Yearly Archives: 2015

The I am a Human Brewery Defense!

Is there a new innovative defense available or those charged for driving under the influence? Based on a recent case in upstate New York, the answer may very well be, ‘yes’. The lawyer in the case argued that the defendant’s body is basically a brewery; the lawyer claimed that the defendant’s blood alcohol level has… Continue Reading »

A Righteous Fight Against Rent Discrimination

As anyone who has ever been convicted or charged with a crime will tell you, renting an abode can be next to impossible when the prospective landlord sees a ‘black mark’ pop up on a background check; especially if that ‘ignominy’ is for a violent offense. Landlord’s use background checks to screen out prospective tenants… Continue Reading »

Think Again, Jedi

Think that our Washington laws on search and seizure are tougher than our federal laws? Well think again … at least as applied to the searching and seizing of bank, phone and email records. On Thursday the Washington State Supreme Court upheld a little known state law that allows the government to get bank records… Continue Reading »

A Simple Indiscetion may not be so Simple

Tis the season for shopping; it is the holidays after all. What some may not realize, however, is that a small indiscretion like shoplifting can sometimes have major consequences, not only in the criminal courts but also on a person’s immigration status. Not only is there a potential for losing the ability to remain in… Continue Reading »

Watch What you Say!

In our personal lives we sometimes make statements to loved ones out of anger, irritation and pure frustration. Relationships are rarely ‘peaches and cream’. Some statements are hurtful and others cut to the bone. Often, however, these comments are made in jest … never intended to do anything more than express the person’s frustration and… Continue Reading »

Bad Acts May not Come Back to Haunt After All

Can someone’s prior abusive history be used against him in a domestic violence related trial? Well, the Washington Court of Appeals recently considered that very issue, and found that the trial court erred by admitting evidence of a defendant’s acts of domestic violence and permitting a jury to consider that evidence. See State v. Moreno-Valentin… Continue Reading »

Neglecting Jury Duty may have a Price

Beware of whimsically and innocently shirking your civic jury duty obligation. It may seem reasonable to think that nothing will happen for such an indiscretion (and often it doesn’t), but piss off the wrong judge and things can get ugly real quick. Just take for example a judge’s ire when 55 folks neglected to respond… Continue Reading »

The Conundrum Solved – at least for Seattle

The great metropolis of the City of Seattle is now at a size that if all potential crimes were reported via 911, the call center would probably be overloaded and summarily shutdown. Or at least that is what one is lead to believe vis a vis the Seattle Police Department (the “SPD”). Why else would… Continue Reading »

Lipstick on a Pig?

The Washington State Patrol’s (the “WSP”) stated mission is to ‘make a difference every day, enhancing the safety and security of our state by providing the best in public safety services.’ Its vision is ‘to be the best public safety agency in the United States. And its motto is, ‘Service With Humility’. So it should… Continue Reading »

What's the Deal with DV Sentencings

Criminal cases in Washington State are serious matters that can impact both a person’s personal as well as their professional life; people face the prospect of jail, fines and conditioned probation. In particular, a domestic violence related criminal case can be particularly impactful on a person’s life, and the stigma alone can be somewhat overwhelming.… Continue Reading »