Tag Archives: legal

License Plates for Bicycles Sought by NJ Lawmaker

UPDATE (01/13/11): Big Gov’t Bureaucrat Back Pedals on Bike Bill

"Can I see your license and registration, please?"

"Can I see your license and registration, please?"

A New Jersey democrat is using her political muscle to force citizens across the state to register their bicycles with the Division of Motor Vehicles. The ridiculous maneuver would help the state offset its $10 billion budget deficit by enforcing a $10 per license plate fee and fines up to $100 for those, including children, caught riding unregistered bikes.

Assemblywoman Cleopatra Tucker (D-Essex) said balancing the state’s budget isn’t her motivation for the outlandish proposal; it’s protecting senior citizens from getting run over by kids on bikes.

Affixing license plates to every bicycle in the state would help these vulnerable senior citizens identify and rattle off the license plate numbers from the kids’ bikes to the police, ensuring the rascals are brought to justice, says Tucker.

Tucker’s proposal has been met with opposition by a diverse group of interests including bicyclists, environmentalists, business owners and even her own colleagues in the State House.

“That’s an outrage, for sure,” said Paige Hiemier, vice-president of the New Jersey Bike & Walk Coalition. “Basically, it’s outrageous for a number of reasons, and most of them are: Who is the legislation aimed at? Who’s going to administer it? How are they going to pay for it? Who’s going to stop the bicyclists and check their registration?”

Send Tucker an email reminding her not to make the same mistake twice: AswTucker@njleg.org

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Cop Issues Jaywalking Ticket to Comatose Teen

Las Vegas police say comatose Takara Davis must be in court on March 6 to face charges of jaywalking. We say, "Our thoughts and prayers are with you, Takara!"

Las Vegas police say comatose Takara Davis must be in court on March 6 to face charges of jaywalking. We say, "Our thoughts and prayers are with you, Takara!"

There are no limitations as to how far nanny state bureaucrats will go to enforce some of their most nonsensical laws. Case in point: Las Vegas police last week hand-delivered a jaywalking ticket to a comatose 13-year-old girl because it seems that justice needed to be served immediately for this heinous crime.

“[The police officer] said, ‘Takara was jaywalking. She has got to go to court on March 6th,'” said Takara Davis’ mother, Kellie Obong. “If she was jaywalking, then she was jaywalking. But maybe you give it to me at a later time. Don’t give it to me when they are rushing her into the operating room.”

The Metropolitan Police Department issued a press statement justifying the jaywalking citation and the manner in which it was handled, completely discounting the family’s emotional state as young Takara clings to life:

“Our officers conduct themselves in a professional and compassionate way. We wouldn’t do anything deliberately insensitive.”

Does anyone else find it hard to believe that one of the most pressing issues for Las Vegas cops these days is to hassle comatose teenagers over petty jaywalking violations? Share your thoughts with Las Vegas’ finest morons:

Metropolitan Police Dept. Office of Public Information
(702) 828-3394
pio@lvmpd.com

Office of The Sheriff
(702) 828-3231
Sheriff@lvmpd.com

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Fear of Lawsuits Prompts Town to Ban Sledding

Remember when sledding with your kids used to be 'priceless' and nobody tried to get rich from a bump or a bruise?

Remember when sledding with your kids used to be 'priceless' and nobody tried to get rich from a bump or a bruise?

Children in one Pa. town can thank trial lawyers for melting their hopes of sledding down some of the best hills this winter. Beaver bureaucrats say the threat of frivolous lawsuits for sledding incidents has prompted its insurer to demand restrictions on the traditional wintertime activity, reports ClaimsJournal.com:

Under the new rules, sledding is banned in a park overlooking the Ohio River. Sledders can go down a marked course in another park, but can’t go all the way to the top of the hill.

The Beaver County Times reports the regulations include a ban on sledding after sunset and a helmet requirement for children under 12. Metal and plastic disc sleds are also banned.

Councilwoman Shirley Sayers says officials are trying to make the best of a bad situation. She says pending lawsuits against the borough for sledding incidents prompted its insurer’s concerns.

In related news, trial lawyers are anticipating a cold reception from the new Republican majority that will be installed in the U.S. House and state governments next month. The American Association for Justice sobbed that for at least the next two years, its members will have a hard time fleecing America:

“Opponents of the tort system have gained more power in the new Congress,” AAJ officials wrote in a recent alert to members. “This new clout means all of our issues will be under attack. Denying rights to the innocent victims of medical negligence is certain to be the first order of business when the 112th Congress convenes.”

Can I get a “boo-hoo?”

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Court Rules Snobby Bureaucrats Can Ban Pick-up Trucks

Welcome to Coral Gables ... unless you drive a pick-up truck!

Welcome to Coral Gables ... unless you drive a pick-up truck!

Florida’s Third District Court of Appeal issued a ruling Wednesday upholding a ritzy city’s absurd law banning overnight parking of pickup trucks in posh neighborhoods.

Coral Gables, Fla. is home to wealthy citizens whose average household incomes exceed $128,288 and median home values top $710,000. And, when it comes to the city’s preferred mode of transportation, pick-up trucks are for hired help and day laborers — not residents.

In 2003, former resident Lowell Kuvin learned that his Ford F-150 pick-up truck posed a threat to society after being fined $50 for parking it in front of his home. He filed suit against the city and won, but bureacrats and local residents did not relent in their attempts to brand pick-ups a ‘threat to society.’

Activist judges this week in a 6-2 decision overturned the court’s 2007 decision that declared the city’s pick-up truck ban “unconstitutional,” concluding that the law is actually “rationally related to the health and welfare of the residents in the city.”

City Attorney Elizabeth Hernandez told the Miami Herald that officials believe the ban is being enforced as a “quality of life” issue, and if pick-up trucks get a free pass today, they fear it opens the door to residents bringing tractor trailers and other non-traditional vehicles in to the upper-class suburban community.

Lowell Kuvin’s brother and attorney, Spencer Kuvin, said he will take the fight to the state’s Supreme Court because it “boils down to individual rights versus government regulation.”

Do you agree or disagree that pick-up trucks pose a threat to the “health and welfare” of suburban communities, meriting an official ban?

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Judges Increasingly Demand Proper Attire in Courtrooms

"Is this a court of law or a beauty contest, Your Honor?"

"Is this a court of law or a beauty contest, Your Honor?"

Forget about wearing baggy pants, flip-flops and skimpy tops to court if the thought has crossed your mind. Increasingly, judges are demanding anyone who has a date with the law must dress “appropriately,” and what defendants wear to their trials can and will be used against them.

“We’re not out to treat people as school kids, but we do expect if you come to court, you need to treat it with the appropriate respect and dignity it should deserve due to the occasion,” Delaware Superior Court Judge William Witham Jr. told USA Today. His courtroom and others across the state prohibit women from wearing skirts that fall shorter than 4 inches above the knee when standing.

Show-up on your trial date wearing inappropriate clothing and you will miss your court date and be slapped with a penalty for failing to appear. While some legal advocates claim that policy is unfair, perhaps taking the safe route and wearing a suit or dress would serve defendants’ best interests.

Holly Alford, an assistant professor in the department of fashion design and merchandising at Virginia Commonwealth University, noted that judges who prohibit defendants from wearing “saggy pants” that expose their underwear are silently being discriminated against by judges because that trend is popular among blacks. “[It’s] almost like you’re making racial statements without actually saying it.”

Ibrahim Hooper, spokesman for the Council on American-Islamic Relations, says female Muslim defendants are at risk of discrimination, too. “There should be no issue for anyone entering a court with either a face veil or a head scarf,” he said.

Then, there are the idiots who are either expressing their First Amendment rights to free speech or just trying to send a message to judges and juries by wearing clothing that sends a message:

• In May, Jennifer LaPenta was jailed briefly after a judge in Lake County, Ill., held her in contempt for wearing an offensive T-shirt to court.

• In Inkster, Mich., Joseph Kassab was turned away in April from the courtroom for wearing black jeans. He missed his traffic court appearance and was fined, and he’s challenging the dress code in the state Court of Appeals.

• The same thing happened to Linda West, who missed her court date after being refused entry in June to court in Bakersfield, Calif., for wearing flip-flops.

• In July, in Hamilton County (Ohio) Municipal Court, William Morse’s T-shirt featuring slasher-movie character Chucky and the words “Say goodbye to the killer” earned Morse a warning that he’d spend a day in jail if he came to court again with inappropriate attire.

Do you believe judges should determine the appropriateness of defendants’ wardrobes? Can defendants wearing questionable attire receive fair trials? Should the First Amendment protect defendants’ rights to wearing whatever they determine appropriate for court appearances? Sound-off below on these issues and whatever else comes to mind.

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The Great Bay State Snowjob of 2010

The Mass. court system should find itself deluged with frivolous 'slip and fall' lawsuits this winter.

The Mass. court system should find itself deluged with frivolous 'slip and fall' lawsuits this winter.

The activist judges in Massachusetts’ highest court just made it easier for frivolous lawsuits to tie-up the court system when the next snow storm hits. Even if a municipal snow plow covers sidewalks with three feet of snow, property owners of all ages and physical abilities are responsible for making them safe before someone slips, breaks a bone and sues the heck out of ’em.

Trial lawyers and those seeking a way to get rich quick must be hoping for another record winter snowfall since big pay-outs are almost guaranteed to ‘unfortunate’ victims of ‘negligent’ property owners. Note to money hungry accident seekers: find out where elderly folks live and slip on the snow or ice in front of their homes since they’ll be the least likely to be able to comply with the new law’s immediate snow shoveling mandate.

Justice Ralph Gants doesn’t seem to care about the plight of elderly citizens and their inability to shovel snow and break-up ice with the urgency his courts ruling now requires. In the court’s ruling, he wrote that it “is not reasonable for a property owner to leave snow or ice on a walkway where it is reasonable to expect that a hardy New England visitor would choose to risk crossing the snow or ice, rather than turn back or attempt an equally or more perilous walk around it.’’

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Website Tarnishes Bosses’ Reputations with Click of a Button

Mmmm. Tasty!

Mmmm. Tasty!

Attorney Daniel Schwartz, author of the Connecticut Employment Law Blog, discovered a website that has the potential to destroy careers with the click of a button.

“eBossWatch” prides itself as a “a critical resource for job seekers,” allowing them to get a taste for the “true environment at a potential employer and the true nature of a potential manager,” all from happy employees’ perspectives, of course.

At the heart of Schwartz’ contempt for eBossWatch is the website’s “Sexual Harassment Registry” that publicly tars and feathers employers who may or may not have been tried and/or convicted in a criminal court of law. The website’s registry has the effect of immediately branding employers accused of or awaiting trial as real threats to society and their employees before they ever see a judge.

Schwartz says the “Sexual Harassment Registry” is chock full of unfounded “allegations” and “nothing more that [sic] a meager list of some people accused of sexual harassment with no real attempt at completeness, fairness or accuracy.”

Interestingly, the website admits “not all of the people listed in the eBosswatch registry have been found by a jury to have committed sexual harassment.” Yet, taking the word of disgruntled employees with axes to grind as reason enough to include alleged sexual harassers in the registry doesn’t seem to bother eBossWatch a bit.

According to Schwartz, “For employers and employees, there are simply better, more accurate places to find information than this site.”

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