Tuesday, February 12, 2008

People v. Bonnetta (Cal. Ct. App. - Nov. 15, 2007)

A lazy day for the Ninth Circuit and the California Court of Appeal today. Nothing at all from the latter -- it's Lincoln's Birthday, after all. And, from the Ninth Circuit, only this single sentence, in which the panel affirms for the reasons already expressed in the district court's published opinion.

So I figured I'd go back and briefly mention a very good opinion which I didn't have the opportunity to discuss late last year. Which is a classic example of a judge being bound by precedent and not being very happy about it.

When that happens, you can't do any better than Justice Richmann does here. It's a wonderful, wonderful opinion. Exactly what you want to say in this setting. "Yes, I'm doing what I need to do. But, really. This is a silly rule. And the California Supreme Court and/or Legislature should definitely change it."

Definitely take a look at this one the next time you're obliged, as a court, to do something that doesn't make any sense. This is the perfect way to do it and yet redeem yourself. As well as to serve the public interest.

It's extremely well done.