Jackie Carpenter, African American criminal defense lawyer in Houston, Texas, for a fleeting moment, is a suspect in an armed robbery case. Her story, while interesting to the criminal defense bloggers, was met with shock mostly by the non-lawyer readers, and of course the rationalization by law enforcement. We criminal defense lawyers read stories like Jackie's and know that they don't just occur in movies.
The issue here is not whether the officer's conduct was improper. Jackie probably shocked her readers by saying she won't sue, but she knows better - the only damage is to her perception of the world, so who cares. Her moment "in the client's shoes" is something that will make her a better lawyer, and her clients will appreciate the passion of a lawyer who can say "I've been there."
The issue is faulty eyewitness testimony.
Tonight (Friday) Chris Hansen will discuss the topic of faulty eyewitness testimony on Dateline NBC. I saw a preview this morning, and it looks like something everyone should watch that thinks eyewitness testimony means anything.
Brian Tannebaum is a criminal defense lawyer in Miami, Florida practicing in state and federal court, and the author of The Truth About Hiring A Criminal Defense Lawyer. Post to Twitter
5 hours ago