October 26, 2012

Bill Nemitz: Justice was blind but now he sees

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Facebook and Twitter? Good luck with that.

Then came the calls from men with matching monikers who had never heard of Zumba, let alone Alexis Wright. And with those calls came not-so-thinly-veiled threats of lawsuits against anyone and everyone who dragged their otherwise good names into this mess.

"This case has been a major story in Maine and even some national media," observed Sigmund Schutz, representing Maine Today Media in a motion for expedited reconsideration filed with the court on Tuesday.

"If the names are released without the addresses," Schutz continued, "anyone who lives in or near southern Maine and happens to have the same name as (one of Wright's alleged clients) will suffer substantial damage to their reputation that would not occur if the addresses were released."

Schutz also argued that Warren wrongly co-mingled the John Does' statuses as alleged perpetrators and victims.

The records in question, Schutz correctly noted, pertained only to the perps and thus should have been released with addresses included.

But by the time everyone got on the phone later in the day, those finer points no longer seemed to matter.

A quick poll by Warren of all the attorneys on the line -- Schutz, Schwartz, York County District Attorney Kathryn Slattery, Kennebunk Town Attorney William Dale -- confirmed that nobody wanted to play catch with this hot potato any longer.

"The town wants very much for the addresses to be released," implored Kennebunk's Dale, adding that the "false positives" among the rapidly spreading names had become "problematic" for the town.

"The partial relief that was granted by the court was not the relief that we were seeking," chimed in Schwartz, who told the judge that he planned to immediately end his legal battle because to do otherwise "doesn't make sense" to his clients.

And with that, the judge whose twisted logic started this whole mess suddenly found himself off the hook.

"I will do whatever I can to get an order out somehow this afternoon," said Warren, who was away at a legal conference Tuesday. "Does that make sense to everybody?"

Sure does, Your Honor.

And if it please the court, next time skip the back flips.

Columnist Bill Nemitz can be contacted at 791-6323 or at:



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