July 15, 2018

Archives for August 3, 2011

Tenth Circuit: No Abuse of Discretion to Exclude Evidence of Shooting as Defense to Federal Gun Charge

The Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals issued its opinion in United States v. Fraser on Tuesday, August 2, 2011.

The Tenth Circuit affirmed the district court’s decision. Petitioner was charged as being a felon unlawfully in possession of a firearm and ammunition, possessing a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime, and for distributing cocaine. The charges stem from an encounter in which Petitioner shot and killed another man. “As the case progressed toward trial, the government filed a motion in limine, urging the district court to prohibit [Petitioner] from introducing any evidence of the shooting. The government argued that the only question at issue in the charges was whether [Petitioner] was a felon who possessed a gun and ammunition. Why he had those things, the government said, was irrelevant and should be excluded from trial under Fed. R. Evid. 403. In reply, [Petitioner] argued that evidence about the killing would allow him to argue to the jury that his defiance of federal gun laws was necessary to meet [the treat posed by the man he killed] and so justified as a matter of law.”

The Court disagreed with Petitioner’s contentions. “[W]hether or not a necessity defense can be raised to a federal gun charge — a premise subject to several and significant questions — [Petitioner] can’t establish that defense on its own terms as a matter of law.” The district court’s decision to exclude evidence of the killing was no abuse of discretion.

Tenth Circuit: Petition for En Banc Rehearing Granted to Consider Immigration Law Questions

The Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals issued its opinion in Contreras-Bocanegra v. Holder, Jr. on Tuesday, August 2, 2011.

The Tenth Circuit granted Petitioner’s request for en banc rehearing. This matter will be heard on the court’s November 2011 oral argument calendar. In addition, the parties are directed to file simultaneous supplemental briefs addressing several questions concerning immigration law.

Tenth Circuit: Unpublished Opinions, 8/2/11

On Tuesday, August 2, 2011, the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals issued two published opinions and three unpublished opinions.

Unpublished

Simmons v. Donahoe

Honeyfield v. City of Gallup

United States v. Lamberti

No case summaries are available for unpublished opinions. However, published opinions are summarized and provided by Legal Connection.

Tom Mighell: The iPad for Lawyers – All About Apps

In the first post in this series, I made the argument for investigating whether the iPad can add value to the way you provide service to your clients. Today, in hopes of persuading those of you with lingering doubts, I’ll discuss the best part about having an iPad: The apps! The iPad doesn’t run “programs,” not like you’re used to on a PC or Mac, and most iPad apps are not as full-featured as software programs. Still, apps can do some amazing things.

Here are some of the apps that I recommend for the practicing lawyer.

Being Productive. The iPad is not the best device for creating legal documents, but it’s a great tool for taking notes and working informally on legal documents. My favorite note-taking apps include Note Taker HD, Penultimate and WritePad. You can use a stylus or your finger to write in a notebook or legal pad-type page, then save those pages to PDF or another location. If you need to work with Microsoft Word or iWork documents, take a look at DocsToGo, QuickOffice Connect or Office2HD. Apple’s iWork suite (including Pages) is also a good investment for document and presentation creation.

Reading Documents. Although the apps listed above are great for working with documents, they just don’t do the job when it comes to reading and marking up caselaw, briefs, contracts or other documents. My picks for apps that make iPad reading a joy include GoodReader, which will allow you to view just about any type of file, and iAnnotate PDF, a fantastic annotation tool.

Legal-Specific Apps. iPad apps designed specifically for lawyers are starting to make their way into the App Store, and there are some intriguing choices. You can find dozens of apps that provide access to your state’s laws, the U.S. Code, CFR, Constitution and many other laws and regulations. Just go to the App Store in iTunes and search for “law” or “legal,” or be more specific if you know what you’re looking for.

Beyond legislative resources, some of the better apps are designed to help lawyers at trial. One set of apps—including Jury Duty, Jury Tracker and iJuror—help you not only pick a jury but monitor jurors’ reactions during trial. Unfortunately, none of these does all of these, but hopefully future releases will include the complete functionality. Apps like TrialPad and Evidence allow you to present evidence to a judge or jury. You simply connect your iPad to a projector (using a VGA adaptor, purchased separately) to show PDF and image files during trials or hearings.

More Resources for Lawyers Who Use iPads

This is only scratching the tip of the app iceberg, and already I’m running out of room.  With more than 60,000 apps designed for the iPad, it can be overwhelming trying to figure out which app is best. To keep up with the latest apps, for lawyers or otherwise, check out these resources:

Next, in our final post in this series: Accessories for the iPad owner.

Tom Mighell is a Senior Consultant with Contoural, Inc., where he helps companies address their records management, electronic discovery, and litigation readiness issues. Tom has followed technology trends for more than twenty years, and works with lawyers to help them use technology in ways that provide great service to their clients. He authored iPad in One Hour for Lawyers, which was published in March 2011 by the American Bar Association. He contributes to the Attorney at Work blog, where this post originally appeared on April 4, 2011.

U.S. Bankruptcy Court Online Case Management and PACER Outage Scheduled for Saturday

On Saturday, August 6, 2011, both CM/ECF and PACER will be unavailable on the United States Bankruptcy Court for the District of Colorado’s e-filing system from 7:00 – 10:00 am.

The PACER Reporting Tools system enables users to obtain, view, and print case records from federal Appellate, District, and Bankruptcy courts via the Internet. The CM/ECF Online Case Management and Filing system is a comprehensive case management system that enables users to file electronically in cases pending before the Bankruptcy Court.

State Judicial Issues Revised Forms for Adult and Minor Name Changes

The Colorado State Judicial Branch has issued several revised forms regarding name changes for adults and minor children. Practitioners should begin using the new forms immediately.

All forms are available in Adobe Acrobat (PDF) and Microsoft Word formats. Many are also available as Word templates; download the new form from State Judicial’s individual forms pages, or below.

County Civil

  • JDF 421 – “Petition for Change of Name of Minor Child” (revised 7/11)
  • JDF 422 – “Notice to Non-Custodial Parent” (revised 7/11)
  • JDF 425 – “Notice to Non-Custodial Parent by Publication” (revised 7/11)
  • JDF 426 – “Order for Publication for Change of Name” (revised 7/11)
  • JDF 427 – “Public Notice of Petition for Change of Name (Minor/Adult)” (revised 7/11)
  • JDF 433 – “Petition for Change of Name – Adult” (revised 7/11)
  • JDF 448 – ” Final Decree for Change of Name” (revised 7/11)

Legal Aid Foundation Welcomes Several New Board Members

The Legal Aid Foundation of Colorado is pleased to welcome the following lawyers to its 2011-12 Board of Trustees:

  • Jon Bender of Holland & Hart
  • Robert Duncan of Duncan Ostrander & Dingess
  • Natalie Hanlon-Leh of Faegre & Benson
  • Dave Hersh of Burg Simpson Eldredge Hersh & Jardine
  • Mike Keating of Fogel Keating Wagner Polidori & Shafner
  • John Keilbach of Altman Keilbach Lytle Parlapiano & Ware
  • Saranne Maxwell of Kutak Rock
  • Jeff Pagliuca of Haddon Morgan & Foreman
  • Dave Palmer of Greenberg Traurig

The Legal Aid Foundation promotes equal access to justice by raising money to provide free civil legal assistance for low-income Coloradans. The Trustees’ leadership in increasing private support for legal aid has never been more important as the federal government cuts back on its historic support for these essential services.  The Board’s 2010-11 Campaign for Justice, which concluded on June 30th, raised approximately $1.3 million for legal aid, primarily from lawyers and law firms across the state who are committed to maintaining access to civil justice for those who have no place else to turn.