May 28, 2017

The Lumer Law Group

In September 2013, I co-founded Lumer & Neville, a small civil rights and criminal defense firm in New York City. We had some real successes and met all of my personal goals and targets. But life is is not static and things change. Which is my way of saying that I have moved on to form the Lumer Law Group.

The firm will continue to be located in the same office in the City Hall area of Manhattan, and my practice will be very much the same. I am hoping to find the time to resume blogging, and look forward to hearing from you all again.

January 24, 2016

Alan Newton and New York's Flexible Principles of Justice

Courtesy of the Innocence Project
When he ran for mayor, Bill de Blasio made a point of talking about doing what was right and what was just. Based on these basic principles, our mayor-to-be promised to reform the NYPD's Stop and Frisk program and settle the Central Park Five case, and he followed through on both counts, even though both policy calls were politically loaded.

The City engaged in early settlement talks in other serious cases, such as the malicious prosecution and conviction of David Ranta and the wrongful death of Eric Garner. These two settlements were not just right, they were good business. By quickly confronting situations with likely liability and serious damages, the City was able to save money and avoid expensive and divisive litigation. These cases are but a few where New York was willing to take a nuanced view on litigation, to acknowledge its responsibility for its mistakes, and to reconcile that exposure with its obligation to do what is right by its citizens.

So why is Alan Newton getting such a screwing from the City?

December 6, 2015

Laquan McDonald: Same Old, Same Old

Cook County Coroner's illustration of Laquan McDonald's wounds
 -- courtesy of the New Republic
When I began this blog, I was enthusiastic about the forum and set aside the energy and time to write. As the months passed, I have found it increasingly difficult to talk about the intersecting issues of civil rights, politics, and law enforcement. That is to say, it feels as though we are watching history repeat itself in increasingly short cycles with little change in state behavior or it's response to the evidence of misconduct. When the aggrieved communities express their anger and concern, the media responds by questioning whether these protests are only making it harder to effectively police crime and suggesting that these incidents are the outliers, always the outliers. By the time I have begun to wrap my head around an event, we are already on to the next, markedly similar travesty. Writing posts discussing police violence and the blue wall of silence that supports it often has a pointless feel to it, given the police shooting and cover up that is inevitably right around the corner.