Topic category: Other/General
Justice and the Vick and Duke Cases
Good news: Billy Martin, lead attorney for pro football star Michael Vick, announced that Mr. Vick will plead guilty to dogfighting and related charges and will "accept full responsibility for his actions and the mistakes he has made."
Mr. Martin's statement: "After consulting with his family over the weekend, Michael Vick asked that I announce today that he has reached an agreement with Federal prosecutors regarding the charges pending against him. Mr. Vick has agreed to enter a plea of Guilty to those charges and to accept full responsibility for his actions and the mistakes he has made. Michael wishes to apologizes again to everyone who has been hurt by this matter. The legal team and Mr. Vick will appear in court in Richmond on August 27th."
On the bad behavior scale, Mr. Vick's despicable offenses fall far short of, say, trying to railroad innocent young men on bogus rape, kidnapping and sexual offense felony charges in order to fool enough local African-American voters to win an upset victory in a Democrat district attorney primary and maximize a pension, but they are much more serious than, say, taking $400 from the open purse of a stripper who took the money in advance and failed to deliver the contracted-for (legal) performance or giving a teammate $100 of the money that had been taken to keep for himself.
In the Vick case, justice IS triumphing. A man who should plead guilty is pleading guilty. (Not all those who really are guilty are even charged, much less plead guilty.)
Congratulations to the prosecutors for pursuing the Vick case expertly and ethically. (If the prosecutors had engaged in any prosecutorial misconduct, you can be sure Billy Martin and the rest of Mr. Vick's "dream team" would have mentioned it.)
In the Duke case, bogus charges finally were fully dismissed after about a year, but no criminal charges are being pursued against the false accuser and the rogue former prosecutor (except the contempt proceeding initiated by Judge Osmond Smith) and the Durham criminal justice system is not being sanitized.
Say that my standard is too high if you like, but I don't call only eventual dismissal of bogus charges justice triumphant.
"Durham's Acting DA: Office's Image Is Biggest Hurdle
"Posted: Aug. 14, 2007
"Durham — The public automatically associates Mike Nifong and his handling of the Duke lacrosse case with the district attorney's office – and that perception is the biggest issue with the office, Durham's interim head prosecutor said Tuesday.
"'We've had to deal with it in a couple of cases when we were selecting juries,' former Superior Court Judge Jim Hardin said. 'I mean, it's on everyone's mind. It still is, to some degree.'
"But having reviewed policies and cases in which the toppled prosecutor was involved, Hardin said he has been pleased with what he has seen in the two months since Gov. Mike Easley appointed him to 'take stock of the office, the personnel and its practices.'"
Former and current Durham County, North Carolina District Attorney (and Judge) James Hardin seems to be saying that no one in the Durham District Attorney's Office knowingly participated in Mr. Nifong's skullduggery.
Defense lawyer Jim Cooney posted on the LieStoppers Board his opinion that no one in the Durham Police Department knew that Mr. Nifong and Dr. Brian Meehan were concealing exculpatory information, not even Sergeant Gottlieb (and Dr. Meehan isn't being prosecuted either).
Defense lawyer Brad Bannon testified that as of September 22, 2006 he believed that Mr. Nifong, as an officer of the court, could be trusted and wanted to shout from the mountain tops, "I am not going to let the view of North Carolina's criminal justice system to America be [the Duke] case."
Defense lawyer Wade Smith (former senior partner of presidential hopeful John Edwards and former North Carolina Democrat Party Chairman) quickly issued a public statement after the declaration of innocence to the effect that not prosecuting the false accuser was reasonable.
And Duke settled confidentially with the families of the wrongly and wrongfully indicted players, to protect its administrators and the 88ers and move on in its extremely politically correct way.
Reade Seligmann and Collin Finnerty are smart fellows. Sophomores at the time of the off-campus party during Spring Break, they attended that "mandatory" team party, the "entertainment" at which was not of their choosing or to their taste, and ended up wrongly vilified for being at the wrong place at the wrong time (and the media did not miss the fact that they were especially noteworthy graduates of elite Catholic high schools). Reade and Collin will continue their college (and lacrosse) careers elsewhere, if only to give their loving relatives more peace of mind that they will be less likely to be framed again by someone with an evil agenda.
Stripper party host David Evans was fortunate enough to graduate from Duke before he was indicted on charges on which he too was completely innocent.
Michael J. Gaynor
Biography - Michael J. Gaynor
Michael J. Gaynor has been practicing law in New York since 1973. A former partner at Fulton, Duncombe & Rowe and Gaynor & Bass, he is a solo practitioner admitted to practice in New York state and federal courts and an Association of the Bar of the City of New York member.
Gaynor graduated magna cum laude, with Honors in Social Science, from Hofstra University's New College, and received his J.D. degree from St. John's Law School, where he won the American Jurisprudence Award in Evidence and served as an editor of the Law Review and the St. Thomas More Institute for Legal Research. He wrote on the Pentagon Papers case for the Review and obscenity law for The Catholic Lawyer and edited the Law Review's commentary on significant developments in New York law.
The day after graduating, Gaynor joined the Fulton firm, where he focused on litigation and corporate law. In 1997 Gaynor and Emily Bass formed Gaynor & Bass and then conducted a general legal practice, emphasizing litigation, and represented corporations, individuals and a New York City labor union. Notably, Gaynor & Bass prevailed in the Second Circuit in a seminal copyright infringement case, Tasini v. New York Times, against newspaper and magazine publishers and Lexis-Nexis. The U.S. Supreme Court affirmed, 7 to 2, holding that the copyrights of freelance writers had been infringed when their work was put online without permission or compensation.
Gaynor currently contributes regularly to www.MichNews.com, www.RenewAmerica.com, www.WebCommentary.com, www.PostChronicle.com and www.therealitycheck.org and has contributed to many other websites. He has written extensively on political and religious issues, notably the Terry Schiavo case, the Duke "no rape" case, ACORN and canon law, and appeared as a guest on television and radio. He was acknowledged in Until Proven Innocent, by Stuart Taylor and KC Johnson, and Culture of Corruption, by Michelle Malkin. He appeared on "Your World With Cavuto" to promote an eBay boycott that he initiated and "The World Over With Raymond Arroyo" (EWTN) to discuss the legal implications of the Schiavo case. On October 22, 2008, Gaynor was the first to report that The New York Times had killed an Obama/ACORN expose on which a Times reporter had been working with ACORN whistleblower Anita MonCrief.
Gaynor's email address is firstname.lastname@example.org.