Fixing Maverick: An Appeal To Reason

After parsing the website of young buck Maverick Ray for, let’s say, excesses, Mark Bennett found a far more concrete, and disconcerting, excess to address.  With all of his 8 months of experience, Maverick had taken on a retained death penalty case against one of the toughest prosecutors Texas can throw at a lawyer, raising the ghost of Joseph Rakofsky with one significant difference: this time, there was an opportunity to address the mistake of judgment before the harm was done.

“I am extremely trou­bled about Mr. Ray’s lack of knowl­edge and train­ing in tak­ing this case,” Weeks said. “(Cap­i­tal mur­der) is the most dif­fi­cult and inte­gral crim­i­nal case we have in this state.”

Ray argued that it was his client’s Sixth Amend­ment right to choose his own coun­sel. Krae­mer agreed with the defense, but stressed the impor­tance of the case to Ray.

“I cau­tion you to be care­ful,” Krae­mer told Ray. “This is a seri­ous case you are tak­ing on.”

Bennett invited others to offer Maverick advice, and others did, both in the comments to his post and in posts of their own.  Much of the advice was sound, with tone ranging from angry to the dutch uncle. Some included gratuitously dubious assertions in the process.  Robb Fickman, in his second try, noted that the Disciplinary Rule 1.01 addresses the choice of a young lawyer, filled with, what?, passion, zeal, the thirst for glory, the love of money?, over-reaching his competency:

Rule 1.01 Competent and Diligent Representation

(a) A lawyer shall not accept or continue employment in a legal matter which the lawyer knows or should know is beyond the lawyer’s competence, unless:

(1) another lawyer who is competent to handle the matter is, with the prior informed consent of the client, associated in the matter; or

(2) the advice or assistance of the lawyer is reasonably required in an emergency and the lawyer limits the advice and assistance to that which is reasonably necessary in the circumstances.

It’s in there. Granted, there is no bright line test, but to the extent that being admitted to the profession of law carries with it the duty of adhering to our ethical proscriptions, it’s more than sufficiently covered. To the extent that lawyers will use deception on their websites, take any case that walks in the door at fees that no experienced lawyer would consider, there is no reason to believe that adherence to the Code of Professional Responsibility will be voluntarily honored.  If you’re inclined to ignore the ethics of being a lawyer in one way, then why not in all ways? We don’t get to pick and choose which ethical demands bind us.

Whether bar discipline will follow a lack of allegiance to DR 1.01 isn’t known; it’s generally a product of someone making a complaint, and perhaps that will happen in this case.  Sadly, as the avalanche of unethical conduct falls, the disciplinary committees get buried.

This is, perhaps, the reason a lawyer like Bennett will do what he did, which was perceived by some who lack a broader perspective on the importance of ethics to be harsh to a young lawyer. It is harsh. It’s also needed. While the disciplinary authorities may be impotent in dealing with problems, we lawyers have an independent duty to deal with our own. It may be unpleasant and lack “collegiality,” but that’s the price of striving to maintain an ethical profession.

So Bennett used one of the most powerful forces available to make the point, both for the sake of Maverick’s client and for the eyes of other young lawyers who might consider doing the same: Peer pressure. Naming and shaming. Fatherly advice, according to how you view it.

But as seems to be the norm with when others want to get in on the garden party, someone tossed in a skunk.  After discussing the appropriate requirements for the state to assign counsel for the indigent in death cases comes the stink:

Why shouldn’t the state bar require similar standards for retained counsel in capital cases? And if they won’t, shouldn’t the Legislature step in to do so?

After all, the solution to all that ails us is another law, more regulation, state control.  I waited a bit for Bennett to calmly and rationally explain why this was fundamentally wrong and dangerous. And I waited, as this was every bit as dangerously wrong a notion as the many others he felt compelled to call out. And I waited. But he didn’t. So I do so now.

Some people are convenient friends of the Constitution, loving those parts that meet with their approval, and not so kind to those parts that don’t.  We see a lot of that in the northeast, where criminal defense lawyers adore the 4th and 5th Amendments, but don’t care too much for the Second. The hypocrisy of this position doesn’t seem to bother them much.

Number six in the Bill of Rights affords the defendant the right to counsel, which is held to mean the right to counsel of choice. While it’s not absolute (as the lawyer has to agree to the representation as well), it’s not the right to counsel of choice unless the state thinks otherwise.

If a defendant wishes to defend himself, even where the outcome might mean his death, a free country allows him to do so, provided he’s competent to make the choice. If he chooses to be defended by a kid with 12 minutes experience, foolish as that may be, the Constitution says it’s his right.

You think it’s a stupid right? You think the state knows better and should be empowered to limit that right? You think state regulation, a new law, is the solution to every problem a person can create?  The Constitution disagrees.  No matter how much you love regulation, the Constitution protects our freedom to be stupid, foolish and free.

There is an answer to impropriety by lawyers, and it’s the expressions captured in Bennett’s post and the comments and the other blog posts that admonish a young lawyer not to do harm to a defendant for his own purposes.  Then again, it’s unfortunate in the piling on to that worthwhile point that no one bothered to notice, and remark, the sweet smell of ethics and sound concern for the welfare of a defendant facing death was fouled by the needless stench of an unconstitutional urge.

It’s very disappointing to me that with all the words spilled over this question of protecting one part of the Constitution, none could be spared for another.  Very disappointing.



55 thoughts on “Fixing Maverick: An Appeal To Reason

    1. SHG Post author

      Or because the moral authority to beat up on a kid lawyer carries with it the obligation to take on less pleasant tasks. If you’re not going to ignore one, it’s hard to justify ignoring the other.

        1. SHG Post author

          It found it’s way by links into other posts by lawyers, and was partially quoted in Keith’s ATL post, where the audience would be least likely to be aware of why it was wrong. That Keith didn’t recognize it is one of the “disappointments” I mention in the post.

  1. Bruce Godfrey

    Arguably the very requirement of licensure to practice infringes the 6th Amendment right to counsel. I might prefer to hire a pawnbroker or piano player from a house of ill fame
    over Maverick for my death penalty defense, but the courts will use state power to block my choice.

    1. SHG Post author

      “I told my mother I was a piano player in a whorehouse so she wouldn’t know I was a criminal defense lawyer.”

  2. David Sugerman

    I am no scholar of Am 6, but I wonder about the wisdom of your reading. If Am 6 is simply the right to counsel, then competence does not enter into the analysis. In the case of appointment, I imagine that a competence standard matters. If so, why would we consider a lower standard adequate for retained?All that said, I see it as purely a disciplinary issue. Perhaps the young idiot’s conduct here complies with the Texas disciplinary rules–I don’t know the facts or the nuances of the rule. But short of an emergency or no competent alternatives, I would bet he is way over the line. I imagine Bennett left it alone because the of a perception of urgency. Stop the pinhead first, then worry about the fallout. At bottom, if the child follows through, and Texas kills his client, the protections and sanctions should come from
    DR’s, which might need amendment to protect consumers.

    1. SHG Post author

      This wasn’t intended as a debate for civil lawyers on a long-settled criminal law issue. As for imagining Mark’s motive, it could have been dealt with in a single line in his comments, cleaning up the error. Problem solved. He’s up to the effort.

    2. Brett Middleton

      “In the case of appointment, I imagine that a competence standard matters. If so, why would we consider a lower standard adequate for retained?”

      There’s a simple difference. The standard for appointments binds the STATE. A similar standard for retained would bind the CLIENT. The standard isn’t meant to protect the state against stupidity; it is meant to protect us from the state, preventing it from deliberately assigning incompetent counsel.

      1. noah

        So are you saying there is no right to effective assistance of counsel for those who can afford representation? As my old boss used to say “That can’t be right.”

        The Supreme Court addressed this issue in Cuyler v. Sullivan (1980) – “The vital guarantee of the Sixth Amendment would stand for little if the often uninformed decision to retain a particular lawyer could reduce or forfeit the defendant’s entitlement to constitutional protection.”

          1. noah

            ???? re the barrista comment – I may be too slow to understand your question/jibe, but not too slow to recognize that even Jose Baez who was criticized for not having enough experience prior to taking the Casey Anthony trial had 45 jury trials before that point.

            That boss was ex-Texas Supreme Court Justice Scott Brister, who would regularly say that to counsel during arguments.

  3. Charlesmorrison

    While I share in your larger concern re more laws, I’m not sure I agree that requiring different standards to practice in death cases violates the right to counsel. If the highest court of your state can prescribe requirements for a ticket, I don’t see how it can’t also differentiate between the tickets as well. So, in order to be a member of death bar you have to demonstrate x,y,z above what got you a ticket in the first place. What would be wrong with that? And as far as impinging on the 6th, well, the client isn’t being told you can’t have counsel of your choice, you just have to choose between those that are a member of the death bar, those that are licensed to practice. No different than saying you can have counsel of your choice in any other case, as long as that person is licensed. That’s why you can’t have your best friend represent you, even though he’s the smartest doctor you know. Again, I’m not in favor if greater regulation, but cases on the margin push that position. Death is different and this is something the highest courts should care about. It’s their responsibility to regulate the profession.

    1. SHG Post author

      See Brett’s comment which explains it. The issue isn’t simply more laws, though that’s the liberal Utopian view of solving problems, but that there is this constitutional thingy that answers your muddled confusion. You don’t get to debate whether you like the Constitution when it doesn’t suit your sensibilities any more than the other side gets to ignore it when it doesn’t suit theirs.

      If you hate the Constitution and prefer to ignore it, then say so. Otherwise, we honor it even when we might prefer not to.

      1. Charlesmorrison

        My point wasn’t that I prefer to only uphold portions of the constitution when it suits my sensibilities. But, rather that a high court could regulate the practice in death cases without offending the 6th. If your licensed, your licensed. If not, then no problem with the choice of consumer. The sixth doesn’t prohibit requiring only licensed attorneys to practice. And a licensing scheme could comprehend this differentiation.

        1. SHG Post author

          At the time the 6th Amendment was ratified, it was understood that right to counsel referred to lawyers admitted to practice (though what admission to practice means has changed over the years). So yes, the 6th Amendment very much historically limited the practice of law to lawyers. That’s as far as it goes.

          It does not include (nor tolerate) a secondary regulatory scheme, including one that suits your sensibilities. What is interesting is that you don’t see how this is all acceptable to you, despite your professed dislike for regulations, because it suits your sensibilities. This is the same justification that Franks uses when promoting her revenge porn law, but you fail to see the same myopia when it’s good with you.

          When you write that a licensing scheme could “comprehend this differentiation,” it comes at the expense of the individual’s freedom to select his lawyer of choice. Yet, you feel that you are entitled to dictate other people’s rights, but just don’t see it as a problem because you think you’re right? Horrible.

          1. Charlesmorrison

            You are about to read something you are (probably) unused to seeing here: you are right. You have convinced me that a regulatory scheme that differentiates between attorneys is a bad idea. I’m willing to admit that my initial inclination is wrong after having considered arguments.

            However, you are entirely unpersuasive in your position that such a scheme would violate the sixth amendment. Where is the authority for your position? Other than, “that’s the way it was at our foundation”?

            As you readily admit, the admission of practice of law has changed since the foundation. Where is the authority for the proposition for the rule that a state bar can’t differentiate?

            1. SHG Post author

              So I didn’t convince you that there is no right to violate the Constitution? A very curious perspective.

              I think your grasp of the way constitutional law works is kinda backwards. The test isn’t that you can ignore the Constitution unless there is authority that says you have to follow the Constitution. It’s the exception to the Constitution that needs to be proven, not adherence. The basic rule is follow the Constitution. It’s kinda how law works.

              And if that doesn’t persuade you, I guess I will just have to survive knowing Charles Morrison was unpersuaded. I will be sad, but I will recover. (Seriously, whether you’re convinced or not is up to you. I just write ’em. You decide for yourself. I don’t take umbrage either way.)

  4. nidefatt

    The Texas State Bar is a public corporation. So if a complaint is filed, and it is found that the attorney is violating rule 1.01, and they yank his license for a bit, why would that be ok under the Sixth Amendment? Last I read SCOTUS said the 6th protects your choice of attorney from the state. If the Bar is part of the state, wouldn’t that create a conflict?

    1. SHG Post author

      The right to counsel is contingent upon being counsel which is contingent upon admission to practice law, and admission to practice law is contingent upon adherence with the Code of Professional Responsibility. So is that a conflict?

      1. nidefatt

        No, but wouldn’t there be a concern since an arm of the state is making the decision? And I’m not suggesting that a prosecutor would pressure the the panel or something. I’m just saying, from a constitutional standpoint, if the Sixth prohibits government interference with choice of counsel and the bar is the government, it seems like a problem.

        1. SHG Post author

          I understand your point, but it goes back to the understanding of counsel at the inception of the Constitution, when it was understood that counsel meant lawyer. If, for example, the licensing authority provided the names to prosecutors for approval during the character and fitness stage, then the concern would be more concrete and all hell would break loose, but otherwise, it’s a historic mechanism that was accepted at the time the 6th Amendment was ratified and has been used ever since. So it’s not that your point doesn’t make sense, but that it’s one of those parts of the mechanism that simply “is” without any controversy.

  5. Josh King

    Scott, the 6th amendment doesn’t protect the client’s choice of counsel as a free-floating right; it protects it as a means of ensuring effective representation.

    As such, client choice of counsel is already limited in several obvious and non-controversial ways – you can’t hire a non-lawyer, you can’t force representation, out-of-state lawyers must meet the requirements to be admitted pro hoc vice, etc. It wouldn’t necessarily offend the 6th Amendment if a state decided that the goal of effective representation in capital cases would be best met by further limiting the client’s choice to those members of the bar who meet minimum standards.

    Doesn’t mean it’s a good idea, and the devil is obviously in the details. But it’s not like we need to retire to the fainting couch at the very idea that a client’s choice of counsel might be limited.

    1. SHG Post author

      It ensures a minimum level of competence, not effective representation. Have you not read Strickland v. Washington? Putting aside that it’s not a good idea to have the state enter into the business of micromanaging client’s choice of counsel that meets the state’s approval notwithstanding the defendant’s choice, you’ve made a leap from minimal competence to the state controlling choice. There neither is, nor ever has, been any decision/rule to support such a leap. And if there was, it would be disastrous.

      1. Josh King

        Strickland, as you know, involves the choices made by counsel – not the client’s choice of counsel. For that, you need to turn to Wheat v. US, which involves another example – in addition to the ones I listed above – of the state controlling choice of counsel.

        1. SHG Post author

          Strickland, as you know, defines effective assistance of counsel. As for Wheat, conflict-free counsel is another limit on counsel of choice, although it can be waived under most circumstances. Don’t let the rhetoric fool you. When they use the word “effective,” they mean awake some of the time, during the really important stuff. For some of us, that’s too low, even as a floor.

  6. RKTlaw

    I believe it’s the long-lost codicil to the 6th Amendment that says ” You have the absolute right to be a flippin’ moron and hire a lawyer practicing for six months to do whatever you are stupid enough to hire him to do.” Hamilton drafted it.

  7. Andrew

    So are you saying it would be impossible for the Supreme Court to create a new exception to the 6th Amendment, say a “death is different” exception, like conflict in Wheat v. US, to allow for states to impose requirements of experience for defense counsel in death cases?

    1. SHG Post author

      Ah. Now that’s a better question. As of now, there is no such carve out and no one has ever sought such a carve out. I think it would be a terrible idea, but that’s me. The Supreme and I don’t always see eye to eye.

      Is it impossible? Of course not, just as it’s not impossible that the Supremes could create a new categorical exception to the 1st for revenge porn on the internet. But just as there is no such categorical exception like that for the 1st Amendment, there is no extant exception under the 6th that would allow the state to place conditions on a client’s right to counsel of choice based on skill or experience. So it is possible, in the sense that anything (within reason) is possible, but it doesn’t exist now and there is absolutely nothing to suggest it would or should.

      What’s interesting here is that while everyone agrees that Maverick Ray should not try a death case, it’s by no means clear where the line should be drawn below which counsel of choice should be disallowed by the state. We know he’s on the wrong side of the line, but trying to draw a line (10 murder trials? 100 felony trials? 1000 misdemeanor trials?) would be nearly impossible.

      An even better question is how much money a defendant should pay, given that all the experts needed for a death trial cost a ton of money, at least $100k. So should a lawyer be allowed to take a death case for $10,000, knowing that he can never afford the experts the client will need? There are tons of problems inherent in trying to draw lines. It would be all out war, and regardless of where the line was drawn, it would never be in the right place under all circumstances.

      1. noah

        This is the real issue (money and time) – and while it looks like Texas may have fixed some of its past problems in appointing counsel in capital cases with its criminal procedure rule (they had the famous issue where half the residents of Harrison County’s death row were defended by one guy who assured all that he was competent and effective), that’s certainly not the case everywhere. The Equal Justice Institute in Alabama estimates that “Nearly half of the people on Alabama’s death row were represented at trial by appointed lawyers whose compensation for out-of-court preparation was capped at $1000.”

        Would we feel differently if we knew that the client’s choice in this case were an overworked but slightly more experienced (and what kind of experience?) appointed attorney who does not give the client the attention his case deserves and this inexperienced lawyer who makes the client feel as if he will give everything and more to the case? I’m not saying that’s the circumstance here, and it seems that Bennett says that the client would have been appointed a good experienced lawyer to defend him.

        1. SHG Post author

          Did you miss the whole part about line drawing? When someone is way over the line, wherever that line may be, it’s clear to everyone that it’s wrong. Since there is no line, and nobody would agree where the line should be drawn, it gets fuzzier as we get closer to the line.

          I trust Bennett’s assessment that the lawyer who would be appointed to defend would be a good choice, but that doesn’t change the fact that a defendant has a constitutional right to pick his own lawyer. It’s his right, even if it’s a poor choice. This is why we, lawyers, implore a lawyer who is clearly not up to the job to walk away. Just because a client will retain him to do the case doesn’t mean he should take it if he’s not qualified. DR 1.01. Did you read any of this?

          1. noah

            you’re absolutely right – Sixth Amendment trumps concerns about competence. One would hope, however, that the bar is not relegated to acting after an ambitious new lawyer provided ineffective (or even just incompetent) assistance on a capital case. The difference between a defendant choosing to represent himself ineffectively and choosing incompetent counsel is that once counsel is in the picture, the court also has a duty to ensure that counsel is not ineffective.

            Not every judge would call a mistrial when it becomes obvious that a counsel is not competent to act at that level, as the judge did in Rakofsky’s case. It sounds like the judge in Maverick’s case might though.

            I’m not trying to add to the confusion – I sincerely appreciate your patience and willingness to engage on this issue. This is important and I’m just learning.

            1. SHG Post author

              It’s a conflicted system. There are rights and responsibilities all over the place, they frequently make contradictory demands of us, and the system was created under the assumption that all the moving pieces fit together properly. That doesn’t always happen. It understandable that it can all be confusing, but it’s our responsibility not to let the confusion harm defendants while simultaneously protecting all the rights afforded by the Constitution. It’s no easy thing.

              And while we are discussing this in context of a death case, bear in mind that lawyers who can’t try a case aren’t any better in lesser cases. For the defendant who gets 20 years, it’s not a joke either. As for the court’s duty to assure that the defendant isn’t denied effective assistance of counsel, it’s one of the many responsibilities on a judge, and another duty that a judge might neglect. As I say, it’s a messy, conflicted system.

  8. Alex Bunin

    While I am not a huge fan of the invisible hand of the free market, it tends to work in these situations. Few retained lawyer accept capital cases because clients lack the funds for their time and resources. I predict Maverick will shortly figure this out and seek to withdraw after exhausting those meager assets.

    1. SHG Post author

      The shame is that he will have depleted his clients assets, and the client will end up where he should have been all along, except poorer. On the other hand, that could be considered the price of a poor decision. Then again, that’s not an uncommon affliction for clients, and we still try to protect the from poor decisions.

  9. Pingback: The View From Your Screen | Simple Justice

  10. Walter Ballard

    Why does it take an experienced lawyer to sign on to a capital case when the initial proceedings can be handled by a law school student. Seeking reduction of bail. Pursuing avenues of discovery. Requesting an autopsy report. Listening to the raging tone of an elected district attorney whose pursuit is all but honorable even though a man’s life is in the balance. I thought defense strategy was privileged. Who knows what is in the making of a defense with Maverick Ray. I have personally witnessed this young ambitious attorney being intimidated, demeaned, and ridiculed by the devices of an elected district attorney and his assistant while being addressed by the court. He never lost sight of his client’s interests and pushed on. He continues to honor his client’s privilege of nondisclosure although it seems that the critique of a number of defense attorneys eye his tactics with only criticism. All I have seen and learned from this experience is that we don’t really have a united defense bar. An association of lawyers whose purpose is to see that citizens who have reached out to seek the assistance of counsel are provided with effective representation guaranteed by the Sixth Amendment. If there was any real concern then those experienced in this agenda would expend their energies towards achieving a reckoning with a prosecutor and State that persists in killing human beings as a means to an end. Instead of helping and assisting each other, you put forth your best front with criticism. We need the helping hand of attorneys, not their manic slights towards each other. The oppressive conditions that exist in our criminal justice system today is in large part because defense lawyers have failed in their responsibilities and duty to rein in the tyranny to which citizens are being subjected every day. Competitive bidding lies in the civil arena. Loss of liberty and life without due process is the fault of the defense bar as a whole. As a consequence, we are losing our most precious rights because Texas doesn’t have a defense bar that lives up to the expectations of its citizens who have no idea how much they are dependent upon defense lawyers in the preservation of our liberty.

      1. Mark W. Bennett

        Mr. Ballard, the truth is that the Harris County Criminal Lawyers Association is unusually strong and unified, and has mentorship resources available to young lawyers; your lawyer would be a perfect candidate, but he hasn’t availed himself of them because he thinks he doesn’t need them.

        A criminal-defense lawyer needs something that Ray hasn’t demonstrated: wisdom. Of course, that might not matter to you.

  11. Pingback: Creating Law Talking Guys | Simple Justice

  12. Gritsforbreakfast

    The suggested solution wasn’t necessarily a new law but that the state bar should clean up its own house. If it won’t, and death penalty verdicts are thrown out because of IAC by retained lawyers, you can bet the Texas Legislature will do it for them, which is how the standards for appointed counsel got set. Doesn’t really matter if you like it.

      1. Gritsforbreakfast

        If you’re going to quote me, here’s the part before your carefully suggested ellipses: “Why shouldn’t the state bar require similar standards for retained counsel in capital cases? And if they won’t …”

        As I’ve said before, some of the best lawyers are patently clueless about how laws are actually made. The bar wouldn’t publicly sanction prosecutors for Brady violations so the Texas Lege this year passed a law saying no more private sanctions for that. If the bar won’t get its house in order on this, the Lege will likely step in there, too, just like the sleeping lawyer case spurred creation of capital standards for appointed counsel. That’s how the world works. Lawyers argue the law, but legislators write it.

        1. SHG Post author

          Lawyers argue the law, but legislators write it.

          And sometimes the laws they write are unconstitutional and/or have disastrous unintended consequences, often when seeking to fix problems that defy the simplistic solutions promoted by well-intended but clueless proponents of “every disease must have a legislative cure.” Did I quote enough, or do I have to quote every word of yours every time to address your complaints?

          1. Gritsforbreakfast

            Every disease doesn’t HAVE to have a legislative cure. If the state bar can and will clean up their own house as I suggested, there will be no need. If criminal defense lawyers just whine about Maverick Ray in blogs but don’t push the state bar to act, they can expect Texas legislators to defend the death penalty and do the job for them.

            The prosecutor in Ray’s case is out there saying the choice of Ray was intentional to goad the courts into granting an IAC writ later. Like it or not, if the bar can’t manage its own business, those sorts of arguments will prevail at the Legislature, and since “death is different,” they’re also likely to withstand scrutiny in Texas courts. Nobody will really care what some New York lawyer with a blog has to say about it, and for that matter I’ve never seen Mark Bennett at the Legislature. David Weeks, however, who is the prosecutor on the other side of Mr. Ray, is up there all the time. And he often gets what he wants.

            1. SHG Post author

              Yup, that’s us, a bunch of whiners. We get all hung up on ideas like constitutional rights and disciplinary rules instead of the simple solutions that seem so obvious to you, free from the nasty complexities of law and the reality in the trenches. But hey, since all the actual lawyers have chosen to whine instead of follow your lead, then it will be left to you, our savior, to protect Texas from the blight of incompetent and whiny lawyers who don’t appreciate your genius. Go get ’em, tiger.

  13. Gloria Wolk

    There is something seriously wrong with “a young, ambitious attorney” (as Ballard describes him) who has all of eight months experience as a solo practitioner who eagerly takes on a capital case because he is so ambitious and too pompous to turn to experienced defense attorneys for mentoring.

    This is not the case to use as a fulcrum to get the Texas legislature to end the death penalty as punishment. The argument is that this young, ambitious lawyer is piggy-backing on the client’s life to get headlines. If he loses, he will shrug and say it was a foregone conclusion because there was DNA, the man committed a heinous crime, no one could have saved him.

    This is obscene ambition.

Comments are closed.