Legally Weird - The FindLaw Legal Curiosities Blog

August 2017 Archives

'F*** you. F*** you. F*** you.'

Not always the most diplomatic tack to take with a police officer, but should it get you arrested? Tracy Smith doesn't think so, but then again, he probably didn't think he'd end up in handcuffs after a neighbor complained about a dog that he didn't own, pooping in a yard that wasn't his.

So what did the Founding Fathers say about dropping F-bombs to the fuzz regarding some furry friend's fecal matter?

It's not hard to imagine walking into a doughnut shop, wanting all those sweet, glazed calories, noticing some fruity options on the menu, and thinking to yourself, "That sounds like a healthy option for my sweet glazed calories -- I'll go with the blueberry doughnut." These could be the thoughts of many doughnut shop customers; those who go to Krispy Kreme and those who go to Dunkin' Donuts.

It's also not hard to imagine that those customers might be disappointed upon learning the blueberries in their sweet, glazed donuts were not actually blueberries. So disappointed, in fact that they would want to sue the doughnut shop, whether it be a Krispy Kreme or a Dunkin' Donuts. And you might even imagine attorneys for one of those disappointed customers copying and pasting large sections of one fake blueberry doughnut lawsuit into another.

Cracking open a 24-oz can of Heineken and noting 'a foul taste' is not an uncommon occurrence. Experiencing 'severe abdominal pain followed by vomiting,' on the other hand, only happens to some of us.

It also happened to California resident George Toubbeh back in August 2015. And when his daughter examined the tall can she discovered two small intruders -- juvenile leopard geckos, who, due to their un-decomposed nature, were probably alive and kicking when the beer was poured and sealed into the can. We know the Euro-lager is light on the hops, but geez ...

Pot cafes and pot bars. Spring Break pot tourism and pot churches. Even your grandmother is smoking pot, on YouTube. So perhaps it's only natural that the booming cannabiz industry and the "wedding-industrial complex" (as Bloomberg calls it) collide.

To wit, wedding vendors in marijuana-friendly states are now offering everything from pot plant bouquets to stoner-related party favors and even open cannabis bars. But before you get your best "buds" together for your nuptials, there are a couple legal ramifications to think of first.

The San Francisco real estate market is rather unique and red hot right now. Most homes and properties that go up for sale get multiple offers, and tend to sell anywhere from 10 to over 30 percent over the asking price. If that wasn't silly enough, a single parking space can sometimes run $82,000 in the city. And it's not slowing down.

However, there are ways to get a slice of San Francisco without having to spend a million dollars on an entry level home. One San Jose couple recently went to a property auction where they purchased a private street in San Francisco for the low price of $90,000. They had not seen the property, Presidio Terrace, but believed that it was too good of a deal to pass up. The private neighborhood had not paid taxes on the street for several years due to an error after changing accountants, and never receiving tax notices or even a notice of the sale.

Now, you might be asking: Why would anyone want to buy a street?

Tommy Ray McAdoo wanted one thing when he walked into a Nevada bank last November brandishing a steak knife: a prison sentence. Homeless, "freezing and scared" according to his public defender, and suffering from heart kidney disease, McAdoo didn't want to spend more time on the Reno streets.

With a criminal history stretching back to 1964, the 77-year-old had done several stints in jail and wanted to return to "a world he's familiar with." But even more odd than McAdoo wanting to be re-incarcerated is a federal judge obliging him.

To the extent that most of us use them, few of us really think much about our stamps. We pick up a roll or sheet at the post office or grocery store, put them on letters, cards, and bills until we run out, then start again. Every now and then we choose stamps based on the image, whether it be a favorite historical figure or cartoon character, or we just like the way they look -- some stamps are chosen for their artistic appeal.

As it turns out, those images hold a unique place when it comes to government works and copyright law. So do postage stamps get the same copyright protections as other works of art?

Jason Nissen seems like a swell guy. Fourteen years ago, as a math teacher at a Queens high school, Nissen sold his students tickets to a free Dave Matthews Band concert. And it turns out he's been turning to shady ticket sales tactics ever since to turn a profit.

Nissen has been charged with wire fraud after using a fake premium ticket exchange as the cover for a Ponzi scheme. Nissen's told investors it would acquire and resell "premium tickets for events like the Super Bowl, the World Cup and the Broadway hit 'Hamilton.'" Instead, it used later investors' funds to pay back initial investors, cheating them out of over $70 million.

There is often the conception that once we own land, we can do whatever we want with it. Sadly for some landowners, there are regulations, restrictions, and responsibilities placed on land use, which can exist at the local, state, and federal level.

Most, if not all of these regulations come from two often competing interests: conservation and agriculture. Those interests, along with one man's desire to build a house, are colliding in Northern California, where a turkey farmer is suing over a county ordinance he claims will force him and his family to farm his land in perpetuity.