September 2, 2012
August 17, 2012
May 11, 2011
January 29, 2011
January 21, 2011
December 24, 2010
January 22, 2010
In division 30 waiting to do arraignments so I take my jacket off; it’s that kind of place. Get a call to go next door to handle something there. This court is packed. Maybe 400 defendants, family and/or friends in the audience. I’d love to have that audience at my show IT’S CRIMINAL the comedy. (by the way it’s playing now at the Santa Monica Playhouse – every Saturday night till February 13 – www.plays411.com/itscriminal for tix.)
And then there are dozens of “bodies” (that’s what we call them in the biz) in the dock; the lawyers – prosecutors, defense attorneys, milling around in front of the Bar; the court staff; the interpreters and bailiffs. It’s so busy cause there’ s lots of misdemeanors committed every day in the big city and we never hear about it because who cares? Other than the people charged and their lawyers and the prosecutors.
So when i get there i’d hardly expect to be noticed. When the judge calls out to me – “Sir, are you an attorney?”
“You can’t come into my court dressed like that.”
“Where is your jacket counsel?”
Is he kidding around? I’m wearing a white shirt and a tie. I don’t know this judge – must be new. He’s not kidding. He’s coming at me hot and heavy. His face goes red.
“Do you understand me counsel?”
I’m not taking this shit from this punk asshole. I’m a professional, an officer of the court. I’m a goddamn grandfather.
“Yes, your honor.” I may have bowed my head too.
What could I do? Guess I won’t be starring in any super hero movies.
May 20, 2009
For some reason this Judge is giving it to this young cocky DA at a preliminary hearing. I say, giving it to him because being stupid and cocky in a DA doesn’t usually get you in trouble with a Judge. But there must have been some bad shit between these two. Because she really got on his tail. She interrupts him as he questions his witness – in a voice like she was talking to a 4th grader – “Mr. So & So – look at the jury instructions before you present your case so you’ll know the elements you have to prove. I am tired of having to do your job for you.” Man she was mad. And my client’s boyfriend lets out a whoop from the audience. One for the oppressed yeah! He’s thrown out of court. I have to say I enjoyed it too. As long as it wasn’t me. And then, of course, the Judge held my client to “answer”* and put her in jail.
*answer enough evidence to hold defendant for trial.
September 28, 2008
I’m in a rape trial – titanic forces of evil and good crashing against each other.
What’s the Climax of this Cosmic Confrontation for me?
I call a witness and I project a map of southern California onto the big screen for the jury. There’s an issue about the route the alleged victim took to get to Los Angeles where she was allegedly brutally raped by my client. You don’t want to know the details, trust me. I pull out my LASER PEN – I’ve been waiting to do this ever since I got the pen few weeks ago from another lawyer during another trial. But I didn’t have occasion to use it until now, 3 weeks into this trial.
I’m pointing on the map with MY LASER trying to locate Temecula, California and all of a sudden there’s another beam on the map – this beam is coming from the direction of the bench – the Judge.
HIS HONOR has whipped out HIS LASER PEN and he’s pointing it right on Temecula – “thank you your honor”, I say. I’m hoping he’ll back off but no he keeps it right on the map going to all the other cities we’re talking about – San Clemente, San Diego, Riverside, San Bernadino. I’m thinking what am I gonna do? Could I say “Your honor could you just let me use my goddamn LASER?.” No, I couldn’t.
I diplomatically with reluctance withdraw my LASER. The judge finishes up MY PRESENTATION with HIS LASER.
What can you do?