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  1.    #1  
    I know somebody mentioned this, but I'm thinking the Treo 600 camera may be an issue for attorneys. I know for me, (after a year of practice) I will be spending some time at the federal courthouse working for a District Judge. Cameras are not allowed in our courthouse at all (recording devices of any kind are also banned.) I'm not sure if this will be an issue.

    I've seen people asked if their Palms could record, and I've seen a lot of people bringing in Pocket PCs, and I know they can record. It is hard for me to know if the CSOs (court security) will make an issue of it. I guess as a court employee, a note from the Judge will suffice... but as an attorney coming in for a hearing, I can imagine the CSOs will not be as accommodating. Check your treo at the door?

    For my $0.02, I'd really not have to mess with the camera.

    (Incidentally, phones are allowed in the courthouse. However, automatic $100 fine if it rings in a courtroom. I love this rule :-)... At dinner, or in a movie, when a phone rings I find myself wishing the judge would announce the fine!)
  2. #2  
    Originally posted by Brianp
    (Incidentally, phones are allowed in the courthouse. However, automatic $100 fine if it rings in a courtroom. I love this rule :-)... At dinner, or in a movie, when a phone rings I find myself wishing the judge would announce the fine!)
    Ahh... I'm with you all the way!

    What would the judge do if the person actually answered and started talking on the phone? Some people do that in movie theaters!!
  3. #3  
    Hmm... mind if I point out the obvious? Virtually all phones can record. And very near all (the only exceptions being those that are broken ) can transmit court proceedings to other places where they can be easily recorded. I fail to see why any concern over phone-cameras isn't simply aversion to new ideas.
  4. #4  
    I've noticed court security to be a bit like airports. Empty your pockets, put your briefcase on the belt, and walk through the metal detector. The security offices only seem to care about weapons, etc.

    In my experience, cell phones are allowed in most courthouses, but can't be used in the actual courtrooms (not to mention ringing phones).

    On that note, I've never heard of any rules preventing the use of PDAs in courtrooms. Don't know about cameras though.
  5.    #5  
    Tcc, I used to think the same thing until I worked for a Judge. CSOs are pretty sharp and know their Palms -- they asked me as I came through if my Visor Prism had the recording module -- because "no recording devices are allowed in the courtroom." It's hard to know if you can't bring them in, or if you just can't use them.

    ...for the $100 fine rule. What a beauty. My second favorite part of the rule is that if a witness or party has a phone ring -- they get the fine AND the attorney gets the fine too :-). $100 ea.
  6. #6  
    i'm all for anything that is a hardship for attornies...
    Change is a challenge to the adventurous, an opportunity to the alert, a threat to the insecure.
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    #7  
    lawyers suck!
  8.    #8  
    Please. Has it degenerated into this already?

    Just remember. Everybody hates lawyers until they need a good one.
  9. #9  
    > ...Everybody hates lawyers until they need a good one.

    No, it doesn't stop with that.

    It goes on ... and on ... and on...
  10. #10  
    I've had some of the same experiences with courthouse security. In my case, (on different days) I brought my Treo 270 through security and was asked what it was (I guess he had never seen one). I told the security guard that it was a phone. Unfortunately, the guard saw the Palm OS screen and then I was asked if it could be hooked up to a computer. When I said "I suppose", he told me I couldn't bring it into the courthouse.

    On a different day (different guard) I told them it was a phone, but made sure that all he saw was the phone dial screen. No further questions were asked and I brought the Treo in without incident.

    Obviously, it all depends on local policy and training (or lack thereof). In the first instance, I didn't have the hot-sync cable with me...and unless a PC has an IR port, it's not likely that I could have gotten information off a machine that way. So why the questions about whether it can be hooked up to a PC? What did they think I was going to do? I was there as a material witness, not a spy or reporter.

    I don't get it. A phone can be used for "good" or "bad" as easily as a PDA, yet the attitude towards PDAs in courthouses (at least the one I was in) is definately more hostile.

    I can imagine what would have happened if my Treo had a camera. That's definately going to be an issue in courthouses. Fortunately for me, I don't work in such a place, but I do work in some secure areas from time to time.
    --Inspector Gadget

    "Go Go Gadget Pre!!"
    Palm Pre on Sprint

    Palm V--> Palm IIIc--> Visor Prism--> Visor Phone--> Treo 270--> Treo 600--> Treo 650-->
    Treo 700wx--> HTC Touch Diamond--> Palm Pre & HTC EVO 4G.
  11. #11  
    I'm going to assume that this varies from courthouse to courthouse, but my grandfather works as security at one in southern IL and more often than not they don't even allow cell phones in court rooms. I think that is just some of their judges' preference though.

    Gargoyle
  12.    #12  
    Here in the Western District of Washington the judges all agreed to allow cell phones in the courtrooms, but only if there was an automatic $100 contempt of court fine if your phone rings inside a courtroom.

    There is no official word on camera phones, or recorder PDAs, except that no cameras and no recording devices are allowed in any federal court (with some minor exceptions).
  13. #13  
    Originally posted by Brianp
    Here in the Western District of Washington the judges all agreed to allow cell phones in the courtrooms, but only if there was an automatic $100 contempt of court fine if your phone rings inside a courtroom.
    I still want to know what happens if someone actually answers a ringing phone and starts talking into it? What's the penalty then? Some people actually do that in movie theaters.
    Last edited by silverado; 07/11/2003 at 08:06 PM.
  14. #14  
    Originally posted by silverado

    I still want to know what happens if someone actually answers a wringing phone and starts talking into it? What's the penalty then? Some people actually do that in movie theaters.
    I think they are sentenced to death immediately...
  15. #15  
    Originally posted by Brianp
    No cameras and no recording devices are allowed in any federal court (with some minor exceptions).
    So why do they allow phones which obviously can be used to at least transmit and possibly even to record?
  16. #16  
    Originally posted by KRamsauer
    So why do they allow phones which obviously can be used to at least transmit and possibly even to record?
    I guess they're going for the first order problems only, either by design or just insufficient thought given to the problem.

    Along the same lines, maybe they should ban people with photographic memories
  17.    #17  
    I think the first order comment is quite on point. You'll notice that cameras are banned, but sketch artists are allowed. We had some pretty interesting terrorism cases, and the sketch artist was always there to give you an impressionistic view of what the courtroom looked like, but there is an absolute prohibition on cameras of any type.

    As for phones -- that is a good question -- seems like you could record pretty effectively with a cell phone (just as much as with a PDA, at least.) Also, laptops are pretty freely allowed in the courthouse and courtrooms for powerpoint presentations (My $0.02 on this, incidentally: powerpoint presentation = you're going to lose).
  18. #18  
    Originally posted by Brianp
    I think the first order comment is quite on point. You'll notice that cameras are banned, but sketch artists are allowed. We had some pretty interesting terrorism cases, and the sketch artist was always there to give you an impressionistic view of what the courtroom looked like, but there is an absolute prohibition on cameras of any type.
    What's the logic behind this? Seems to me that if you're trying to keep proceedings private, a) there are many many ways for information to leak (if not simply someone retelling the story) and b) aren't there constitutional, legal and traditional prohibitions against it?
  19.    #19  
    I think "private" proceedings are different (e.g. sealed juvenile proceedings, or a sealed terrorist cases). Here, there is an absolute right to the record, which is kept by the court reporter. There just isn't a right to technological advances like video cameras, tape recorders, etc.

    State courts frequently do allow cameras, but Federal Courts do not. Probably because they don't want to be on the news. Funny thing about life tenure (which is a good thing, IMHO) -- you don't care what people think, and you don't need to get re-elected.
  20. #20  
    arent all court procedings "recorded?"

    stenos?
    Felipe
    On the road to 5,000 posts
    Life is what happens between Firmware releases.
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