Van Ness’ courtroom highlights |

Van Ness’ courtroom highlights

– “Mommy, is the army invading us?” asked by an 8-year old girl when a Huey helicopter loaded with DEA agents swooped in on their house to check out the marijuana growing in her father’s garden was enough to convince the Court of Appeals that their privacy was invaded. The judge tossed out the father’s 7-year prison sentence. Seven was also the number of school-age children he had in the house, which might explain his need for Mother Mary in the first place.- “It must have been the birthday cake our business rival brought over to the house,” was successfully used in Elko, Nev., to defend a long-distance truck driver accused of violating probation by going off the meter when tested for marijuana and “speed.”- An amateur marijuana grower from Eastern Washington was accused of stealing $500,000 of excavating equipment in Colorado to be used for digging underground bunkers for the cultivation of marijuana and storage of (large) weapons. Most of the stolen equipment was found on his farm, and his own son and the real ringleader testified that it was all his idea. The tide turned when I asked the druggie teenage son how old he was. Although he struggled for several minutes, he just couldn’t figure it out. The real ringleader lost all credibility with the jury when he got stuck trying to count the number of times he’d been convicted of a felony. He was only off by five.- Although there was no alcohol test, a lady who was indisputably acting very impaired was arrested for Driving While Ability Impaired. It took just a few witnesses to convince the judge that “impaired” was the way she acted all the time, and that drugs or alcohol had nothing to do with it. She was acquitted.

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