motions

Dear Judge: Can you PLEASE muzzle that woman…and the press

In its third motion for protective order my least favorite tourism company asks the court yet again to stop the plaintiff from filing motions in the public court file.  Instead they want a special rule that requires us to give them five days notice before we can file a document so they can bring a motion asking the court to seal it or block us.  Kind of like an early warning anti-missile system.  We must tell them before we launch then they try to shoot us down before the paperwork can hit the courthouse file.

To justify this procedure, the defense attacks me yet again.  According to them I’m: a) self-serving; b)misrepresenting the facts; c)  garnering media attention; d) circumventing an existing court order.

I know I know.  You’re probably getting tired of reading about defense lawyers picking on me over and over again in the blog.  Trust me so am I.

But this time in its motion the company also attacks the media.  They charge: ” The media stories are contaminating the potential jury pool with false narratives.”

This is bothersome.  It is an echo of the “fake media” mantra that has been recently taken up around the country.

I believe we all need to stand up  for our right to engage in free speech and talk to the media if they are interested enough to ask.

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press, or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances. 

U.S. Constitution Amendment I.

Photo: Nala on her 9th birthday. 

Attachment:  Declaration of Karen Koehler in Support of Free Speech and the Press:  Koehler Decl. First Amendment

Rising above the quacking

A tree branch scratched the lower part of my left upper arm last summer when I capsized a kayak.  The wound stung.  Swelled into a welt.  But didn’t bleed.  Almost a year later there is definitely a scar still there.  My real skin is getting thinner with age.  My mental skin is not.

A few weeks ago we needed to bring a discovery motion against a Seattle tourism company.  Andrew had tried to work things out with them but it was a no go.  So we drafted a motion.  In order to show the judge why this information was so important I had to lay out the other pieces of the puzzle.  This exercise the defendant did not like.

In real life (thanks to lessons learned in Kindergarten) if you want to disprove your opponent’s puzzle creation you could engage in various tactics such as: a) show them their pieces are not really fitting together – they are just mashed up pretending to fit together; b) demonstrate how the pieces really should fit; c) show that the missing piece is totally a different shape.

Or you could just throw the puzzle on the ground and challenge the other person to a duel.

The latter is what pretty much happens here.  This is the list of the personal accusations and insults charged by this company’s lawyers in throwing my puzzle board to the ground.

  • failed to follow the rules
  • “mislead” the court
  • presented a “false” issue to the Court
  • have “sprinkled misrepresentations” throughout their filing
  • “blatantly misrepresented”
  • used the motion to” circumvent” the court’s previous order regarding dissemination of discovery materials
  • used the motion as a “vehicle to publish sensationalized material”
  • “injected otherwise unpublishable material discovery materials into the Court record”
  • have done this for “sensationalism not legitimate argumentation”
  • the argument “is, quite frankly, ridiculous”
  • “do not have a legitimate reason” for their request
  • “counsel are disingenuous here

Oh bad bad bad bad Karen.

How to respond.  Do I get out my sword and run them through.  Ah hold that thought.  Tempting though that may be…Andrew Garth and I take the higher ground.  Stick to our message.  And at the end of the day win the motion.

Attached:  the winning order.  Order Granting Motion to Compel

Photo:  Bad Karen by Snapchat

 

 


Check out a recent interview by Super Lawyers about my blog. Yes, I'm a lawyer. But I'm also a human being. I have a doggie named Nala, three daughters, eat brown sugar cinnamon pop tarts for breakfast, and wear jeans as often as possible when not in court.
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