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Christopher Humphrey
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"Sound Advice in Uncertain Times"
"Sound Advice in Uncertain Times"

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Be safe in the New Year. Designate a driver!
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Saw this happen today. Never seen anything like it.
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If you are watching the walking dead, you have to agree that Carl is not the best character.
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Best Bernie Sanders / Curb Your Enthusiasm parody ever!
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Only one candidate answered a very direct question on community policing; he even included references to actual data and statistics collected. It is time to re-examine community policing and stop using citations for revenue generation.
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I in no way condone murder, but this case has an interesting discussion of when a court may continue your trial passed the 180 day speedy trial rule.

Mr. Castellanos did not have a trial until over 800 days had passed from the date of arraignment. The trial court may continue for a number of reasons against your objections: change of counsel, mental health evaluations, motions by your own attorney over your objections, or to ensure you receive "due administration of justice," without prejudice to the defendant. It will be interesting to see if the federal court will agree with this analysis. The defendant repeatedly and independently from his three sets of lawyers asserted his speedy trial right.
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Interesting case. Wyoming has long held that consent to the sexual act is not a defense to 2nd Degree sexual abuse of a minor. The statute prohibits consensual contact between an adult and a minor. The policy against allowing adults to engaging in intercourse with minors is sound, and I in no way condone sexual intercourse with a minor. That being said, as an attorney who has defended individuals with cases that seem to lack any cogent argument, I can appreciate the creativity of his attorney. Even the trial court was impressed.

The attorney in this case masterfully pointed out that the section of the statute that her client was accused of violating had the word "inflicts" as opposed to the words "engaged in" that were used to describe other prohibited behavior described in the same statute. By emphasizing the word "inflicts," which by definition is to "endure" or suffer, consent became the theory of defense in an otherwise seemingly indefensible act. The victim of the abuse testified that she had consented to the act.

The trial court allowed the theory of defense be presented, but did not allow a definition of the word "inflicts." Predictably, the jury asked for a definition of the word. The court did not allow the jury to receive any instruction as to the word's definition.

After much deliberation, the jury unanimously voted to convict the defendant. On appeal, the Supreme Court reasoned that the meaning of the word "inflicts" and the words "engaged in" bore the same meaning, at least as it pertains to 2nd Degree Sexual Abuse of a Minor. The reasoning was based on the fact that the penalty for each prohibited act under the statute bore the same possible prison sentence or penalty. My comments are a very simplified version of a interesting case that show cases a very creative argument and a well reasoned approach to analyzing statutory construction and meaning.
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Another entertaining, yet eye opening segment of the Daily Show.
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