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Read the minutes at the side bar=trouble

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I had once asked if my mother's attorney is guilty of malpractice. I was told we could never prove it affected the outcome of the mistrial.

Well we went and read her case file where the prosecutors had the minutes of her testimony placed into file. They took the minutes at the side bar which occured right after he impeached my mother on the stand and the prosecutors objected to a response she made (in true innocence and he never counseled her of any pitfalls as this was not to be a part of this trial unless the attorney introduced it as he "accidentally did"). The judge said he was just going to give him a chance to brief his client (my mother), because at this stage "she's going in". Now it was clear that the Judge was not happy with my mother as if she knowingly gave a false answer. The question was" You have never been in a situation like this in your life have you Mrs.xxxxx?" She had never spent the night in jail and had been horrified, she answered no, never! The objection came in, as 25 years ago when laws on dui were much less strict, she truly didn't think of the two as the same experience. The side bar occurred. The judge noticably (in print and possibly in person) angry and suggested her lawyer strongly think about accepting the reckless driving charge!! This made an impression on the Judge, how far of a leap is it to think it did NOT have an effect on the jury??

He came back to my mother still sitting on the stand while jurers were being entertained by the bailiff, and had to ask her about the DUI 20-25 years ago. He had to because the door was open form the prosecution, the Judge sustained the objection.

It was 4 against 2 for her and the judge suggested the attorney's rest the case with a mistrial as this would go on all night, he's seen it before. If not for the question her attorney blundered (he knew of this as it is in her file and we told him first thing in consultation), she could have easily have had at least one jurer if not more and then the charge would have been dismissed. Where it needs to be. The costs of the trial and attorney's fees are exhorbitant and she is on a limited income. The officer arrested her after she failed a FST not designed for anyone over 62-65 and she stated that she had a foot problem several times to the officer. Feet and balance are the sole basis of the FST. No alternatives where given. He handcuffed her and took her to the jail. At the station her bac .083/.076 with .005+- made her literally below the state minimum of .08. This should never have gotten to this point. We are desperate and have to seek further remedies including civil rights violations. The judges comments to me make for malpractice on her attorney. Do you agree? And if you do, should the judge be notified of the decision to drop this attorney and why?


[This message has been edited by over70 (edited June 19, 2000).]

[This message has been edited by over70 (edited June 19, 2000).]

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