The "Scooter" Defense
I had a felony hearing appearance in a city court the other day. The client, with no substantial criminal history was held on a felony charge after arraignment. From the paperwork, it was evident that the charge wasn't sustainable, and that the client would be released on that basis. Before the Judge hit the bench, I jokingly said to the Court Officer, Prosecutor and Court clerk, "If the judge hedges on releasing him, I'll argue that his name is Scooter, and keeping a man in jail named Scooter is cruel and unusual."
The case was called, and the judge hedged, for reasons that were not apparent to me. I cited the law, and asked for his release, making a technical argument based upon the language of the statute. The judge, a normally reasonable jurist with a calm demeanor, bristled at my argument and said it was "ridiculous" and "shallow". His face turned red and spittle came from his mouth. I was confident I was right, and also confident that the judge was having a bad day. I maintained composure, advised the Judge that I disagreed and repeated my request for the client's release.
He reluctantly agreed.
On the way out of the Courtroom I whispered to the Court officer, "Damn, it's a good thing I didn't go with the whole "Scooter" defense."