Guy tries to buy drinks with bartender’s stolen credit card

The guy in this story is saying something sort of similar, I’m sure. From the Associated Press:

Suspect David Weber, mugshot from Miami-Dade Corrections, via Miami Herald

MIAMI BEACH, Fla. (AP) — Police say a homeless man broke into a car in a Miami Beach garage, stole a credit card and then tried to use it to buy a beer from the bar in The Clevelander.

But the case was cracked when 53-year-old David Weber handed the card to the bartender who took his order Monday night. The Miami Herald reports the bartender noticed he had just been handed his own credit card.

The bartender called Miami Beach police. Weber was charged with credit card fraud and theft. He remained in the Miami-Dade County Jail early Wednesday.

Police say Weber told them he found the credit card on the ground.

As they say across the pond, unlucky. It’s been a couple months since we’ve had one, but … it’s the Lawsuit of the Month. (Yes, I know it’s technically not a lawsuit.)

‘Lived-in’ look leads to landlord nightmare


[Screencap taken from video]

Upon moving to a new home, I’ve heard many people loudly proclaim that they aren’t selling their old one because they’ll just rent it out and make money off of it. Many times, they wind up with a crash course in landlord-tenant law when their tenant turns out to be something less than ideal.

A woman in Texas was sitting on a McMansion she was trying to sell after moving back to Boston. She didn’t want to keep the house, but had a hard time selling it.

Her realtor had a great idea: give the home a more “lived-in” feel by hiring a company to temporarily place a family. And by family, I’m sure the landowner was thinking Mom, Dad, Connor, Tucker and Chloe, a tricycle on the front walk and may even a sandbox in the back.

Instead, she got the Evil Clampetts. [

The tenants were supposed to be two brothers. But then they invited the whole family to move in. Then they brought in a  pitbull, despite the lease forbidding pets. Then they parked a pickup on the grass that leaked oil on the lawn. Finally, they started planting crucifixes everywhere, including one that was 10 feet tall.

In other words, this house wasn’t selling.

She had wanted lived in, and she got it. She complained that the crosses violated homeowner association laws. They claimed they were being discriminated against on religious grounds and threatened to go to the Department of Justice.

So just evict them, right? They violated the terms of the deal by having the dog and other family members move in.

She and the company filed for eviction of the family. The brothers left … but Dear Old Dad — the trunk on that family tree — isn’t going anywhere.

It doesn’t matter, [Nathan] Burgess told CBS 11, that he wasn’t expected to be in the home in the first place. He was “invited” by his sons, he said, before the eviction order came down.

“Sometimes, I’ve learned, you can’t run from things. You just have to hit em head on,” Burgess said.

He said he would have likely moved out with the rest of his family if Aji and Castle Keepers had been nice about it.

“They call and said, ‘Oh, you have a dog on the property.’ Ever since then, the level of abuse has gotten worse and worse,” Burgess said.

Burgess is vowing to exhaust all appeals before he leaves, like he’s on death row or something.

When the listing agent brought in a prospective buyer, they were met with a sign instructing them that the house is occupied and that nothing is to be touched.

The house was eventually removed from the market while the eviction mess is sorted out. She claims that neither she, nor her agent, can go into the house until it’s sorted out.

Urinal-ot of trouble: Man steamed, sues Arby’s

BONUS Lawsuit of the Month! And the month just started!

Fast food restaurants get sued for all types of things, from slip-and-falls to human body parts in the sandwich to hot coffee burning someone’s genitals. (Sorry to bring that up, but it’s relevant.)

Apparently hot coffee isn’t the only way a fast food restaurant can allegedly burn one’s genitals.

A Colorado man has sued Arby’s, claiming the restaurant is responsible for his steamed genitals after a strange bathroom incident. [Courthouse News]

[Kenneth] DeJoie claims that on May 28, 2010, he “was utilizing the urinal in the men’s restroom when it caused a jet of steam to shoot forth from the urinal and burn Mr. DeJoie’s genitals.”

When he and his wife reported it, an Arby’s employee “responded that ‘we have that bathroom problem again,’ and ‘this happens when the sink in the kitchen is running,'” the DeJoies say in the complaint.

They are suing under negligence and premises liability theories. Too bad it’s in Colorado. It would be very interesting to see how a Michigan court would deal with the premises liability issues for this one.

The ol’ not guilty/sleepwalking defense

Lawsuit of the Month for June. And it’s a criminal case.

I once sat in a Wayne County courtroom and watched a defense attorney attempt a most nuanced defense for a drug trafficking case: My client is a drug dealer, she said, but he’s such a good drug dealer that he could never be caught; therefore, he was not dealing drugs when police say he was.

Even Avon Barksdale knew that wasn’t going to fly. [Language NSFW]. And it didn’t. The jury convicted the guy after about a half hour.

Even that defense didn’t have this degree of difficulty.

A 27-year old Connecticut man was arrested and accused of attempting a purse snatching outside of the Mohegan Sun Casino in Bridgeport. His defense: I was sleepwalking. [Norwich Bulletin via ABA Journal].

[His attorney, Nicholas] D’Amato plans to argue that Riley wasn’t feeling well and had napped in his car on the morning of the incident. Riley was actually woken up by the woman in the elevator, running away in confusion and fright, he said.

D’Amato said while he has anecdotal evidence, he is in the early stages of gathering medical records in his attempt to gather proof and convince prosecutors they should take the claim seriously.

In his defense, the defendant, Winston Riley, has no record, and the police report seems to suggest that we’re not really dealing with some career thug.

Police say that after his arrest in Madison, Riley confessed to the crime, but “he did not know why he did it.”

“He had a momentary lapse of judgment,” according to the police report. “He just wanted some money. When she fought back, he became scared and ran away.”
D’Amato said the facts don’t add up.

“I told the judge and prosecutor, ‘Here’s a guy who’s (27), no criminal record, married,’ ” D’Amato said. “ ‘Do you honestly think he woke up one morning, drove across the state and decided to rob a woman’ ” in a place full of security cameras? “It doesn’t make sense if you think about it rationally.”

D’Amato admits the defense will be difficult to pull off. I suggest they start with producing his mugshot:

[Photo from Connecticut Dept. of Corrections]

On second thought, this may work after all.

Man sues team over three extra text messages

Just under the wire for May…

If you’re a fan of just about anything, you can sign up for text message updates (also known as mobile alerts) from that thing. Sports teams often use them to send ticket deals and score updates to fans. Of course, these things are “opt-in,” so if you don’t want them, don’t sign up for them.

Fred Weiss signed up for mobile alerts from his beloved Pittsburgh Penguins. When he signed up, the team’s documentation said he’d received “no more than three texts per week.” In the first week, he received five text messages. The second week, four. That’s right, he received three extra text messages over a two week period. This was unacceptable. If there’s one man in the world that you don’t send three extra text messages to, it’s Fred Weiss. Fred Weiss isn’t going to stand around and let some automated service send messages that, assuming he doesn’t have an unlimited texting plan, cost him an extra 30 cents.

Weiss filed a class action lawsuit in California alleging the team violated the Telephone Consumer Protection Act and breached its contract:

By exceeding the authorized limits on weekly text message calls made to Plaintiff… Defendant has caused Plaintiff and the other members of the Class actual harm, not only because they were subjected to the aggravation that necessarily accompanies the invasion of privacy caused by unsolicited text message calls, but also because consumers frequently have to pay their cell phone service providers for the receipt of such wireless calls.

[The Consumerist, Pens Blog, Larry Brown Sports and Courthouse News]

I did mention this was an “opt in” thing, right? Weiss could simply opt out by texting STOP PENS to 32623. How do I know this?


I went to the website. This took 20 seconds.

Instead, he filed a lawsuit. Not just any lawsuit, but the Lawsuit of the Month.

Man sues theater over the price of Goobers

Maybe it was the film tax rebates…

But something about the movie industry seems  to have upset the locals to the point that they are suing various industry pillars.

Last October, a woman sued a movie studio for allegedly mismarketing the movie “Drive” to seem like “The Fast and the Furious” when it was more like a slow building, uber-violent mob movie or perhaps a really good episode of Miami Vice. (The movie feels like an 80s movie, right down to the soundtrack). She also alleged that it was anti-Semetic because the mobsters were Jewish. That is still pending in Oakland County, at least as of March 6.

Now, a Michigan man has filed a class action suit against AMC Theaters alleging the Livonia 20 cinema charges too much for Goobers. (No really, that’s the claim).

Security technician Joshua Thompson hopes to convince a judge that his local AMC theatre in Livonia, a city within the Detroit metropolitan area, is breaking state consumer protection laws. He has filed a class-action suit at the Wayne County circuit court in southern Michigan asking for affected filmgoers to be refunded and calls for the cinema to be hit with a civil penalty.

Thompson says he paid $8 for a Coke and a packet of Goobers chocolate-covered peanuts at the Livonia AMC cinema on Boxing Day last year, nearly three times the $2.73 he would have been charged for the same snacks at a nearby fast-food restaurant and drug store. He said he used to take his own snacks into the cinema to avoid paying high prices, but was forced to stop when staff put up a notice stating that the practice was banned.

Now, it’s certainly not a stretch to suggest that perhaps movie theaters charge above the food industry standard for popcorn and soda. But it’s not as if they force you to buy it. And even if they did, there are alternatives to actually going to the theater, such as HDTV/Bluray, and various (legal) internet streaming/On Demand options.

The case isn’t expected to go anywhere.

“It’s a loser,” said Gary Victor, an Eastern Michigan University business law professor. He said state Supreme Court decisions in 1999 and 2007 exempted most regulated businesses from the Michigan Consumer Protection Act.

Added Ian Lyngklip, a nationally known consumer lawyer in Southfield: “Movie theaters are regulated, so the lawsuit won’t go anywhere”

Victor, an avid moviegoer, agreed that snack prices are excessive at theaters. That’s why he shuns the concession counter unless he’s with a date.

Until then, Joshua, you’ll just have to stick a bottle of soda in your pants like the rest of us. It’s early, but I think we have our Lawsuit of the Month for March.

How dare you admit me into law school!

Still a couple weeks to go but here’s the early entry for Lawsuit of the Month.

Much has been made here and elsewhere about the lawsuits against law schools alleging falsified (or at the very least, inflated) job statistics. Most of these lawsuits are based in the idea that law schools care only about their bottom line and that they are letting in too many students without regard to what happens to them after graduation.

One student in Tennessee has sued her law school on a similar theory, I guess, a much more, shall we say, creative theory.  She’s suing the school claiming it negligently admitted her. [Knoxville News Sentinel via ABA Journal].

A student at Lincoln Memorial University is suing the institution in Knox County Chancery Court, claiming college administrators negligently allowed her to enroll in law school there even though she is ineligible to sit for the state bar exam.

Morgan Crutchfield, a part-time student at the Knoxville-based John J. Duncan Jr. School of Law, is asking for as much as $750,000 in damages after school officials told her she could enroll despite lacking 12 credit hours in her undergraduate degree, according to the complaint filed Tuesday.

“They discarded the rules at the very least, and I think that as attorneys and as administrators, they’re bound to know what the requirements are when they’re attempting to bring students into the law program,” said her attorney, Hugh Ward Jr. of the Knoxville firm Bernstein, Stair & McAdams.

According to the article, Crutchfield applied to the school before learning she was short of her requirements to graduate from Penn State. The school said it wasn’t a problem so long as she completed the credit before 3L. But when she applied for the Tennessee bar, the board wouldn’t allow her to sit for the exam because she had to finish the credit before starting law school.  It should also be noted that she still hasn’t completed the undergrad requirements, even though she’s 2 1/2 years into law school.