Category: Criminal Defense

The Lament of Zachary Warren

Zachary Warren was a master of the universe. At least the legal universe. At 29 a Stanford degree, a magna cum laude graduate of Georgetown Law School, a clerkship at the Sixth Circuit and a job at the Wall Street titan Dewey & LeBoeuf. But this legal prodigy made a bonehead mistake any grizzled veteran of the criminal bar educated at a third rate law school would have prevented. He talked to a prosecutor without a lawyer.

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Cross Examination: The Sympathetic Yet Deadly Witness

The challenge – how to cross examine, impeach or even just diminish the impact of sympathetic witnesses without losing your audience?

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Richard Sharpstein: A Tape Surfaces

In my post about Richard’s particular skill in presenting final arguments, I lamented there was no video tape of his courtroom performances. Fortunately I was partially wrong: Dore Louis, an excellent criminal defense lawyer and friend, emailed me an audio clip of a Sharpstein final argument.

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Partner Howard Srebnick Argued Asset Seizure Before the United States Supreme Court

On March 18, 2013, a Petition for Writ of Certiorari was granted in the case of United States v. Kaley, U.S. Supreme Court Case No. 12-464. Howard Srebnick, a Partner in the Firm, appeared before the United States Supreme Court yesterday, October 16, 2013.

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Final Argument: Olbermann

Henry Ward Beecher: “Not until human nature is other than what it is, will the function of the living voice — the greatest force on earth among men — cease . . . . I advocate, therefore, in its full extent, and for every reason of humanity, of patriotism, and of religion, a more thorough culture of oratory and I define oratory to be the art of influencing conduct with the truth set home by all the resources of the living man.”

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Obsession

This is one of my favorite quotes:

“You do not merely want to be considered just the best of the best. You want to be considered the only ones who do what you do.”
~Jerry Garcia (lead guitar for The Grateful Dead)

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Zimmerman: Primacy & Recency

My advice to trial lawyers – throw out the trial advocacy books filled with old wives’ tales, and study human behavior. The opening arguments in the Zimmerman trial are a good example of using the psychological principles of primacy and recency. The audience remembers the first thing you say and the last far better than that sandwiched in the middle. And the impression the jurors get from the opening colors their perception of the evidence as it unfolds.

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Criminal Law: Quo Vadis?

Is it time to start lamentations on the death of the classic tough-as-nails criminal lawyer?

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Criminal Law: Quo Vadis?

Is it time to start lamentations on the death of the classic tough-as-nails criminal lawyer?

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Blogging Again

I have ignored this blog for the past two months because I was acutely tied up – the vicious battle for a new trial in the Goodman case, several intense criminal investigations and even a contentious civil case. But now I have some time while decompressing in our LA house. I will write on the many jury selection ideas learned from the Goodman wars once my PTSD wears off, but here is a taste of that battle.

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