How Appealing

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

“Dreadlocks shouldn’t keep man from jury; S.C. Supreme Court rules potential juror shouldn’t have been dismissed for hair”: Today’s edition of The State of Columbia, South Carolina contains an article that begins, “A black man with dreadlocks should not have been kept off a Florence County jury in a 2004 civil trial, the state’s top court said Monday. The S.C. Supreme Court in a 3-2 decision said a defense lawyer’s stated ‘uneasiness’ about the dreadlocks was not a ‘race-neutral’ reason for excluding the prospective juror.”

You can access yesterday’s ruling of the Supreme Court of South Carolina at this link (via “Religion Clause“).

Posted at 10:55 PM by Howard Bashman

“Counsel investigating chief judge’s past”: Denver’s NBC News affiliate provides a report that begins, “The office that regulates attorney licenses in Colorado will investigate allegations that federal Chief Judge Edward Nottingham spent $3,000 at a topless bar, viewed pornography on his work computer, intimidated a disabled woman and was a client of two prostitution businesses. The Colorado Supreme Court Attorney Regulation Counsel acknowledged the investigation Saturday in a letter to the person who filed the complaint, Sean Harrington.”

Posted at 10:48 PM by Howard Bashman

“Doctor: Joyce never said he was hurt during flight exam.” The Erie (Pa.) Times-News provides an update that begins, “An Erie physician who examined then-state Superior Court Judge Michael T. Joyce when Joyce applied for a pilot’s license testified today that Joyce never told him he was injured or had neurological problems.”

Posted at 10:44 PM by Howard Bashman

“Federal court OKs prayer at Cobb commission meetings”: Bill Rankin of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution has a news update that begins, “The federal appeals court in Atlanta on Tuesday upheld Cobb County’s practice of allowing predominantly Christian prayers to open commission meetings. By a 2-1 ruling, the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals said it disagreed with a lawsuit’s contention that the Constitution permits only nonsectarian prayers.”

Circuit Judge William H. Pryor, Jr. wrote the majority opinion for a divided three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit.

Posted at 10:35 PM by Howard Bashman

Today’s rulings of note from Seventh Circuit Judge Richard A. Posner: In an “in chambers” order, Judge Posner rejects plaintiffs’ motion to strike the entire fact section from the defendants’ appellate brief. The plaintiffs’ motion challenged the fact section of defendants’ brief as overly argumentative. The motion arose in a case challenging the constitutionality of Wisconsin’s practice of allowing only graduates of the two law schools located in Wisconsin the privilege of being admitted to the Wisconsin bar without taking an examination. Judge Posner’s order concludes by noting that “even the plaintiffs, in the (very brief) statement of facts section in their brief, quote from a judicial decision and from an online interview with a judge.” Perhaps the online interview is this one (see question 9 and the accompanying answer)?

And in an opinion issued today on behalf of a unanimous three-judge panel, Judge Posner reverses the class certification of an action alleging that Sears Kenmore clothes dryers were deceptively advertised as containing “stainless steel” drums in which the clothing is dried when in fact the drums are only partially made of stainless steel. The opinion contains a useful discussion of the pros and cons of class actions and also reveals that none of the wives of the judges on the panel was concerned about rust stains on clothing in their dryers.

Posted at 10:18 PM by Howard Bashman

Programming note: I’ll be attending an appellate oral argument mid-morning today in a case that raises an issue that’s presented in several appeals that I’m working on. Additional posts will appear here this afternoon.

Posted at 8:54 AM by Howard Bashman

“Ted Olson v. Joe Larisa: Will the Supreme Court Decide?” Tony Mauro has this post at “The BLT: The Blog of Legal Times.”

Posted at 12:45 AM by Howard Bashman

“In a first, World Series game suspended; Fall Classic to resume when ‘weather conditions are appropriate'”: provides this report. Our seats for game five were located first level under an overhang, so we avoided getting too wet from the rain. You can access the box score of the suspended game at this link.

Posted at 12:30 AM by Howard Bashman