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Rich Meehan

Juror Misconduct

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The trial of Shelton developer, James Botti, hit a snag this week during jury deliberations. It was reported to the court that one of the jurors had brought her personal journal into the jury room and was persisting in reading passages from it. After a hearing that took precious time from deliberations the court excused […] [Read More]
Categories: General

“The first thing we do, let’s kill all the lawyers” Wm. Shakespeare

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Raise your hand if you have never heard a lawyer joke. I thought so; no takers. Lawyers have been the leading butt of humor on the internet. Every cocktail party I have ever attended had its share of lawyer jokes or some character complaining how his lawyer screwed him. We are viewed as a necessary […] [Read More]
Categories: General

“Is That All There Is?”

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As the jury in James Botti’s federal criminal trial settles in to the task of deliberating his future I am reminded of Peggy Lee, the old torch singer from the 1950’s, who recorded the existentialist ballad, “Is that all there is?” The haunting lyrics reflected an almost fatalistic pessimism about life. “Is that all there […] [Read More]
Categories: General

Justice Delayed But Not Denied

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This column has discussed in the past the work of the Innocence Project in freeing wrongly convicted defendants. Nationally, over 250 inmates have been exonerated, many after decades in prison. But not all the work of vindicating the wrongly convicted has fallen to the lawyers from the Innocence Project. Connecticut recognizes the right for an […] [Read More]
Categories: General

Tracking Domestic Violence: GPS or Big Brother?

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Domestic violence is at the forefront of legislative news in Connecticut. Hearings are being held on ways to ensure the safety of victims of pending cases. The recent killings of a court clerk at her home in Bridgeport and a murder suicide in West Haven have brought a stark focus to the dilemma of protecting […] [Read More]
Categories: General

Bribery 101: It Takes Two to Tango

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The trial of Shelton developer James Botti continues in New Haven federal court. Botti is charged with bribery, conspiracy and mail fraud. At the center of the Government’s case is the claim that Botti bestowed gratuities on public officials in Shelton, principally Mayor Mark Lauretti. New Haven veteran trial attorney, Willie Dow, represents Botti. Dow […] [Read More]
Categories: General

DNA: Bane or Boon?

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DNA evidence has now become the definitive means of identification. The number of people exonerated after a wrongful conviction has reached more than 250. Was it cause for celebration or lament? Certainly the efforts of groups like Barry Scheck’s Innocence Project should celebrate their achievements in finally obtaining justice for persons who have languished in […] [Read More]
Categories: General

If It Doesn’t Fit, You Must Acquit

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“If it doesn’t fit you must acquit!” That mantra has taken on iconic status since it was spoken in September 1995 by the late Johnny Cochran in the now infamous trial of O.J. Simpson. I can still see Simpson standing there, arm raised,that quizzical look on his face as he tried to fit the shrunken […] [Read More]
Categories: General

Judging Gun Control and the Second Amendment

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The United States Supreme Court is about to decide an important segment of the continuing debate on gun control. At issue is whether the individual states, and by extension municipal and county legislative bodies, have the right to restrict or ban weapons. The constitutional impediment stems from the Second Amendment. That Amendment states: “A well […] [Read More]
Categories: General

Is Lauretti on Trial?

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The second trial of Shelton developer, James Botti, began with jury selection this week. Each side announced its potential witnesses. Prominent on the list was Shelton Mayor, Mark Lauretti. Several news reports have indicated that Lauretti is alleged to be the public official at the core of Botti’s charges. Lauretti may or may not be […] [Read More]
Categories: General