Pro Se Chicago's Weblog

November 25, 2014

How confirmatory bias taints the law – a must read for all attorneys


There is a concept in psychology and psychiatry termed confirmatory bias, which often adversely influences the judgment of officers, attorneys, judges, and juries, resulting in biased, unfair or unlawful arrests, decisions and convictions. It is the unfortunate human tendency for each individual to become part of a position, to hold that position regardless and to hear only that which supports that position, a phenomenon known as “confirmatory bias”. Dr. Richard Rappaport, a nationally renowned member of the American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law concluded in an editorial in a leading Journal for the American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law, in 2006, that AZ, a civil rights activist, had been abused by the courts and police due to this principle, when they falsely labeled her as psychotic and treated her as an escaped mental patient, disregarding everything she said, withholding medication needed for medical illnesses that threatened her life, and even beat her.[1] In the 2013 murder trial of David Camm, the defense argued that Camm was charged for the murders of his wife and two children solely because of confirmation bias within the investigation.[2] Confirmatory bias is pervasive in law. It is an area which is ripe for increased efforts to recognize it, as well as for legislation and rules that incorporate methods to reduce it.  To see the rest of this article click here: HOW CONFIRMATORY BIAS TAINTS THE LAW

[1] Editorial:  Losing Your Rights: Complications of Misdiagnosis,  written by Dr. Richard Rappaport, J Am Acad Psychiatry Law 34:436-8, 2006

[2] “David Camm Blog: Investigation under fire”. WDRB. October 10, 2013.

 

August 1, 2014

Federal Petiton proving corrupt judges, sheriff, & state’s attorney in Cook County


SIC color_edited-1

PLEASE come to court and show support for Shelton at the next court date on December 15, 2014, 10am, 2600 S California, Chicago IL, courtroom 506. Write letters to the U.S. Attorney, Sen. Durbin, Sen. Kirk, your senator, Rep. Lipinsky or your representative, and the press. Some addresses are at end of post. Spread the word through social media that Shelton needs public support to continue these blogs and fight unlawful attacks against her in retaliation for them and for helping so many with pro se litigation and defense.

This is a petition for writ of habeas corpus to the federal district court in Chicago. The Cook County Sheriff in retaliation for Shelton filing civil rights suits has been falsely arresting Shelton repeatedly and maliciously prosecuting her for battery to officers. Of NOTE: She is never charged with battering anyone else and has a lifelong history of non-violent pacifism.  For more information go here.  Also read Shelton’s other blogs: http://cookcountyjudges.wordpress.com  http://chicagofbi.wordpress.com   http://cookcountysheriffdeputies.wordpress.com   http://illinoiscorruption.blogspot.com and search them for posts about Madigan in particular. They have beaten her so many times and so viciously that she now has post-traumatic-stress disorder and when aggressively approached by officers goes into a flashback where she cries, screams, tries to protect herself from imagined blows swinging her arms randomly (as she is reliving attacks) and cowers. If she is pushed, carried, or dragged, due to disabilities and severe balance problems she grabs at things to steady herself – all the while being out of touch with reality during these brief PTSD flashbacks. She has been arrested and charged with FELONY battery to an officer with a possible sentence of 3-14 years for “touching an officers ear and pulling her hair until her hand slipped off”. She has been held in jail one year on no bail and only recently released on $300,000 bail. This is unconstitutional excessive bail She has been denied notice, counsel of choice, discovery of evidence, and has been fraudulently accussed of being psychotic and unfit for trial, illegally without notice or jury trial, without any professional saying she was psychotic or unfit, sent to a secure mental health facility who after a few months said in court she was never unfit and is not psychotic and sent her back to jail. As a result of this lawlessness Shelton has now filed at Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus to the Federal District Court asking for relief and presentment of the criminal conduct of judges, sheriff staff, state’s attorney, court clerk, and other corrupt persons to the U.S. Attorney for  prosecution. You can read it here: (download will be 24 pages) fed habeas 6-12-14 final Full Petition with evidence (download will be 400+ pages) Habeas Petition Asst. US Attorney Zachary T. Fardon United States Attorney’s Office Northern District of Illinois, Eastern Division 219 S. Dearborn St., 5th Floor Chicago, IL 60604 Phone: (312) 353-5300 ______________________ FBI,Special Agent in Charge – Chicago Robert J. Holley 2111 W. Roosevelt Road Chicago, IL 60608 Phone: (312) 421-6700 Fax: (312) 829-5732/38 E-mail: Chicago@ic.fbi.gov _________________________ Senator Durbin WASHINGTON, D.C. 711 Hart Senate Bldg. Washington, DC 20510 9 am to 6 pm ET (202) 224-2152 – phone (202) 228-0400 – fax ____________________ Senator Kirk Washington, DC 524 Hart Senate Office Building Washington DC, 20510 Phone: 202-224-2854 Fax: 202-228-4611 ___________________ Congressman Lipinsky Washington, D.C. Office 1717 Longworth HOB Washington, DC 20515 P (202) 225 – 5701 P (866) 822 – 5701 F (202) 225 – 1012

July 31, 2014

Inability to pay child support, court fee, & court-appointed counselor or examiner


A COURT MAY AWARD THE NONCUSTODIAL PARENT CHILD SUPPORT IF THE CUSTODIAL PARENT IS MUCH WEALTHIER THAN NONCUSTODIAL PARENT. THIS IS SO THAT CHILD CAN LIVE SAME LIFESTYLE WITH BOTH PARENTS.

In re Marriage of Turk 2014 IL 116730

 

Appellate citation: 2013 IL App (1st) 122486.

 

      JUSTICE KARMEIER delivered the judgment of the court, with opinion.

            Chief Justice Garman and Justices Freeman, Kilbride, and Burke concurred in the judgment and opinion.

      Justice Theis specially concurred, with opinion, joined by Justice Thomas.

 

            The parties to this Cook County child support dispute divorced in 2005 and have two sons, now ages 17 and 15. In 2012, the circuit court entered an agreed order establishing the father as custodial parent and setting up a visitation schedule for the mother under which she had regular visitation with the older boy once a week, for dinner on Wednesdays, and regular visitation with the younger boy, with weekly visits from Monday to Wednesday mornings, plus alternating weekends. This system gave her nearly equal time with him. At this time it was determined that the father earned approximately $150,000 per year and that the mother was earning less than $10,000. The father asked for termination of his obligation to pay support based on his custodial status, but the circuit court’s order required him to pay $600 per month in child support and to fund medical expenses not covered by insurance. The father’s claim that his designation as custodial parent meant that statute precluded requiring him to pay child support to a noncustodial parent was rejected by the circuit court, and the father appealed.

            The appellate court, like the circuit court, rejected the father’s claim of no obligation to pay child support, and it affirmed this aspect of the trial court’s ruling. However, it remanded for an evidentiary hearing for reconsideration as to the support amount. It did not, however, interfere with the circuit court’s ruling as to medical expenses.

            In this decision, the Illinois Supreme Court said that the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act expressly confers on courts the option to order either or both parents to pay an amount that is reasonable and necessary for the support of the child, and, in its discretion, to order payment of various expenses determined to be reasonable, including health needs not covered by insurance. The supreme court explained that a parent who is technically noncustodial may have visitation rights which place the child in that parent’s care for periods of time which involve commensurate cost. This can be problematic if the noncustodial parent has fewer resources to meet the substantial support costs of an extensive visitation schedule. This would not only be unfair, but would leave the poorer parent with insufficient resources to care for the child in a manner even minimally comparable to that of the wealthier parent. A child should not end up living commensurate with the wealthier custodial parent’s income only half the time, when staying with the wealthier custodial parent. This could be detrimental to the child. Therefore, a trial court may order a custodial parent to pay child support where the circumstances and the best interests of the child warrant it.

            While rejecting the custodial father’s claims as to the meaning of the statute, the appellate court had remanded for an evidentiary hearing, with directions for the circuit court to clearly explain the basis for any support awarded. It was correct in this regard, but the supreme court held that, on remand, the circuit court should also revisit with specificity the issue of what portion of uninsured medical expenses the father should be required to pay.

            The appellate court was, thus, affirmed in part and reversed in part.

________________________________________________________________

THE U.S. SUPREME COURT HAS HELD THAT BEFORE A PERSON CAN BE JAILED FOR NONPAYMENT OF CHILD SUPPORT HE MUST BE GIVEN DUE PROCESS AND IN SOME CASES AN ATTORNEY – IF THE COURT DOES NOT PROVIDE THAT DUE PROCESS AS DEFINED IN THIS CASE

Turner v. Rogers, 131 S. Ct. 2507, 180 L. Ed. 2d 452 (2011) [2011 BL 161240]

If incarcerated for failing to pay child support must have been given due process – notice, due process evidentiary hearing where it must be proven that defendant has ability to pay child support, and counsel. In a civil case, due process does not always involve appointment of counsel.

This is true only if there are procedural safeguards:

These include (1) notice to the defendant that his “ability to pay” is a critical issue in the contempt proceeding; (2) the use of a form (or the equivalent) to elicit relevant financial information from him; (3) an opportunity at the hearing for him to respond to statements and questions about his financial status; and (4) an express finding by the court that the defendant has the ability to pay,

and the opposing counsel (parent) is pro se, then the court is not required to appoint counsel.

 

December 19, 2012

Discovery in misdemeanor cases in Illinois


Discovery in misdeemanor cases in Illinois do NOT follow the Illinois Supreme Court Rules on discovery which only apply to felony cases.

The rules in misdemeanor cases are described in a case called People v. Schmidt, 56 Ill.2d 572 (1974). They required the states attorney to give the defense a 1) witness list, 2) copy of confessions, and 3) any exculpatory evidence (evidence that proves the defendant or suggests the defendant is not guilty).

The defendant is NOT obliged to provide the state anything including witness lists in misdemeanor discovery.  The defendant’s witnesses can decide to refuse to speak to the state’s attorney’s investigators.

There are exceptions, but the state or defendant must ask for additional discovery by motion and have a hearing before the court about this issue.

The only change in the law was in a case called People v. Kladis,  2011 IL 110920 ¶ 23, 355 Ill.Dec. 933, 960 N.E.2d 1104    [#110920, 2011 IL 110920, 2011 Ill. Lexis 2236, 2011 IL 110920] where the court ruled that the state must also provide videos from police cars capturing the incident in discovery.

See this page describing all this in more detail.

http://prosechicago.wordpress.com/criminal-defense-procedures-in-misdemeanor-court/

March 7, 2012

IISBA members retaliate against activists in family court fighting against extortion of family assets by court-appointed attorneys


Read complaint here.

On February 29, 2012 a group of moms and dads who were victims of court ordered extortion of their families appeared to testify before the Illinois House Judiciary I Committee in support of HB 5544, which would set a limit on fees that child representatives and guardian ad litems can bill families for services in divorce cases, when they are court-appointed to represent the minor children.

These moms and dads made compelling testimony that proved that judges were rubber stamping orders to pay these lawyers exorbitant amounts, from $300 to $1200 per hour, amounting to up to around $100,000 per divorce case. These fees which are often one to two times an average family’s yearly income, not including the fees the parents pay each of their own attorneys, cause the corrupt family court judges to ignore the law, 750 ILCS 5-506, that requires them to approve only “reasonable and necessary” fees, and order the families to use the children’s’ college funds to pay the court-appointed attorneys as well as to sell their homes – often making them homeless or end up living in trailer homes or with friends and relatives, to pay these fees.

Surely, this was not the intent of the legislature when they enacted these statutes to look after the “best interest of the children” – notably a term that the Nazis used 60 years ago to take Aryan looking from their parents and place them with good German couples in order to ensure a pure race!

For details of this scheme to rape the estates of families in divorce court to enrich lawyers see the complaint filed with the ARDC, Illinois Supreme Court Chief Justice Kilbride, with the attached copies of the slide show that these activists gave to the Illinois House Judiciary I Committee on February 29, 2012 to document this atrocious, immoral, and illegal scheme supported by the ISBA, whose member testified that they NEED these exorbitant fees and the families should have a penalty that impoverishes them for arguing with each other!

Read complaint here.

February 12, 2012

Illinois Supreme Court motion for supervisory order to force Illinois HFS Child Support Division to hear requests to change child support


Federal and State law, Social Security Title IV-D and 305 ILCS 5/10, require the administrative law courts in the Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services (HFS) hear petitions to change child support by a non-custodial parent or custodial parent. For a summary of these laws see this link here.

The HFS Child Support Division and their Administrative Law courts have been illegally refusing to hear any non-custodial parent’s request for change in child support for 20 years. They do not even have forms for the non-custodial parent to apply for a hearing before the Administrative Court Law Judge or to request a change in child support!  The above codes and statutes require that this be allowed and done. Therefore, their refusal to do their job is being challenged in the courts – see link below.

HFS-CSD directed by Pam Lowery has been refusing to do their job. Non-custodial parents have been illegally forced to pay as much as 110 % of their income for child support and have even been illegally jailed. Even if in arrears a non-custodial parent may not be ordered to pay more than 65 % of his/her income to child support after garnishment for taxes per the federal Consumer Protection Act.

Trial courts lose jurisdiction to hear post-trial requests for change in child support according to these laws and regain it only after the HFS-CSD administrative law court investigates the financial circumstances (with subpoenas to the parents) and holds a hearing before the administrative law judge in their division with the parents present and then makes a recommendation that goes to the Trial Judge. Then the trial judge can rubber-stamp it if the parents agree or hold a trial to determine the appropriate amount of child support if the parents disagree.

See a 383 Motion for Supervisory Order to the Illinois Supreme Court , which purpose is to ask the Court to ORDER the HFS-CSD administrative law courts to do their statutory duty and to order the family court judges to stop holding post-trial hearings on child support until AFTER they receive the recommendations from the HFS-CSD administrative law courts. here

January 25, 2012

Motion for Supervisory Order – Illinois Supreme Court


The reason to file a motion for a supervisory order with the Illinois Supreme Court (IL S Ct) is if a person is unable to file  direct appeal on the issue. For example in a divorce case where the judge endlessly keeps an issue “in reserve” for more than a year, and therefore, there is no final appealable order because all issues are not dealt with, then it is appropriate to file a motion for supervisory order to the IL S Ct in order to ask for an order to force the trial judge to make a decision on the case.

Also see info from the Illinois Pro Bono organization: here

The following is an example of a motion for supervisory order. The sample IL S Ct motion for supervisory order is here.

To file it, if the court is in session you send the original and 9 copies to the IL S Ct in Springfield at their office. If they are not in session and you are in Chicago, you file an original and five copies in the Chicago office of the IL S Ct and then send one copy to each of the four justices outside of Chicago – their local offices. Recently (2013) the IL S Ct made rules on how to E-file. See their web site for updated information.

Included must be notice of service to the judge (who is the respondent) and to the other parties, an order with a place for the judges to circle either “denied” or “granted” and a place to sign it., a verified statement that you are complying with the 20 page limit to the pleading, a cover for the appendix, an affidavit that the documents in the appendix are true and accurate copies, a table of contents with page numbers for the appendix, an affidavit if you are pro se (verified statement if you are an attorney) that you have served notice and the motion to the parties and judges, and a check for $25 dollars.  See IL S Ct rules 383,341-343.

The supporting record must be authenticated by the trial court clerk or verified by affidavit by attorney or  pro se counsel as required in IL S Ct rule
328

January 17, 2012

How to win a legal argument


    The “argument” either orally or in writing in a pleading such as a motion or petition is the manner in which a litigant can win or lose in court. This may seem simple but it is not. There is a lot of confusion and most people think that if a law says something, it must be followed. This is a delusion and is NOT how the law works in the United States.
    The court does not care about the truth or facts. It cares about who convinces them that their argument is correct or the best. It comes down to whoever shouted loud enough, did the best magic act, used the best smoke and mirrors, or denigrated the other side enough so that the judge didn’t listen to them wins.
    First understand that we are the UNITED States of America. There is a concept known as state’s rights.
    Federal law DOES NOT always trump state law. If you have a federal right that is CLEARLY delineated by federal law or the constitution such as the right in a CRIMINAL trial to have a jury decide your fate, then any state law depriving you of that right is unconstitutional and is trumped by your federal right.
    However, federal rights such as the constitutional Fifth and Fourteenth Amendment Due Process right does not always trump state law. For example, if there is a state law that says you have to stop at a stoplight, the federal due process constitutional right is NOT violated if someone doesn’t stop at the stoplight, hits you and the police fail to give them a ticket. There is no federal law that says a person has to stop at a stoplight and no federal law or right that says police must give someone who violates the law a ticket.
    Therefore DO NOT PRESUME YOUR FEDERAL DUE PROCESS RIGHTS ARE VIOLATED WHEN THE STATE COURT OR POLICE DO NOT FOLLOW STATE LAW.
    Next remember that EVERY argument MUST be backed-up by case law that is on point supporting that argument. You should Shephardize your cases. That means look in the ” Shephard’s Citations” volumes and see if there is a more recent case that overturns or that supports the decision in the case you are looking up. This is how you verify the validity of the authority (case law) that you quote. If you don’t know how to use Shephard’s Citations ask a law librarian to teach you.
    If you state an argument but fail to develop it and back it up with case law, the court can THROW OUT that argument for “failure to develop it.”
    If you have an argument where there is NO case law available and this is the FIRST time it is being argued in any court, then this is an ” issue of first impression .” You still have to develop it or the court may throw it out for failure to develop it. You need to review the historical “common law” and then explain the “line of reasoning” including quoting any cases that have a similar line of reasoning although about a different issue. If you say: “I am right because the statute says this,” you will likely lose because you did not develop your argument.
    Laymen think that if a statute says an official “shall” do X, then that doing X is mandatory. You are wrong. The Illinois Supreme Court has ruled that sometimes the word “shall” is interpreted as a discretionary duty. This is what I call “perverted logic.” Then you have to explain, while quoting case law, why the word “shall” in the argument you use that claims that “shall” means the action is mandatory, really is mandatory. In other words you have to explain the issue of “statutory construction” or the line of reasoning from case law that explains when the word “shall” is mandatory and when it is discretionary. Then you have to explain citing case law on the line of argument from other cases that you are using why this line of argument applies to your case. “Statutory construction” is the issue of how you interpret a legal statute written by the legislature. This includes the issues of “legislative intent” which you can find by reading the “legislative record” (the verbatim copy of the arguments of the legislators when the bill was debated before passage). It also includes the issue of “clear language interpretation” where the courts have held in case law that if the language is clear then it should be interpreted clearly (which is open to interpretation as illustrated in above discussion of the word “shall”). This also includes the fact that if two statutes are conflicting and contradictory, then case law says that the statute that is more specific controls.
    Another difficult concept is the fact that criminal law and civil law have DIFFERENT procedures. Look at the Illinois code of civil procedure v. the Illinois Code of Criminal Procedure. Therefore case law concerning civil procedure may not translate into precedent for criminal procedure. The same applies for federal v state laws, codes and rules as well as appellate v. local trial rules and procedures.
    Stare decisis is the principle in law that previous appellate or supreme court decisions are controlling and must be followed, especially if they are long-standing.
    I am developing this article, so the above is introductory, but you get my point. See the code of civil procedure section on “pleadings” posted to the right under “pages” on this blog and read it carefully.

December 9, 2011

Time for Fourth branch of government to clean up corrupt Cook County Courts


When the British government acted like dictators and ignored the laws we had the Boston Tea Party and then the revolutionary war.

 

It is time for a new awakening of the Fourth branch of government – this time to clean up the courts. It is past time to talk the talk -we must walk the walk -no fear – just act! When the judge violates the law – file everything possible in state and federal court (complaint for supervisory order; complaint for mandamus; Section 1983 federal civil rights suit for injunctive relief – justices have immunity from suits for monetary damages but not from suits for injunctive relief or mandamus; Attorney Regulatory Commission Complaint; Judicial Inquiry Board Complaint; Judicial Council complaints; complain to the press; complain to officials in charge of the County or State; complain to your representatives and senators; make a request for impeachment to the speaker of the house; complain to the press, put ALL details of your case on the Internet.

The Declaration of Independence states:

      We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. –That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, –That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed.

But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.

Our right to justice is not something that the judiciary should play with. Our justice system is not a tool of self serving lawyers to use to allow lawyers to take advantage of the misfortunate and victimize them. Our courts are to serve the people and not as a profit center to protect the incomes of lawyers. We the people hereby give notice to the judiciary that you are acting in contempt of the people and that you will refrain from continuing to do so or face the consequences.

For more details see this link: http://www.perkel.com/politics/issues/fourth.htm

October 27, 2011

IL Supreme Court returns father’s parental rights when not informed of case


This decision of the Illinois Supreme Court defines the concept of due diligence in notifying a parent that there is a case where they can lose parental rights. Attempts at service by mail or personal service is NOT enough!

Supreme Court Summaries
Opinions filed October 27, 2011

In re Dar. C., 2011 IL 111083
Appellate citation: No. 4-10-0267 (unpublished order under Supreme Court Rule 23).

CHIEF JUSTICE KILBRIDE delivered the judgment of the court, with opinion.
Justices Thomas, Garman, and Karmeier concurred in the judgment and opinion.
Justice Burke specially concurred, with opinion, joined by Justice Freeman.
Justice Theis specially concurred, with opinion.

In this McLean County case, a father whose parental rights had been terminated on March 7, 2008, challenged that result for lack of personal jurisdiction. Under the Code of Civil Procedure, he filed a petition for relief from that judgment, claiming that, under the Juvenile Court Act of 1987, it was improper to serve him only by publication in Bloomington after attempts at personal service or service by certified mail were unsuccessful. Statute requires a “diligent inquiry” before a parent may be served by publication. The failed attempts had been based on potential addresses obtained through the use of computerized database searches. The State simply mailed letters but made no visits to the addresses to seek further information. The appellate court affirmed the termination order.
The termination took place in proceedings that began pursuant to 2006 charges that the respondent father’s two minor children, who were living with their mother, were neglected. It was known that the mother was receiving Social Security benefits, but no effort was made to determine their source or to obtain a release of Social Security information. Later that same year, a separate proceeding to collect child support from the father was initiated by a different attorney in the same prosecutor’s office, with the complaint being signed by a caseworker in the termination proceeding. In the collection matter, the father’s birth date, Social Security number and physical description were listed. The State indicated that it had located the respondent at a treatment center in Lake County and obtained his consent for entry of a child support order using the funds from his social security disability benefits.
In this decision, the supreme court said that “the State’s ability to obtain respondent’s contact information in the separate child support action casts significant doubt on the diligence of the State’s inquiry into respondent’s location in the termination proceedings” and that “relying on a computerized database search of a parent’s name while ignoring, or otherwise not investigating, other potentially useful information, does not constitute a diligent inquiry.” These circumstances indicate that there was a lack of personal jurisdiction over the father in attempting to serve him by publication on these facts. The appellate court was reversed and the termination of the father’s rights concerning his children was vacated as void. The cause was remanded to the circuit court for further proceedings.

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