Friday, September 14, 2007

September 14

An inmate stabbed a guard at Jessup last night.

Blotter's got the shootings:
A man in his 30s was being treated at a hospital after he was shot in the neck by an assailant in the first block of N. Ellamont St. near Gwynns Falls Parkway about 2:15 a.m. yesterday, and in the Eastern, "shortly before 3 a.m. yesterday police responding to a report of a shooting in the 2800 block of E. Federal St., near Baltimore Cemetery, found a 20-year-old man lying in the street and bleeding from multiple gunshot wounds. He was treated at Johns Hopkins Hospital and admitted. His condition was not available, and no arrest had been made."

Another new low for the White House: they're threatening to take away the only U.S. Attorney we've ever loved and hide his gorgeous suits under a judge-burka!

A man convicted of sexually abusing his ex-girlfriend’s 6-year-old daughter is entitled to a new trial, the Court of Special Appeals held, finding that the judge at Frederick Roscoe Coates’ first trial erred in admitting statements the girl made to a Sexual Assault Forensic Examination (“SAFE”) nurse.

maxim coverAfter a challenge from the Attorney General's office, Eastern Correctional Institution has changed its policy on inmate reading materials and will lift an all-out ban on a white supremacist newsletter and distribute copies if they're in line with department policy. No word on when or if the jailbirds will get their "Maxim."
(...speaking of the Eastern Institutions, we're totally jazzed about this!)

In Elkton, 20-year-old Matthew Blackburn pleaded guilty to first-degree murder charges in a shooting that prosecutors say was the result of a robbery disguised as a drug deal.

Councilman Jack Young: "We need to have a dialogue about taking the profit motive out of drug dealing and ending the so-called war on drugs."


ppatin said...

I'm surprised that the White House would nominate someone like Rosenstein to a Federal appeals court. I mean the guy doesn't seem like a partisan hack or a religious extremist. Surely that makes him unqualified to be a judge in the eyes of this administration?

ppatin said...

From the pervert's lawyer:

“We were very pleased with the result, and thought it was the right result,” said Anne K. Olesen, associate professor of clinical law at George Washington University Law School, and counsel for Coates.

Yeah, I hope you're proud of yourself you sack of shit. You got a pedophile off, and now his victim will be put through another trial. That's a real great accomplishment there. Go pat yourself on the back.

Carol Ott said...

Ah, but ppatin -- he's defending the *constitution* not the pervert. Remember what Warren Brown said?

Because you know, if Warren Brown said it, it must be true.


ppatin said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
ppatin said...

It's not that I'm opposed to suspects getting due process and a fair trial, but at a certain point the endless appeals and the exploitation of ridiculous technicalities are simply an abuse of the legal system. For a perfect example of this take a look at Vernon Evans & Anthony Grandison. Those two pieces of human garbage committed the crime that sent them to death row before I was even born, and they're both still alive & kicking. It's a disgusting farce.

Gor said...

I understand that criminal defense attorneys are a necessary evil, but there is no way I could be one, especially for scum like Coates. If I had to choose between law and justice, justice would win every time.

NCDCO said...

ppatin: "It's not that I'm opposed to suspects getting due process and a fair trial[.]"

Ummm, yes, you are.

Anyone who calls a defense attorney a "sack of shit" for simply using the laws of the United States and/or Maryland to defend someone is necessarily anti-American Constitution.

My ancestors fought a bloody war against the British for the right to a fair trial, due process, right to be held innocent unless proven guilty, AND the right to face one's accuser.

You, sir, evidently despise all these rights. Don't come here and say you support those rights, yet you think those who uphold those rights are "sack[s] of shit."

Obviously, you are a conflicted man.

ppatin said...

Another thing we need to do is stop electing defense lawyers to the state legislatures. If we make that mistake, then for god's sake don't let them head the house judiciary committee! The best way to fight crime in MD would be to take Joseph Vallario and toss him off of a very high building.

ppatin said...

"Anyone who calls a defense attorney a "sack of shit" for simply using the laws of the United States and/or Maryland to defend someone is necessarily anti-American Constitution."

Filing appeal after appeal until you finally find some lefty judge who'll agree with your ridiculous argument is NOT what due process is about. Coates was given a fair trial and he was found guilty.

ppatin said...

Also, I have a serious issue with the whole idea that a defense lawyer is obligated to do absolutely anything and everything for a client who he knows is guilty. Right to counsel doesn't mean "right to a lawyer who will attempt to humiliate rape victims into not testifying."

Gor said...

"My ancestors fought a bloody war against the British for the right to a fair trial, due process, right to be held innocent unless proven guilty, AND the right to face one's accuser."

Actually, "due process" was part of English common law and was already an established procedure in the courts and was not one of the causes of which we fought for.

Remember John Adams (2nd president) defended the British soldiers involved in the "Boston Massacre" to ensure a fair trial, but he did not use underhanded tactics, purposely put forth false/misleading information, or use witness intimidation as part of his defense strategy. Which is the major problem with the current defense lawyer mentality (or at least the bad ones).

olegna said...

Trial lawyers have a different way of thinking about crime and justice than we do. It is a job to them and they remain disinterested in the ethics.

I think that if lawyers (either defenders or prosecutors) took their job personally all the time, it would crush them to the point of being unable to come to work in the morning.

Our system is dysfunctional not because of the lawyers and judges. It is dysfunctional because of a broad spectrum of interacting complex reasons.

Sadly, many of you people are all too eager to point to one or the other person (the mayor, Jessamy, the commish, etc) or conspiracy (Baltimore A vs Baltimore B) or one or another simplistic solution (gun ownership, more cops, sterilization, etc).

ppatin said...

Actually, there are some very simple steps which would make a huge difference. Remember that creep who was arrested in some kid's bedroom recently? He was sentenced to 25 years w/no parole, and from what I remember he was released in about 16. We need to change our laws so that 25 years w/out parole means the guy actually sits in prison for 25 years! Would that solve all of our problems? No, but it sure would help with some of them.

Also, when you talk about people blaming the mayor, you do realize we have an administration in this city that encourages police officers not to report crimes, right? I don't think it's simplistic to blame Sheila Dixon for that. Could she make crime go away with the stroke of a pen? Of course not, but she could make an instant positive difference by demanding that EVERY crime report that the police receive be honestly reported.

NCDCO said...

olegna: "Our system is dysfunctional not because of the lawyers and judges. It is dysfunctional because of a broad spectrum of interacting complex reasons."

Our system is fucked up because the citizens refuse to deal with problems in realistic terms. Seriously, alcohol is legal, yet herion is not. Ridiculous. Not working is legal, yet smoking crack is not. You get more time in Maryland for selling a couple vials of crack than for beating the crap out of someone.

Blaming criminal defense attorneys for society's ills is wrong.

If you don't like the freedoms and rights our Constitution affords (including the rights to appeal), I suggest you lobby your representative and ask him or her to take away those freedoms and rights.

Sadly, ppatin, you'd probably be the first to cry foul if you're ever an unfortunate sap charged with a crime you did not commit.

Maurice Bradbury said...

I get really frustrated when I hear people (especially politicians) say defeatest things like, "Baltimore didn't get like this overnight, there's no easy solution," etc etc. There's no one solution, sure, and there's crime in every society on earth, but if we arrested the 50,000 people out on outstanding warrants in the city right now no doubt things would be a lot different the next day.

Or if the city asked the state to bring in troopers to help fill the 300-something vacant police positions, we'd see changes pretty quickly. The "this problem is too complex to ever be solved" will never get us anywhere.

John Galt said...

I don't see what's inconsistent in expecting more good arrests and fewer false arrests. It's called better government. And here in Baltimore, almost anything would be better.

The police vacancies are just a no-brainer. But the administration is going to tell you that it's a very, very complicated process taking oh,.... at least four years.

Send in state troops. If the Governor cannot (or politically will not), then send in national guard. Not policing the second-most violent city in the nation is just wrong.

Maurice Bradbury said...

would it be better if your local crime blog had the 'tude of "here's some horrible crime that's going on, too bad there's nothing we can do about it until we have top-rated schools, French-style social services and only people who are licensed can breed!"
"this information for embitterment purposes only"

ppatin said...


I happen to be a big fan of the constitution, and of our protections against the government. What I am not a fan of is when defense lawyers abuse the justice system by pulling stunts like delaying a murder trial again and again and again in order to put the victim's family through hell, hoping they'll be more amenable to a plea bargain.

Also, if you want an example of why I think our justice sytem is fucked up go read about John Thanos, who was Maryland's first post-Furman execution. Thanos admitted to murdering three people, said he wished he could do it again, and a year after his sentencing he fired his lawyers and said he wanted to drop his appeals. Despite that it still took another year of legal battles to put him to death. I'm sorry but that is a sick perversion of justice.

Rob said...


Your priorities are a bit skewed if a guy getting killed a year late by the state is your example of why our justice system is fucked up.

Jesus…..If you are going to focus on the death penalty and not our overflowing prison population for an example, one thinks you might choose a case where an innocent guy gets poisoned, or electrocuted to death, rather than a one year delay in the death penalty.

I think the number is like 125 or something, for number of exonerated, death-row inmates since it was reinstated. Even if someone is a fan of the death penalty, they should want the most complete and comprehensive appeal process.

ppatin said...


I am not saying that what happened with Thanos was the worst miscarriage of justice ever to happen, it's just an excellent example of how out of control some lawyers are. I realize we had better be careful about due process for condemned inmates, but when a defendant actually says that he did it and wishes he could do it again at his trial then I don't see why we need to wait two years to carry out his sentence.