which they backed up into a police patrol car.
Women and Guns!
You see this handsome lady with the automatic weapon to the left? Her name is Kumari Fulbright. She’s a second year law student at the University of Arizona (Go Wildcats!). She is also a former two-time contestant in the Miss Arizona pageant, and recently completed an unpaid internship clerking for a federal judge.
Quite a resume, huh? Well, she’s got a couple of new lines she can now add to that CV: Kidnapping, armed robbery, biting, aggravated robbery and two counts of aggravated assault! That should make her very competitive at the spring job fairs, huh?
Apparently, what Ms. Fulbright did is she invited her ex-boyfriend in and jumped in the shower, while three other men (including a former boyfriend) got together and duct taped her 24-year-old ex down, accused him of stealing some jewelry, and threatened to shoot him with pistols. When Fulbright got out of the shower, she allegedly bit her former beau on his forearm, right hand and ear, held a butcher knife to his head, and told him she was going to kill him.
That’s not nice.
The ex-boyfriend did, eventually, mange to free himself, taking a gun and unloading a round (he didn’t hit anyone) before escaping, though the suspects stole his money, his cell phone, and his briefcase. Fulbright is currently free on bond. It’s cool, though — if she has to serve a small sentence, she should be all right. Nobody goes to class their third year anyway.
QuizLaw Lives on to Fight Another Day!
Well the votes are in, and by a narrow 19 vote margin, QuizLaw managed to beat out the Overlawyered kids in a fierce fight to the finish. We. Are. The Number One “Generally Speaking” Blawg. So thank you to all the QuizLaw and Pajiba readership for showing the love. We’re thankful, we truly are. Humanity lives on to continue its fight against the robotic would-be overlords. Cute Pajiba Jr. (who is, despite some of your protestations to the contrary, truly just shy of six months old — he’s an Indy Colts linebacker in waiting!) is thankful. And most importantly of all, Pajiba Jr.’s lion is thankful.
We love being number one in a relatively meaningless poll, we truly do. But there are two more orders of business we must turn to. First, an earnest hat tip to the Overlawyered gang, who were wonderfully gracious in their embarrassing and merciless defeat. It was truly a pleasure to vanquish you guys! They were also incredibly good sports about all our shenanigans.
Second, there’s more work to be done. As reader three elle pointed out yesterday, the nominations for the 2008 Bloggies are underway. Now, we’ve already begged, pleaded, borrowed and stolen to get your votes for us in the ABA Whatchamacallit, so we understand if you’re turned off to more voting. But we’re gonna ask for your help anyway. And here’s the thing — you wouldn’t just be helping out good old QuizLaw. See, the Bloggies require you to put forth nominations for at least three different blogs. And well, wouldn’t you know it, QuizLaw has two sister sites equally deserving of some nominating love, which adds up to a shiny three.
But beyond that, we’re not a selfish bunch. In fact, if and when you hit the Bloggies’ nomination page, QuizLaw recommends your first order of business to be giving the fine Overlawyered folks a nomination or two. And then, we’d love to see you give Kissing Suzy Kolber a nod for Best Sports Weblog. And then, you can deal with your favorite trio of Scathing Websites. Now there are a lot of categories we think We Three Kings fit into, but if we could have only one, well, we would absolutely love to see Pajiba get some love for Best-Kept Secret Weblog.
Beyond that, here’s how I personally voted for our three websites — you are, of course, free to do as you’d like. And whether you nominate or not, just know that the Number One ABA “Generally Speaking” Blawg loves you, truly and sincerely:
Pajiba — Best American Weblog, Best-Kept Secret Weblog, Best Entertainment Weblog, Best Writing of a Weblog and Best Group Weblog.
QuizLaw — Best American Weblog, Best-Kept Secret Weblog and Best Topical Weblog.
Websters Is My Bitch — Best American Weblog, Best-Kept Secret Weblog and Best Gossip Blog.
Somebody Is Having a Great New Year
You’d think that getting charged with a DUI would suggest that James Stirparo was starting off the year in a terrible way.
But that DUI is just an unfortunate blip to the luckiest day of Stirparo’s life. Indeed, at 2:30 a.m. on New Year’s Day, he was driving drunk on an interstate in Wilmington, Delaware when he struck the right and left guard rails.
He was ejected from his Jeep.
And then, “as he attempted to get to his knees, an oncoming tractor trailer passed directly over top of him, missing Stirparo entirely.”
Wow. Happy New Year, James!
God Bless the USA! You may recall a case I told you about back in October, where Dawn Herb was facing prosecution for cussing at her overflowing toilet. Well a federal judge in Pennsylvania has now ruled that the case against Herb was crap because in America, one is entitled to cuss out their toilet.
Judge Gallagher said that Herb’s language might have been “offensive, vulgar and imprudent,” but it’s just the kind of the thing the First Amendment intends to protect. To quote Trey Parker and Matt Stone: “America … fuck yeah!”
And Judge Gallagher? I wonder if he exercised his own First Amendment rights, after issuing this ruling, by smashing a watermelon. That’d be awesome. If I’m ever a judge, I’m totally using my gavel to bust up some fruit from the bench.
The Daily Memo - 1/2/08
Cambridge and Somerville in the dumb criminal news! A dude gets busted for robbing a Porter Square Dunkin’ Donuts when the cops were able to simply follow his snow tracks. (wickedlocal.com)
Tee-hee … pole tax. (TheSpec)
A brilliant San Diego man called the cops to report that his PS2 had been stolen … along with his weed. (SignOnSanDiego)
Stealing from a cop car — big balls, or big stupid? (WXYZ)
Same old story … flying bra leads two friends to a courtroom face-off. (Toledo Blade)
Police in Columbus, Ohio are employing topless women in their latest attempt to generate arrests. (Overlawyered)
Bush is yet again trying to show that he’s America’s Emperor. (AP)
Chief Justice Johnny thinks that the first thing Congress should do in the new session is give him more money. (WSJ Law Blog)
It’s Voting Time!
The Iowa Caucuses are tomorrow, which means that after 3 years of campaigning, we’re actually going to get to see some freakin’ results. The Iowa Caucus used to be a relatively insignificant election, one that some presidential contenders used to skip all together in favor of putting all their resources into NH, figuring that after the NH vote the following week, everyone will have forgotten about Iowa anyway. And I think that used to be a fairly decent strategy — that is until 2004, when Howard Dean proved just how important the caucus is when he rolled in third, obliterated his nationwide front-runner status, and then basically gave the nomination to John Kerry. You know how the rest went.
Given the relatively tiny number of people who actually caucus, and the amount of money put into the state, I read somewhere that each vote costs the candidates about $17 a piece, about $150 per caucus goer, and almost $500,000 per delegate. That’s unbelievably absurd.
Not that you haven’t heard enough about it, but the latest polls suggest that either Barack Obama or Hillary Clinton is winning on the Democrat side (with John Edwards in a dead heat), while Mitt Romney or Mike Huckabee leads on the GOP side, depending on which poll you check (the polls, of course, came before Huckabee’s Howard-Dean like self-destruction on New Year’s Eve).
At any rate, I’m actually relatively excited about the caucus — I love the heart of election season, if only because it offers up some of the best reality programing on the TV. Seth is in California, and I’m in New York, so by the time our primary elections arrive, the election has usually been decided, despite our delegate-rich states. But, if those undecided voters out in NH and Iowa are looking for an endorsement, I’ll just say that I’m in the Obama camp. I’m awfully tempted to vote for Hillary, if only because it means Bill will be back in the White House, but like I wrote last week, the deciding factor for me was that “The Wire” is Obama’s favorite show, while Hillary claims hers is “American Idol,” which is more pandering than I can stomach.
Best of luck to your candidate(s) of choice.
If you hung him on a wall, his name would be Art
Samuel Shoemaker is seeking to dismiss the case brought against him for threats he made against a Pennsylvania judge. Last year, Shoemaker was before a county judge, Judge John Driscoll, who ruled against him in a child-support case. Shoemaker didn’t take to the ruling so well, and he threatened to punch and strangle Judge Driscoll.
Shoemaker now says that this was just him blowing off steam and that he totally didn’t mean the threats. More importantly, says Shoemaker, it’s quite clear that he never could’ve carried out the threats because, well, he’s got no legs and only limited use of his arms.
Which is a fair point. But then, one recalls the no-arm-one-leg adventures of Frances Wiley. So it’s not far fetched to think that Shoemaker just might have been handi-capable of giving His Honor an ass kicking.
Humanity fights on!
With mere moments left to go in the ABA Journal contest who-ji-whatsit, we’re holding a tight lead on Overlawyered and the Overlawyered robots are none too pleased about it. So they’re seeking “winning tactics that wouldn’t mire us in an embarrassing degree of groveling, nagging, cheating, conniving, etc.” Which is interesting, given that robots can’t feel embarrassment.
In any event, we ain’t going down without a fight. So while I suspect all our regular readers, and then some, have done their part and given their vote (and those crafty ABA folks have set it up so you can only vote once), this here is a call out to those of you who ain’t voted. We don’t know who you are. We don’t have any way to selectively stop entertaining you while continuing to entertain those who did vote. We know winning this thing means absolutely nothing in the grand scheme of anything. But don’t think any of that will stop us from trying to hunt you down anyway. Because if you’re not voting for us, that’s essentially the same as voting for the robots.
And if you want the robots to win? Well then, you’re no friend of QuizLaw’s. Or humanity.
So get busy voting or get busy greeting your new robot overlords. And if you won’t do it for the sake of all humanity, how about for the sake of one cute kid and his equally cute lion?
Last Second Dirty Tactics
As we may have mentioned, there’s a fierce battle going on between Overlawyered and QuizLaw in voting for the American Bar Association’s Law Blawg Contest. We’d recently taken a decent-sized lead, and hoped for the best over the holidays. However, Overlawyered has stumped for votes on today, of all days, knowing that Seth and I would no doubt be hungover and in no condition to plead our case. It’s dirty politics, I tell you. Dirty politics. Kicking a man while he’s hungover! Party foul! As a result, they’ve closed the gap significantly in the waning hours before votes are no longer accepted.
Voting ends January 2nd, so we make one final plea to our readers: We’d really like to win this contest. Me, probably more than Seth. I don’t know why. So, I’m afraid I have to pull out the last card I own.
You see the picture? This is my son. Cute, isn’t he? He’ll be six months old in 11 days. You see that Lion he is on top of here? It was a very nice gift received from an old friend from law school. He loves it. But, if we don’t win this contest, I’m afraid I’m going to have to take it away from him. My son will be crushed. But Daddy doesn’t like to lose. He hates losing.
Vote for QuizLaw. Do it for a cute kid that loves his lion.
Happy New Year, etc. etc.
I’m writing this ahead of time because it’s a safe bet that no matter when you talk to me today, New Year’s Day, I’m going to be hung over as all hell and bitching about room spinning and the like. Hopefully you’re in better shape. You must be if you’re actually checking in with QuizLaw.
In any event, we’re taking the day off. So a Happy New Year to y’all, and we’ll be seeing you tomorrow.