Angela Corey failed to disclose evidence in Michael Dunn case

January 31, 2014

Friday, January 31, 2014

Good morning:

I have disappointing news to pass along from Angela Corey’s office.

The audio recordings of Michael Dunn’s jailhouse phone calls will not be available for 9 to 10 weeks. Since the trial is likely to end before then, I do not believe we will have an opportunity to listen to them.

According to the terms of the order issued two weeks ago today by the 1st District Court of Appeal, the prosecution was required to release the audio recordings to the media no later than one week ago today.

Corey claims that she has a legitimate excuse for the delay.

I disagree.

She says her office has 170 hours of recorded calls that cannot be released to the public in their present condition because the names and addresses of the participants and various other people mentioned in the calls have not been redacted.

True, but that task should have been accomplished months ago.

Why?

Because anything Dunn said during the calls about the shooting will be admissible in the prosecution’s case-in-chief pursuant to the admission-by-a-party-opponent rule. If Dunn testifies and his testimony differs from what he said during those calls, the prosecution can impeach his testimony with his prior inconsistent statement.

The prosecution acquired this evidence approximately one year ago and I cannot think of any reason that would justify its failure to review the calls months ago. I do not believe that any reasonably competent prosecutor would have failed to review that evidence months ago and for that reason I do not accept Corey’s excuse.

If I were Judge Healey, I would find Corey in contempt and order her to pay $500 per day until she produces the records.

Given the inadequate performance of her team of prosecutors in the George Zimmerman trial, I was expecting her to avoid bonehead screw-ups like this.

Her failure to do so raises new questions about her commitment to this case.


Our commitment to this blog

January 30, 2014

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Good afternoon:

Many of our readers generally know that Crane and I have enemies dedicated to intimidating us and eliminating our blog. I write today to describe their tactics so that readers will recognize their handiwork when they see it and better appreciate what we deal with on a daily basis.

To discredit what I say, they knowingly disseminate false and malicious information about me and my professional reputation as a lawyer and law professor. They do this at their own websites and at high-traffic internet websites like the Huffington Post.

They do not rely on real evidence because no such evidence exists. As my regular readers know, my posts are self-authenticating for the most part because I explain what is happening in non-technical language, provide insights about a case or issue that only a knowledgeable and experienced trial lawyer would know, and generally predict outcomes accurately or explain what went wrong. I admit I am wrong when I make mistakes.

Over time the truth of these statements reveals itself.

Our detractors attempt to create the appearance that their false statements about us and what we say are legitimate by using multiple internet identities to communicate the same false information and proxy servers that conceal their true identities and IP addresses. Using this method, one person can appear to be more than ten people having a conversation about us or something that we supposedly said.

This method of character assassination and legitimization of false information has been around for a long time. The late Andrew Breitbart used it to discredit democratic candidates for political office and organizations dedicated to registering voters and turning out the vote. The method was used to defeat John Kerry in the 2004 election. At that time it was called swift boating.

In some cases involving people who have their own blogs and comment here, they have threatened to use the same tactic against them unless they moderate what they say and stop commenting here.

The effort against me has been underway for about two years and I have no reason to believe that it will end unless the feds indict the people running the scam with conspiracy to violate my civil rights.

Everyone has a right to free speech, including me. However, it is not absolute. For example, no one has a right to scream “Fire” in a crowded theater.

The right to free speech comes with a duty to speak the truth. Knowingly or recklessly uttering false statements about another person is not protected by the First Amendment. If such a statement causes an injury to a person’s reputation that is capable of being measured in dollars, such as lost income for example, the injured person can recover money damages from the person who uttered the false statement.

Under some circumstances, a person who utters a false statement may be charged with a crime.

We realize that a federal prosecution against the people attempting to destroy the credibility of this website probably will remain a low priority for the feds, unless someone is murdered. We are not the only people whom the right wing hate machine seeks to discredit and silence with a coordinated campaign of lies.

They do this all the time.

From time to time we get discouraged by all of the hate directed at us. Within the past two weeks we were doxed: our address and telephone number was published on the internet.

We want our readers to know that we honor our commitments.

No matter what happens, we will continue to speak the truth.


Texas Republicans cannot reanimate the dead

January 29, 2014
A patient in a hospital bed connected to equipment.

Why are Texas Republicans so ghoulish?

Good morning:

I will be subbing for Crane Station today because she is busy working on her case.

Four Republican candidates seeking their party’s nomination to run for the position of Lieutenant Governor of Texas in the fall election participated in the first televised debate of the primary season on Monday evening.

Under normal circumstances, I would not comment on the debate.

I have decided to comment, however, because the four candidates disagreed with the judge who ordered the hospital to disconnect Marlise Munoz from a ventilator. They also vowed to change the law so that this mistake will not happen again.

I believe their position is indefensible legally and ethically and I believe it demonstrates why these men are not qualified for the position they seek.

The primary is March 4th.

First, Marlise Munoz very likely was brain dead (i.e., clinically dead) before she was transported to the hospital. If not, she soon reached that condition. Her condition was irreversible.

Second, but for the Texas statute, the hospital was ethically required to unplug her from life support.

Third, it was undisputed that the fetus was not viable and but for the Texas statute, the hospital had no choice but to let it go.

Fourth, the statute cannot be rewritten to bring the dead back to life.

Therefore, the court made the correct decision and the Texas legislature cannot amend the existing statute to require the hospital to bring the dead back to life.

The four candidates have no excuse for not being aware of this impossibility.

Characterizing the court’s decision as wrong and promising to rewrite the statute to, in essence, reanimate the dead can only work in zombie films.

President Obama did a pretty good job of zombie politics in his State of the Union address last night.

Read the rest of this entry »


If you could make 5 people disappear, who would you choose?

January 26, 2014

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Good afternoon:

“Would the following people please report to the vice principal’s office,” was a summons over the junior high school public address system that used to strike fear into my heart because my name often would be on that list for various and sundry immature pranks that I committed against teachers whom I disliked for reasons both real and imagined.

Yes, I confess that I was a bratty merry prankster who irritated the hell out of my frazzled teachers. Fortunately, I eventually managed to give my poor overworked and underpaid teachers a break and redirected my teenage rebellion into more productive pursuits like protesting against the war in Vietnam.

But that’s another story.

I am pleased to report that, as far as I know, I never made a teacher sick.

Of course, I had not yet discovered how to cast magic spells.

Which brings me to Brandi Blackbear, a student at Union Intermediate High School in Broken Arrow, Oklahoma back in December, 2000.

The assistant vice principal suspended her for 15 days for casting a magic spell that made a teacher sick.

ABC News reported:

The lawsuit, filed on Thursday [by the ACLU], alleges that Blackbear was summoned to the office of assistant principal Charlie Bushyhead last December after a teacher fell ill, and was questioned about her interest in Wicca.

According to the lawsuit, Brandi Blackbear had read a library book about Wicca beliefs and, under aggressive interrogation by Bushyhead, said she might be a Wiccan. In fact, Blackbear is a Roman Catholic, according to the newspaper Tulsa World.

“The interview culminated with Defendant Bushyhead accusing Plaintiff, Brandi Blackbear, of casting spells causing (a teacher at the school) … to be sick and to be hospitalized,” the lawsuit said.

The lawsuit stated that because of the “unknown cause” of the teacher’s illness, Bushyhead advised the 15-year-old girl “that she was an immediate threat to the school and summarily suspended her for what he arbitrarily determined to be a disruption of the education process.”

Absolutely brilliant detective work by Mr. Bushyhead, who should give serious consideration to changing his name to Defendant Shit For Brains.

First Coast News reprinted this story from December, 2000 as its selection for today in the strange news department.

Wouldn’t it be wonderful, if we could cast magic spells that would make people disappear?

George Zimmerman would be in my top 5.

How about you?


Discovery dump today in Michael Dunn case

January 24, 2014

Friday, January 24, 2014

Good evening:

We have a discovery dump (156 pages) to review in the Michael Dunn case. Among the contents are some letters he wrote that you may find interesting to read.

(H/T to Lynn for providing the link)

Happy trails,

Fred


Marlise Munoz hearing

January 24, 2014

Friday, January 24, 2014

Good afternoon:

No live stream of the Munoz hearing and it started at 3 pm. Judge ordered all cell phones turned off during the hearing, so no one can tweet about it.

Two hours before the hearing, the hospital acknowledged in legal papers filed with the court that Marlise Munoz has been brain dead since November 28th and the fetus is not viable.

You can follow developments on twitter

#marlisemunoz

Meanwhile, we wait . . .


Open Thread

January 23, 2014

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Good afternoon:

I have replaced my dead computer and I’m back up and running.

Not much happening today that has not already been mentioned in the comments.

Big day tomorrow.

Angela Corey’s office must release the audio recordings of Michael Dunn’s 740 or so phone calls from jail by tomorrow at the close of business.

There will be a hearing in Erick Munoz’s lawsuit against the hospital seeking an order to disconnect his dead pregnant wife from a ventilator with the fetus in some serious difficulty.

Fauxmccoy posted this comment quoting his attorney and a link, which I have embedded.

“According to the medical records we have been provided, the fetus is distinctly abnormal,” the attorneys said. “Even at this early stage, the lower extremities are deformed to the extent that the gender cannot be determined.”

The attorneys said the fetus also has fluid building up inside the skull and possibly has a heart problem.

“Quite sadly, this information is not surprising due to the fact that the fetus, after being deprived of oxygen for an indeterminate length of time, is gestating within a dead and deteriorating body, as a horrified family looks on in absolute anguish, distress and sadness,” the attorneys said.

Meanwhile, Zimmerman’s fledgling career as a paint-by-numbers copycat continues.

The pool is open.


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