Thursday, June 28, 2007

Oral argument on appeal

I just had my oral argument before the state appellate court.

By law, I have a right to a half hour of oral argument. There were three cases ahead of me on the calendar, and the lawyers were claiming that they'd be brief, so I only requested "5 or 10 minutes".

The first lawyer was a public defender with a perfunctory appeal for some dude who got a drug bust after a traffic stop. She was unconvincing, and choked on her attempts to pronounce "panoply" and "corollary". The DA appeared by telephone.

The next case was some sort of statute of limitations problem on when some embezzler should have been discovered.

Then the presiding judge left, and was replaced by Judge Mihara. The others on the panel were Judges McAdams and Duffy. They were the same ones I had before.

The next case was an elderly couple that tried to do some property exchange, but got caught with an increased assessment. The lawyer babbled on and on about how it was a "case of first impression", and how the assessment "exalts form over substance", and "frustrates the intent of the statute". He sounded like he had a losing case.

Finally, my case came up. There were no clocks in the courtroom, and they confiscated my electronic devices, so I could not watch the time. I briefly presented by analogy with Sole v Wyner, as that was not in the brief. Supposedly the judges had read the briefs. The judges were unimpressed, and one asked, "Did you get a chance to make this argument in the lower court?" I answered yes, and explained how Comm. Joseph did not really have the facts, and how I wanted to rebut the allegations against me, and didn't have the opportunity. The judges didn't look interested. I am now expecting a short decision saying simply that the lower court did not abuse its discretion.

My ex-wife took her turn, and she acknowledged that her lawyer misstated the length of time she worked on the case in her declaration, but claimed that I couldn't rebut the work she did do. She started to present an argument that I shouldn't be allowed to cross-examine Jennifer Gray, her lawyer, but could only say, "If he had --".

That's all. She stopped in mid-sentence. That summed it up right there. If I had cross-examined the lawyer, we would have gotten to the facts of the matter, and we wouldn't need to appeal. I would have exposed what a dishonest fraud she is. I let it go at that, and that was the end of the hearing.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I am sorry I must make a comment on this.

If you read the the court ruling, you would know you missed the deadline in filing a written request for oral testimony.

Had you made that request, the trial court judge would have able to rule on it and possibly decide to call Ms. Gray to the stand to testify.

I am not sure why you did not hire a competent lawyer for this. This was a mistake that was avoidable on your part.