“Anybody want to hear the one about the audio recording the cops said didn’t exist? “
Posted by Charles II on January 1, 2015
A California attorney has begun posting diaries on Daily Kos regarding cases he has defended. They are extremely entertaining. His first:
The transcript was a window into the heart of darkness. Bill apparently thought Stoney was a cop come to reward him for setting up Dave. He apparently wanted everybody to know what a good job he had done. He spared no details. He told about how he was in jail for burglary, drugs, and perjury when the detective approached him with a deal to lighten his sentence. All he had to do was go out and set up Dave. He was instructed in detail as to how he was to approach Dave. He reported his progress regularly to the detective. The detective introduced him to Joyce and told him how use her to get into Dave’s confidence. Bill said he was always afraid Joyce was a cop and actually asked Stoney if she was. Finally, Stoney identified himself as a private investigator working for the defense attorney. Bill was stunned. He asked for an attorney. Stoney advised him that he was going to be confronted in court with the statements he had just made. Bill said “What do I care? I’m in here for perjury anyway!”
Forward to the preliminary hearing. Bill testified under oath to the detective’s version of the story. My turn. I asked Bill if he had ever met the couple sitting in the second row of the courtroom. He looked out and saw Stoney and the stenographer. At that point, I handed a copy of the transcript to that smarmy lying bastard of a DA. He read a couple of sentences and asked for a recess. When we came back, he abruptly dismissed the charges regarding the pill sales.
I have contended that the greatest power a license to practice law confers is the power to compel powerful people to testify under oath. But police have developed a countermeasure. It’s called lying. It’s a powerful device because it’s institutionally protected. Few lawyers can beat them head on. They will always be “believed.” Cops sardonically call it “testilying.” However, there is a workaround. It involves maneuvering them into telling the wrong lies. To do this, you have to exploit a common character flaw – hubris. Cops who lie are generally infected with a compulsion for dominance. They need to let you know they are lying and that you can’t do anything about it. That’s why I love to tell about the missing tape recording.
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