Oregon State Bar Bulletin — DECEMBER 2015


Stopping Gang Member for Jaywalking

The October 2015 issue of the Oregon State Bar Bulletincontains a “Parting Thoughts” article by Cody Berne entitled “Don’t Take Your Guns to Town.”

Berne refers to State v. Jimenez, which allegedly started when Joseph Jimenez, an admitted gang member, was stopped by a state trooper for failure to observe a “Don’t Walk” signal.

Really? When in this fiscally challenged environment, when the head of the State Police says on television that speeders on the freeway will not be stopped unless they are going more than 85 miles per hour, does a state trooper stop someone for crossing the street against a “Don’t Walk” signal? Jimenez was stopped because he was a known gang member. The “Don’t Walk” excuse is a charade.

Courts are not stupid. Perhaps if law enforcement officers told the truth, they would receive more beneficial treatment from the courts.

Peter M. Appleton, Salem


Worth Consideration — If It Works

Thank you for Helen Hierschbiel‘s fine article on ownership of law firms by other professionals, investors and others. (“The Wave of the Future?”, November 2015). I am very concerned about law firms being owned by nonprofessional investors unrestrained by our ethical rules. It seems to me that employee lawyers would be constantly faced with demands to maximize profits (even more so than now) at the expense of strict adherence to ethical requirements.

But since this change has taken place in other jurisdictions, perhaps there is evidence that non-lawyer ownership has improved the delivery of legal services to the public. Is there any reason to believe that the change has extended access to the poor and middle class in Australia or in the U.K.? Has it had any discernible impact on convenience and delivery of legal services at all? How do lawyers in those places view the rule change? Is it limited to lawyers going into partnership with accountants and financial planners? Or are firms like Walmart and CVS sta1iing on site law offices staffed by law firms owned in part by the retailer?

We are fortunate that we can have the benefit of others’ experience before making such a major change. If it does make access measurably better, it is worth investigating.

Charles R. Williamson, Portland


We Love Letters

The Bulletin welcomes letters. In general, letters should pertain to recent articles, columns or other letters and should be limited to 250 words. Other things to keep in mind:

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Send letters to: Editor, OSB Bulletin, P.O. Box 231935, Tigard, OR 97281.



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