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Piling On The wheels of justice turn slowly, but even by that standard an exchange between Rutgers Law School-Newark dean Stuart Deutsch and Law Revision Commission executive director John Cannel gives one pause. Last April, Deutsch wrote Cannel to ask him to consider removing two statutes that courts had declared unconstitutional. One, N.J.S.A. 18A:36-3(c), requiring students to stand during the Pledge of Allegiance, was voided in 1978. And three years ago the state Supreme Court struck the other, N.J.S.A. 9:17A-1, which required parental notification when a minor sought an abortion. The laws are sporadically enforced by authorities who wrongly think they’re still valid, much to the irritation of the American Civil Liberties Union of New Jersey, which receives phone calls protesting them on a regular basis. On March 3, 2004 — 11 months later — Cannel wrote back. After apologizing for the delay, he told Deutsch that the statutes will be part of a proposed repeal package of useless old laws. Everything at the commission takes a long time, Cannel says. Laws need to be researched before replies can be written. Old laws are repealed in omnibus packages, and the commission likes to build up a big pile before approaching the Legislature. “It will be a while before it gets to be sufficient,” Cannel says. Raging Board Who is “DALILAMA?” It’s not an Asian religious leader but a screen name Jay R. McDaniel will be seeking information on when he subpoenas Yahoo and Lycos for identities of posters who bashed his client, Secure Digital Applications, on Internet bulletin boards. Most of the messages were posted on Lycos’ Raging Bull board. Somerset County Judge Rosemarie Ruggiero Williams granted a motion for the subpoenas last week. She found that McDaniel met the criteria of Dendrite v. Doe by showing a prima facie case of defamation against the company, which has a Flemington office. No one showed up to contest the motion, even though Williams had McDaniel post notice of the hearing online. After he did so, posters asked McDaniel if he had told the judge about Dendrite, warned that “jrm” was watching and posted links to information about SLAPP suits. McDaniel, of New York’s Sichenzia Ross Friedman Ference, notes that these types of cases have become so common that callers to Yahoo’s legal department are told to press one if you’re calling about a criminal subpoena and two if it’s a civil one. Bloomfield Bonfires The case of four white Bloomfield police officers indicted for reckless manslaughter for allegedly using excessive force in restraining an immigrant having an epileptic fit took on a Bonfire of the Vanities flavor. Supporters of the widow of Santiago Villanueva, who died in 2002, denounced the four as murderers and racists. Likewise, police and Bloomfield residents decried the indictment as being based more on political pressure than evidence. Their lawyers said the police had to control and cuff Villanueva for everyone’s safety, including his own. But the case ended — at least for now — on March 5 when Essex County Judge Paul Vichness tossed the indictments, saying no witnesses could identify which officers did what. A lawyer for the widow, Susan Karten of Castro & Karten in New York, says she is asking the U.S. attorney to probe a civil rights violation and has said her client didn’t get justice because he was a minority. The prosecutor’s office has yet to say if it will appeal. Defense attorney Anthony Pope Jr. calls the indictment a result of “pressure from the racial hustlers.” Parkin’s Other Life Friday’s news articles about the federal indictment of Harry Parkin, former chief of staff of the Mercer County executive, mentioned his prior service as county counsel but omitted a r�sum� item that makes him memorable among veteran workers’ compensation lawyer. He was director and chief judge of the Division of Workers Compensation for the final three years of the administration of Gov. Thomas Kean, and he left with reviews that were mixed, at best. He was credited with modernizing the department’s computer system. But judges chafed at his directives. Practitioners alleged he didn’t understand how the court worked, having never been a judge or a workers’ comp lawyer. And two county bar associations sued him for allegedly interfering with judge’s deliberations. None of that had anything to do with the indictment announced by U.S. Attorney Christopher Christie. It said Parkin used his influence as top aide to county executive Robert Prunetti to steer public contracts to a recycling company in which he held a secret interest. His attorney, Trenton solo practitioner David Rhoads, did not return calls for comment. � By Jim Edwards, Mary Gallagher, Henry Gottlieb and Tim O’Brien

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