October 22, 2003 |
John Allen Muhammad's request that he be allowed to serve as his own attorney was an uncommon legal move. But under the 6th Amendment, criminal defendants have the right to represent themselves -- a right solidified by a 1975 Supreme Court ruling that set a high bar for judges to turn down such requests.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
November 10, 1986
U.S. Attorney Bonner goes his boss, Atty. Gen. Edwin Meese III, one better in suggesting only those who can afford it are entitled to protection of the Sixth Amendment and a litmus test for the lawyers of those who can't. LOUIS M. ST. MARTIN Pomona
July 22, 1990
Robert W. Stewart quotes Dannemeyer's press secretary, Paul Mero, as saying, "To us, it's those who believe in a God against those who don't." This echoes what Dannemeyer wrote in a Times Op-Ed piece on Nov. 8, 1981: "The First Amendment provides freedom for religion. The modern interpretation for absolute freedom from religion is erroneous and logically impossible." And what the head of his party, then-Vice President George Bush, told a Chicago airport press conference in August, 1987: "I don't know that atheists should be considered as citizens, nor should they be considered as patriots.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 2, 1992
Re Dist. Atty. Michael R. Capizzi on decriminalizing narcotics: "Does not the First Amendment allow ads and marketing?" he asks. No, Mr. Capizzi, it does not. It allows freedom to speak against the government in word or print. Absence of that right allows, as in Russia under communism, dissidents to be jailed, exiled to Siberia, or to vanish forever. Also, Mr. Capizzi, it is not the Miranda rule that gives suspects the right to legal counsel, it is the Sixth Amendment, which orders a defense counsel.
June 28, 1990 |
Victims in child abuse cases may testify without actually appearing in court and directly confronting those they accuse, the Supreme Court ruled Wednesday, upholding laws in at least 25 states--including California--designed to protect child witnesses from trauma.
June 19, 1990 |
Police officers may ask a drunk-driving suspect to answer routine questions and videotape his slurred responses without warning him of his constitutional right to remain silent, the Supreme Court said Monday. The 8-1 decision creates an exception to the Miranda doctrine for "routine booking questions" at a police station. The ruling also upholds the growing use by the police of videotape, which can be a powerful weapon for prosecutors.