Jury is filing in. Am standing off to the side to let them pass. Realize still wearing sneakers. Judge has noticed and chuckles. Rush to chair. Sit and buckle ankle straps of heels. This looks better with stockings, black criss cross in the front bcbg skirt with raspberry toned red Moschino jacket over free people wildly batique-ish top with key hole neckline. Costume bangles accompanying apple watch.Read More
Just spent a weekend in Lululemon and now it is time to get court ready again. There have been times over the years where have resented having to figure out what to wear. Including whether to repeat or not in a long trial. But dressing up for court is really like putting on a costume for the big show. There is a stage and audience and what we wear is a part of the whole process. So for the most part, don’t whine. Messages are being sent by what we wear in court.Read More
Today’s uber driver is from Romania where everyone crushes grapes in vats at their homes. Some is saved as grape juice for the kids. The rest is put in a bottle. In 6 months there is good wine. Better than you can get at Safeway. He would like me to use uberXL versus uberX. The numerous reasons range from the safer more superior status of his SUV to what difference does a few more bucks make if we are all going to die anyway. Drops me off.
Get through security without beeping. Climb 9 flights. Enter on the dot at 8:30 as ordered by the court so we can address pretrial matters. 8:45 Mr. Ulmer announced her honor will be arriving in 7 minutes. Her bus has been delayed again. She arrives.Read More
Walk into courtroom with Alysha. Most of law firm family have come to watch. Clients many with co-counsel have arrived. Some from around the world. Press is establishing base camp in the rear. As the minutes approach 9 the room fills.
Put bags on the table. Step out of tennies and into heels. Walk behind 85” tv that is in front right corner of the room. Breathe in and out. Kevin the court reporter is setting up. He says are you trying to avoid all the people. Nod at him. Smile. Find center.
Judge Shaffer enters just before 9. Jury comes in. Sits. Instructions are read. Judge says: now please turn your attention to the plaintiff for opening statement.Read More
Two weeks after Liam is born we start the Ride the Ducks Aurora Bridge trial. In the months leading up to the trial stop writing or discussing the case publicly. This includes to the media, to social media, to this blog.
The jurors will be instructed not to read, watch, or listen to anything about this case. They will not be reading this blog for example. So it is not quite clear how pretrial publicity especially in a civil case can be prejudicial if the lawyers talk to the media which the jurors will not be reading. Rather than debate the issue look to The Rules of Professional Conduct (RPC) 3.6.Read More
(a) A lawyer who is participating or has participated in the investigation or litigation of a matter shall not make an extrajudicial statement that the lawyer knows or reasonably should know will be disseminated by means of public communication and will have a substantial likelihood of materially prejudicing an adjudicative proceeding in the matter. (b) Notwithstanding paragraph (a), a lawyer may state:Read More
uly 10, 2018.
1:30 pm Nala is stepping on my feet. She knows what the suitcase means. Looks mournfully at me as I walk out the door.Read More
Judges don't like it when us attorneys can't stop bickering. They are irritated by having to deal with our exchanges of snipes, digs and downright insults.
Last month after a trial ended, two jurors followed me down to the courthouse lobby. They wanted to talk about what happened. Both commented on how impressed they were that the attorneys acted in a civil manner. Sure we disagreed with each other and objected and there were tense moments. But we were not overly disrespectful like the lawyers they saw on television. They appreciated that.Read More
I believe that lawyers take too much credit when a trial is won and too much responsibility when a trial is lost.
Of course this is our j.o.b. We are in it to win it. Our client's well being is our number one top absolute priority. And regardless of the reasons why sometimes we cannot convince the judge or jury of our position - it totally bites when we lose.Read More
4:30 Slide sideways out of bed. Do everything necessary to get out of house.
5:15 Drop Nala off at downtown dog lounge.
5:45 Arrive at SeaTac. Park. Walk. Get thru security. Wait. Board.
7:00 Lift off. Eat lemon luna bar. Pull up P case on ipad. Exhibits have been loaded into Trialpad. Scroll through them. Nod off. Child kicks seat. Get back to work. Eat too many grapes.
Trial day 1:
Instead of doing her usual acrobatic routine, Nala is curled up around my feet. On the little rug in front of the sink. I glance up at the little crystal clock on the shelf. It says 6:10 which means it is 7:10 since the clocks sprang forward Sunday. Haven’t changed it yet. The mental math keeps me sharp. Or so I tell myself.Read More
A male news anchor from Australia wore the same suit every day for a year - changing his shirt and tie - and no one noticed. He did this to prove a point after becoming frustrated with the constant criticisms levied by the public against his female co-anchor's appearance.
"No one has noticed; no one gives a s**t. But women, they wear the wrong colour and they get pulled up. Women are judged much more harshly and keenly for what they do, what they say and what they wear."Read More
Alarm goes off. Am already conscious. Tissues surround me. Am ill.
Have to be in court by 8:45. Go through the motions. Get there in time. Judge S is late. We are set to argue before a jury trial starts at 9. They are at the voir dire phase. The prosecutor and defender are chatting.Read More
The defense is bringing in a memory expert from back east. To say the surviving brother's memory is not real.
This is an asbestos-mesothelioma trial. The exposure happened in the 1970s. The only witnesses who can identify the product are the brother (who was then eight) and the deceased.Read More
Children may be scared to testify in a trial. But being on a witness stand can also be empowering for them. They are having their day in court. They are participating in an integral part of our country's foundational structure. They are helping the process of determining the truth.Read More
Shellie: I'm addicted to Drop Dead Diva. You were right.
K3: I know - isn't it entertaining.
Shellie: Who would have thought.
K3: It is such a ludicrous concept, but executed so brilliantly.
Shellie: I love how she flicks her hair over her shoulder when she scores a point.
K3: You get the case in the morning and try it in the afternoon.
This trial diary excerpt is from 2011 King County Superior Court.
Trial day 1
Am not smiling as leave the courtroom. Judge Hill has just chewed me out. All my energy is turning inward. Breathe in. Breath out. Walk down the stairs to the car. And leave.Read More
Tomorrow we were supposed to be giving closing arguments.
Instead, today the Court sent everyone home.
Can't write about what exactly happened. This case is going to be tried again.
But can tell you what it's like to have a Judge say they're granting a defense motion for mistrial.
This is the third time I've had the experience.
Am resting on a sandy beach somewhere nice and warm. Every so often someone gives me a tasty little treat and a sip of ice water. The breeze gently rustles my fur. Seagulls caw in the background.
Ellie – time to wake up, she says.Read More
Both sides used extensive demonstrative exhibits during opening. Basically we agreed that I could use what I wanted so long as they could use what they wanted.
The transcript is not very accurate (understatement). The courtroom was video recorded. If we wanted a quick transcript, at the end of the day the bailiff would copy the recordings and provided them to a court reporter. The reporter would then transcribe from the videos with only moderate success.Read More