Monday, February 27, 2012

Florida Circuit Court to Cops: If you lie to get evidence, don't ask us to trust you about consent

One thing ordinary folks might not realize, is the fact that the law allows the police to lie like Jon Lovitz in investigating crime. In fact, the cops are free to walk up to your home, knock on your door and tell any manner of falsehood in an effort to gain entry. Once inside, what the police observe in plain view or what they uncover under additional consented-search (even if garnered under more lies) is fair game in charging and trying you, your family members or guests with crimes for.

This tactic is so well-used, that in the criminal justice field, it's become known as the "Knock and Talk" or "Tap and Rap." For those of us who practice criminal defense, we've often wondered how come a cop can admit lying with no reprecussions, while our clients are crucified if they initially lie to police? (Although we did once have a judge opine to us that they felt it was everyone's god-given right to lie just a little to the police). How hard is it to picture someone who uses deceit and trickery in one part of their job, using it in another?

A Circuit Court in Volusia County, Florida pondered this moral dilemma and issued what is one of the most eloquent and succinct orders we have ever seen. Money quotes:

-"What are the costs of teaching the community that law enforcement officers, whom ideally deserve the trust of the citizen, cannot be trusted to tell the simple truth? That no one is wearing the white hat anymore? That the ends justify the means? That the virtue of honesty is essential in our families and individual lives, but that same virtue is optional for the executive branch of our government in the exercise of its police powers? A nation founded on the notions we find in our Constitution is surely better than that."

-"A liar, after all, is a liar. Frankly, it is much easier to wholeheartedly endorse this concept than it is to warm up to the notion that law enforcement officers are permitted to lie to citizens in the course of pursuing justice."

-"...there is significant sacrifice by the state when it relies upon dishonest police conduct at the base of its prosecution...As we all know, a little boy may falsely cry 'wolf' only so many times before no one listens. A simple statement, it is hoped, that does not fall upon deaf ears in the law enforcement community."

Order Granting Knock and Talk Suppression

Kudos to Judge Will for an excellent opinion. We can only hope more courts follow his lead.

Hattip our pal Grand Strand DUI defense for a copy of the order

*Nothing in the above post is meant to be construed as legal advice. You got a legal question? Go hire yourself an attorney.*

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Final Tally for the 2011 NFL Season

For the record, we maintained our .500 batting average and went out with a win in the Super Bowl. That puts us at a whopping 49.74% for our career, after hitting 48.39% for the season. And now you know why we aren't living in Vegas betting book for a living...

Super Bowl: 1-0
Conference Championship week: 1-1
2011 Regular Season Record: 116-114-11 Upset Special: 9-7-1
2011 Playoff record 4-3 (didn't pick until Divisional Round)
2011 Combined Record: 120-117-11
Career to date: 386-361-29

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Super Bowl XLVI pick: Don't Mess with yo Baby Mama...

Today brings us the biggest annual sporting event in the world, the Super Bowl. And while the occasion is reason to celebrate and enjoy fellowship (and a little wagering) with friends, it also marks the sad departure of football games from our lives until August. While every other pundit is sure to be breaking down this game based on Gronk's ankle, questions over whether Eli is elite or whether anyone can beat Bill Belichek three times (there was a preseason game between these two you know) in a row, we focus on something more important in deciding the outcome of this game: Is there a Curse of Bridget Moynahan?

While Tommy Terrific was with the mother of his child, he won two Super Bowls (he won his first while he was with Laura Kinsman).

Brady's rings since taking up with the Supermodel, growing his hair long and wearing UGGs? Zero. Add in that his one SB since hooking up with Gisele was the most painful loss for NE fans since Buckner let that ball through his legs (Google Tyree, David catch) plus the fact that since they started dating Brady has also suffered the one real injury of his career (tearing his knee up and missing the 2008 season) and you can see why some Patriot fans are comparing this...

To This...

Ladies and Gentlemen, if we have learned one thing during our life on this planet, it is that Hell does not, in fact, hath fury equal to that of a woman scorned. And the fact that it leaked this week that Gisele is actually asking people to pray for Tommy...well, that's just really gonna piss off the Gods. Plus, we dig Bridget more than Gisele. First, she's brunette, has got great stems AND she gets to hang out with Tom Selleck.

BTPC pick = Giants getting the 3.

Conference Championship week: 1-1
2011 Regular Season Record: 116-114-11 Upset Special: 9-7-1
2011 Playoff record 3-3 (didn't pick until Divisional Round)
Career to date: 385-361-29