Articles Posted in Oops

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law books lawyer treatise legal research

Law school is really expensive, and it takes three years. So how can you avoid it, and still be a lawyer? Well, just say you are a lawyer. That’s what this woman did, apparently quite well, as reported by newser.com:

A woman used forged documents to pose as an estate lawyer for a decade and made partner at her small firm before her fraud was discovered, according to charges announced yesterday. Kimberly Kitchen was charged Thursday with forgery, unauthorized practice of law, and felony records tampering. State prosecutors contend Kitchen fooled BMZ Law by forging a law license, bar exam results, an email showing she attended Duquesne University law school, and a check for a state attorney registration fee. The firm is based in Huntingdon, about 110 miles east of Pittsburgh. Kitchen, of nearby James Creek, handled estate planning for more than 30 clients “despite never having attended law school,” the attorney general’s office says.

She even served as president of her county bar, says her lawyer, who adds that “she’s an incredibly competent person, and she worked very diligently and was devoted to the people she served. There are things about the charges we don’t agree with.” But the Huntington County Bar Association’s current president called the charges insufficient given “the level of betrayal” over 10 years. Local lawyers were the first to raise questions about Kitchen’s credentials; in December, when the Huntingdon Daily News first reported on the case, the firm vowed to review her work. Kitchen, 45, was previously employed at Juniata College, where she worked in fundraising but “started holding herself out to be a lawyer,” says a senior deputy attorney. She’s married to a state conservation ranger and is no longer working, her lawyer says.

Shazam! Looks like those 30+ clients will be getting some free estate planning – from an actual lawyer. Here’s the source. 

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brick wall foundation

Was it “Wait, I thought we tested the soil?” or “Soil, shmoil. It looks fine to me. Build it!” It’s unclear what happened because the case of the sliding house has not yet gone to trial … but it’s headed there now. As reported by NJ Advance Media for NJ.com:

A $7.4 million judgment for the owner of a Florham Park house that is gradually sliding down a hill was thrown out by an appellate court last month. But another appeal may still bring it to the New Jersey Supreme Court.

The initial $7.4 million award was made to homeowner Humayun Akhtar in 2011 when a judge reached a summary judgment without hearing the arguments of the defendants: JDN Properties, Joseph D. Natale, Deltrus LLC, and Randy DeLuca, said the attorney for Natale.

“He improperly suppressed the answers,” said David Stanziale, the lawyer for Natale. “We’re very happy now that Mr. Natale’s going to have his day in court.”

Yes, it’s sliding down the hill! Probably should have tested that soil.

The Akhtars paid $1.56 million to build the home on Beacon Hill Road, according to court documents. The architect’s plan called for testing of the soil, but that testing was never done. The owners closed on the house, but then heard from a plumber doing work on the property that the house was “sliding,” according to the records. The Akhtars never moved in, and the house remains unoccupied, said the attorneys.

The appellate judges overturned the award on Feb. 24, saying that the Consumer Fraud Act and the triple damages that come with it did not apply, since a failure to test soil at the site was not “fraud” — but just potentially a “breach of warranty.”

Akhtar and his wife, however, will petition the New Jersey Supreme Court to try and make the Consumer Fraud Act — and its increased penalties — stick, said their attorney, Jay Rice.

You’ll find photos of the house, and the source, here.

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short shorts

Sure, it seems like a stupid defense. But it does seem to work every now and then. Anyway, as reported by The Florida Times-Union (at jacksonville.com):

A Jacksonville police officer disciplined for a widely circulated picture of him in uniform closely embracing his girlfriend is in trouble again.

This time Officer Irving Diaz let a “scantily” dressed woman in “short shorts” drive his police car to a Southside Hooters in October.

You can read a lot more, and see a photo, here. 

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red light traffic

Following the law is important. This includes all of them, not just the traffic laws … As reported by The South Florida Sun-Sentinel:

Two Broward County traffic judges dismissed 24,000 pending red-light camera ticket cases Monday, ruling that the program violates Florida law.

Fines from those citations, which came from nearly every city in the county, would have amounted to more than $6.3 million, with each ticket at $264.

“We made the argument that the program was an improper delegation of police power because the videos were being sent out of state for employees of American Traffic Solutions to do the screening,” said Ted Hollander, an attorney with Ticket Clinic. He said the firm has challenged the program for more than four years on behalf of clients.

American Traffic Solutions, a vendor based in Arizona, reviewed videos captured by traffic cameras in Broward County before forwarding them to local police for ticketing. State law mandates that only law enforcement can issue violations.

Oops.  You’ll find the source, and more on this story, here.

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facebook

You lose varying amounts of privacy by being on Facebook, but you can lose a lot more. Just ask this gent.  As reported by The Daily News (Galveston County):

Police say a man’s Facebook posts led to his arrest for allegedly stealing an SUV valued at $38,000.

Doh!  Exactly what breadcrumbs did they follow, you might wonder?

An employee at Texas Direct Auto in Stafford reported the stolen 2011 Infiniti QX5 on Friday morning, police said.

The employee, who knew the suspect, told officers the man’s Facebook posts showed the stolen vehicle’s keys, police said. The posts also tagged his location in League City at UTMB Health Specialty Care Center at Victory Lakes in the 2200 block of Gulf Freeway. Officers arrested him at the clinic.

And you thought nobody paid attention to your location!

Christopher Andrew Lee, 29, of Wharton, is charged with unauthorized use of a motor vehicle.

He was being held in Galveston County jail on $60,000 bond.

Here’s the source.

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laundry drying clothes line

The word “locals” is used, which means that more than one person thought this item was an Isis flag. You’ll wonder about that too when you look at the picture (not the one above – the one at the link below). Anyway, as reported by thelocal.it:

Police were called to an apartment block in Porto Recanati, on Italy’s eastern coast, after locals raised the alarm that an Isis sympathizer may be within their midst.

The officers searched the building and questioned residents, but were unable to recover the mystery black cloth spotted hanging from a tree next to the apartment block.

On further investigation police discovered that the supposed propaganda tool was nothing more than a jacket, swept into the trees after being hung out to dry, Corriere della Sera reported on Wednesday.

You can see a picture of the jacket, and read a little more, here.

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money

This thing could have gone south many times … but it didn’t.  As reported by The International News:

The robber entered the bank and went up to the teller’s window but could not load his gun. He next tried to break the window with the gun but failed again.

The robber then climbed up on the counter and managed to drag the window down. He then proceeded to steal whatever money he could find.

The CCTV video showed the robber almost exiting the bank but then remembering that he had left his gun behind on the counter. The criminal also had difficulty fleeing when he could not start his motorcycle.

Despite all these errors, authorities were unable to stop the robbery from taking place.

The Juice is confident that, given how smoothly the robbery went down, the gent will be caught!  Here’s the source.

 

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coffee cup

There is something to be said for keeping your composure. There’s also something to be said for getting as far away from the scene of the crime you just committed as fast as you can.  Per NJ Advance Media for NJ.com:

Michael J. Cassano, 38, of Oakland Gardens, N.Y., allegedly robbed Hudson City Savings Bank on Essex Street just before 3 p.m. He placed a BB gun on the counter, and the teller gave him $4,000 in cash, Lodi police Detective Capt. Donald Scorzetti said in an e-mail.

Woo-hoo! Quick, scram! Or at least don’t linger. Or …

He ran off, but didn’t go far, Scorzetti said. He went into a Dunkin’ Donuts at 370 Essex Street (about a fifth of a mile away, according to Google Maps) to get a cup of coffee, Scorzetti said.

Cassano then asked a man in the parking lot for a cigarette. As he walked back to his car, two Maywood police officers stopped him, Scorzetti said. Cassano allegedly had both the cash and the BB gun in his possession.

He has been charged with first-degree robbery and two other weapons offenses. Bail has not yet been set, and Scorzetti said federal charges are also pending against Cassano.

You’ll find the source, including the mug shot, here.   (This post is brought to you by your friendly neighborhood personal injury lawyer, the neighborhood being Washington, DC, Maryland, and Virginia.)

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Hand holding mobile smart phone

The “selfie” craze was crazy even pre-Weiner.  This young man took it to another level. As seen and written on khou.com (yes, there’s a video):

Officers pulled over 17-year-old Kenneth Davis around 4 a.m. Monday in a truck, police said, was stolen.

Okay, he’s in some trouble.

After Davis gave officers permission to look at his phone, they discovered several pictures and a video of Davis driving around in another pick-up truck they recognized as stolen.

In the video, Davis appears to be lip syncing to a rap song while it plays in the radio.

“It’s a sign of the times,” said Sgt. John Krueger of the La Porte Police Department. “That’s just a reflection of the younger criminal at this time—they feel comfortable bragging with their friends.”

Police say Davis also admitted to breaking into another vehicle parked off the 8700 block of Collingdale. The teen managed to open the lock but since the vehicle had a club on the steering wheel, he was unable to drive off.

Davis has been charged with two counts of unauthorized use of a motor vehicle and one count of burglary. Police say the pictures on his phone might implicate him in even more crimes.

Now he’s in a lot of trouble. Here’s the source, including the selfie video.

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policeman police officer cop

 

Well sir, the officer might have said, I have some good news and some bad news … Per The Sun News at cleveland.com:

A township officer assisted a Medina Township officer on an arrest at 2:41 a.m. Jan. 24. According to the Medina Township officer, the driver he had pulled over in the Hills had nearly struck his cruiser while the Medina officer was on another traffic stop. The driver passed a Breathalyzer test, registering .08 percent – at the legal limit – but was cited for marijuana possession and failure to move over for a stopped emergency vehicle.

Right at the legal limit! Your author has never seen this before. Maybe they could have taken it out another decimal? .081? It didn’t much matter though, what with the weed in the car. Here’s the source.

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