Legal Grounds - FindLaw Legal Humor Blog

Legal Grounds - The FindLaw Legal News with an Attitude Blog


Blind Man Caught Driving Sees Footage at Disability Hearing

Have you ever wished you could get paid to do nothing? One man figured out a way, but now he is paying, sentenced to five years in prison for fraud after pretending to be blind to obtain $1.3 million in disability benefits. The man was blinded in one eye in a workplace incident in 2006, reports ABC News, but it turned out his vision was not totally impaired after all.

At a disability hearing, John Caltabiano, who claimed not to see, was shown footage taken by investigators revealing he could drive, read, and politely hold open doors. Good thing he has his vision because he'll have a lot of reading time in prison.

Nothing is life is free. Not lunch, not HBO, not even love. And definitely not hugs. So while a sign saying "Free Hugs" might seem like an altruistic act of simple kindness, you better be ready to tip the man carrying that sign, or face an assault.

At least, that can be the case in Times Square, where Jermaine Himmelstein was recently arrested (for the 17th time) and charged with robbery after punching a Canadian tourist in Times Square after she took him up on his offer of free hugs. So how did a friendly sign and the world's friendliest country turn into a felony?

$ave Dat Money: Legal Lessons From Lil' Dickey's Video

You never know what you can learn from a rap video, and that is just one reason not to be a snob. For example, Lil' Dickey's hit $ave Dat Money (yes, that dollar-sign-S is deliberate) is in fact a tutorial on savings ... and the law.

It may even have inspired a recent lawsuit claiming Starbucks overcharges iced beverage drinkers. Pay attention to the dramatic breakdown mid-way through Dickey's instructive clip on getting a lot done with a little bit before you scoff.

Cops to Drug Dealer's Contacts: Don't Call Us, We'll Call You

If you're waiting on your man in Ohio, you will be waiting a while, and the more often you call to insist on your needs, the more likely it is you will get in trouble with the police. The City of Alliance, Ohio Police Department this week urged the clients of an alleged local drug dealer arrested for selling crystal meth on video to stop contacting the guy, reports UPI, at least while they conduct their investigation of his cell phone.

The Alliance Police posted their request on Facebook, revealing that the dealer had granted them permission to look at his phone. They also showed that cops can have a sense of humor ... and understand social media.

There's a time and place for everything, and it's called college. There's also a time and place for Snapchatting, and it's not while traveling 107 mph on a suburban road at night with your two passengers begging you to slow down. Because that's when you go barreling into another car, giving that car's driver serious permanent brain injuries, and get yourself and Snapchat sued in the process.

But how is an innocent Millennial supposed to know she can't Snapchat and drive, when the app has a filter that allows users to record their speed while Snapchatting?

A song so popular it spawned a hilarious guitar store backlash may have been stolen, according to a lawsuit filed in Pennsylvania. The heirs of Randy Craig Wolfe, a.k.a. Randy California, claim he wrote the iconic opening riff to Led Zeppelin's "Stairway to Heaven," and are seeking damages, profits from the song, and some money set aside for musical instruments for needy children.

The case is going to trial in a couple weeks, so here's what you need to know about the battle for one of the biggest songs in rock history.

In a case that stretched the limits of both dram shop laws and employer liability, a Dayton, Ohio strip club called The Living Room was found not liable for injuries caused by one of its strippers after a drunk driving accident.

A state appeals court overturned $1.43 million of a $2.85 million jury award that originally found the club as equally responsible as Mary Montgomery, the stripper who drank beer at the club before plowing into another car, severely injuring two people.

To the delight of some and the dismay of others, purchasing wild animals -- lions, and tigers, and bears, oh my! -- has been relatively easy in the United States. Private individuals, not just zoos and sanctuaries, were able to amass collections of exotic animals, sometimes with tragic results.

But the days of stocking your mansion or estate with rare species may be over. Two new federal laws regarding the breeding, purchase, and sale of tigers in the U.S. will increase oversight and curb illicit tiger ownership. So getting a Bengal for your birthday may not be so easy anymore.

Justice Is Served: Brawling Florida Judge Is off the Bench

Some say that criminal court is where bad people are on their best behavior and civil court is where good people are on their worst behavior. So what are we to make of a criminal court judge who brawls with public defenders, forces defendants to appear without counsel, and totally loses his cool when an accused individual chooses to exercise his constitutional rights?

The Florida Judicial Qualifications Committee and the state's Supreme Court both considered the question, reviewing Brevard County Judge John C. Murphy's actions and reaching two very different conclusions. Spoiler alert: justice prevailed.

Certain TV shows are known for ripping their plotlines straight from the headlines. And sometimes it goes the other way around. In a story reminiscent of AMC's "Breaking Bad," an Indiana pastor plead guilty to producing almost 100 tons of synthetic marijuana, and using his church as a multimillion-dollar drug trafficking operation.

And that's before you get to the crooked married cop couple, the former traveling clown running for state legislature, and the connections to the imprisoned former head of Jared Fogle's foundation.