Tuesday, June 29, 2010


Late last year I was hired to represent a man on a drug case. He was arrested while sitting in a legally parked car. I filed a motion to quash arrest and suppress evidence. I conducted a hearing on that motion. I thought it was a really good motion, but the judge felt otherwise and denied it.

On the next court date I met with the judge and the prosecutor to discuss a possible plea. The client asked me to do so. This man had a pretty extensive criminal background. I plead his case as best as possible to the judge, but the sentence offer was pretty stiff in my opinion.

I relayed the judge's offer to the client. He asked for a continuance to think it over. This case had some merit at trial for reasons I won't discuss. He decided to take the matter to trial. On the next court date, however, I was replaced by another attorney. To put it another way, I was fired. This doesn't happen often, but it does.

The attorney replacing me is someone I am pretty friendly with. He was one of the first attorneys I spoke to at length back when I was first starting out early last year. I like him. He's an ex-prosecutor and a pretty nice person. We always chat when we see each other.

He took over the case for me in early February. Since then I have asked him how it was going. Rolling his eyes is how he always responds.

This morning I ran into him again. He said something like this: "You did an awesome job in that motion hearing. If I take the case to trial, I am just going to use your transcript and ask the exact same questions."

I asked if he was jerking me around. No, he was being honest. And apparently, the prosecutor on that case has also remarked at how well I did, including during the 402 conference where we discussed a possible sentence with the judge.

It seems no one could figure out why I was fired. But based on how things have progressed since I was replaced, I am quite happy I was let go. Some headaches are just not worth it.

This little 5 minute conversation made my month. It's not often we get an "atta boy" in this business, especially from another attorney. Just yesterday morning I declared that I wanted something good to happen...to someone...anyone. I needed a pick-me-up.

I guess Mick Jagger was right, sometimes we get what we need.



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