Pro Se Chicago's Weblog

November 28, 2014

Why grand juries and trials so easily fixed and manipulated by attorneys


What is a grand jury, how does it work, and what is it’s purpose?

A grand jury is a group of citizens brought together to consider evidence in order to determine only one thing – Is there probable cause to charge a person with a crime? It is supposed to be a safeguard against the state bringing outrageous charges against innocent people for the purpose of harassment, but it has turned into a joke as the jurors don’t understand what they are doing, what they can do, the purpose of the grand jury, and how grand juries are manipulated which is clearly and in great detail explained in the link to an article available on line in this post.

Probable cause is not proof of innocence or guilt. It is just evidence that may be hearsay or untrue, suggesting a person committed a crime. It has to include all the elements of a crime. (For example: Elements of trespass to state supported land are that a person was told to leave and did not and that their actions interrupted a citizen’s use of services in the state owned building.)

Probable cause evidence is presented to the grand jury solely by the prosecutor in a closed secret hearing. Usually the defendant is not called as a witness nor is he or she aware that a grand jury has been called in their  case and only the most minimal amount of evidence, including hearsay allegations without proof, are presented to the grand jury.

The grand jury has the right to call witnesses and question witnesses, but they never do, as they are urged to work quickly, usually hearing a case in a minute or two at the most and their instructions are rarely explained to them in a clear unhurried fashion.

The defense has no rights in a grand jury, except that the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that the prosecutor may not strike foul blows by giving knowingly false information or exluding such overwhelming exculpatory evidence that there is no way a grand jury would find probable cause. (Like excluding the video in the Garner case).

There is no double jeopardy with a grand jury.  That means the prosecutor may call a new grand jury and try to get an indictment again, as long as it is within the statute of limitations for the crime.

This article explains in great detail why confirmatory bias taints particularly one-sided presentations like the Brown case to the grand jury, as well as trials if they are not extremely fair, and even if they are “fair.” One of the most striking findings in emotional cases is that the jury remembers what is said first no matter what else is said and may blank out all other testimony. There are psychological reasons for this fact.

This is why grand juries must be given evidence only by special prosecutors when the defendants are people who the state’s attorney interacts with daily – like police & judges. This is why police are almost never successfully indicted. Read it carefully. Think of laws that must be changed in order to firmly control this bias. 

Click here to read article: Memo of Law – Confirmatory Bias

SUMMARY OF ARTICLE

Confirmation bias, also called myside bias, is the tendency to search for, interpret, or prioritize information in a way that confirms one’s beliefs or hypotheses. It is a type of cognitive bias and a systematic error of inductive reasoning. People display this bias when they gather or remember information selectively, or when they interpret it in a biased way. The effect is stronger for emotionally charged issues and for deeply entrenched beliefs. People also tend to interpret ambiguous evidence as supporting their existing position. Biased search, interpretation and memory have been invoked to explain attitude polarization (when a disagreement becomes more extreme even though the different parties are exposed to the same evidence), belief perseverance (when beliefs persist after the evidence for them is shown to be false), the irrational primacy effect (a greater reliance on information encountered early in a series) and illusory correlation (when people falsely perceive an association between two events or situations)

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.

 

July 31, 2014

When opposing counsel lie to the court


You can file a Petition for adjudiction of criminal contempt against the attorney whether the case is in the local court or the appellate court. You should attach an affidavit stating that you have reviewed the transcripts or motion wherein the false statement was made. You should swear that the statement was false and how it was false You can ask the court to hold the attorney in contempt for fraud upon the court and sentence him for criminal contempt after a trial. If the court holds the attorney in contempt for fraud, then you can file with the ARDC and ask for the attorney to be disbarred. ARDC = Attorney Regulatory and Disciplinary Commission.

A petition is written just like a motion, but it is a collateral proceeding and not part of the case. It should be given a separate case number by the clerk.

Opposing counsel is an officer of the court. Attorneys have a code of conduct under IL Supreme Court Rules that prevent them from making false statements. They can be disbarred and should be.

Criminal contempt is when someone makes  false statements or commits fraud upon the court. Criminal contempt cannot be purged. As those charged with crimes have a 5th Amendment right to remain silent they can not be ordered to show cause as in a civil contempt case where someone refuses to obey an order.  Therefore you must file a Petition for Adjudication of Criminal Contempt instead of a Motion for Rule to Show Cause as you would with civil contempt. Criminal contempt is an act that

Civil  contempt is when you disobey an order and you hold the keys to the jail as you can expunge the order to jail you if you comply with the order such as pay child support or perform an act ordered by the judge. This is not an attempt to embarrass the court or bring the court into disrepute.

The following contains extensive important case law relevant to above and your cases.

CONTEMPT OF COURT (CIVIL V CRIMINAL) 

Circle Management, LLC., v. Olivier, 378 Ill.App.3d 601, 317 Ill.Dec. 555, 882 N.E.2d 129 (2007) [Ill.App. 1st Dist]

Major controlling case with amici including Legal Assistance Foundation of Metropolitan Chicago (LAF), the Lawyer’s Committee for Better housing (LCBH), Cabrini-Green legal Aid (CGLA) and the Northwestern University School of Law Bluhm Legal Clinic (Bluhm Clinic).

         

Courts have inherent authority to punish a party for contempt. See People v. Warren, 173 Ill.2d 348, 370, 219 Ill.Dec. 533, 671 N.E.2d 700 (1996) (“The power to punish for contempt does not depend on constitutional or legislative grant”) [further citations omitted]

“Contempt of court has been defined as any act that is calculated to embarrass, hinder, or obstruct a court in the administration of justice, or that is calculated to lessen its authority or dignity.” Levaccare v. Levaccare, 376 Ill.App.3d 503, 508, 315 Ill.Dec. 280, 876 N.E.2d 280 (2007), quoting People v. Budzynski, 333 Ill.App.3d 433, 438, 266 Ill.Dec. 713, 775 N.E.2d 275 (2002).

Criminal contempt sanctions are punitive in nature and require a finding that the contemptuous conduct was willful. People v. Minor, 281 Ill.App.3d 568, 574, 217 Ill.Dec. 449, 667 N.E.2d 538 (1996); People v. Ernest, 141 Ill.2d 412, 422, 152 Ill.Dec. 544, 566 N.E.2d 231 (1990).

Civil contempt is prospective in nature, and is “designed to compel future compliance with a court order.” Emery, 374 Ill.App.3d at 977, 313 Ill.Dec. 502, 872 N.E.2d 485, quoting In re Marriage of Sharp, 369 Ill.App.3d 271, 279, 307 Ill.Dec. 885, 869 N.E.2d 539 (2006).

Although a court may enforce an order to pay money through contempt, this power is “limited to cases of willful refusal to obey the court’s order.” In re Marriage of Logston, 103 Ill.2d 266, 285, 82 Ill.Dec. 633, 469 N.E.2d 167 (1984).

“’It is not a contempt of court to fail to pay money which one neither has nor can obtain and which he has not causelessly either put out of his hands or failed to receive.’” Shapiro v. Shapiro, 113 Ill.App.2d 374, 388, 252 N.E.2d 93 (1969), quoting White v. Adolph, 305 Ill.App.76, 79, 26 N.E.2d 993 (1940)

Trial courts have inherent authority to impose sanctions against a party that fails to abide by valid court orders. Sander v. Dow Chemical Co., 166 Ill.2d 48, 67, 209 Ill.Dec. 623, 651 N.E.2d 1071 (1995); Smith v. City of Chicago, 299 Ill.App.3d 1048, 1054, 234 Ill.Dec. 108, 702 N.E.2d 274 (1998).

FRAUD – NOT JUST FALSE STATEMENT, BUT ALSO SUPPRESSION OF THE TRUTH

It is also clear and well-settled Illinois law that any attempt to commit “fraud upon the court” vitiates the entire proceeding. People v. Sterling, 357 Ill. 354; 192 N.E. 229 (1934) (“The maxim that fraud vitiates every transaction into which it enters applies to judgments as well as to contracts and other transactions.”); Moore v. Sievers, 336 Ill. 316; 168 N.E. 259 (1929) (“The maxim that fraud vitiates every transaction into which it enters …”); In re Village of Willowbrook, 37 Ill.App.2d 393 (1962) (“It is axiomatic that fraud vitiates everything.”); Dunham v. Dunham, 57 Ill.App. 475 (1894), affirmed 162 Ill. 589 (1896); Skelly Oil Co. v. Universal Oil Products Co., 338 Ill.App. 79, 86 N.E.2d 875, 883-4 (1949); Stasel v. The American Home Security Corporation, 362 Ill. 350; 199 N.E. 798 (1935).

Fraud maybe inferred from nature of acts complained of, individual and collective interest of alleged conspirators, situation, intimacy, and relation of parties at time of commission of acts, and generally all circumstances preceding and attending culmination of claimed conspiracy Illinois Rockford Corp. V. Kulp, 1968, 242 N.E. 2d 228, 41 ILL. 2d 215. “The Court has broadly defined fraud as any conduct calculated to deceive, whether it be by direct falsehood or by innuendo, by speech or silence, by word of mouth, by look, or by gesture. Fraud includes the suppression of the truth, as well as the presentation of false information. (In re Witt (1991) 145 Ill.2d 380, 583 N.E.2d 526, 531, 164 Ill. Dec. 610).” See also In re Frederick Edward Strufe, Disciplinary case no. 93 SH 100 where the Court stated that “Fraud has been broadly defined as anything calculated to deceive.” “Fraud upon the court” has been defined by the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals to “embrace that species of fraud which does, or attempts to, defile the court itself, or is a fraud perpetrated by officers of the court so that the judicial machinery cannot perform in the usual manner its impartial task of adjudging cases that are presented for adjudication.” Kenner v. C.I.R., 387 F.3d 689 (1968); 7 Moore’s Federal Practice, 2d ed., p. 512, ¶ 60.23. The 7th Circuit further stated “a decision produced by fraud upon the court is not in essence a decision at all, and never becomes final.”

Fraud does not always divest court of jurisdiction and cause orders to be void. They however would be voidable.

 

Misrepresentation of neglect in petition for wardship did not void jurisdiction.

 

An order is rendered void only by lack of jurisdiction, not by error or impropriety. (p. 377)

 

Only fraud that confers only colorable jurisdiction upon court renders judgment void; fraud that occurs after court’s valid

 

Fraud can render a judgment void, but not all fraud can do so. (Johnson v. Hawkins (1972), 4 Ill.App.3d 29, 32, 280 N.E.2d 291.) There is a difference between fraud that confers only colorable jurisdiction upon the court, and fraud that occurs after the court’s valid acquisition of jurisdiction; only the former type of fraud will render a judgment void. (Schwarz v. Schwarz (1963), 27 Ill.2d 140, 144-45, 188 N.E.2d 673.) The latter type of fraud, fraud that occurs after jurisdiction has been acquired, will render the court’s  order voidable, but not void for lack of jurisdiction. (Vulcan Materials Co.  v. Bee Construction, 96 Ill.2d at 165, 70 Ill.Dec. 465, 449 N.E.2d 812; In re Marriage of Noble (1989), 192 Ill.App.3d 501, 509, 139 Ill.Dec. 133, 548 N.E.2d 518; James v. Chicago Transit Authority (1976), 42 Ill.App.3d 1033, 1034-35, 1 Ill.Dec. 552, 356 N.E.2d 834; Johnson v. Hawkins, 4 Ill.App.3d at 32, 280 N.E.2d 291.) Fraudulent concealment, for example, renders a court’s orders voidable, not void. In re Application of County Treasurer (1990), 194 Ill.App.3d 721, 726, 141 Ill.Dec. 350, 551 N.E.2d 343.

 

Can file civil rights suit against lawyer when they lie to the court and harm you

In ?  Vigus v. O’Bannon, 1886 N.E. 788, 118 Ill. 334; Hazelton v. Carolus, 1907 132 Ill. App. 512; Carter v. Mueller 457 N.E. 2d 1335 Ill. App. 1 Dist. 1983, The Supreme court has held that: “The elements of a cause of action for fraudulent misrepresentation (sometimes referred to as “(fraud and deceit)”are: (1) False statement of material fact; (2) known or believed to be false by the party making it; (3) intent to induce the other party to act; (4) action by the other party in reliance on the truth of the statement; and (5) damage to the other party resulting from such reliance. ______________, ____ U.S. _____ (_?_)

_____? citation_______Scott, 377 Mass. 364, 386 N.E. 2d 218, 220 (1979) See Lopez-Alexander, Unreported Order No. 85-279 (Colo. May 3, 1985) (Judge removed for, inter alia, a persistent pattern of abuse of the contempt power. The Mayor of Denver accepted the findings of the Denver County Court Judicial Qualification Commission that the judge’s conduct could not be characterized as mere mistakes or errors of law and that the conduct constituted willful misconduct in office and conduct prejudicial to the administration of justice that brings the judicial office into disrepute). Canon Ethics where there is a pattern of disregard or indifference, which warrant discipline.

Section 1983 of U.S.C.S. contemplates the depravation of Civil Rights through the Unconstitutional Application of a Law by conspiracy or otherwise. Mansell v. Saunders (CA 5 F 1A) 372 F 573, especially if the conspiracy was actually carried into effect, where an action is for a conspiracy to interfere with Civil Rights under 42 U.S.C.S. 1985 (3), or for the depravation of such rights under 42 U.S.C.S. 1983, if the conspiracy was actually carried into effect and plaintiff was thereby deprived of any rights, privileges, or immunities secured by the United States Constitution and Laws, the gist of the action maybe treated as one for the depravation of rights under 42 U.S.C.S. 1983, Lewis v. Brautigam (CA 5 F 1a) 227 F 2d 124, 55 ALR 2d 505, John W. Strong, 185, 777-78 (4 th ed. 1992).

Properly alleged facts within an affidavit that are not contradicted by counter affidavit are taken as true, despite the existence of contrary averments in the adverse party’s pleadings. Professional Group Travel, Ltd. v. Professional Seminar Consultants Inc., 136 ILL App 3d 1084, 483 N.E. 2d 1291; Buzzard v. Bolger, 117 ILL App 3d 887, 453 N.E. 2d 1129 et al.

i.e. even if false statements, unless you have affidavits that they are false, the statement is taken as true

FRAUD BY STATE IN CRIMINAL CASE – FALSE STATEMENTS TO CRIMINAL COURT

 

Where the public policy of the State of Illinois is violated, the order is void, Martin-Tregona v. Roderick, 29 Ill.App.3d 553, 331 N.E.2d 100 (1st Dist. 1975).

“Fraud upon the court” makes void the orders and judgments of that court. It is clear and well-settled law that any attempt to commit “fraud upon the court” vitiates the entire proceeding. People v. Sterling, 357 Ill. 354, 192 N.E. 229 (1934)

To apprehend a person on a sham or pretextual charge is so dangerous to interest of privacy and personal security as to call into play the exclusionary rule … The officer’s subjective intent and beliefs are quite crucial … If sham arrest operating under the impression that an arrest for offense count not stand up – use exclusionary rule …arrest must have a good faith probable cause  Carroll v. United States 267 U.S. 132, 156, 69 L.Ed. 543, 45 S.Ct 280 (1925); Moss v. Cox, 311 F.Supp. 1245, 1252 (ED VA 1970)

Due Process Defense 97 ALR Fed. 273

January 15, 2013

Free legal assistance for those who are wrongfully convicted or coerced to falsely plea guilty


There is no guarantee you will be able to find a lawyer to help you, but here are the places you can look.  You will have to make appointments by phone and then go to them.  There will be lots of appointments and lots of rejections before  you are likely to find someone to help you, but don’t give up!

Prepare a SHORT document where you write about your case and send it or deliver it to the attorneys or law clinics you made appointments with before you go to your appointments – with a cover letter that is a few sentences saying this is what you are doing.

Write a one to two page story about your case and attach any evidence that proves you are innocent (affidavits or letters from witnesses or whatever else you have).  Give the details of what you were accused of and what you confessed to and pled  guilty to.  Write a paragraph as to why you pled guilty when you didn’t do it.  Write a paragraph about what you plan on doing in life and how the conviction is preventing  you from accomplishing your goals.  Write a paragraph about what the state’s witnesses said that caused you to be convicted and why you think they were motivated to lie.  Give this to each of the places you get an appointment BEFORE you go to the appointment.

Contact law school clinics where they have lawyers who represent indigent clients.  They all don’t do this automatically and they are limited by funding from grants and government. etc.  But call each one and pound the pavement meeting with them after making appointments and showing them the evidence that proves you are innocent. This is NOT an easy task.

http://www.cookcountyclerkofcourt.org/?section=LinksPage&LinksPage=Law_Schools

You should also apply for executive clemency from the parole board – which reviews your case and recommends to the Governor if you should be granted a pardon.  Make sure you answer the above questions in your written application. The Gov. can overturn any conviction with a pardon.  It would be better if you could find witnesses who can prove your innocence and get a signed affidavit from them that would be signed by a notary.  Remember that letters are hearsay and not admissible in court.  If you have witnesses that sign affidavits that state they are willing to testify to what they wrote in their affidavits that would be best.

http://www2.illinois.gov/PRB/Pages/prbexclemex.aspx

This page  contains links to free legal services.

http://www.cookcountyclerkofcourt.org/?section=SERVRESPage&SERVRESPage=7020

It will be tough finding someone to help you.

Good luck!  Work hard pounding the pavement going to appointments and never give up!

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