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Author Archives: Paul Fletcher

Pants on fire (access required)

The other day in Miami, a criminal defense lawyer was starting his closing argument when his trousers began smoking, then burst into flames. He was defending an arson case. Stephen Gutierrez ran out of the courtroom, then returned to finish ...

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Ready to launch (access required)

Imagine heading out for a drive – a trip to the store or the cleaners, and the next thing you know, you’re on the roof of a house. It happened in Winston-Salem on Dec. 30. The Associated Press reported that ...

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War Story: When twins go bad (access required)

Before joining Virginia Lawyers Weekly in 1988, I practiced law in Southwest Virginia for about three years. Like many rookie lawyers, I got a lot of court-appointed criminal work. I handled a jury trial for one of my court-appointed clients ...

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Watch your mouth (access required)

The language of law is rich and varied. Anyone who goes to law school learns a whole new vocabulary. And words, especially in statutes, are open to different meanings and interpretations. But are they open to different pronunciations? Not so ...

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Nothing could be finer

For a month now, I’ve been working at North Carolina and South Carolina Lawyers Weekly. I think it’s time for a proper introduction. I’m a neighbor one state to the north. For the past 27 years, I’ve served as publisher ...

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Fakin’ it (access required)

A woman spent near­ly 10 years posing as a lawyer in a rural Pennsylvania county, handling estates work, despite the fact she never went to law school. She was a partner at a law firm, making a $100,000 buy-in about ...

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