This Chicago Criminal attorney knows all about zealous representation of a client. She will admit to many a sleepless night in preparing the best defense for her clients. However there are limits to being a zealous representative for your client. Yes, she has discussed some of those limits with other defense attorneys, but sometimes it can just go too far.
A Cook County assistant public defender was arrested after he pushed and choked a prosecutor following a hearing at the Criminal Courts Building today, officials said.
The assistant public defender, 47-year-old Henry Hams of the 600 block of East 32nd Street, was charged with aggravated battery and resisting arrest, both felonies.
He was upset about a hearing date a judge had set and complained to the assistant state's attorney in the case outside the courtroom, according to a source.
The prosecutor "apparently said, 'Too bad, that's the date the judge set,' and (Hams) just lost it and shoved (the prosecutor) against the wall," the source said.
The prosecutor "was stunned and didn't do anything, and the next thing you know (Hams) had him in a headlock," the source said.
Another source who witnessed the incident said he heard a scuffle and saw Hams choking the prosecutor. "He had his hands wrapped around his throat and was just kind of riding him down the wall," the source said.
Currently, I'm reading Black Water Rising by Attica Locke and this line sums up the burdens of working in criminal court:
The place lacks the focus or feeling of purpose of the criminal courthouse, a building that practically crackles with the electric energy of righteous indignation, a feeling running under everything, even the most mundane office tasks, that something huge is at stake.
There’s no question that the burden of assisting another human being, literally their freedom being rooted in your legal representation, can be too great a weight.