Skadden Arps Plans Move to New Tower on Manhattan’s West Side

A soaring new skyscraper is poised to rise on Manhattan’s West Side, as legal giant Skadden Arps Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP has signed a letter of intent with Brookfield Property Partners to move to the planned 1 Manhattan West tower, according to a Skadden spokeswoman.

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‘Artist’ Posts Pics of Herself Vandalizing Nat’l Parks With Graffiti

We try not to be too judgmental about potential criminal defendants, but you have to wonder about an “artist” who decides it’s a good idea to paint graffiti on National Park landmarks all across the western United States.

Need more proof before you pass judgment? Not only did the accused vandal tag majestic rock formations (allegedly using acrylic paint), but she also posted pictures of her “artwork” on Instagram and Tumblrincluding a picture of herself in the act. Now, thanks to a little crowd-sourced sleuthing by two hiking blogs (Calipidder and Modern Hiker) and Reddit, the National Park Service has launched an investigation that will likely lead to charges.

What punishment could “creepytings” (the artist) potentially face? And how bad is the public’s reaction to her so-called artwork?

Who Is ‘creepytings’?

The vandal signed her works “creepytings” and documented her entire escapade on social media. It was only a matter of time, then, before her identity was uncovered. The paintings are allegedly the work of Casey Nocket, a 21-year-old on a road trip through the western United States.

You can see one of Nocket’s alleged works in this image, tweeted by a Salt Lake City news director:

Natnl. Parks is investigating Insta user ‘creepytings’ for painting rocks, including in #Utah Photo:Modern Hiker blog

– sherylrockin (@sherylrockin) October 22, 2014

Casey’s uncle, Ed Nocket, told The Denver Post that she is a “good girl” with “a lot of talent.” He confirmed that she was on a road trip, but was unaware of her paintings and the viral, rageful response.

Her Hit List

So far, her taggings have been found in at least 10 national parks, with the investigation still underway. According to a National Park Service press release, she definitely left her mark on:

  • Yosemite National Park, California;
  • Death Valley National Park, California;
  • Crater Lake National Park, Oregon; and
  • Zion National Park and Canyonlands National Park, both in Utah.

And the NPS is confirming these hits as well:

  • Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona;
  • Sequoia Kings Canyon and Joshua Tree National Parks, both in California;
  • Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado; and
  • Bryce National Park, Utah.

Proper Punishment?

You don’t need the federal definition — destroying, injuring, defacing, or damaging property or real property — to know that this is definitely vandalism. For each act of vandalism, she could be charged with a federal misdemeanor, punishable by up to six months in jail and $5,000 in fines.

As you may recall, last year two Boy Scout troop leaders were fined and given probation for their own act of vandalism — topping a natural rock formation — and like Nocket, they also posted evidence of their crime online. Many are hoping that Nocket ends up with a more severe punishment. In fact, there is a petition on asking the government to make sure she receives the maximum punishment allowed by law.

As of Friday afternoon, the petition had more than 5,500 signatures.

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Skadden Arps Plans Move to New Tower on Manhattan’s Far West Side

A soaring new skyscraper is poised to rise on Manhattan’s West Side, as legal giant Skadden Arps Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP has signed a letter of intent with Brookfield Property Partners to move to the planned 1 Manhattan West tower, according to a Skadden spokeswoman.

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Non-Sequiturs: 10.24.14

* NFL blackout rules will be a thing of the past on November 24. So just in time for all you rabid Rams fans to watch them play the Raiders. [CommLawBlog] * Electing judges is so very stupid. [What About Clients?] * OK, Alex Rich: it’s time to ditch document review and become a psychic. [Law and More] * A tumblr of offensive stuff overheard at Yale Law. If these are true, then that place sounds horrible. [The YLS Offensive] * Exactly where is the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge? It turns out the government doesn’t really even know. They’re looking to shift the border and possibly allow more oil drilling. [Breaking Energy] * How to get your Biglaw career right from the beginning. [Medium]

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“Judge’s One Wrong Word Overturns 50-Year Sentence”

“Judge’s One Wrong Word Overturns 50-Year Sentence”: Pamela A. MacLean has this post at her “Trial Insider” blog reporting on a ruling that the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit issued yesterday.

And in other coverage, Courthouse News Service reports that “Judge’s Error Leads 9th Circuit to Grant Habeas.”

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Is It Legal to Fight Back If Someone Hits You First?

No one (or at least anyone in their right mind) goes around looking for a fight.

But sometimes, whether you’re looking for it a not, a physical confrontation may find you. If you find yourself the victim of an assault, what can you do to defend yourself without also potentially being charged with a crime?

Is it legal to fight back if someone punches you first?

Self Defense

Use of force that would otherwise be criminal in nature may be excused if it was done in self defense. Though the specific rules for self defense vary from state to state, generally, a person under an imminent threat of physical violence can act to prevent being harmed.

In a physical confrontation, self defense typically allows a person who reasonably believes he is about to be hit to defend himself. However, if you’ve already been hit, and the person who hit you indicates by words or actions that he is not going to hit you again, self defense generally does not allow you to hit that person back. Self defense may only be invoked to prevent further harm, not to retaliate against a person who has already harmed you.

Proportional Response

Self defense also only allows for a proportional response. This means that if someone hits you with his fist, you may not necessarily be justified in pulling out a gun and shooting him.

Generally, deadly force may only be used in circumstances in which the person using deadly force has a reasonable fear of losing his or her life. In some states, a person may also be required to attempt to retreat before using deadly force. In other states, however, so-called Stand Your Ground laws may allow a person to defend himself by using lethal force without having to attempt to retreat.

To learn more about self defense and criminal charges, check out FindLaw’s section on Criminal Law Basics or consult an experienced criminal defense lawyer near you.

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Lawyer Marketing – Leverage More Symbolism, Performance Art, Like Andrew Cuomo

Today, Governor Andrew Cuomo is riding the subway. He’s riding the same train lines which Craig Spencer took before he discovered he might have Ebola. Many in New York City, of course, are in a panic.

Through this symbolism of caring and the actual performance art of being a strap-hanger. the Governor of the state is providing comfort and hope. This is deja vu of what NYC’s Mayor Rudy Giuliani achieved in those grim days following 9/11. It’s not hard to speculate that Cuomo could have boarded a train to the White House. Yes, there can be a push for him to take on Hillary Clinton et al. in 2016.

Lawyers can embrace this skillful use of symbolism and performance art. Too often their marketing communications, ranging from the website to their advertising, sends no message. And doesn’t include any physical action. There are exceptions. Lawyer Ralph Nader shrewdly rolled out the Naders Raiders in the late 1960s. They sent the message of youth and commitment to a better deal for consumers. In performance art, Nader was the Energizer Bunny, everywhere the consumer might be getting screwed. His rumpled trench coat became his signature for those “stage” appearances.

In logos, slogans, and even the location of the office, lawyers should be creating symbolism. A B2B lawyer can hammer the meme of capitalism. Life is a stage and we are all actors on it. Lawyers should be where their clients and prospects can observe their dramatic art. That could well be an impassioned guest sermon at their church. The subject would be “Jesus: He was crucified for capitalist values.” The theme would be how Jesus wanted integrity in commercial transactions and the world pushed back.

Rather than simply lobbying politicos, lawyers should be analyzing how they exploit opportunities for putting out the perfect message, in the perfect way, at the perfect time.

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Field of AG Candidates Narrows as Ruemmler Withdraws Name

Former White House counsel Kathryn Ruemmler has withdrawn her name from consideration as President Barack Obama ‘s nominee for attorney general, a White House official said Friday.

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“2014 Supreme Court Roundup: An explanation of the Court’s affirmations of our right not to go along.”

“2014 Supreme Court Roundup: An explanation of the Court’s affirmations of our right not to go along.” Michael Stokes Paulsen has this article in the November 2014 issue of First Things.

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Discovering the Internet of Things: Measuring Impact on Tomorrow’s Litigation & Compliance Strategies

The beginning of a new business, technology and legal inflection point is staring at us, chuckling at point blank. The Internet of Things (IoT) has quickly ascended to be the “new frontier” for technology vendors to explore, customers to consider and the legal community to fear. But what is the “Internet of Things” really? Depending…

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