Thursday, March 9, 2017
Hon. Paul L. Friedman moderated the judges panel. The judges on the panel were Hon. Gregg Costa, Hon. Charles Breyer, Hon. Nannette Jolivette Brown, Hon. Amy J. St. Eve, Hon. Kathleen M. Williams, and Hon. Carlos Mendoza.
Does your life experiences influence your judging? The judges talked about sentencing.
Hon. Carlos Mendoza spoke about how his diverse background has affected his sentencing. Hon. Amy J. St. Eve noted that judging is the most difficult thing that judges do. Hon Charles Breyer noted that there is no such thing as a "right sentence," but there is something called a "wrong sentence."
Some pointers offered:
- Sentencing memos are important
- "Educate us on your client"
- "Know your judge"
- Some Judges may not want 3 or 7 pages of Booker, and then finally saying -now here is what you can do - "I already know that."
- "Watch what your clients do" -Problems when the offender doesn't accept responsibility
- Come up with a better argument then the folks at the country club don't talk to him any more
- Not helpful when government just says - we want a sentence in the guidelines range
- If prosecutor and defense attorney agree on something (C1c), more inclined to do it
Deferred prosecution agreements were discussed as well as the managerial aspects of the judicial position. The panelists offered many reflections in thenearly two hour discussion. They also looked at high profile cases and whether they had any special procedures in these cases. Justice Breyer said the less said, the better. Hon. J. St. Eve said - "I don't read the coverage in a high profile case." They skipped over discussing Brady, but did discuss technology.
One question was whether the judge allowed the defense counsel to see the probation officer's recommendation. It was noted that the judges differed on whether the judge would allow counsel to see this.