Never let it be said that I'm not an equal opportunity offender. And apparently, I'm offending someone.
Of course, this particular dispute stems from a couple of posts wherein the righteously indignant (yet internet famous) Mark Bennett tells prosecutors (and even alludes that some judges could be included) to watch out and even gives them a "friendly" head's up, saying that next time they do something that violates the Rules of Conduct, they just might get "that certified letter from Austin."
In another post he even ponders the always-present "who's watching the watchers" issue when he states that he knows why it’s so hard to get a grievance sustained against a prosecutor: "even when they lie, cheat, hide evidence, and send unethical letters to people represented by counsel". According to him, it's because the perception of prosecutos is that they can do no wrong, and when even the Office of Chief Disciplinary Counsel loves prosecutors how can we expect them to take action against the unethical ones?
Here's an idea for you Mr. Bennett: make them aware of it in the first place.
So, I'm sure with all of your indignation you'll be reporting them for disciplinary action, like you threatened to do, so they never do it to one of your clients, right?
Of course not.
Even you ask, in the very title of your post, how this can possibly be OK. And instead of doing what you threaten to do not a few days before, you prevent any form of dissent from being discussed on your blog by denouncing it as bile, to be posted on my blog that nobody will read (which I pretty much said was the case in my first post, and your comment in the early posts was fairly complimentary...).
But, God forbid someone have to put up with their own words being thrown in their face. Way to talk a big game, yet do nothing but have "constructive conversations" when confronted with violations of the rules.
Edmund Burke was setting the absolute minimum standard for evil to prevail when he said that it would if good men do nothing. But you know what else will help it along? When defense attorneys don't have the courage to take action and are more concerned with their internet presece than they are with representing their clients or making sure that our profession is cleaned out of all of the scumbags--on any side of the bar--who break the rules.
Congratulations on your huge internet readership Mr. Bennett.
UPDATE: I can't tell you how much pleasure I just got out of telling my esteemed colleague Mr. Bennett that he referred to one of my recent posts on Life at the Harris County Criminal Justice Center as being correct. It was anonymous because when I posted I was sitting at the airport waiting for friends to come to town, and I hit post before filling anything with my name. My posts there are moderated but mostly approved when they're middle of the road, as that one was. So Bennett made the mistake of quoting me, which I couldn't help but tell him about.
His response? To list me as spam on all Wordpress blogs.
Man, that guy really doesn't like to be told he's wrong, but he likes it even less when he accidentally agrees with someone who's trying to hold him accountable for his ethics.
Oh well, I'm not too concerned about losing the confidence of a criminal lawyer who tried to tell me that there were no circumstances that would ever allow a judge in Texas to hold a defendant without bail, only to find within two minutes several reasons why it could be done. I'll just assume that the rest of his advice is equally as valuable.
(Note to Mark: I said "valuable," but I don't really mean it.)
There Goes a Man
6 months ago