Wednesday, June 29, 2022

9:00 AM-6:00 PM

  • Government/Non-Profit Member $150.00
  • Judge Member $0.00
  • LBA Solo Section $150.00
  • LBA YLS Member $150.00
  • Member $280.00
  • Non-Member $560.00
  • Paralegal Member $155.00
  • Sustaining Member $250.00

June 28, 2022 11:00 PM

Course Description

This class will remind the lawyer about the true essence of being an attorney. We go back in time as review the most significant, precedent-setting, cultural-impacting cases over the last several millennia. We look at the trial strategies, the issues involved, the outcomes, and how those cases can make you a better lawyer today.

Timed Agenda (eastern time)

9:00am – 9:10am – Introduction

9:10am - 10:30am – Trials of Socrates

While the trial Socrates happened well before the advent of Instagram, and the tweets from that time period are somewhat limited, the impact on the legal system was and continues to be significant. Socrates was on trial for corrupting the minds of the youth. Which is rather ironic because most youth think the word revolves around them. In this class, we will learn the importance of public trials, trials by jury, the importance of academic freedom and controlling freedom of thought. This class will prove one thing – the more things change, the more they stay the same.

  • Socrates Trial
    • Charges Asebeia against Athens
    • Corruption of the youth
      • The evidence
      • The testimony
      • The jury
      • The verdict
    • Lasting legacy
      • Separation of church and state
      • Academic freedom
      • Freedom of thought
      • Jury trials

10:30am – 11:30am - Marbury v. Madison and the Judicial Power Grab

A nation in its infancy faced the first true test of its laws. President Adams, as one of his last official duties, appointed William Marbury as a justice of the peace. Even though the Senate quickly confirmed the appointment, Adams failed to have the appointment delivered. The incoming president, Thomas Jefferson, no fan of John Adams, refused to have the appointment delivered. And so Marbury sued the new Secretary of State James Madison, seeking a mandamus compelling him to deliver the appointment. A young nation’s laws hung in the balance. This class looks at the arguments that were made, the strategies, and the ramifications today of the holding in this landmark case.

  • Facts of Marbury v. Madison
    • The players
      • Chief Justice John Marshall
      • James Markham Marshall
      • President Adams
      • President Jefferson
      • James Madison
      • William Marbury
  • Packing the courts with ani-Jeffersonians
  • The Judiciary Act of 1789 and the right to mandamus
    • Right to mandamus
    • Judiciary Act of 1789, Section 13
    • Article III, section 2, clause 2 of U.S. Constitution
  • The decision
    • Did Marbury state a claim?
    • Was there a remedy?
    • Could the SC legally issue it?
  • Judicial review
    • Federalist papers
    • Other approaches
  • The minority report
    • The legacy of Marbury v. Madison

11:30am – 11:40am – Break


11:40am – 1:00pm - Leopold and Loeb – Defending the Imperfect Crime

Two wealthy students sought to commit the perfect crime. They kidnapped and murdered 14 year-old Bobby Franks in Chicago. Newspapers called it “the crime of the century.” The problem with the perfect nature of this crime is that Leopold dropped his glasses where the body was dumped. Arguing the case for the defendants was Clarence Darrow. This case transformed closing arguments. Darrow delivered a masterpiece that allowed his clients to avoid death row. This class will examine the mechanics of a masterful closing argument

  • Facts of State v. Leopold and Loeb
  • The players
    • Nathan Freudenthal Leopold, Jr.
    • Richard Albert Loeb
    • Bobby Franks
    • Clarence Darrow
    • The investigation
  • The trial
    • Strategy to not plead insanity
    • Case to the court
  • Closing Argument and the verdict
  • Supreme Court cases on capital punishment
    • Wilkerson v. Utah
    • In re Kemmier
    • Hall v. Florida
    • Glossip v. Gross
    • Hurst v. Florida
    • Madison v. Alabama
    • Bucklew v. Precythe

1:00pm – 1:30pm – Lunch

1:30pm – 2:30pm – Scopes Monkey Trial: Litigating Counter-cultural cases

Clarence Darrow. William Jennings Bryant. WGN. This case was the first true trial of the century. The law would never be the same. A high school teacher was indicted for teaching evolution at the local high school in defiance of a state law. And the entire nation listened in as WGN broadcasted the proceedings.

The trial climaxed when Clarence Darrow called the opposing lawyer to the stand, a three-time democratic nominee for president. This class will analyze how to litigate counter-cultural cases and review the lasting impact of the Scopes Trial today.

  • Facts
  • Butler Act
  • Set-up lawsuit
  • The problem – no one actually taught evolution
  • The main players
    • Clarence Darrow
    • William Jennings Bryan
  • The indictment
  • The media – WGN
  • Motion to dismiss
  • The evidence
  • Expert witnesses
  • Fact witnesses
  • Calling Bryan to the stand
  • Verdict and appeal
  • Ethical violations and Aftermath
    • Lying to the court
    • Conflict of interest towards client
    • Taking a case/making decisions contrary to interests of client
    • Third party payments
  • Tips for litigating Counter-cultural cases

2:30pm – 3:50pm - State v. OJ Simpson

White Ford Bronco Chase. Gloves not quite the right size. A judge who loved the spotlight. And let’s not forget a defendant who is best known for his Academy award winning performances in the Naked Gun trilogy (he was robbed!)(oh, he also had a Heisman trophy in his bedroom closet). This case transformed the way courts are viewed by the public. This class studies how this case was litigated, and what this means to our legal system today.

  • Facts of People of the State of California v. Orenthal James Simpson
  • The players
    • O.J. Simpson
    • Al Cowlings
    • Robert Shapiro
    • Johnnie Cochran
    • F. Lee Baily
    • Alan Dershowitz
    • Robert Kardashian
    • Marcia Clark
    • Christopher Darden
    • Mark Fuhrman
    • Judge Lance Ito
  • Marital Abuse
  • The murder
  • The arrest
  • The timeline
  • Preliminary hearing
  • Trial
  • Jury pool
  • Prosecution’s theory
  • Defense case
  • The DNA evidence
  • The verdict and the legacy of the OJ Simpson case

3:50pm – 4:00pm – Break

4:00pm – 6:00pm – Darwinian Awards (Ethics)

By reviewing the mistakes other lawyers have made, from advising clients to put a sign up in their yard announcing illegal activity was going on inside the house, to lawyers getting opposing counsel drunk just to score some points with the jury, this class hands out the Darwinian Awards. Charles Darwin had a theory that only the fittest survive. Well … you can be among the fittest by adjusting your behavior to not match these lawyers.

  • Review of Model Rules 1.1, 1.2, 1.3, 1.4, 1.5, 1.6, 1.7, 1.8, 1.15, 3.3, 3.5, 3.6, 4.1, 7.1, 7.3, 8.3, 8.4
  • The Darwinian Award for Stumbling out of the Gate: In re Nadler, Supreme Court of New Jersey, Case no. 083624, March 13, 2020 (lying on resume, suspended)
  • The Darwinian Award for Picking the Wrong Profession (should have gone MMA!): In re: Cherkasky, N.Y. Supreme Court, Case No. M-3831, March 10, 2020.
  • The Darwinian Award for Best Client Story: Tom Griffith (client told judge he must be having sex with the prosecutor and be a member of KKK while lawyer smirks in disbelief)
  • The Darwinian Award for acting like a toddler: In re Baker (judge made lawyer write sentences for throwing a tantrum in court).
  • The Darwinian Award for impersonating Dr. Who: (in college admissions scandal case, prosecutors claimed not to possess “mental telepathy or time travel and thus cannot disclose witness statements before the witnesses make them.”
  • The Darwinian Award for mishandling client’s money: In re Hartly (Fl Supreme Court) (disbarred attorney for using client moneys to fund strip club)
  • The Darwinian Award for Judicial Jealousy: In re: Michael Peterson (attorney accused of forging judges signature on order)
  • The Darwinian Award for getting too Excited: n re Felix Anthony Dejean IV, case no. 16-DB-069 (chest bumping opposing counsel)
  • The Darwinian Award for Creativity in Argument: Pi-Net International Inc. v. JPMorgan Chase (Attorney filed brief in excess of 14,000 words by deleting spaces).
  • The Darwinian Award for Handling Opposing Counsel: In re: Quitschau, case no. 2017PR00084 (Attorney created fake dating profile for opposing counsel)
  • The Darwinian Award for Poor Client Relations: In re Benbow, (attorney and client caught in a sex act on videotape at courtroom)

6:00pm – The End

Speaker: Joel Oster, Comedian of Law

Joel is a seasoned constitutional attorney and regular speaker to attorneys and non-attorneys alike. He represented the town of Greece, New York in the landmark constitutional case Galloway v. Greece. Joel argued the case before the United States District Court for the Western District of New York and the Second Circuit, and he was part of the legal team presenting the case to the United States Supreme Court.

Oster regularly litigates First Amendment issues. As lead counsel in Freedom from Religion Foundation v. Obama, Oster skillfully defended the constitutionality of the National Day of Prayer against an Establishment Clause challenge. Before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 8th Circuit, he successfully defended the right of an organization to have a pro-life specialty license plate in Missouri in Roach v. Stouffer. In Wigg v. Sioux Falls School District, he successfully represented an elementary school teacher in obtaining equal access to school facilities. Oster has defended various churches based on the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act, against discriminatory zoning codes and regulations. Likewise, he has defended various individuals, corporations, and political committees against discriminatory and unconstitutional campaign finance regulations.

Oster earned his J.D. in 1997 from the University of Kansas School of Law. He is admitted to the bar in Kansas, Missouri, Florida, and numerous federal courts.

Cancellation Policy: All cancellations must be received by the LBA 24 hours in advance to receive a credit or refund. Substitutes will be allowed. This is a LIVE program and only accredited for a live program. Any post-event recordings/replays will be subject to the On-Demand fee(s). User-error technology issues do not qualify for a refund.


Credit Status: Approved
  • General (5)
  • Ethics (2)