A satirical blog about law and other absurdities for criminal defense lawyers & friends


ideal oral argument
How oral argument should be.

What oral argument is really like.

“The Government is entirely correct.”

What’s the use of criminal appeals?

“Your question has nothing to do with this case, Judge.”

Everything you’ve ever wanted to say in your brief but had sense enough not to

Squawk writing

How to describe judicial decisionmaking without being held in contempt

Judicial decisionmaking

We find no error “under the circumstances”

Shell game
Step right up, folks! Who wants to guess where the error is? Nope, not under this circumstance! Ha, ha, you lose! Care to try again?

The NY Court of Appeals fiddles the facts. . . and gets its comeuppance.

NY Court of Appeals in 2016: Fahey, Abdus-Salaam, Pigott, DiFiore, Rivera, Stein, Garcia

“An imperious outpouring of insulting advice”: The Appellate Division doesn’t like to be told.

More insulting advice

Rubber stamp

The appellate process explained

Decision of the Day

The Appellate Division vs. bicycles

The Appellate Advocacy board game: available at the Appellate Division gift shop.

Appellate process cartoon

The winning appeal: good writing has nothing to do with it.

Reverse for bad writing
Never happen.

Secrets of appellate advocacy

Decision of the Day: Suppression of Boa Constrictor Denied

Boa constrictor

How is an appeal like a tree falling in an empty forest?

Affirmance goggles


Welcome aboard the criminal justice system

There is no order.

Thank you for riding with the criminal justice system

Unwanted sexual behavior

The New Worker Judges

On Top of Old Bailey: Part I

On Top of Old Bailey: Part II

Public defenders: poor but happy

7 dwarfs
“Hi ho, hi ho, it’s off to court we go! We wait, wait, wait for our case to be called, we wait the whole day through. . .”

Advising your client to waive future ineffective assistance claims

Waiver IAC

What really happens in court

Bewildered Member

Appellate Squawk’s Institute of Continuing Legal Education

Improving relations between bench & bar

Guest Post: Exoneration after 25 years is great, but the courts should have got it right in the first place

Andre Hatchett after being exonerated in Brooklyn. Barry Scheck of the Innocence Project is at left. Second from right is Seeme Saifee, staff attorney with the Innocence Project, and James Brochin of Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison
Andre Hatchett is declared exonerated as Innocence Project attorney Barry Scheck looks on.

Is it a crime to sleep it off in your car?

Let’s keep dogs off the witness stand

Dog in ctrm

Is a parrot’s statement testimonial?

Grey parrot testifying

Discovery reform arrives with the New Year!

New Year 2020 small

“Harmless error” = “good enough for government work.”

Why do cops lie? Because judges believe them.

testilying-1.jpeg (1432×1099)

The Case of the Interfering Judge

Official guide for children going to federal court (we didn’t make this up)

Federal Court with Mark & Julie

Courts should take a tip from the Department of Agriculture

Ineffective assistance of counsel Aussie style

OMG! What’s so reliable about “excited utterance”?

Is it legal to threaten to behead the chief court clerk of Brooklyn?

Appearing in court isn’t supposed to be fun.

Guv to judges: want a raise? get to work on time.

The final solution to bail reform: shoot the client

Powerpoint for the defense

An actual prosecution Powerpoint, apparently for the trial of a shoplifter of a can of oysters.

Wondering which is the right court for you? Check out these customer reviews.

“Give me a lawyer dawg.”

“Thrusting counsel upon the accused against his considered wish.”

Are lawyers therapeutically conterproductive?

Time for courts to put their money where their mouth is about eyewitness misidentification

Judges singing with caption

Guest post: proposed additions to the NY Penal Law

Study finds law too complex for robots

Data Star Trek
Data is baffled by the Confrontation Clause

The revolt of the court reporters

Court reporters

From back when you could go to jail for having a gravity knife:

Cop demonstrating how knife flips open by mere gravity

Study shows correlation between snack breaks and judicial leniency

The court interpreter knows the witness? No problem.

“A fair trial, not a perfect trial”

“He was entitled to a fair operation, not a perfect operation.”

Judges’ letters to the Judicial Ethics Committee


Chris Rock on the 4th Amendment

Demolishing the 4th

The Hosannah Exception

Justice Thomas endorses solitary confinement

Justice Kavanaugh’s crickets

Justice Alito as a fly on the wall

Supreme Court hears robocall case, flushes toilet

scotusblog-robocalls-copy.png (1360×264)

Justice Scalia takes his show on the road

Justice Scalia kills at Bench ‘n’ Bar

Scalia and Posner duke it out

Justice Scalia dissents from a traffic ticket


The prosecutor’s heavy burden

Where does the D.A. send naughty prosecutors? To the Appeals Bureau.

Do prosecutors know the truth from a lie?

“If I said my robe was white, would that be the truth or a lie?”

Prosecuting purse snatching as a hate crime

Prosecutors admit wrongful convictions: the fox is very sorry and will return the chickens.

Queens DA to arrestees: “I’m from the government and I’m here to help you.”

Prosecutors’ junta gets coal in its stocking for Christmas


Manhattan D.A. tries his hand at oral argument in the NY Court of Appeals


The awful truth: seeing and hearing the witness doesn’t make the jury’s opinion more reliable

Inside the Jury Room

The Jury Movie

Squawk gets kicked off jury duty, is astonished.

Forget speed dating. Try jury duty instead.

It’s not a trial without a jury

Can you follow the law as given by His Honor?

Arrested for handing out leaflets about jury nullification


Cop gets booboo, client gets 5 years

Cop injured

Crime doesn’t pay. Join the NYPD instead.

Britain’s policing by consent

Policing by Consent: Carsten Alvén



Quality Use of Force (UOF) at Rikers Island

Prisoner gives “Miss Peach” comic strip to C.O., is prosecuted for sexual harassment

Banning Prison Legal News

Protecting Letters from Home | Prison Policy Initiative

Replacing prison with drug (mis)treatment

Drug dog


The case of Masterpiece Cakeshop and compelled speech

The ACLU uncompromisingly defends free speech. . . unless it’s offensive

What’s cyberbullying? Judges know it when they see it.

When is parody a crime? When no one gets it.

Supreme Court to Patent Office: “Don’t FUCT with the First Amendment!”

Are license plates government speech? Yup.

Government does not endorse
Government endorses

Inflated rats are constitutionally protected, why not real rats?

Praise the Lord and renew my drivers license

Je Suis Charlie: the massacre at Charlie Hebdo

“100 lashes if you don’t die laughing.”
Parisians protest

First edition of Charlie Hebdo after the massacre


"Should its toenails be painted red or green?"
“Looks fine to us.”

SORA: The human cost of junk science

The “science” of sex offender risk prediction

RAI crystal ball

Sexperts in court

Happy Birthday, SORA, may you die soon.

The sex offender bus

How SORA hearings really work

The NY Court of Appeals jumps on the bandwagon

The new Sex Offender passport


“Life in non-punitive therapeutic civil commitment is not what you think.”

Duck Soup cartoon
by Jimmy Pesci, author and publisher of inmate magazine at Florida Civil Commitment Center

Prison sex offender “treatment”

Banning “sex offender art”

Deciding SORA risk level based on acquitted charges

“It’s not prison, it’s residential treatment!”

Residential treatment
Residential treatment
Residential Treatment Facility

Santa Claus has a SORA hearing


Virtual porn: the court knows it when it sees it

Was a minor exploited to create this image?


Witch doctor

The fake science journal “peer review” scam

“Not scientific? Them’s fightin’ words!”

The horse who could do math, confirmatory bias and police lineups

Clever Hans

Does your DNA have Miranda rights?

Expert water-dunking testimony held admissible

Let’s make suppression hearings great again!

How not to take a DNA sample from a phone


The DNA truck brings exoneration to your doorstep

“Everything I know about science I learned in kindergarten” (or from Sherlock Holmes)

“He examined with his glass the word upon the wall, going over every letter with the most minute exactness.”

Don’t pan Frye

DOJ says no cheating on photo arrays

“Fillers should be sufficiently similar so that the suspect’s photograph does not stand out. . .
. . . but not so similar that a person who knew the suspect would find it difficult to distinguish him or her.”

Videotaping interrogations: The NY Court of Appeals blows it

The Adrian Thomas case: Videotaping interrogations isn’t enough

Scenes of a Crime on Twitter: "FREE: Adrian Thomas w his legal team a few  hours after release (l-r Turi, Effman, Coffey, Thomas, J. Frost, A. Frost)"
The documentary that exposed a false confession


Squawk and the Boss

Is this your office?

The compulsory program mystique

Suppression of counter-revolutionary thinking

Can you be fired for calling your boss a f*cking moron?

Mr. Dithers

How to send strictly work-related email

Squawk typing


Are you a cissy?

For which Squawk was put on “final warning.”

Trigger warnings for courtrooms

If you need a halo, don’t do criminal defense

More client-centered than thou.

Call a rose by any other name and it’ll see you in court

Punch & Judy’s easy answers to everything

Waiting 30 years to accuse Judge Kavanaugh

Newspeak reforms criminal defense

Helvetica Bold

Linda Fairstein still thinks the Central Park 5 are guilty

Being fair to Fairstein

“Justice in Every Borough”

Relax, baby, I’m gay

The end of the world will have disproportionate effect on our clients


This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is squawk-with-mask-2.jpeg

Squawk under house arrest

Sign in Bronx
Bronx bodega April 2020

Courts closed due to the pandemic should follow the example of restaurants.

Would you care to start with a guilty plea?

Taking a tip from the concert hall: replacing juries with potted plants:

“Don’t invite me to your stupid Zoom party!”


The wit and wisdom of a feathered judge

Judge Wool’s judicial horoscope

Judge Wool for NY Court of Appeals


Sherlock Squawk

An illustrated novella where the corpse is a DA and the sleuth is an irreverent solo practitioner .

Harry confronts Franklin
“You can’t just let her plead guilty to a life sentence!”


Sheldon Silver’s life matters

Sheldon Silver’s life matters Part 2

Sentencing Sheldon Silver


Granny stun-gunned for picking dandelion greens

The Lucky Bag scam

Lucky bag2

Is a goldfish a “companion animal”?


Do statues matter?

pigeons.jpg (720×664)

Let’s remove offensive statues from Central Park

Alice in Wonderland

Exiled Statues find asylum at Green-Wood Cemetery

Dr. Marion Sims removed from Central Park


Lunar New Year 2020: Year of the Rat

Easter Bunny convicted of kidnapping, trafficking

Stocking stuffers
Need stocking stuffers for Christmas? Try a little judge-shopping.

The naughty/nice hearings


Criminal defense in India:

Court defense and prosecutor


Squawk goes to DC, falls into Reflecting Pool

Are your politics acceptable to your cabdriver?

Vigilant baker edits Summa [obscenity deleted] Laude graduation cake

Speaking Tooth to Power

President Trump takes to the street

In memory of Dennis Murphy, public defender

Horsing around at the office

Does watching “Hamlet” incite revenge murder? What about “Oedipus Rex”?

Guest post from the Houston Public Defender: Vwar Deer or Vor Dyre?


Eliot Spitzer finds Jesus in front of the Brooklyn Municipal Building

Spitzer’s post-scandal bid for Presidential nomination

ISIS highly offended by Trump’s crediting Obama as founder

Tribute to A.P. Herbert’s “Misleading Cases”

Judge Jack Weinstein on growing up in Brooklyn.

“I come from a lawless family. My grandparents fled Russia in 1905 to avoid arrest. When my father lost his job during the Depression, he brought us food that ‘fell off the back of a truck.'”

NY endorses frog as State Amphibian

Bail bonds hot dog cart
Where to get a bail bond in the Bronx

“Occupy Food”: the farmers’ march to Zuccotti Park

You can’t smoke your crack and have it

Squawkuppy Wall Street 2011

NYC’s last peaceful demonstration

Squawk writing

About Appellate Squawk

A satirical blog for criminal defense lawyers and their friends who won't give up without a squawk.
This entry was posted in Law & Parody. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to THE BEST OF APPELLATE SQUAWK 2010-2020

  1. Alex Bunin says:

    It is all the best.


  2. E.S. says:

    Squawk does it again! This is a wonderful compendium of Squawk’s brilliance.


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