Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Is Cassie Smith's Hooter's Uniform Size An Exception To Michigan Elliot-Larsen Civil Rights Act Or Is Cassie Simply Already Fun Size?

Hooters may become a breeding ground for lawsuits. Jodee Berry was the Hooters waitress who got back at a boss who allegedly tried a bait and switch on a contest prize. LINK. Now, there is another suit being brought against Hooters. This time it is Cassie Smith, a 20-year-old former Hooters waitress who claims she was placed on probation "to lose weight." She claims being ordered to lose weight constituted discrimination in a lawsuit filed Monday.

The suit in Macomb County Circuit Court claims Hooters of America violated Cassie Smith's civil rights when managers at the Roseville eatery threatened to fire her if she didn't lose weight during a 30-day probation period. (Cassie was expected to fit into a size extra-small uniform. She was allegedly offered a gym membership to help in the transition.) Hooters denies anyone from the company or restaurant asked Smith to lose weight and said there are no weight standards. It also claims she was never placed on probation. (How about double secret probation like in Animal House?)

For the male readers wondering what Cassie looks like, she stands 5 feet 8 and weighs 132 pounds soaking wet. Neither by her photo nor by her measurements would she ever be considered a large girl. Yet Cassie no longer works at the restaurant because in her opinion losing any weight might put her health in jeopardy. Cassie is represented by Richard Bernstein of the Sam Bernstein Law Firm in Farmington Hills. Her law suit alleges a violation of the Michigan Elliot-Larsen Civil Rights Act that bars employers from discrimination on the basis of religion, marital status, race, gender, age, height and weight.

Are waitresses entertainers who are not protected under the civil rights act because they must meet specific qualifications? The key is whether such requirements are 'reasonably necessary' to the business. Plaintiffs will contend the main purpose of a waitress is to serve food and beverages. (Yup, men really do go to Hooters only for the hot wings argument.) We should know in a few months if looking good in a skimpy Hooters outfit is a BFOQ. Stay tuned for a full pictorial... on second thought, just click on the LINK.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Is Richard Fine, J.D. "Fine" With Wearing Stripes Behind Bars? Update Indiana Lawyer Incarcerated For The Right Reasons!

Reader: I have been reading about the Richard Fine story, why have you not covered it?
Legal Pub Editor: We have not made a conscientious decision to not cover the story, we simply don't know much about it.

Reader: Ignoring the story only adds to the conspiracy theory. This is a real life lawyer being deprived of due process here in the United States. Richard has been imprisoned for 14 months despite never being charged with a crime. Richard has nearly lost everything standing up for his principles. (Fine's home was foreclosed upon and he has been disbarred.)

Legal Pub Editor: As is often the case, no one knows a 100% of the story. From what we can learn, Beverly Hills attorney Richard Fine has been held in solitary confinement at Los Angeles County Men's Central Jail for 14 months. Fine is not charged with any crime. However, the 70-year-old taxpayer's advocate is being held for contempt of court.

Reader: Who is Richard Fine and what does he stands for?
Legal Pub Editor: We would love to interview him but that does not seem likely unless he or his representative contacts us. (Legalpub@legalpub.net) In the mean time, Richard Fine is a taxpayer advocate attorney who once worked for the Department of Justice. Fine claims that the real reason that he is confined in jail is that he is a political prisoner. However, Superior Court Judge David Yaffe believes he properly found Fine in contempt of court after Fine refused to turn over financial documents and answer questions when ordered to pay an opposing party's attorney's fees.

Reader: So just why is he held so long on contempt charges?
Legal Pub Editor: I can't see any reason other than a continuing failure to follow the judges orders. But Fine continues to contend that his contempt order is just a means to confine him as a political prisoner. According to CNN, Fine stated: "I ended up here because I did the one thing no other lawyer in California is willing to do. I took on the corruption of the courts."

Reader: Is Fine right? What is the status of the legal wrangling?
Legal Pub Editor: Well one thing is clear. Fine is definitely persistant and doesn't take no for an answer. For the last decade, Fine has unsuccessfully filed several appeals of Los Angeles County's Superior Court judges claiming that the judges each accept yearly "bribes" from the county in addition to their $178,789 annual state salary. (The county payments are considered "supplemental benefits" in order to attract and retain quality judges. This is common practice in California but not other states.)

Reader: But Judges in Los Angeles County have the highest state salaries in the nation. They should not need thousands of dollars in county benefits. Fine claims that judges paid by the county will be reluctant to rule against the county in lawsuits. Can Fine be right?
Legal Pub Editor: Los Angeles County won all but one of the nine recent bench trials. But that does not automatically mean that Fine is right. Furthermore, it appears that Fine has gone about it all wrong. Two wrongs never make a right. Unsubstantiated claims and disrespectful actions lead to disbarment and the legal profession turning their back upon a comrade. (Fine has been disbarred. Apparently when Fine lost a case, he would argue in each appeal that the judges were corrupt. This results in delays and led to false accusations against judges who were just trying to do their job. It is hard to have any other opinion based on the eventual finding that these lawsuits were found to be "frivolous and meritless.")

Reader: Not everyone agrees with your commentary. So what does the future hold for Fine?
Legal Pub Editor: Fine can free himself from jail by handing over the documents as ordered. While Fine has done more jail time than a lot of criminals, he knows how to obtain his own release. While Sterling Norris of Judicial Watch may be right when he advocates that enough is enough, the ultimate release date appears to be in Fine's control. Opinions by Norris hold some weight as he is no stranger to the issues involved. ( In 2008, Norris obtained a judicial ruling that county payments to judges was unconstitutional. The California Legislature then overturned this decision by passing a law that enabled counties to continue the practice of paying extra benefits to county judges.)

Reader: Norris apparently believes that the time Fine has spent in jail is out of proportion to the misconduct, how can you not agree?
Legal Pub Editor: If that is truly Norris' opinion, one can see why. The Los Angeles County's jails have recently released hundreds of inmates before their release dates due to budget constraints. (Heck, someone has to make room for the Lindsay Lohans of the world. LINK.) Despite attempts to purge the jail population to make room for violent offenders, Richard Fine remains locked up in solitary confinement. And while the release date may be in Fine's control if he accepts defeat, he is not ready to give up just yet. In fact, Fine is attempting to get the U.S Supreme Court to hear his case. Any day now, the Supreme Court may decide whether Richard Fine's voice will once again be heard. In the mean time, expect the prison diet to continue a bit longer.

Update 5-28-10: See comments for a comparison to Russian Sergie Magnitsky.

Update 6-10-10: Here is a link to a prominent Indiana civil defense lawyer who we can all agree has been voluntarily incarcerated for the right reasons: LINK.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Gabriella Nagy Sues Rogers (Phone Company) For Letting Her Husband See Incriminating Phone Records

There are many lame excuses given for why a marriage fails. For example, Lois Feldman apparently blamed her failed relationship on alcohol at an Iowa v. Minnesota football game. FELDMAN LINK. Earlier this week Legal Pub explored an extra marital affair of a "sinner" as it applied to Congressman Souder. But quite frankly, the idea of blaming a failed marriage on a phone company may top them all. Yet, Gabriella Nagy, 35, contends with a straight face that her telephone company ruined her life when it provided her husband with an itemized bill listing calls to her lover. The Canadian woman claims Rogers Wireless owes her $600,000 for invasion of privacy and breach of contract because her records were furnished without her consent. "I want others to know what a big corporation has done," Nagy is quoted as saying in the The Vancouver Sun.

Now after that public statement, "others" not only know of the phone company but also about what Nagy had done. By airing her problem in public, she has brought attention to her own misconduct. Nevertheless, Nagy is pressing forward with her claim that since she had opened the account solely under her maiden name, her husband had no right to share the information in the account. As a plaintiff she contends that Rogers terminated her contact without her permission, transferred her services to someone else's name and breached her privacy. Good luck with these contentions and the "clean hands doctrine." Most readers will likely find this suit as offensive as the David Phahler lawsuit against an eight year old skier. PHAHLER LINK.

Just how did she get caught? Nagy's husband apparently became suspicious when he saw long phone conversations with an unknown number on the invoice. Apparently he called the number and learned of some type of relationship with the other person. (The alleged affair had apparently ended at this point.) According to the Toronto Star, the plaintiff's lawsuit has been on file since December of 2008.. Rogers denied all liability in a London's Daily Telegraph publication: "The marriage breakup and its effects happened, or alternatively, would in any event have happened, regardless of the form in which the plaintiff and her husband received their invoices," the statement read. Nagy said she "lost everything." (This defense should be rather intuitively obvious to most folks.)

Nagy's fate is not unlike that of many cheaters. Her husband left her and the couple's two young children (age 6 and 7) in August 2007. Subsequently, Nagy has claimed that she lost her job as an apartment rental agent and suffers from depression. Nagy apparently admits the affair was a regrettable mistake. But like so many cheaters, does she regret the affair or being caught? Nagy is represented by attorney Edward Tonello.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Should Mark Souder's Inappropriate Conduct Come As A Shock? It Should But Why Doesn't It?

The thirst for change and entertainment got a morsel with the recent resignation of Rep. Mark Souder, R-Indiana. Souder unexpectedly announced his resignation Tuesday, after admitting that he “sinned against God” by having a relationship with a staff member. Souder, 59, just recently won his primary. Now he will leave his office this week. While Democrats may see this as a cause for celebration, the 59-year-old Republican is a married father of three and such public disclosures are never easy on the family. He will submit his resignation to Speaker Pelosi on Friday. Those wanting change welcome the resignation of the social conservative while supports proclaim their shock at such out of character conduct.

Souder's choice of words should cause concern for the future of this mans family and the poisonous environment we know as Congress: "I sinned against God, my wife and my family by having a mutual relationship with a part-time member of my staff." So where did Souder learn such inappropriate behavior? Certainly not in the heartlands of the midwest. Souder has been in Congress since 1994. He and his wife Diane have been married since 1974. The couple has three grown children. While Hoosiers debate what caused their representative to abandoned his family values, Governor Mitch Daniels must contemplate when to hold a special election for Souder's vacant seat. In the mean time folks want more details about Souder's romantic relationship with Tracy Meadows Jackson. Jackson apparently has worked in "various capacities" in Souder's district office.

Sen. Arlen Specter is also a victim of change. Fortunately his ticket out of office was orchestrated by good old democracy in action. Specter was punished for trying to be a chameleon. (In April of 2009 Specter shifted his allegiance from the GOP to the Democratic party.) After 30 years on Capitol Hill, Specter lost Tuesday in the Democratic primary for his Senate seat to Rep. Joe Sestak. Pennsylvania may never be the same. But public polling shows that Sestak surged as Specter fell.

Missteps have not been limited to the Republican party. Two months ago, Rep. Eric Massa, D-New York, resigned after admitting to groping male staff members. Nor is bad judgment limited to politicians. For example, Mary Richardson Kennedy, the wife of Robert F. Kennedy Jr., was arrested for drunk driving after a police officer saw her run over a curb outside a school in Bedford, New York. Kennedy's blood alcohol level was 0.11. Think she is not a perfect fit for the always political Kennedy family?

The real question is why people express such shock and dismay when they read the headlines concerning such missteps. Politicians have become victims to the same "entitlement syndrome" as athletes. Once elected, the world owes them special treatment. Staff members become looked at as personal property. Money that previously may be seen as a bribe is now just compensation. Change is good. But change needs to be for the right reason. Athletes, Politicians and ordinary citizens all need to be held to the same standards and expectation both in and out of the public eye. Only with such real change in expectations can we truly lay the "entitlement syndrome" properly to rest.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Missing People Are Not Always Dead, Just Ask Nancy Salas Or Others Who Have Been Found.. 12-22-11

Why has Drew Peterson not been charged for the murder of his fourth wife, Stacy Peterson? LINK (He is charged with murdering his third wife Kathleen Savio. LINK.) Similar questions have been asked about Josh Powell. The fact is sometimes, missing people do turn up alive. Legal Pub explored this phenomenon when it discussed missing person John Darwin's re-entrance into society. JOHN DARWIN LINK. Other cases of missing folks turning up alive spark an inquiry as to why people sometimes disappear. The reasons are not always the same and usually are not pleasant.

For example, Nancy Salas appeared to be a beautiful young woman about to graduate from UCLA. This Glendale woman allegedly disappeared while jogging which caused a massive search. She was recently discovered alive and it was learned that she made up a story that she'd been abducted at knife point. I turns out that she fled because of stress. Salas turned up in a carpet store in Merced California. Initially, Salas told police she'd been abducted by a man at knife point. She later retracted her story admitting that she made it up because of feeling intense pressure from her family and friends. (Salas had apparently misled her parents by telling them she was attending the UCLA when in fact she apparently was not enrolled since the fall of 2008.
Salas had been praised by family, neighbors, friends, and church, as being a successful student and she apparently just could not handle the pressure. So, stress can be a reason for wanting to disappear.

Sometimes the reason appears to be as a result of crime. A South Carolina elderly woman who deputies think may have been kidnapped was found in the trunk of her car. 78-year-old Margaret Gooding was found in the trunk about 30 miles away in a Walterboro parking lot. Exactly how she got in the trunk was not completely clear but it may have occurred after a home invasion. Further investigation reveals that Gooding apparently used her own pistol to shoot back at one of the men who invaded her home in December of 2009. She then survived more than 12 hours in the trunk of her car with a bullet wound in her stomach. (Gooding had apparently hired Stevie Aiken and two others to do yard work around her home. Aiken apparently threw a brick through a side window of Gooding’s home. He allegedly put a gun through the window, demanding Gooding go open the front door. Gooding attempted to run and was shot at by Aiken. She was able to get to her gun. According to Sheriff Smalls, Gooding fired off a few rounds but apparently did not hit Aikens. Crime was the likely culprit for this disappearance.

Sometimes the reason for the disappearance may be fear. For example, a 34 year-old Salt Lake City woman (name withheld) was missing in March of 2010. Her disappearance triggered an Endangered Persons Advisory Alert. It turned out that the 34-year-old woman was found in her basement crawlspace hiding. Police had received a call at about 2:30 a.m. sending them to the woman's home in Salt Lake City. Police could hear suspicious sounds in the background. (Perhaps arguing with a boyfriend.) When authorities arrived, they searched the house and could not find the woman. Her car was also missing, but her purse was still in the house. An Endangered Persons Advisory Alert was then issued. The woman was subsequently found alive and well. Police called the incident "suspicious".

Sarah Pallis, a 26 year-old Helena women was found in May of 2010 after being reported missing. She was found at the Best Western Helena Great Northern Hotel. Pallis was taken to St. Peter's Hospital emergency room but the injuries were not clear. Her parents had reported Pallis missing when she did not show up for work. While it is fortunate that she turned up alive and well, the exact details of her disappearance were not initially known. Depression may have been a factor.

Bennie Wint resurfaced over twenty years after folks thought he had drowned. BENNIE WINT LINK.

Sometimes, a persons life is so miserable they fantasize about a fresh start. A new identity. Overtimes, fear makes a person want to disappear or run away. Other times, people are victims of random crime and their disappearance is beyond their control. Finally, sometimes, the boyfriend, husband or ex truly is the reason for the disappearance. However, each case deserves a thorough investigation without an automatic jump to conclusions. This is especially true when dealing with high profile cases such as Drew Peterson and Josh Powell. (Susan Powell was last seen at her West Valley City home on Dec. 7. Her husband Josh told police he saw his wife as he left with the couple's young sons for an overnight desert camping trip.) Police have called Josh Powell a person of interest but he has not been arrested or charged. And as always, all suspects are presumed innocent unless otherwise proven in a court of law....

Update 6-23-10: See Jimmie's comment about Kelly Guzman. She disappeared for 11 days under unusual circumstances and turned up alive...

Update 6-24-10: Speaking of missing people who turn up alive, Jennifer Wilbanks is back in the news. You may recall that she was the woman who disappeared and then fibbed to police about being abducted and sexually abused in order to avoid her marriage ceremony in 2005. The runaway bride is supposedly going to try marriage again. Let's wish her groom luck....

Update 8-19-10: Can Trudie Hall be added to the list? Police in Massachusetts are investigating the mysterious disappearance of Trudie. Hall is pregnant. She has been missing for almost a month. Media has suggested that Hall may have been married to two men and leading a double life. (She may have been involved in marrying foreigners to help them gain immigration status in this country.) Police describe Hall as a 23-year-old native of Jamaica. She is 5 feet, 4 inches tall and weighs around 160 pounds. She was last seen July 27, when she left her Nantucket home for a doctor's appointment. Despite finding blood in a rental car as well as some bullet casings, the possibility that Hall may be alive has not been ruled out. Friends and family are holding out hope. Only time may tell.

Update 9-21-10: Marco Antonio Gonazalez, a missing 15 year-old Georgia teen returned home three days after two men allegedly stole his family's car with him inside. Gonzalez drove himself home in the missing car. Gonzalez is in good health. He is being questioned by the Smyrna police. Police are still looking for possible suspects. The family's Mercedez-Benz is being analyzed for possible finger prints.

Update 12-22-11: A second man, Theodore Szal, believed to have been a victim of John Wayne Gacy has turned up alive more than thirty years after he disappeared. Szal went missing in Chicago, Illinois, in 1977. In actuality, he had run away from home after his bitter divorce and left his car abandoned at the city's O'Hare International Airport. LINK.

Update 3-15-12: A Texas infant who vanished eight years ago has been found alive and well. Police have arrested his former baby sitter, Krystle Rochelle Tanner, 26, who is accused of kidnapping him. The boy's mother, Auboni Champion-Morin is ecstatic.
Tanner had been the 8 month-old child's godmother when he disappeared in 2004. The case went cold in 2006. CPS recently investigated Tanner and the mystery has apparently been solved.

Update 2-28-13: KEYT news anchor Paula Lopez, recently reported missing, has returned home. Family The Santa Barbara Sheriff's Office confirmed that Lopez is safe at home. The Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Department and the Santa Barbara County Search and Rescue had been seaching for the newswoman.  Paula Lopez had disappeared around 10 a.m. Wednesday near her home on Cathedral Oaks.

Update 4-8-13:  Raven Cassidy Furlong, 18, an Aurora, Colorado woman who has been missing since February has been found.  She is unharmed and living in Venice, California.  According to KKTV, Raven was located during a casting call for “American Ninja Warrior.” Raven cooperated fully with the the LAPD's Pacific Division.  She is of age, in good health,  and capable of living on her own. Case closed.

Update 9-11-13: Rajwinder Kaur, a young woman disappeared and a text message was sent that the girl with this phone is dead.  Turns out Rajwinder was alive and well but apparently wanted to start a new life down in Texas. LINK

Friday, May 14, 2010

Eradication Of The Suicide Epidemic Is Within Reach With Understanding...

The culprit is often called "the silent killer" in certain circles. It's not heart disease or even high blood pressure. The culprit is the growing problem of suicide. This week a beautiful 35 year old female legal secretary took her life by putting a gun to her head. After she shot herself, she was in so much pain that she called 911 before she bled to death. Not a pleasant image. Yet suicide has become a growing epidemic.

In 2007, the number of suicides was twice that of homicides according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Suicide is the 11th leading cause of death in the United States .CDC: Suicide Statistics. While anyone can be a victim of suicide, rates are higher among
men, American Indians, whites and people between the ages of 45 and 54 years. No one knows exactly why suicide is so popular. Theories of causes include mental health, stress concerning jobs, finances, or relationships. The CDC report lists mental health problems as the most common denominator among suicide victims. 74.9 percent of the deceased allegedly had a diagnosis of depression/dysthymia. Bipolar disorder appears to be associated with 14.5% of the victims. 8.1 percent allegedly carried a diagnosis of anxiety disorder.

Suicide is not limited to the cowardly. The U.S. Army announced in August of 2007 that 99 soldiers committed suicide in 2006. That's 17.3 per 100,000. In all, 948 soldiers attempted suicide. There were 67 completed soldier suicides in 2004 (or 10.8 per 100,000 soldiers) and 87 in 2005 (12.8 per 100,000). Suicides were committed with active-duty, reserves and National Guard at an alarming rate. So when we read about MINGORA, Pakistan -- A suicide bomber in Pakistan blowing himself up in a busy market in Pakistan's Swat Valley in May of 2010 should it really cause us to think that problems are limited to foreign countries? Taliban suicide bombers need mental help, but so do all who contemplate suicide.

Unfortunately, the effect of suicide is not just ending the victims life. Children whose parents commit suicide are statistically twice as likely to kill themselves. Teenagers and younger children have a three times greater risk of suicide if their parent committed suicide when they were 18 or younger. May Study Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. A parent committing suicide after the child was 18 or older did not apparently increase the child's risk for suicide. The most common predictor of suicide might be past experience. About 20 percent of the suicide victims had a history of previous attempts. 28 percent expressed an intent to commit suicide prior to taking their lives. Only a third of the victims left a suicide note trying to explain their actions.

Recognition of troubled souls and troubled minds is a first step. Listen and take serious any talk of ending one's life. Depression warrants medical attention not ignorance. Sometimes, however; there are no answers. There are simply memories with friends and family left behind to mourn a new emptiness in their lives. May all victims and their loved ones find the peace they so rightfully deserve.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Erica Blasberg Mysteriously Dies While Rafael Morales Escapes Marriage By Being Murdered

A beautiful popular golfer (no, not you, Tiger) is dead and Nevada police want to know why. Erica Blasberg was found dead in bed without any apparent signs of trauma. The cause of death for the 25 year-old golfer has not yet been revealed. Was it suicide, homicide or neither? One thing is clear, Erica was found Sunday in bed in her Henderson, Nevada home with no obvious signs of trauma. She failed to appear for a golf tournament on Saturday in Alabama although her bags had been packed for the trip. A toxicology screening will be performed by the Clark County Coroner. Most feel that suicide is an unlikely cause. Blasberg Didn't Commit Suicide. Police found Blasberg after responding to a 911 call. (Apparently an unidentified friend found Erica's body in bed on Sunday and there were no obvious signs of trauma to her body.) While the cause of death remains a mystery for the time being, it is already clear that Erica will be missed by her family and friends.

Nine are dead in Beijing, China and the cause of death is no mystery. The deaths occurred after a man attacked a kindergarten in northwestern China . He killed his victims with a kitchen cleaver. The dead include a teacher, the teacher's mother and seven kindergarten students. The perpetrator then returned home and committed suicide according to the Xinhua news agency. This just goes to show that all countries have losers...

While we may want to add China to the list of where not to go on vacation, Mexico remains the number one place to avoid. Four men were kidnapped from a wedding in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico. Their bodies have now been found in the bed of a pickup truck in the city. The kidnapped men included the groom, Rafael Morales; his brother, Jaime Morales; and their uncle, Guadalupe Morales. Municipal police did not release the name of the fourth victim. All of the bodies showed signs of torture. The FBI indicates that Rafael Morales was a U.S. citizen from La Mesa, New Mexico. The others may be citizens as well. The men were all kidnapped at gun point in the church during the wedding ceremony. A fifth man was apparently also shot to death during the incident. Some have theorized that the groom was connected to La Mesa. To date, police do not know the actual motive for the murders; however, no one thinks it was motivated by MARRIAGE STRIKE.
Update 8-25-10: Erica Blasberg's death is ruled a suicide. LINK.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Does Michelle Thomas Apparent Lack of Judgment Warrant A Historical Review Of Crime And Punishment As Seen From The Electric Chair? Not For Her But...

Legal Pub has learned of a Texas woman who allegedly tried to kill her common law husband because he was not good in bed. (NO, THIS IS NOT AN INVITATION FOR VIAGRA SPAM!) Apparently Michelle Thomas, age 26, got upset when her man failed to please her in the bedroom. Michelle allegedly expressed her displeasure by stabbing her 28 year old partner with scissors. Fortunately, the victim survived and provided his allegations to police for investigation. Did Michelle fail to realize the serious consequences of expressing one's displeasure in a violent fashion? Readers know what can happen when women take justice into their own hands in the bedroom. BELLIVEAU & SEWELL LINK. If Michell failed to read Legal Pub's JOHN LOTTER LINK , perhaps she might want to read "20 Criminals Executed in The Chair" found at http://www.criminaljusticeuniversity.net/blog/2010/20-criminals-executed-in-the-chair/.

Again, Michelle is lucky that her boyfriend did not die. In fact, he refused to press charges despite cuts to his chest, knee and thumb. However, Michelle was still charged with aggravated assault which is a felony in Texas. (Michelle denies guilt and allegedly contends that her man was drunk and she was just defending herself.) But for future reference, as the above referenced article points out, the electric chair is still alive and well in Virginia, Tennessee, Kentucky, South Carolina, Florida, and Alabama. Furthermore, Texas is no safe haven from capital punishment. Under Texas law executions are done by intravenous injections. Texas does not specify the substances to be used but usually it is a three-drug combination of sodium thiopental (which sedates the offender), pancuronium bromide (a muscle relaxant which collapses the diaphragm and lungs), and potassium chloride (which stops the heartbeat). At a prescription medicine cost of about $86.08 per offender, it takes about seven minutes to complete punishment for a horrible lapse in judgment.

Twenty notorious executions including Ted Bundy (January 24, 1989), Ruth Snyder (January 12, 1928), Julius and Ethel Rosenberg (June 19, 1953), Leon Czolgosz (October 29, 1901), Giuseppe Zangara (March 20, 1933), Ferdinando Sacco and Bartolomeo Vanzetti (1927), Hans Schmidt (February 8, 1916) and Bruno Hauptmann (April 3, 1936) are mentioned in the feature article. Enough of a deterrence?

Keep in mind, all suspects are presumed to be innocent. While Michelle Thomas, will not face the death penalty, she may face jail time up to twenty years for the aggravated assault charge if convicted. In the mean time, she is presumed innocent. For her sake, let's hope she has a good lawyer and a good defense.
Update 5-10-10: In a move that may have a substantial impact on future capital punishment cases, President Obama has named Elena Kagan, the current solicitor general, to be the next U.S. Supreme Court Justice. Kagan, 50, is a former dean of Harvard Law School. If confirmed, she will be the third woman on the current court. Kagan will replace retiring Justice John Paul Stevens.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Former Football And LaCross Players Dominate Legal News Instead Of The Playing Field

Former football players in the news. No not O.J. Simpson. He is serving his sentence for his part in an alleged robbery. O.J. SIMPSON Link. This time it is O.J. McDuffie and L.T. Lawrence Taylor. McDuffie in the civil arena and L.T. in the criminal arena.

O.J. McDuffie retired prematurely from football after injuring his big toe in 1999. After a civil suit for bad medical advice, he is now $11.5 million richer. (His verdict was for 10 million dollars in lost income and 1.5 million dollars in mental anguish against a former team doctor.) McDuffies obtained a judgment for malpractice against former Miami Dolphin team physician John Uribe. The Miami-Dade County jury ruled that Dr. Uribe improperly handled the player's injury. McDuffie injured his big toe in the 10th game of the 1999 season. He played in only two of the remaining six regular-season games, then played in both playoff games. Dr. Uribe allegedly told McDuffie that he could continue to play even though his MRI showed tendon damage.

McDuffie was on the Dolphin's roster in 2000 and 2001 but saw little or no playing time. He was cut before the 2002 season with three years left on his contract. (Ironically, McDuffie had a nine-year NFL career which is longer than average; yet, he was still awarded 10 million dollars in lost revenue.) Attorney Stuart Ratzan and Herman Russomanno represented the plaintiff. An appeal of the verdict is likely. (In addition, a few other suits related to the injury were settled against other doctors and at least two hospitals.)

Lawrence Taylor was a great linebacker for the New York Giants and a wonderful dancer on Dancing with the Stars. But is this Hall of Famer also a sex offender? His lawyer says he is not. Yet, Taylor was recently accused of allegedly having sexual contact with a 16 year old girl in a New York City suburban hotel in Montebello. Taylor, 51, is remaining silent. But his lawyer has publicly denied all allegations despite the discovery of a condom in Taylor's hotel room.

Taylor is apparently no saint. He has had substance abuse problems and plead guilty to possessing articles and equipment for drug use in New Jersey in 2001. (A butane torch and other materials used for smoking crack had been discovered in September 1998.) In 1996 and 1997 Taylor faced drug charges in South Carolina and Florida. (In May 1996 for trying to buy crack and then again in 1998) Also in 1998, he was arrested for owing his ex-wife child support for their three kids. Taylor later declared bankruptcy because of ongoing financial problems. In November of 2009, Taylor's Escalade lost its front right tire in a crash. LT drove 2 miles on the axle, and was charged with leaving the scene. nydailynews.com/news/ny_crime/2010/05/07/2010-05-07_coke_crack_booze_women_and_jail.html#ixzz0nFYfPfJr.

In 2000 Taylor was apparently sentenced to five years of probation for filing false income statements and tax evasion. The recent incident finds Taylor being accused of having forced sex with a 16-year-old runaway. The girl was allegedly forced into prostitution by a man who had beaten her up. Taylor allegedly paid the girl $300 for sex in a Holiday Inn. The girl apparently texted her uncle for help which resulted in Taylor's arrest. Taylor was cooperative with police but denies all charges of third-degree rape and patronizing a prostitute. Taylor is released on $75,000 bail. He is represented by Arthur Aidala who professes Taylor's innocence. Taylor claims he was set up. Taylor's wife has come out publicly in her husband's defense. Taylor, may just be guilty of bad judgment. But like all suspects, Lawrence Taylor is to be presumed innocent unless otherwise proven in a court of law. (5-17-10: Lawrence Taylor's attorney says a woman that was waiting in the car said that the 16 year old girl said that she was paid $300 and did not even have to have sex with Taylor. This testimony may legally exonerate Taylor.)
Update 5-12-10: Some say athletes are just out of control. Their erroneous belief that they are entitled to special privileges may make them think they are above the law. 22-year-old suspect George Huguely, simply makes me sick. He is charged with murder of Yeardley Love, a UVa. student and lacrosse player, whose beaten body was found May 3 in a pool of blood. Apparently, Huguely was arrested in 2008 on a charge of resisting arrest and public intoxication after he had allegedly threatened to kill the arresting officer. (The arresting office claims she had to use a taser on Hugely at the time of the 2008 arrest.)
Huguely was in a relationship with Love that recently ended. His lawyer, Francis Lawrence, contends that Love's death was an accident. However, The Associated Press reported that Love allegedly died in an altercation with Huguely. Love's face was bruised and her right eye was swollen. Police are investigating whether the couple had been involved in other altercations. Huguely is presumed innocent unless otherwise proven in a court of law. Nevertheless, Huguely's name may appear on the growing list of Tiger Woods, Lawrence Taylor, Ben Roethlisberger, and other athletes that are getting a lot of bad press because of their lack of good judgment.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Round Up All The Bad Boys Like Faisal Shahzad And Hangem From The Highest Tree?

Is it time to celebrate a victory Texas style? In the old west, whenever a diabolic plot was foiled and the villain apprehended, the town folks got together for a western celebration known as a trial and a subsequent event referred to as a lynching. Faisal Shahzad, a 30-year-old Pakistani-American has been arrested in connection with the failed New York's Times Square SUV bombing. Shahzad was arrested after he had boarded a midnight flight for Dubai at Kennedy International Airport. For his sake, let's hope Faisal is innocent. Otherwise, all of hades is about to break lose as it pertains to Faisal.
Attorney General Eric Holder revealed that Faisal Shahzad was born in Pakistan and had become a U.S. citizen last year. Anyone who is allowed to become a citizen and then terrorizes that same country has commited treason beyond pardon. Shahzad will be formally charged soon in federal court. In the interim, he is held without bond and is considered a flight risk. (It is believed that Shahzad had recently spent five-months in Pakistan. ) Shahzad recently paid $1,300 for the Nissan Pathfinder that found in Times Square rigged with propane tanks, fertilizer and gasoline. The Washington Post.
The vehicles previous owner helped alert authorities to Shahzad. Two Connecticut cities (Shelton and Bridgeport) where Shahzad lived have become the source of continued investigation. Shahzad and his wife, Huma Mian, apparently lived in Bridgeport for three years. The New York Times. The couple apparently have a son and daughter. Authorities believe that the plot may involve more than one person. (Shahzad apparently claims sole responsibility.)
Justice will not be served until all that are involved receive a fair trial. While all are presumed innocent until otherwise proven in court, any one convicted should receive the harshest penalty allowed by law.
Update 5-5-10: Shahzad claims he was trained to bomb in Pakistan. (He must have graduated last in his class.) He was on the no fly list. So just why did Emirates Airlines allow him on the plane anyway?
Update 10-5-10: Faisal Shahzad, who tried to detonate a deadly bomb in New York's Times Square, was sentenced to life in prison. When he heard the news he smiled and said,"I'm happy with the deal that God is giving me... God is great."

Monday, May 3, 2010

Science Confirms That Unhappy Marriages Are Not Healthy ~by T.J.

Men: Want to keep the critical care hospital bed vacant? The "catch and release" health benefits enjoyed by marriage strikers are well known for most. MARRIAGE STRIKE LINK. At first blush, it appeared that the marriage strikers were not a significant threat to marriage. Then along came Helen's Article in support of alimony, than another advocating wealth building through marriage. ALIMONY LINK. MARRY FOR MONEY. It was obviously a direct jab at the marriage strike people. Now, with the statistical decline in the number of marriages in the U.S., advocates of the institution of marriage are fighting back with overgeneralized theories and misleading statistics.

The latest propaganda argues that there are some health benefits of being married. Advocates contend that happily married people tend to live longer, healthier lives. "The Case for Marriage: Why Married People are Happier, Healthier and Better Off Financially."Happily married women have less work related stress according to a University of California study. But the key word is "happily." When it comes to marriage, happily ever after only happens in fairy tales. In fact studies show that unhappily married women experience almost an 11% increase in weight gain. Weight. While studies suggest happily married men have a 64 percent less risk of a fatal stroke, the study is flawed because they could find so few "happily married men." In fact, heart disease risk significantly increases for both sexes in a bad marriage! Heart Disease. Roberto De Vogli has a very persuasive study on the effects of a bad marriage on heart disease which is published in the Archives of Internal Medicine. Those in bad marriages are 34 percent more likely to develop heart disease.

Want to forget a bad marriage? Stay in a bad marriage. A recent study suggests that divorced men have three times greater risk of dementia. ( See the study of Miia Kivipelto from the Swedish medical university Karolinska Institutet.) Married folks who argue are simply making themselves unhealthy. Those of us who have been unhappily married don't need to read the recent study at Ohio State University Medical Center. Immune system to confirm our anecdotal experience. The solution? Don't get married in the first place.

Don't even get me started on depression. I can't think of anything more depressing than losing at least half your assets and paying alimony so that your ex spouse and her boyfriend can vacation in the Caribbean. I sincerely believe that married men do not live longer.  It just seems that way because of the torture!  In sum, want to be healthy? Join the marriage strike movement. This is the best way for men to live long and prosper.


Update 6-10-2013:  In the season of June brides, this update might save some unfortunate male from stepping into a huge financial disaster.  Specifically, if you can not avoid marriage altogether, at least avoid these type of women: 

  1.  The “Gold Digger.”  Listen, usually your family can spot this money grubber a mile away, so why can't you?  Ask yourself:
     a.  Does she seem to make everything about money?
     b.  Does she light up when something expensive is in front of her?
     c.  Does she ask a lot about how much money you make?
     d.  Does she wear expensive shoes, clothes, purse, etc?
     e.  Does she insist on fine dining?

  2.  The “Overly Feminine Feminist.” Beware, men hating non-shaving power hungry women are out there and they do want to hurt you.  If your future bride belongs to a women's rights groups, run.  Run far and fast! Feminism is NOT bad.  It is just bad karma for a man to marry a feminist. Men who marry a feminist typically end up miserable because everything they do is criticized and interpreted to somehow oppress women. So if a woman gets mad because you open a door for her or pull out a chair for her because “she can do it herself” then, I repeat, run far and fast.
3. The “Excessively Sensitive.” If every little thing evolves into an argument because you hurt her feelings, then your relationship is doomed from the beginning.  A man does not mind occasionally comforting his woman when she actually needs emotional support.  However, if  every discussion causes her to suffer an emotional crisis, run away.  A woman who is too emotionally needy seldom makes a good long term match for a man.

As a man, if you need support in removing a potential ball and chain from your neck, read: 
Marriage Strike, Helen I why women deserve alimony, and Helen II marry for money IF YOU STILL WANT TO MARRY ONE OF THE ABOVE TYPE OF WOMEN, PLEASE GET PSYCHIATRIC HELP IMMEDIATELY