A Teenager Daughter’s Expensive Joy Ride (Cadillac v. Porsche v. Mercedes)

"Court Case Friday" With her parents away for the evening, their fourteen-year-old daughter invited her friends for a joy ride in her parent’s new Cadillac luxury sedan.The four girls were playing with the controls and gadgets as they cruised down the road in rich Newport Beach.  Suddenly, the driver looked up and realized they were … Continue reading A Teenager Daughter’s Expensive Joy Ride (Cadillac v. Porsche v. Mercedes)

When “Coaching” Your Witness Blows Up in Your Face

I learned in law school that lawyers should be very careful about "coaching" witnesses. The story below illustrates that putting words in a witness’s mouth can blow up in your face. Let them testify in their own words. My Admonition to Every Witness Background: As a prosecutor I gave all of my witnesses, including police officers, … Continue reading When “Coaching” Your Witness Blows Up in Your Face

Drunk Driver Calls 911 to Report — Herself

 In 2019, a Utah woman called 911 to report a drunk driver. The caller sounded intoxicated. She had slurred speech, and she was burping, and laughing uncontrollably on the phone.  The dispatcher asked the woman for a description of the drunk driver. The caller gave a description of - herself. She also gave a description of … Continue reading Drunk Driver Calls 911 to Report — Herself

My “Yucky” Health Code Cases: Flies, Roof Rats, Slime, Pigeons, and Mystery Meat

As a young District Attorney, one of my assignments was prosecuting misdemeanor Health Code violations. One day, the Orange County Supervising Health Inspector invited me to go on an inspection tour.  The Store Selling “Mystery Meat” At a small mom-and-pop store we inspected the meat display. The meat was wrapped in cellophane, with prices only, … Continue reading My “Yucky” Health Code Cases: Flies, Roof Rats, Slime, Pigeons, and Mystery Meat

Sad Case of the Man Held in “Captivity” (Prison) So Long He Could No Longer Cope With Freedom

Animals and humans kept in captivity lose their emotional strength and survival skills When animals are kept in captivity too long, they lose the ability to survive in the wild.  Prolonged captivity weakens their mental well being and strips them of essential survival skills. Likewise, when people are incarcerated for long periods, they become institutionalized. … Continue reading Sad Case of the Man Held in “Captivity” (Prison) So Long He Could No Longer Cope With Freedom

Swearing Oaths on the Bible – Tradition and the Law

In 2007, Representative Keith Ellison of Minnesota was sworn in as the first Muslim member of Congress.  During the oath, instead of using the Bible, he placed his hand on Thomas Jefferson’s 1734 translation of the Koran. This created a firestorm of criticism from conservative Christians.  When Representative Rashida Talib of Michigan took her oath … Continue reading Swearing Oaths on the Bible – Tradition and the Law

My Fellow Judge Got Pranked – Big Time

Judges don’t have regular work hours. As elected officials, we are judges -- 24/7.   For example, I am available any time day or night to handle law enforcement requests, like issuing emergency protective orders in domestic violence cases, or issuing emergency arrest or search warrants. For instance, the police have contacted me at night at … Continue reading My Fellow Judge Got Pranked – Big Time

Man Taunts Police Dog and Pays the Price

I prosecuted a man for misdemeanor obstructing police. (PC 148(a)) The dumb defendant walked up to a canine police officer on the Huntington Beach pier and declared: “Your dog doesn’t scare me!”  He then bent down, grabbed the police German Shepherd by both ears, went nose-to-nose with the dog, and yelled, “Growl!”  The police dog … Continue reading Man Taunts Police Dog and Pays the Price

A Unique Homeless Lifestyle – Partying with Social Security Disability Checks

As a criminal prosecutor I worked on a murder case where the victim was a homeless man. The witnesses were a group of ten homeless men who lived under an overpass on the Santa Ana River in Orange County. Their lifestyle was unique and interesting. The men banded together. They each received a monthly check … Continue reading A Unique Homeless Lifestyle – Partying with Social Security Disability Checks

“God Wanted Him Caught”–Case of the Dangerous Stalker

I have handled a few serious cases where the investigators were convinced that they were aided by Divine Providence. The detectives declared: “God wanted him caught.” The Dangerous Stalker I presided over the first case under California’s new felony stalking law.  The defendant was obsessed with the female victim. The victim’s life became a nightmare. … Continue reading “God Wanted Him Caught”–Case of the Dangerous Stalker