Sentencing Law

  • Conjugal Visit RF

    Crime, Sentencing Law

    Conjugal Visits Are Almost A Thing Of The Past

    Did you know that conjugal visits might be really useful to society?

    33 Comments / / Jan 13, 2014 at 2:11 PM
  • bart simpson RF

    Crime, Quote of the Day, Sentencing Law, State Judges, Violence

    This Sentence Probably Should’ve Included A Spanking

    A sentence that sounds like it could come from Bart Simpson’s future.

    4 Comments / / Dec 24, 2013 at 1:01 PM
  • Teen driver RF

    Cars, Crime, Drinking, DUI / DWI, Kids, Sentencing Law, White People

    In Defense Of The Rich White Boy Who Killed Four People And Got Away With It

    Instead of blaming the kid for killing four people, can we figure out a way to blame the parents?

    75 Comments / / Dec 12, 2013 at 5:47 PM
  • iStock_000010223467XSmall-RF

    Department of Justice, Sentencing Law, U.S. Attorneys Offices, White-Collar Crime

    Putting People In Prison To Get To The Cool Kids’ Table

    Cramming more people into prison should not be a badge of honor for an agency.

    18 Comments / / Dec 12, 2013 at 11:22 AM
  • Spoiled_brat_selfish_parent_child_beg_thumb

    China, Law Professors, Law Schools, Non-Sequiturs, Sentencing Law, Trademarks, United Kingdom / Great Britain

    Non-Sequiturs: 12.11.13

    * Beware of “affluenza” — the condition where rich kids believe that their wealth shields them from consequences. One kid with affluenza was convicted of four counts of manslaughter and got… probation. Great way to teach him that there are consequences. I don’t doubt being a hyper-privileged douche contributed to his criminal behavior, but let’s see if the judge is equally lenient to the next kid in this courtroom who argues that poverty contributed to his crimes. [Gawker]

    * In America people complain about law reviews sharing outlines for free. In the U.K., they’re selling notes on eBay. If you’re buying notes off the Internet, perhaps law school isn’t your bag. [Legal Cheek]

    * Do Twitter mentions reflect the scholarly significance of a professor’s articles? No. [TaxProf Blog]

    * Here’s some terrifying stuff that lawyers want for Christmas. It’s not quite our gift guide. [The Spark File]

    * The word “spin” is apparently trademarked. This is the company that did it and enforces its trademark against gyms with uncertified spin classes. [Racked]

    * Law school applications are in free fall. Too bad all these people are going to miss out on that sweet $1 million law degree. [Lawyers, Guns & Money]

    * Mental health remains a seriously undiscussed problem in the legal industry. [Law and More]

    * TSA now confiscating prop guns off stuffed animals. [Lowering the Bar]

    * A Chinese law professor lost his job for writing an article advocating constitutional rule. If you think this is a harsh response, remember this government used to throw tanks at people over less. [Washington Post]

    * Speaking of China, next month the CBLA is hosting a panel discussion about the expanded use of the FCPA, specifically with regard to China. [CBLA]

    4 Comments / / Dec 11, 2013 at 6:04 PM
  • iStock_000001026615XSmall

    Free Speech, Legal Ethics, Marijuana, Non-Sequiturs, Religion, Sentencing Law

    Non-Sequiturs: 11.04.13

    * The NSA protests that its spying on foreign leaders was entirely legal. In defense of the NSA, this latest uproar seems misplaced. Warrantless spying on Americans is illegal, but spying on foreign governments is kind of the whole point of the NSA. [Associated Press]

    * Judge James Bredar has laid out his thoughts on how sentencing judges should deal with the changing legal landscape surrounding marijuana. This is important because those dumb Guidelines still recommend an enhancement for taking One Toke Over the Line. [Sentencing Law & Policy]

    * Should a plagiarizing journalist be allowed to join the ranks of licensed attorneys? Con: his crime suggests low moral character. Pro: He’s going to be a master of boilerplate. [Juice, Justice & Corgis]

    * Jones Day is representing pro bono a number of Catholic institutions ticked off that they might have to buy insurance that their workers might, at some point, maybe use to buy birth control pills. It’s a tremendous intrusion upon religious liberty that Catholic institutions routinely did before they decided to make a political spectacle out of it. [The National Law Journal]

    * A speech to Harvard Law alums about the slow death of free speech at Harvard. By “slow death of free speech” he details how a private, non-governmental institution decided not to tolerate jackassery, but whatever. [Minding the Campus via The Volokh Conspiracy]

    * It’s still several months until the ATL Law Revue competition. So to keep you entertained until then, check out this parody of Lorde’s Royals performed by some law students. It looks like the same geniuses from Auckland Law School behind the Blurred Lines parody. Do the Kiwis have time to do actual law school stuff? Video embedded after the jump… [Legal Cheek]

    4 Comments / / Nov 4, 2013 at 5:01 PM
  • junk crotch jeans RF

    2nd Circuit, Barrington Parker, Crime, Guido Calabresi, Pornography, Sentencing Law, Sex, Technology

    Second Circuit To Feds: Don’t Touch His Junk

    What exactly is “penile plethysmography”? A violation of substantive due process, according to the Second Circuit.

    7 Comments / / Oct 4, 2013 at 3:29 PM
  • Shon Hopwood

    Bankruptcy, Biglaw, Clerkships, D.C. Circuit, Divorce Train Wrecks, Federal Judges, Howrey LLP, Law Schools, Morning Docket, Sentencing Law, Technology

    Morning Docket: 09.06.13

    * Thanks to the Electronic Frontier Foundation, the Department of Justice will be declassifying some secret opinions from the FISA Court. We wonder who’ll be hosting the giant redaction party. [Associated Press]

    * Morgan Lewis paid out a $1.15 million settlement over unfinished business claims to this defunct firm. Great work, Mr. Diamond, but Howrey going to get the rest to do the same? [Am Law Daily (sub. req.)]

    * “[Shon] Hopwood proves that my sentencing instincts suck.” Now that this former bank robber has a clerkship with the D.C. Circuit, the judge who sentenced him is having second thoughts. [The Two-Way / NPR]

    * Laptops are useful tools for students in law school classrooms, but they’re also great for checking Above the Law and buying shoes while professors are droning on and on. Apparently we needed a study to confirm this. [National Law Journal (sub. req.)]

    * George Zimmerman’s wife filed for divorce, citing “disappointment” as one of her reasons for ending the marriage. Don’t worry, Shellie, half of the nation was disappointed with the verdict too. [Washington Post]

    3 Comments / / Sep 6, 2013 at 9:09 AM
  • mini graduation cap on money

    2nd Circuit, Attorney Misconduct, Crime, Deaths, Law Schools, Legal Ethics, Money, Morning Docket, SCOTUS, Sentencing Law, Student Loans, Supreme Court, William and Mary School of Law

    Morning Docket: 09.05.13

    * “The situation is an absolute mess.” Last summer’s SCOTUS decision on mandatory life-without-parole sentences for juvenile offenders has created a “legal limbo” for inmates. We hope they find suitable dance partners. [Wall Street Journal (sub. req.)]

    * Even after you retire, you apparently still have to deal with the Cebullsh*t from your life on the bench. Former Chief District Judge Richard Cebull’s misconduct review is likely heading to Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts. [Great Falls Tribune]

    * Woe unto them that call unpaid work fair: the Second Circuit quickly granted Fox Searchlight an appeal in the Black Swan unpaid intern case in the hope of offering some “much-needed guidance.” [Deadline]

    * Which private law schools offer students the best value? Some unlikely contenders are named on this list, and some T14 schools even make appearances. We’ll have more on this later today. [National Jurist]

    * GW wasn’t the only school that grew the size of its entering class (although it was the largest increase). William & Mary and Missouri saw big gains, too. Yay, more lawyers! [National Law Journal (sub. req.)]

    * If you’re considering applying to law school, think about schools that have lowered their standards and are offering scholarship money like candy. Otherwise, here are some helpful hints. [Huffington Post]

    * Henry Putzel Jr., former reporter of decisions at the Supreme Court, RIP. [Washington Post]

    6 Comments / / Sep 5, 2013 at 9:02 AM
  • National_Football_League_2008.svg

    Baseball, Cardozo Law School, Drinking, Football, Gay, Gay Marriage, Non-Sequiturs, Pornography, Sentencing Law, Sports

    Non-Sequiturs: 08.29.13

    * The NFL has reached a $765 million settlement with the over 4,500 retired concussion victims whose injuries paved the way for the league’s success. [Sports Illustrated]

    * Dennis Rodman confidante Kim Jong-un had his ex-girlfriend executed on pornography charges. Kind of puts the whole “revenge porn” thing in perspective. [The Telegraph]

    * A lawsuit against Curt Schilling, based on allegations that he deceived the state into giving his company $75 million, will go forward. Like most conservative Republicans, Schilling saw no problem with taking millions in handouts from the government so long as poor people don’t get $4.50 a day for food. [Comcast SportsNet]

    * Judge Mark Bennett (N.D. Iowa) ripped the Department of Justice for creating massive drug sentencing disparities because the DOJ went years without a policy for when prosecutors should double the prison time for repeat offenders. In Northern Iowa, that’s a LOT of meth heads in prison. [Des Moines Register]

    * Attorneys for the Governor of Pennsylvania equate gay marriage to letting 12-year-olds marry. Just because a demographic calls everything “gay” doesn’t make them gay. [ABA Journal]

    * Study shows academics use lots of adjectives and adverbs. This is really a very terrific and awesome study. [TaxProf Blog]

    * Polygraphs are inadmissible, but remember invisible jets are A-OK. [Texts from Superheroes]

    * REMINDER: OK NYU, Columbia, Fordham, Cardozo, and NYLS students! It’s time to send nominations to us for where you want us to go on the Great Above the Law/Kaplan Bar Review Bar Crawl. Send bar nominations to tips@abovethelaw.com, subject: “Bar Crawl.” See you on September 18th! [Above the Law]

    1 Comment / / Aug 29, 2013 at 5:01 PM
  • Alan Dershowitz

    Alan Dershowitz, Books, Constitutional Law, Death Penalty, Quote of the Day, SCOTUS, Sentencing Law, Supreme Court

    The Eventual Death of the Death Penalty?

    How will the death penalty come to an end in the United States? Alan Dershowitz makes a prediction.

    7 Comments / / Aug 26, 2013 at 5:02 PM
  • It's Alito time, Phil! (via Getty Images)

    Antonin Scalia, Biglaw, Celebrities, Constitutional Law, Eugene Scalia, Federal Judges, Gay Marriage, Law Schools, LSAT, Military / Military Law, Morning Docket, Phil Alito, Police, Samuel Alito, SCOTUS, Sentencing Law, Shira Scheindlin, Supreme Court

    Morning Docket: 08.22.13

    * The NSA has violated the Constitution for years, you say? And it’s been misleading the FISA court about all of its domestic spying activities? As of this moment, the NSA is on double secret probation! [New York Times]

    * Imagine how the New York stop-and-frisk case would have turned out if it had been before SCOTUS. The “human toll of unconstitutional stops” may not have been weighed so heavily. [Opinionator / New York Times]

    * “[N]o one has a crystal ball,” but right now, it’s highly likely that the Supreme Court will take up another gay marriage case. Perhaps it’ll be the one that’s currently unfolding in Pennsylvania. [Legal Intelligencer]

    * According to a recent survey conducted by Randstad, about 60 percent of lawyers are proud to be members of the legal profession, which is impressive(!) considering how unhappy they are. [The Lawyer]

    * Birds of a feather really do flock together. Philip Alito, son of Justice Samuel Alito, will join Eugene Scalia, son of Justice Antonin Scalia, at Gibson Dunn’s Washington, D.C. office. [Blog of Legal Times]

    * Even though the vast majority of his race-based claims were dismissed on summary judgment, this “token black associate” still has a respected Biglaw firm up against the Ropes. [National Law Journal]

    * Law school applications are plummeting, but top law schools haven’t started scraping the bottom of the barrel — their applicants’ LSAT scores have remained relatively competitive. [WSJ Law Blog (sub. req.)]

    * I am Chelsea Manning, I am a female.” Considering (s)he was just sentenced to 35 years in prison, Bradley Chelsea Manning sure picked a great time to make this announcement to the world. [Chicago Tribune]

    * You dare call the Duchess of Dumplins racist and sexist? When it comes to Paula Deen’s new legal team from Morgan Lewis, five are women, and four are black. Take that, Lisa Jackson. [Am Law Daily]

    4 Comments / / Aug 22, 2013 at 9:08 AM
  • Martin Lipton?

    Attorney Misconduct, Clerkships, Deaths, Drugs, Education / Schools, Gay, Gay Marriage, Legal Ethics, Martin Lipton, Money, Morning Docket, Murder, Police, Privacy, SCOTUS, Sentencing Law, Shira Scheindlin, State Judges, State Judges Are Clowns, Supreme Court, Supreme Court Clerks

    Morning Docket: 08.16.13

    * Former SCOTUS clerks earn more money for having clerked at the high court than SCOTUS justices earn for their yearly salaries. Consider how ridiculous that is. [The Economist]

    * As it turns out, the National Security Agency oversteps its legal authority thousands of times each year, but that’s only because it’s a “human-run agency.” [Washington Post]

    * Federal judges have come together to bemoan sequestration. “We do not have projects or programs to cut; we only have people.” Eep! Don’t give them any ideas. [National Law Journal]

    * Ready, set, lawgasm! The comment period for proposed amendments to the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure opened up yesterday, and yet again, e-discovery rules are on the table for debate. [Forbes]

    * NYU professors want Martin Lipton to step down from the school’s board of trustees, but the Wachtell Lipton founding partner has had a honey badger-esque response — he don’t give a s**t. [Am Law Daily]

    * As was widely expected, Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s army of New York City lawyers will soon take the first step to appeal Judge Shira Scheindlin’s stop-and-frisk ruling. [New York Law Journal (sub. req.)]

    * A West Virginia judge was federally indicted for attempting to frame his secretary’s husband with drug charges. Did we mention that the secretary is the judge’s ex-lover? Quite dramatic. [Charleston Gazette]

    * Consortium: Not just for straight couples. A same-sex couple in Pennsylvania is trying to appeal the dismissal of a loss of consortium claim in light of the Supreme Court’s Windsor ruling. [Legal Intelligencer]

    * Christian Gerhartsreiter, aka poseur heir Clark Rockefeller, was just sentenced to 27 years to life in prison in a California cold-case murder. Maybe Lifetime will make a sequel to that god-awful movie. [Toronto Star]

    * Jacques Vergès, defender of notorious villains and perpetual devil’s advocate, RIP. [New York Times]

    16 Comments / / Aug 16, 2013 at 9:11 AM
  • drugs soft on drugs RF

    American Bar Association / ABA, Crime, Department of Justice, Drugs, Eric Holder, Politics, Sentencing Law

    More Than Minimizing Mandatory Minimums: A Conservative Call for More Radical Drug Reform

    Why should conservatives support the decriminalization of drugs? Tamara Tabo explains.

    59 Comments / / Aug 15, 2013 at 10:12 AM
  • Holder ABA RF

    American Bar Association / ABA, Conferences / Symposia, Crime, Drugs, Eric Holder, Minority Issues, Racism, Sentencing Law

    Eric Holder Preaches To The Choir At ABA: It’s Nice When Lawyers Think People Will Listen To Them About Laws

    Holder’s speech at the ABA would have been more interesting if the ABA could have done anything about it.

    29 Comments / / Aug 14, 2013 at 3:52 PM
  • student-loan-debt

    9th Circuit, Banking Law, Bar Exams, Biglaw, Books, Federal Government, Federal Judges, Law Schools, Money, Morning Docket, Racism, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, SCOTUS, Sentencing Law, Sports, Student Loans, Supreme Court, United Kingdom / Great Britain, Video games

    Morning Docket: 08.01.13

    Ed. note: We are having an Above the Law retreat this afternoon, so we may be less prolific than usual today. We will return to our regularly scheduled programming tomorrow.

    * “I think I am now the hardest-working justice. I wasn’t until David Souter left us.” Justice Ginsburg celebrates her twentieth year on the high bench in true diva style. [USA Today]

    * Sorry, EA, the Ninth Circuit thought your First Amendment free expression defense to allegedly stealing college sports players’ likenesses was a load of hooey. [Wall Street Journal]

    * “It’s a decision that clearly favors the merchants.” A federal judge gave the Fed a spanking in a ruling on its cap for debit card fees earned by banks after consumer swipes. [DealBook / New York Times]

    * “What makes this discriminatory? I don’t think there’s anything in Title 7 that says an employer has to be consistent.” Ropes & Gray’s “token black associate” had his day in court. [National Law Journal]

    * The firm that outed J.K. Rowling as author of “The Cuckoo’s Calling” will make a charitable donation as an apology — getting the book to the bestseller’s list wasn’t charitable enough. [New York Times]

    * As the bar exam draws to a close today, here’s something to consider: 12,250 people signed up to take the test in New York alone. Are there jobs out there for them? Best of luck! [New York Law Journal]

    * The feds want to make a better return on their investment on law student loans. Perhaps it’s time for those good old gainful employment regulations. [Student Loan Ranger / U.S. News & World Report]

    * Cleveland kidnapper Ariel Castro is expected to speak at his sentencing hearing today, where a judge will decide if a term of life in prison plus 1,000 years is appropriate punishment for him. [CBS News]

    14 Comments / / Aug 1, 2013 at 9:25 AM
  • via Know Your Meme

    Akin Gump, Attorney Misconduct, Death Penalty, Drugs, Non-Sequiturs, Sentencing Law, Technology

    Non-Sequiturs: 07.26.13

    * The cop who became a global internet meme for pepper spraying protesters at Berkeley is now appealing for worker’s comp, arguing that he suffered psychiatric injury. Pray for him. [Lawyers, Guns & Money]

    * Ariel Castro has pleaded guilty. Professor Douglas Berman suggests that the death penalty may have made this possible. An alternative theory is that Castro doesn’t think being locked up in a tiny space for years on end is all that bad. [Sentencing Law and Policy]

    * Navigating the archetypes of expert witnesses based on The Office. [The Expert Institute]

    * Lawyer arrested for bringing meth into a courthouse. I’d say “better call Saul,” but this sounds more like something Saul would do. [Press Democrat]

    * An Akin Gump partner, James Meggesto, is in hot water for Tweeting his disdain for a congressman and a Native American chief. For the record, when a tweet opens with “Resisting urge to tweet…”, you’ve failed. [Politico]

    * This story actually reminds me of the plot to the new BSG series — a networked house can easily be hacked by cylons. Or in this case, Kashmir Hill. [Forbes]

    * New York’s energy regulations are increasing demand for energy-efficient solutions. The most efficient thing about my apartment is finally getting a break in the heat. [Breaking Energy]

    8 Comments / / Jul 26, 2013 at 5:02 PM
  • iphone

    3rd Circuit, 7th Circuit, Biglaw, Blackberry-Crackberry, Cellphones, Gay Marriage, Guns / Firearms, In-House Counsel, Insider Trading, iPhone, Law Professors, Law Schools, LSAT, Morning Docket, Sentencing Law, Trials

    Morning Docket: 07.10.13

    * “Can you imagine if a law firm had a breach? We wouldn’t work with them again.” In-house counsel are pissed that outside counsel CHECK THEY EMAILS on cellphones. [Am Law Daily]

    * Matt Kluger’s 12-year insider trading sentence was upheld by the Third Circuit. All of the Biglaw firms he’s worked at, most recently Wilson Sonsini, must be so proud. [WSJ Law Blog (sub. req.)]

    * Shots fired: a tax law professor decimates Seton Hall in prose over its decision to possibly kick untenured junior professors to the curb due to budget considerations. [DealBook / New York Times]

    * Do yourselves a favor, and don’t worry about how to “demystify the LSAT experimental section” during the test — unless you want a crappy score. [Law Admissions Lowdown / U.S. News & World Report]

    * Pass the ammunition? After facing a court-mandated deadline from the Seventh Circuit, Illinois is now the last state in the country to have legalized the concealed carrying of firearms. [Chicago Tribune]

    * Now that SCOTUS has punted on the question of gay marriage, other plaintiffs are stepping forward to sue for the right to wed. Next up, a challenge to Pennsylvania’s ban on equality. [Legal Intelligencer]

    * James “Whitey” Bulger let f-bombs fly across the courtroom during his trial yesterday when his former partner took the stand to testify against the mob boss. Once a Masshole, always a Masshole. [CNN]

    18 Comments / / Jul 10, 2013 at 9:07 AM

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