So, let me tell you why I am a public defender. When I first went to law school I wanted to be a cop. Maybe Crown Counsel. Oh, my views were far different back then. That all changed on July 26, 1996. It was on that day that a search warrant was served at my home. It is a deeply personal story that involves betrayal and false allegations. I won't give all the details but my younger brother, for reasons that never became clear to me, made up some allegations. The police arrived in force in my yard. I was cuffed and my property was searched. What struck me at the time was that even as the police began to realize it was all bullshit, they didn't back off. They began to threaten me. Try to intimidate me. Luckily, I had just completed my first year of law school, and it was less than effective. I was hauled down to the police station and thrown into a cell with a bloody mattress. I was booked and released. For months the police threatened to charge with me an indictable offense, knowing it would hurt my bar application. Nothing ever happened. My goods were returned and I filed a law suit. Eventually, I settled it on the promise to remove the arrest from my 'record'. It is funny how my world view changed in an instant. The less the police had, the worse they treated me. I vowed on that day to fight the police for the rest of my life. And so I have. Even though it means that I make less money than I deserve. Even though I have to deal with criminals. I willl never forget how the police treated me that day. If they could treat me that badly, how do they treat 'true' criminals? You see, here is the problem with the police. Most of them start with great intentions. Many are even good people at first. But after enough time they begin to divide the world into TWO groups: cops and their families and SCUM. That is it. Two groups. I know the police have their role. I have been friends with a few cops over the years. Not all are bad. I have even relied on them once or twice. But, as a group, the police are the enemies of the People. And I shall fight them until I can't. May the memory of July 26, 1996 burn forever in my heart. P.S. we got our first real snowfall yesterday..it finally looks like winter in this part of Alaska.

Comments

pearl said…
you are awesome!! please keep fighting the good fight, and know that you are appreciated.

wow, no snow until now? we've had snow in fairbanks for well over a month and that's late for us.
Dan said…
I'm not going to quibble over the substance of your post. It was a traumatic event and you were treated like dog shit. I am going to quibble over your statement that you're not getting paid what you should get paid. You and I are on the same pay scale (I probably make more b/c I'm a higher attorney classification). That's something I truly love about Alaska. PDs and DAs get paid the same. It's not some b.s. game at the county level like the vast majority of places in this country.

I guess one more thing. Us DAs know which cops are like those you encountered and which cops aren't. There are reasons why some cases are declined straight out of the gate.
Dan: my comment about not getting paid what I am worth was not about getting paid less than a DA. It was about the fact that I am a good defense lawyer. In another world, I would not have to worry about money. I am thankful that I make what I make, but is less than half of what I (we?) deserve.
Dan said…
Yes, the appropriate pronoun is "we". As used in the phrase, "We should be paid more by our skinflint bosses."
josh said…
Here in FL we get paid less than we should but more than DA's - as it should be.
While I share your feelings about cops and the State, it is a shame that you had to go through that incident to realize the truth. Most people don't ever live through that horror and have no sympathy for those who do. How many times have you heard the line, "Well, if you have nothing to hide, you should be happy to consent." LOL. BTW, Dan, the local ADAs don't know the good cops from the bad cops. In fact, one recently stated at a pblic meeting that in his ten years of being a ADA, he never knew a cop who lied.
Anonymous said…
Well said! I lived a similar horror recently when I ejected someone from my home after she committed an act of domestic violence against me. She went to the local PD, cried on her daddy's former partner's shoulder, and these pigs came to my house to arrest me! I got charged for "placing her in fear", domestic violence, and spent the night in jail. Her daddy is a fired cop from our town. He was fired after a drunken, suicidal night barricaded in an Anchorage motel (the Super 8 on Minnesota) that required a SWAT team to evacuate the place, and taser his ass into submission. You won't find any record of it. I tried, and the cops in Anchorage said I needed a subpoena to get the report. After he got fired from our PD, he sued for wrongful dismissal and got a settlement. He eventually got a high profile job with the troopers and carries a gun and badge today. Doesn't that scare the living dog shit out of you?
Anonymous said…
You will probably never read this, as it is an old post, but I'm glad in a way you had that experience and it moved you to fight for the rights of individuals. I have seen some pretty awful stuff from the police, including out and out fabrication of an entire police report (fortunately it was exposed through other evidence), deadly force (Assault II) utilized on a kid they had no business stopping and charged with nothing, and nobody dares do anything about it. I'm glad you were moved by your experience to commiserate with others, to come to understand what have become acceptable losses in our society. Keep up the fight. I hope to take it up in my own way soon.

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