Friday, July 06, 2007

Be careful what you wish for.

"Media Maven" Marcy Burstiner is "...frustrated with the two dailies because they each go about covering crime and the courts in a superficial manner." She makes some excellent points in a well written piece, and she does the right thing, noting: "Now, before all you bloggers with too much time on your hands go ballistic on me, here’s the disclosure you want to see: My husband works as a deputy district attorney and he used to be a criminal defense attorney."

It's a good thing she included the disclaimer this time. Her husband is not just any Deputy District Attorney, he is Jeffrey "" Schwartz, the source of much of the frustration surrounding the DA's Office itself. The same "Jeffrey, Schwartz" listed in the yellow pages under Attorneys, with a cell phone number as his office number, while he is serving as a public prosecutor.

The Maven's column addresses trial coverage, which of late has been territory largely ceded to The Eureka Reporter. And, as she points out, reporter Kara Machado sticks to "the facts, Ma'am, just the facts." The Maven would like to see the story behind the story, and oddly enough, we are in agreement here. Funny thing, though, it is The Journal that has traditionally filled that niche, telling the story behind the story, and rounding out the coverage.

But, be careful what you ask for, Marcy. It would be interesting, for example, to hear from the woman who was tied to a tree and raped for three days whether or not she was willing to testify against her attackers, and how she was treated by the DA's office, whether or not she was encouraged to stand up, or guided into not testifying. It would be interested to hear how the victims and the victims families feel about all the plea bargains of late. It would be interesting to hear how the jurors felt about how the trials went. It is indeed the way it is done in other places.

What may really shock Marcy the most though, is just how little the public cares about the people in the DA's office. How little they know about the work they do, about the long and thankless hours that they put in on behalf of the public. They do indeed care more about the cast of "Law and Order" than they do about the people working for them.

The prosecutors who have left, and who have been fired found out. They found that the people they had toiled for did not even raise an eyebrow at their passing. Did not squawk about the talent they were losing, expressed no appreciation for the years of work, and laughed it off with the notion that any pro-bono attorney (or defense attorney) could be brought in to fill their shoes.

Perhaps it will be a sobering realization when it hits home.

Question really is, Who's left?


  1. Is it just me, or is what she's calling for the kind of coverage that both dailies gave the Marsh trial (or, as it might be, fiasco)? About which she was highly critical? Without disclosing that her husband worked for the DA? (By "worked" I mean "was paid by taxpayer dollars for whatever reason.") And mentored the DDA who thought that mess was worth a trial? I thought she was an idiot before that, and nothing I have read by her since has changed my opinion.

  2. Well she is married to !!!!!! but you have to give her some credit for not taking his name!

    About the two "dailies", they seem to have dropped the ball and let Gallegos off the hook on just about everything. For a short while I thought the T/S was going to keep up the pressure on the Cheri Moore decision.

    What somebody ought to check,if they have some spare time on their hands, is what the orignial charges were, the original filing by the DA's office, and then what ACTUALLY happened. Maybe compare how many criminals our DA's office sent to prison in 2003 vs. 2006??!
    I bet 06 would be 40 % or more less than 03. Maybe as much as 55% to 65%.

  3. Gretchen Mauer7/07/2007 12:02 AM

    Get over yourself Titus (aka 7/6, 10:35 p.m.).

  4. I agree. I wonder if Marcy would be happy to read about the impacts on victims and their families after her husband just hands out their attackers plea offers. Not only did the victims have to deal with whatever pain and humiliation they were exposed to, but then they weren't given any real justice because Jeff Schwartz let their attackers pretty much walk. Yeah, Schwartz might be quoted as saying the victims and their families were in agreement with the offers, but that's isn't always true. Too bad the victims, many times, feel just too humiliated to come to court because of the shitty cush deals Marcy's husband gave the defendants. Would that be a good read, Marcy?

  5. Is Jeffie gone yet? At least from the DA's office!?

  6. Burstiner is a hypocrite for writing that and being married to YOUGOFREE who has screwed more victims than their attackers.

    And what is with her oh so very condenscending position of criticizing the other two daily papers in the NCJ. Surely, if she put as much time into doing the type of article that she accuses the others of NOT doing, it would be a better use of her time. Oh, but no she can' would out her worthless deadbeat and incompetent hubby.

    put a sock in it Burstiner.

  7. Actually the offensive part of that piece was the (typical of defense attorneys and their ilk) suggestion that a battery of "experts" could "explain" Applegate's behavior. That's not often the case. What the "experts" do is argue about the defendant's motives and moods, but rarely explain them. Of course, such muddying the waters is precisely what the defense wants.
    It's fine for media types to chatter away about bad childhoods and organic brain function and
    closed head injuries, etc etc. And if a publication wants to air out that kind of thing for readers to speculate about, fine. But don't pretend there are any answers there. But I'm sure it feels more highbrow to demonstrate one's deep understanding of the true causes of societal ills (when wiil the town heal-- oh please) than it does to cover BranGelina's new baby.

  8. I don't think it will be particularly fair for Gallegos to put all the blame for CAST's decline on Schwartz. The problems began far earlier in Gallegos' reign. The blame is his.

  9. Fair? PVG? I don't care who you are, that's funny.
    The blame is the voters.
    The vacation is his.

  10. Hey - did you hear about how PVG embarrased the county when he was at the Napa country club?

  11. Jon Fleimann7/10/2007 9:42 AM

    To 7/9, 7:49 a.m. and 8:06 a.m.: You both are so right!!!

  12. 8:55 AM....Please, tell us the story!

  13. He was a completely embarassing bozo in front of the Mexican Consulate regarding the mexican drug cartels. But since he is pro-pot (god only knows how much he is getting paid off by the growers here)this doesn't suprise anyone. Although it did humiliate and disgust everyone else.


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