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Commentary and analysis of Ohio criminal law and whatever else comes to mind, served with a dash of snark.  Continue Reading »

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If you've been putting off that sex change operation only because Uncle Sam isn't willing to help pick up the tab, good news might await you:  as this story relates, by the end of the year we should have a ruling on whether gender identity disorder is a medical condition, thus allowing the cost of a sex change -- typically around twenty-five large -- to be tax-deductible. 

The government might have fared better in opposing this if it hadn't chosen for its expert Dr. Park Dietz.  His 15 minutes of fame came during his appearance a few years back as an expert witness for the state in the Andrea Yates case,

during which he told spellbound jurors that Yates may have gotten her idea of drowning her five children from a Law and Order episode in which a mother drowned her children and was acquitted on grounds of insanity.  Unhappily, it wasn't until the case got to the court of appeals that everyone discovered that no such episode existed, leading to the reversal of Yates' conviction. 

No word on whether Dr. Dietz formed his opinions about gender identity disorder from episodes of Will & Grace and Queer Eye for the Straight Guy.

The Briefcase is going to have a substantially abbreviated schedule in September.  Monday's Labor Day, so the Case Update will be on Tuesday.  On Thursday, I'm leaving for two weeks in Maui, and on the list of things that will be occupying my thoughts for those two weeks, anything to do with the law is about midway down page 12.  I'll have a post tomorrow about speedy trial and state requests for discovery, then the case update on Tuesday and whatever catches my fancy on Wednesday, and then we'll be on hiatus here (note the use of the imperial "we") until the 24th.

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Recent Entries

  • July 24, 2017
    What's Up in the 8th
    Some things we knew, some things we didn't
  • July 21, 2017
    Friday Roundup
    Computers and sex offenders, civil forfeiture, and phrases that should be put out to pasture
  • July 20, 2017
    Case Update
    A look at the Ohio Supreme Court's decision in State v. Oles, and did you know that Justice Ginsburg has a .311 batting average with runners in scoring position? Oh, wait...
  • July 18, 2017
    What's Up in the 8th
    Judicial bias, RVO specs, 26(B) stuff, waivers of counsel... And more!
  • July 17, 2017
    No more Anders Briefs?
    I have a case now in the 8th District where I came close to filing an Anders brief the other week. It's an appeal from a plea and sentence. The plea hearing was flawless. The judge imposed consecutive sentences, and...
  • July 13, 2017
    Sex offenders and the First Amendment
    Analysis of the Supreme Court's decision in Packingham v. North Carolina
  • July 12, 2017
    Removing a retained attorney
    What does a judge do if he thinks a retained attorney in a criminal case isn't competent?
  • July 11, 2017
    What's Up in the 8th
    The court does good work on a juvenile bindover case, and the State finally figures out that it should have indicted someone in the first place
  • July 10, 2017
    Case Update
    SCOTUS ends its term; the Ohio Supreme Court issues another opinion, and likely the last one, on the trial tax
  • June 28, 2017
    Plea Bargaining -- The defendant's view
    A look at the Supreme Court's decision last week in Lee v. United States