Sidney Powell Grows Up

I've never understood why some criminal defense lawyers feel the need to make a great public display about how they only represent those whom they believe are truly innocent. There's a self-indulgent, almost moralistic quality to such declarations that render the lawyers untrustworthy. And hence my problem with Sidney Powell's otherwise excellent book, Licensed to Lie: Exposing Corruption in the Department of Justice (Brown. 2014). She takes pains to tell us she never sides with sinners.
Powell is a former Justice Department lawyer who has, for the past 20 years, devoted her private...
June 8, 2014

The FBI Stalks Phil Mickelson

I have no idea whether Phil Mickelson, one of the world's premier golfers and three-time winner of the Masters golf tournament, is guilty of insider trading. But the mere fact that we are talking about it tarnishes his reputation. And why are we talking about it? The FBI has made public sport of stalking him.
It all has to do with the price of Clorox stock. In 2011, Mickelson and several others, including a big-time sports bettor from Las Vegas named William Walters, made millions virtually overnight on well-timed stock trades, according to reports published in The New York Times and...
June 4, 2014

Cushy Judicial Pensions

Oh, Dannell, what a disappointment you are. The governor's been pumping the judiciary full of geriatric pals, positioning them for $100,000 a year pensions after serving a few short years on the bench. When lawmakers tried to put an end to the practice, the governor's men tucked an amendment onto the legislation. It's politics as usual in Hartford.
In less than one term in the governor's mansion, Dannell P. Malloy has appointed 10 men and women to the bench who are aged 61 or older. Under state law, judges must retire at age 70. But judges are eligible for a full pension the day after...
May 29, 2014

Spot a Killer Before He Strikes? Good Luck

Twenty or so years ago, I wrote one of the most difficult legal briefs of my career: The task was to compare and contrast the nature of the crimes and the character of the defendants for all the capital cases — those involving a potential penalty of death — in the state of Connecticut, including all the men then actually on death row. It was a process known as “proportionality review,” a now discarded requirement.
One man killed his ex-wife and son when he believed they were about to depart Connecticut to live elsewhere. Another abducted, assaulted and then...
May 28, 2014

Elliot Rodger and the Culture of Narcissism

May 25, 2014
Here’s a thought experiment: Pretend for the moment that Elliot Rodger had not gone on a killing spree in California. Put it out of your mind,...

Gen. Keith Alexander: Hacker Supreme

May 24, 2014
Did you catch the news that Eric Holder and the geniuses at Justice persuaded a grand jury to indict five members of the Chinese military? The...

Let's Get Serious About Jury Duty

May 22, 2014
Here’s a tip: If you want to avoid jury service, simply tell the judge you have a pre-paid vacation planned. No one will seek to verify if what...

The Elegance of Anarchism

May 19, 2014
"[T]he great emancipatory gains for human freedom have not been the result of orderly, institutional procedures but of disorderly, unpredictable,...

When The Fifth and Sixth Amendments Collide

May 18, 2014
The Fifth Amendment provides that no one can be compelled to testify against himself. In other words, a person cannot be required to speak if his...

NSA v. USA. Who Will Win?

May 17, 2014
I confess to being among those who regard the reach of the surveillance state with a tired sense of inevitability: I’ve long since grown...

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Taking Back the Courts
Norm Pattis Taking Back the Courts

The Wizard of Oz was one of my favorites movies as a kid. Little did I know judges were so much like the wizard, hiding behind empty trappings of power. This book tells you things you need to know about what really goes on in court. Read it, weep, and then demand that the courts do better.

In the Trenches
Norm Pattis In the Trenches

Plenty of lawyers write about the law, but few who write try cases. Judge for yourself whether I talk the talk and walk the walk in this collection of occasional essays about life in the law's trenches.

Juries and Justice
Norm Pattis Juries and Justice

How prepared are you to take seriously the notion that 'we the people' are, in fact, sovereign? Discover the secret, and unused, power of jurors. 'Ask why; then nullify.'

Norm Pattis

About Norm

Norm Pattis is a Connecticut based trial lawyer focused on high stakes criminal cases and civil right violations. He is a veteran of more than 150 jury trials, many resulting in acquittals for people charged with serious crimes, multi-million dollar civil rights and discrimination verdicts, and scores of cases favorably settled.

© Norm Pattis is represented by Elite Lawyer Management, managing agents for Exceptional American Lawyers
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