Thursday, April 20, 2006



One of the things the trial deputy District Attorneys have to do is decide what the proper plea bargain is. Based on the criminal history of the accused, the nature of the crime and the strength (or lack thereof) of the evidence, the prosecutor will offer anything from a harsh to a sweet deal to the criminally accused. The harshest is GorT (Guilty or Trial) and it's the same as no deal. You're either mad at the defendant or have a slam dunk case, or both, if you GorT someone.

The defense attorneys have a similar harsh demand, DorT (Dismiss or Trial). It's their signal to the prosecutor that they think his or her case sucks.

In Durham yesterday, attorney Bill Cotter, who represents accused Duke lacrosse player Collin Finnerty said: "I can't tell you about (everybody), but my client's case is either going to be dismissed by the D.A. or go to trial." That's a DorT.

I don't know anything like as much as you do about the DA game (obviously), but I'd expect both of the extreme positions to also be used as initial negotiating positions for weaker cases. Is that sort of thing common?
In rare occasions, but if you have a client who may well go to jail, a deal is often welcome. I didn't listen to the defense attorney but based the deal on my view of the evidence and the defendant. Of course, I didn't do any high profile murder or rape cases, so it could be different with that type.

Per our conversation Saturday night, what is going on in Durham?
We know we are not seeing all the evidence, but one of ther indicted players appears to have been absolutely elsewhere when the alleged rape occurred.

Is this Tawana Brawley redux?

W/o being very familiar w/ rape and DNA collection--let's face it, the closest I get is one of the CSI shows or Bones or the one w/ Mark Harmon-- even if a arapist used a condom, wouldn't he leave something behind--skin under the fingernails, an errant hair, something?

The brazen comments of defense counsel have the added benefit of being supported by incredibly strong evidence. Don't think I could say the same thing about the comments of the DA.
Read D's post above, it's beginning to look like a slow dismissal and the families of the two accused are only out $40 k for the bond plus the not small attorney fees. And Tony, the theory is that in all cases of illegal sexual penetration there is some of the victim on the perpetrator and vice versa. We haven't heard the results of hair testing yet I'm beginning to think that the most important evidence will be where the "victim" was and what she was doing before midnight.
Yea. Verily.
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