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Author Archives: Nicole Black

Unlikely inferences do not a felony make

Last week the New York State Court of Appeals handed down its decision in People v. Finley, 2008 WL 2338613. At issue was whether small amounts of marijuana smuggled into New York correctional facilities by inmates constituted “dangerous contraband” pursuant ...

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Why not err on the side of caution≠

Last week the U.S. Supreme Court granted certiorari in Herring v. United States, 07-513. At issue in Herring is whether the exclusionary rule should apply when a suspect’s arrest was based on erroneous information from another law enforcement officer. The ...

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Tempations of Utopia

“Those who made and endorsed our Constitution knew man’s nature, and it is to their ideas, rather than to the temptations of utopia, that we must ask that our judges adhere.” — Robert Bork A few weeks ago, my family ...

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The high price of partisan politics

Gideon v. Wainwright, 372 U.S. 335 (1963), states in part: “[R]eason and reflection require us to recognize that in our adversary system of criminal justice, any person haled into court, who is too poor to hire a lawyer, cannot be assured ...

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Beyond these four walls

“Resistance is futile. Your life as it has been is over.” — Locutus of Borg/Jean-Luc Picard, “Star Trek: The Next Generation,” “The Best of Both Worlds” episode (1990). Businesses exist to make money and, as we all know, time is ...

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Judge not, lest you be a judge

With the dawn of a new year, two leading jurists once again brought the issue of judicial pay raises to the forefront of legislative concerns. U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts and New York State Court of Appeals Chief ...

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