20.6.06

And Justice for All: Finding a Needle in a Haystack

How many of us have read John Grisham? Or seen Law and Order?

How many times have we seen a lawyer digging through piles of evidence, and then, in a sudden realization, or single moment, he finds that key piece of evidence he's looking for?

It is only mentioned in passing, but it is singularly important. It holds the key to conviction or freedom (depending on which side you’re on).

Today, I experienced one of those moments.

It was the end of the day, and I had been through a day full of pre-sentence investigation readings with clients (both related to drugs, surprise, surprise...); parole hearings and plenty of investigation back at the office.

I had my Trial Notebook of (I will NEVER mention cases by real name, I’ll give them fake, completely ridiculous names that have nothing to do with the actual person) Deepthroat.

I was reading through her statement to the police and she mentions calling a friend by the name of Anastasia. This was mentioned in passing. In just a few lines. Now at the time, I was thinking it was looking pretty bleak for Deepthroat: she looked like she could go down for murder.

Our only hope was self-defense. Whether it was extreme emotional disturbance or whatever.

I was sinking in hopes of getting some evidence to help show that it was such.

But, then, after reading these few lines, there was a modicum of hope. A fact that would be consistent with our theory of the case!

A fact, simply put, that would give us a chance to move forward.

So, I found this fact, and I went rushing into our head lawyer's office. I explained to him that I'd found a specific mention of the call that we needed for our theory.

And, so it was positive response from him. He suggested that I go to ...(a dark parking garage and meet her while she’s smoking) ...to jail and interview Deepthroat to find out where to track down Anastasia as a potential witness.

So, how is this awesome and powerful for me?

I've been looking to make an impact on the client's life since, as of right now, I’ve had less personal interaction that I would have liked with clients. But it happens and that's how the law works. It's more than face-to-face. It also requires in depth research, investigation, a little luck, etc...

And, so, it's awesome for me, because I have the chance to do something great. And, it's so powerful for me, because my goal in life (in a sense) is to do the great things. To be the best, and do the extraordinary uncommon thing, as though it's so simple a child could do it.

And, getting someone off for murder (at least to a lesser charge), is one of those for me. Because, after all, the criminal justice system deals with the greatest thing a human being can have: freedom. So, in a sense, I'm fighting for someone else's freedom. Maybe I’m a freedom fighter?

Make no bones about it however, this is for me. I’ll love the client and cherish him or her , and may come off actually liking him or her. But, I'm not doing this just for him or her like some people might say. This is my destiny (to work in the law), so I'm doing what I'm meant to do.




And, so, tomorrow, I'm off to interview an anonymous source to find a princess...

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