My interview on Favorite Detective Stories - early days in the PI biz, wrongful convictions, creativity, con men.



Prison or palace: reprogramming your mind & spirit

This week I was listening to a podcast by one of my clients, the fine gentleman Victor Rosario, who spent 35 years in prison before he was exonerated. Victor is a religious man.  In his recent podcast at Mass Exoneration, he says something profound that I must have listened to eight times. Victor knew he was innocent and refused to accept the concept of a 'prison':

"Words are powerful. One word can get you high, and one word can destroy you. Then when I found out that one word can destroy me — that word was prisoner — I no accepting prison in my body, I no accepting prison in my mind. And I was a free man. I walked inside the prison system as a free man … knowing that one day I gonna be free.

Every time that I go into the church, every time that I go to a school, every time that I go anywhere I go, I walk as a free man. I never accepting the word prisoner in me. Never. Never accepting that. That’s not me. That’s somebody else not me. No, you gonna die in prison. Who gonna die in prison? You? Not me. I’m not going to die in prison, are you crazy?"

Gives me chills; what a way to reprogram your mind. Here is the link to his
story.

State has paid $8.34 million under wrongful conviction compensation law




Lawyers Weekly Poll: Nardizzi Inc. is top investigative firm in state



Cell phone tracking laws by state



Staying Logged In All The Time? Diversify for Privacy



Privacy, surveillance & civil litigation: a Massachusetts guide for private investigators

The Massachusetts Bar Association hosts a good summary of privacy laws as they apply to video surveillance in Massachusetts civil litigation, including insurance cases. One of the leading cases in Mass. is DiGirolamo v. D.P. Anderson & Associates, Inc., The court wrote that investigators may generally observe, or photograph a person in public places. A gray area arises when a person enters the privacy of their own home. The court looked at 4 scenarios as to whether a private investigator violates a person's statutory right to privacy:

~ the investigator looks through a window into an apartment with the naked eye;

~ the investigator looks with the naked eye when a person walks out onto a balcony;

~ the investigator photographs, or looks at the person on a balcony with enhanced vision;

~ the investigator photographs or looks at a person inside the home with enhanced vision.
 
The Mass. court concluded that only the fourth scenario would constitute an unreasonable and substantial interference with the plaintiff’s right to privacy.

The court adopted the United States Supreme Court’s Fourth Amendment analysis from Oliver v. United States. It also quoted a Second Circuit Court of Appeals’ case United States v. Taborda: “Observation of objects and activities inside a person’s home by unenhanced vision from a location where the observer may properly be does not impair a legitimate expectation of privacy. However, any enhanced viewing of the interior of a home does impair a legitimate expectation of privacy.”

Written by lawyers Joseph M. Desmond & David Viens, this article has some good information on Massachusetts state laws applicable to video surveillance, audio recordings, pretext interviews and pretrial discovery.

Memo from the Warden, 1941, Sing Sing Prison, New York


Thanks to John Jay College for preserving this artifact, which I dug up on an unusual research project for a client.