Those That Know 4th District Chief Public Defender Mary Moriarty Best Will Not Be Silent.  “Other Officials” Will Hide Their Identities Like Cowards.

Those That Know 4th District Chief Public Defender Mary Moriarty Best Will Not Be Silent.  “Other Officials” Will Hide Their Identities Like Cowards. 

Quotes from the Star Tribune story on the Attorney General’s demand for review of Mary Moriarty’s suspension. “She said they expressed concerns about her management style, what they called inflexibility with other criminal justice officials and confrontations on the issue of racial inequality. They also questioned a series of Tweets about historic lynchings in the Deep South, she said.” ————————————————- TRANSLATION: She has made the state actually do work and interrupted the Hennepin plea machine. Further she talks like those scary BLM people that block the highway because they are being stopped, beat, and shot by police in disproportionate numbers as demonstrated by every SHRED OF DATA and should be called out every time BY THE PEOPLE FIGHTING FOR MINORITIES IN COURT. ——————————————————— “Separately, law clerks and lawyers in Moriarty’s office wrote to the board in her defense, praising her leadership and commitment to clients and calling for her reinstatement. And dozens of public defenders and public interest attorneys outside Minnesota signed onto a letter objecting to her suspension” ————————- TRANSLATION: She has created no “culture of fear” in her office and has done nothing but educate all of us and zealously advocate and suffer beside all of us. We’re talking about a woman who was nearly too busy to comment because she was volunteering on scene with cleanup from the Drake Hotel Disaster.   PLEASE SIGN PETITION HERE. Those That Know 4th District Chief Public Defender Mary Moriarty Best Will Not Be Silent.  “Other Officials” Will Hide Their Identities Like Cowards.  was last modified: January 7th, 2020 by Alex DeMarco

Vehicle Forfeitures Can Be Reversed On Constitutional Grounds

Minnesota Courts are bound by published opinions of higher courts, including Federal Circuit Courts.   Minnesota is in the 8th Circuit’s jurisdiction.  We have recently become alerted that some defendants are still losing highly valuable assets, most notably vehicles, for DWI and Drug Offenses through a process called forfeiture.  Forfeiture involves the government taking your asset on the grounds that it was used in a crime.  This area of law is in a state of flux right now on a number of levels.  If you’ve been accused of or convicted of a Controlled Substance Crime involving a motor vehicle or DWI, and you’ve been served with a notice of forfeiture, you should immediately have your case reviewed by a competent attorney as soon as possible.   The 8th Circuit Court of Appeals recently ruled in Timbs-v.-Indiana-17-1091_5536 that the excessive fines clause of the Federal Constitution applies to actions by States and Municipalities as well, and that forfeiture of valuable assets is a form of punishment.  The ruling does not specifically hold that all forfeitures are unconstitutionally excessive.  Rather, it simply states that the clause applies to the actions of local government as well and a district court which rules a forfeiture to be excessive punishment has the power and discretion to do so.  No particular bright line has been drawn as to what amount of loss is considered “excessive.”   Much of the analysis then likely turns on the degree of offense, the record of the individual, and the value of the asset.  Contact an attorney today for a free consultation.  Any and all documentation may be sent by email for free review to Vehicle Forfeitures Can Be Reversed On Constitutional Grounds was last modified: November 22nd, 2019 by Alex DeMarco

Ring Is Teaching Cops How To Obtain Doorbell Camera Footage Without A Warrant | Techdirt

Criminal Defense attorneys tend to sound the alarm on things that people don’t think about.  While twitter feeds and proposals by the executive branch to buy Greenland and nuke Hurricanes continue to dominate cable news, the fourth Amendment remains under siege.  The Fourth Amendment reads as follows: “The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.” Three primary eras of law enforcement have slowly whittled away at the efficacy of the Fourth Amendment.  The first was the granting of law enforcement powers to the IRS in the effort to break the Mafia and other organized crime.  Second, the “crack-down” of the 1980s and early 1990s on the drug trade, cocaine, crack, and heroin greatly expanded search and seizure powers, particularly in the home search and traffic stop contexts.  Third, the Patriot act and various State and Federal statutes and case law associated with investigations place a higher priority on security than privacy, the very opposite of Fourth Amendment “protection.” However, the latest and most effortless destruction of privacy is us, the American People.  From time to time, humorous anecdotes of how “Alexa” and similar technology misinterprets our words and searches for things without our intention have become mainstream. We are learning that in fact this is more than a glitch for our amusement.  It’s a deliberate and coordinated effort by commercial interests to learn our interests, concerns, needs and wants.  Government no longer has to invade your privacy.  It let’s you do it for them, and then gathers it as “subscriber information” over which you have little to no control.  Now tech companies and the government are coordinating to share this information with government agencies, especially law enforcement.   In the name of convenience and our own security, we have placed microphones and now even cameras in our home which listen and watch 24 hours.  Every one of these devices retain data that is retrievable by surveillance forces, even long after that information is deleted. It used to take multiple sources of documentation to obtain a warrant for the government to tap your landline, or to access your postal mailbox and unseal and read your mail.  Ask yourself this:  Other than information from the government itself, like Tax documents and vehicle tabs, what do you receive by mail that is actually private or confidential?  Probably not much.  If you’re like most people, most of your postal mail is junk mail, political advertisements, and local vendors.  You probably don’t care if the government sees that.  Now take into account that a complete search and data dump of every communication on a suspect’s cell phone has become standard procedure in many arrests.   How much more private is the device in your pocket used to communicate about every facet… Read more {+}

Eleventh Circuit Grants Immunity to Officer Who Shot Child Lying on the Ground | Cato @ Liberty

It is stunning that this ruling happened and was virtually unreported.  The 11th Circuit, this July, upheld the decision to declare Michael Vickers immune from lawsuit, simply and for no other apparently explanation than he’s a police officer.  It essentially sets a binding precedent that, in fact, officers ARE above the law.  It’s not about guilt or innocence or liability.  This ruling says we don’t even get to start the usual processes to get that answer.  There are no words to describe this.  That the incident itself happened is shocking and lamentable enough.  That fellow lawyers and judges who swore to do justice would uphold this at the highest levels of federal jurisdiction is utterly disheartening.   Source: Eleventh Circuit Grants Immunity to Officer Who Shot Child Lying on the Ground | Cato @ Liberty Eleventh Circuit Grants Immunity to Officer Who Shot Child Lying on the Ground | Cato @ Liberty was last modified: August 22nd, 2019 by Alex DeMarco

Too ‘Woke’ for the Jury Box? A Clash of Two Hashtags

A recent article in The Marshall Project scratches the surface of a dialogue whose time has come. “While potential jurors take an oath to answer questions honestly during voir dire, and there are undoubtedly some with hard biases, I suspect many socially conscious citizens overstate their positions,” writes Todd Oppenheim of the Baltimore Public Defender’s Office. “Those individuals should think carefully about whether their closely-held beliefs actually result in bias before answering questions. They should take that question more seriously because judges will almost always err on the side of caution and eliminate those on the fence—or simply posturing—from jury pools, even if they might make for good jurors. Defendants lose out as a result.” ————————————————————————- A great article, but it does not go nearly far enough.  #blacklivesmatter and the like are not the only movements that can become problematic in the jury box when a juror feels compelled to answer with depth and honesty.  People who may call themselves various forms of “progressive” increasingly share a healthy skepticism of the government, of the police.  In particular, they see profound injustice in the overall treatment of men of color by our justice system from the time of arrest all the way through the the ultimate test of justice; a jury trial.  What the article fails to address is what happens when this movement runs directly into another movement, such as the #metoo movement. Increasingly, we are a nation in which progressive advocacy groups see vindication only in guilty verdicts, and decry any other outcome as a “slap in the face to all women,” or other such hyperbole.  In order to be considered “enlightened,” one is now socially compelled to say “I believe her” from the moment allegations are spoken by an accuser.  However, many so-called “progressive” individuals who promote this sentiment likely also find favor with movements raising awareness about the disparate treatment of African Americans and other minorities at the hands of police and the larger machine of the justice system as well.   Yet, in cases of sexual assault allegations, the government’s position is essentially “you should believe her.”  So what happens when a man of color is accused of sexual assault? We have countless stories in which men of color have been exonerated of crimes by DNA or other evidence, and most of those cases are criminal sexual conduct cases.  Many of these men have sat years or decades in prison for a crime they did not commit.  In every one of those cases, the jury said “I believe her.”  We know also that when the accused is black, and the alleged victim is not, there is an even greater risk of wrongful conviction.  The fact remains our justice system is still making the exact same errors today that put these men in prison decades ago.  In most criminal sexual conduct cases, there is no biological evidence at all, and we are left with the same rules of evidence, and a question of credibility, that decide a man’s fate.  Just as racism and sexism… Read more {+}