Help Wanted?

Paying The Freight  (Updated @ 12n)

How costly the criminal defense of the Swann Street housemates was has long been a topic of conversation.  Washingtonian Magazine’s Harry Jaffe ran the numbers during the trial and came up with a figure of around $2.5 million. 

Hard hat zone: Ground Zero on K Street

Some legal insiders thought that aggregate figure may have been a little on the high side; the former defendants may have worked out flat fees for their respective firms rather than pay the hefty hourly rates. 

And Joe Price’s costs may have been lower than assumed:  His counsel Bernie Grimm was mostly a one man band in the courtroom, as if playing playing second chair to the armada of talent from Schertler & Onorato, who we’re told ran the show.  Zaborsky counsel Tom Connolly traveled light too, aided in the courtroom by just one other attorney, Amy Richardson. 

The threesome’s resources will now be devoted to fighting the wrongful death civil suit waged by Kathy Wone on behalf of Robert’s estate.  The defense team may be doing the bidding of insurance companies that wrote homeowner policies for their former home on Swann.  Still, checks may have to be cut and if a jury goes against the threesome in the civil case, there is the $20 million judgement.  How to pay?

Rich, an experienced executive recruiter (headhunter) weighs in on future job prospects that may help the threesome pay the freight.

“The future looks brighter than what most of us think for our boys.  I have thought a lot about what the prospects of their employment can be. First of all allow some qualifiers here:

I’ve been in Human Resources/Recruitment for thirty years focused on Corporate HR and Executive Search. I have worked extensively in Legal (Placing Law Firm Partners and their Practice Groups) and with Marketing professionals. So, my opinion carries a bit more weight than just another theory.

The most practical next step for the defendants is to get out from under the Civil Suit, change their names, possibly, and move to the house in Florida.  DC is over for them.  A new life to rebuild in another state.  It’s easier living this way.

As for their individual employment prospects, my opinion, which is for the most part very sound, may differ from many of you.

Joe will work again.  Sorry folks.  And, he will do exceedingly well, especially on Florida cost of living.  If he and the other guys can pick up Spanish, which is very easy to do on the cheap in Miami, they will do even better.  Especially, Victor.  More on him later.

Joe can join the Miami Office of a national firm and assume an, “Of Counsel,” role.  Not a partner.  Make over $200k per year minimum and be a great, “Backseat,” subject matter expert.  According to Martindale-Hubbell, (International Law Directory – one of the most popular and extensive sources of information on the global legal profession) there are 133 National Law Firms in Miami alone.  This does not include nearby Ft. Lauderdale.  There are hundreds more small regional/local firms, that will take him in a heartbeat with his big firm experience.

Joe can also hang his own shingle.  In addition to securing new business, he can go to old clients who liked him and warm himself to them again.  They will remember the good feelings they had and where their loyalties were at one time. Since they were not caught up in the wmrw machinations, they will base their feelings on past experience with Joe and not on all the hoopla the case generated.

Do not forget kids, these clients have not been living on this site, like the rest of us.  I have tried to engage dozens of folks in this story from all around the country, and not one person even heard of Robert Wone, yet alone the case and story.  We are a unique group and a precious few.

Actually, I also have a lot of experience with former offenders rebuilding their lives, as well.  I know all too well the many moving parts these boys will have to execute and endure to rebuild their lives.  Since they have proven to be resourceful, I’m confident they will succeed, whether I believe their story or not.

As for Victor, it’s much easier.  Marketing is hot in Miami right now and the “Got Milk” campaign,” is quite successful and still popular. If Victor picked up Spanish, a very easy language to learn, he will do extraordinary well, as Miami is the gateway for Central and South America.  In Honduras or Venezuela, it’s all about Miami. Victor will easily command a minimum of  $125k.

Dylan has the most options.  Much of his massage money could be under the table and if they are found liable in the civil suit, Dylan is the only one who will skate by.  He can pursue any of his career paths to date.  The massage business, in South Beach alone, will generate another $175k.  That is the actual income of Massage Therapist in SoBe.  Tourists, especially the models in South Beach, love to have massages.  Real ones.  No happy endings.

The trouple show well.  They are verbal, allegedly, depending on who you talk with, they are handsome, although from what I can see, many of you have eliminated Joe from the competition.  He still shows well in a suit.  That is all you need on an interview.  And, they have clearly proven, they know how to tell a story, so their employment interviews will go swimmingly.

None of them have to get over the criminal backgroundcheck issue, as the matter will be discussed up front.  No hurdles there. Prospective employers may be impressed that they came clean up front and could become more loyal to them.  I’ve seen it before. Everyone likes a real sad story where there are burdens and the party involved takes responsibility.

Basically, which is kind of funny, if you think about it- the boys will present themselves to prospective employers as victims, especially when they spin the story about how they were unfairly pursued by the authorities as a scapegoat or for being ‘gay bashed by the government.  And, Leibowitz’ ultimate decision sets them free.  They got off.  Obviously, they were innocent.  A prospective employer will not know, Leibovitz expressed doubt about their innocence.  The record will show, “acquittal.”

As for adding new hires to the workplace, there will be no disruption.  Since the national media has not been covering this story, and no one in Miami, over 1000 miles from Washington DC, knows about Robert Wone or the case.  An employer does not have to worry about how this will play out in the office.  They are off the hook, like innocent.

Collectively they can all earn well.  If the house in Miami has no mortgage, they are even better off.  Since they purchased a home there, they have already bought into the Southern Florida, so there is no hardship acclimating.  They want to be there.  Again, no hurdles.  It’s not like trying to get used to living in North Dakota, when you want to be in Washington, DC.

If you have a minimum pot of $595,000 per annum, it’s a start. So, for those of you who believe their futures are over, rethink it.

Miami is a hot spot for Gay folks and quite urban.  These may be harsh realities to some. My only fear is that the posting will empower them at a time they feel their options are limited.”

Thanks to Rich.  We’ll ask him later if he’s looking for resumes.  He tells us he’s not. 🙂

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195 comments for “Help Wanted?

  1. 310 Observer
    07/21/2010 at 10:54 AM

    Just an FYI–Kirschner is no longer head of the homicide unit.

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/07/20/AR2010072005488.html?hpid=newswell

    • AnnaZed
      07/21/2010 at 11:21 AM

      Humm, interesting, Kirschner can plausibly say that he “wants to try cases” but it clearly massively sucks to be Zachem.

      • Ivan
        07/22/2010 at 7:29 AM

        Who or what is “Zachem”?

        • 07/22/2010 at 11:38 AM

          Read the article via the URL that 310 provided. In brief, Daniel Zachem “stepped aside” as a homicide prosecutor in the US Attorney’s Office “after 27 years as a prosecutor,” taking off “at least a year” so as to (uh oh, the tell tale sign) “spend time with his family.” This is part of a shake up in the prosecution hierarchy, five months after the President named Ronald Machen, Jr. to be US Attorney in DC. The news, for the Wone case, is that Glenn Kirschner will no longer manage the homicide unit, after 6 years, and two of his top deputies (including Zachem) also were removed (or “stepped aside”) from management.

          • Ivan
            07/22/2010 at 11:43 AM

            OK thanks I couldn’t get the link to work

          • Dave
            07/23/2010 at 2:14 PM

            Just to be clear, Zachem was planning on taking a leave of absence WELL before the conclusion of the Wone trial, so let’s quickly stamp out any conspiracy theories (unless you want to try to claim he saw it coming and was planning this to cushion the blow).

    • 07/21/2010 at 2:33 PM

      ALERT!! Readers could easily skip this WaPo article since the topic (personnel changes in the U.S. Attorney’s Office) is off topic (seemingly) from the current post (employability of the 3). But it’s super important. The WaPo article ends by saying that the new U.S. Attorney, Machen, is bringing in Vincent Cohen, Jr. to be his #2. (Cohen is a well known, politically well connected and civic leader attorney in DC.)

      The article says that Cohen was seen (by the WaPo writer, Keith Alexander) observing the Wone trial. My first thought was that Cohen may not have been pleased with the lack of aggressiveness of the prosecution team (I agree in part). But then I remembered: Vincent Cohen, Jr. is a partner in the law firm of none other than SCHERTLER and Onorato!! See http://www.schertlerlaw.com/attorneys/cohen.php

      I hope (but can fully expect) our treasured editors will be all over this turn of news. (BTW, Cohen’s experience is on both the civil and criminal ends of the law.)

      • Craig
        07/21/2010 at 2:59 PM

        Good catch Gloria. This post by Rich really did turn out to be the Help Wanted listings after all.

        So – Schertler is hiring…. Rich: Want to run interference for me? 🙂 I’M KIDDING!

        • Clio
          07/21/2010 at 9:34 PM

          So, Glenn gets canned, and the trouple regain their income, if not their image. These must be omens of the coming apocolypse: 2012 cannot come too soon!

        • Deb
          07/21/2010 at 10:00 PM

          Ach, Craig, WAY too quick on the “I’m kidding” part. Always make ’em sweat!

          This is pretty interesting. Makes you wonder which of 3 perspectives Cohen may have brought to the pew.

          Hope ’twere the Jesuit one. . .

          Rich, I agree with you about their earning potential and immediate employability. However, I do wonder, should they not yet be employed prior to the conclusion of the civil case, what will be the impact when they say the word “innocent” followed by the phrase “wage garnishment”?

          I also wonder about whether they will be employable between now and the conclusion of the civil case because their defense of that will be nearly a full time job.

          • Rich
            07/21/2010 at 10:14 PM

            Dear Deb:

            No way in HELL are they employable prior to the conclusion of the Civil Trial.

            I speak from experience.

            I was involved in litigation against me while employed and I basically got paid to make and take phone calls and send and recieve emails strictly pertaining to the lawsuit.

            My employer was way too understanding.

            The case was dismissed for lacking legal merit, but, it took every waking moment out of me for one year.

            As for garnishments, take it to the bank!

            They will lose any reportable income.

            Which makes sense for Dylan (Money Under the Table) to support them or go into a Porn Biz where they can hide the money.

            • Deb
              07/21/2010 at 10:27 PM

              Going back to the garnishments, then . . . would the employer who hears their sob story of persecution and ultimate acquittal not balk a bit once they get around to a very necessary discussion re: garnishment?

              I think you are hot-on that Dylan will be the one to come out of this in the best stead . . . financially.

              • Bill 2
                07/21/2010 at 10:31 PM

                Dylan may do okay financially after the trial, but what about an inheritance from the parents. Will he lose out when it comes to getting millions in a will?

                • NYer
                  07/22/2010 at 12:14 PM

                  I think C79 or Hoya brought this up in an earlier post – and correct me if I am mistaken – that with regard to a potential inheritance from dad, what would make sense for Dylan would be to establish a special trust to protect the assets. I forgot the details proposed with regard to such a potential trust.

                  • AnnaZed
                    07/22/2010 at 12:20 PM

                    Couldn’t a trust just buy him some real estate in Florida?

                    • NYer
                      07/22/2010 at 12:46 PM

                      That’s a good point- perhaps establish a family trust, which later purchases FL property. Might the property then be rented out, paid in cash transactions?

              • carolina
                07/22/2010 at 7:26 AM

                You are assuming they lose the civil action. Let’s hope, right?

                • Ivan
                  07/22/2010 at 7:33 AM

                  Yes, folks, let’s not assume anything at this point.

      • Rich
        07/21/2010 at 3:03 PM

        Stuuning Observation:

        Cohen is from Schertler and Onorato.

        Maybe tyou can do some more research and write the story for the Editors.

        They’re swamped and tired. Naturally,

      • Jeana
        07/21/2010 at 3:10 PM

        WOW,Gloria, that’s news! Here’s a hypothetical for the legal team: New evidence arises that would support a murder charge against Dylan. Schertler for the defense. Doesn’t the US Attorney’s office have a conflict of interest on the basis of the former partnership and the theory that if one attorney in the office has a COI, the entire office is excluded from handling the case? For how long would a ‘former partnership’ COI exist? Who steps in for ‘the people’ when the US Atty’s office has a conflict? Since the right to counsel (at least when the defendant is footing the bill) includes the right to counsel of one’s choice, I can’t imagine that Schertler could be precluded from taking the case – although he might choose to decline it. Thoughts?

        • David
          07/21/2010 at 3:17 PM

          The bigger issue in your hypothetical, as I see it, would be that Cohen would SLOW down any active prosecution of Dylan Ward since he is the client of his former partner at the firm he was with immediately before taking the US Attorney position.

          David, co-ed.

          • Bruce
            07/21/2010 at 3:35 PM

            It’s not like prosecutors have not done this before, but I think they are very unlikely to go after any of the Swann 3 for murder unless something really big drops in their laps that was not present for the first criminal trial.

            If they couldn’t get a conviction for the lesser charges brought in the criminal trial, why in the world would they go for murder on the same evidence?

            They would likely be subject to great criticism for utilizing public funds in that project, and murder trials are very expensive both for the public, and for the defendants.

            My guess is, no matter what the criminal judge said in her acquittal decision, no matter what has been said by any public or private concerns on the matter, no matter what new personnel comes into the prosecutor’s or police’s offices, there will be no murder charges for the Swann 3 unless “smoking gun” evidence pops up.

            [I’m an idiot skeptical defense attorney from Chicago, unlike any juror for the civil trial of the Swann 3, and truly unworthy of having any of my posts read, since I apparently (according to at least one poster) know very little about this case]

            • Jeana
              07/21/2010 at 4:21 PM

              Bruce,

              I, too, am a skeptical (former) criminal defense attorney and even though I think these dudes, or at least one or some of them “done” it (I’m sure you recognize this riff on the SODDI defense – “Some other dude done it,”) I enjoy reading your posts. I also think you’re right that a murder charge is not likely. That’s why my hypothetical relies on new evidence arising.

              • Bruce
                07/21/2010 at 4:46 PM

                Jeana:

                Thanks for your kind post. I should have clarified that I don’t do criminal work and never have. I have tremendous respect for your having done criminal defense.

                But, I suspect that you and I, since we both share a defense background, share something else: sympathy for the underdog. Can’t help it, just can’t.

                I am comfortable recognizing and appreciating the horror and unfairness to Robert Wone and his loved ones and friends as to this whole crazy mess, and the impact upon them.

                Yet, I can at the same time also “feel” for the defendants here, at the mercy of all the government resources, fair and not fair, and considering the evidence, in both a criminal and civil context.

                I don’t think you have to “pick sides” in this debate. I realize probably 90% or more of people on the blog do pick a side and stick with it consistently. I don’t criticize anyone who has “taken sides,” as that allows free and fun debate, and everyone has a right to their opinions, obviously. I am also conscious of the fact that I can be wrong in my opinions, just as others can.

                To be fair, like you, I think that one or more of the Swann 3 “did it.” But, as I would bet you agree, what we “think” is a lot different from what is allowable from a criminal or civil court context, as the criminal judge so painfully expressed in her acquittal decision. Take care.

                • Bill Orange
                  07/21/2010 at 6:28 PM

                  I agree with both of you–I don’t think additional charges are likely unless something else happens. But with that in mind, we know for certain that “something else” is going to happen, namely a civil trial. I think that there are good (but not great) odds that the civil trial is going to “shake something loose” that might have relevance to future charges.

                  • Jeana
                    07/21/2010 at 6:54 PM

                    I hope that’s the case, Bill. Whether new information points toward the trouple or away from them, we all want to know how and at whose had Robert died.

                    • Jeana
                      07/21/2010 at 6:57 PM

                      Sorry – that should have read “whose hand…”

                • Deb
                  07/21/2010 at 10:06 PM

                  Bruce:
                  I bring the Jesuit perspective to the bench.

                  There are more sides than two.

                  Consider everthing openly. No harm in that.

                  Peace,
                  Deb

          • Cat from Cleveland
            07/21/2010 at 7:31 PM

            Happens all the time in the tight world of criminal defense/prosecution. He will not be permitted to access or discuss the Wone case. The rest of the office will be informed that they are not to discuss the matter with him at all.

        • KiKi
          07/21/2010 at 4:00 PM

          In practice if this occurred the defense would file a motion to recuse the US Attorneys office. If the motion was granted, I am not sure who would take over. In most states if the local DAs are recused the State AG takes over. I am sure a DC attorney can answer the who takes over question. Maybe another division of the USAO?

          As far as Schertler is concerned, if the USAO was allowed to continue on the case, the conflict is DW’s to waive. In other words, DW can say I understand that my attorney’s former partner is now the USA Homicide chief and I waive any conflict.

          In the end, I agree with Bruce, but for some major new bombshell it is likely this is the end of the criminal proceedings.

          • Hoya Loya
            07/21/2010 at 4:56 PM

            In the relatively small hothouse that is the D.C. legal community, I doubt this sort of revolving door thing is that unusual. Remember, Judge L. had both worked for Schertler in the past and held senior positions in the prosecutor’s office.

            Wouldn’t Cohen likely recuse himself from making any decisions on a possible case against Ward? I believe AG Holder recused himself from any involvement in the recent case due to his prior representation of Kathy and the estate. Then, as you note, any broader perceived conflict would be Dylan’s to waive.

            I agree that any murder case is a long way off. There needs to be solid evidence or someone needs to talk. There is a reason such a case has not been brought to date. On the chance that a solid case might one day be made, the government does not want to risk double jeopardy attaching after a flawed, insubstantial case.

            • Bill Orange
              07/21/2010 at 6:35 PM

              Question for the defense lawyers: What is the legal difference between a charge of obstruction of justice and accessory after the fact? As a hypothetical, what would happen if one of the three had walked in on the other two standing over a dead body, and then they all cleaned up the scene and told a cover story, and then the odd man out decided to testify as to what he actually saw that night? He doesn’t know which of the other two did the stabbing, so he wouldn’t be able to make a murder charge stick. All three have been acquitted of evidence tampering, obstruction, and conspiracy, so they can’t be charged with any of those crimes again. Would the prosecutor be able to bring any charges at that point, or do we still have a “math problem”?

        • chilaw79
          07/21/2010 at 4:04 PM

          More importantly, did any of the prosecutors know that Cohen was under consideration for the position of number two in the office?

          As a partner, Cohen would be deemed to know any client confidences of Dylan Ward. In addition, Covington will be seeking discovery from the U. S. Attorneys’ office and the investigative agencies.

          Schertler is Ward’s counsel in the civil case, too.

          I hear a Chinese wall being constructed somewhere.

          • KiKi
            07/21/2010 at 4:18 PM

            Add the Holder connection and you might as well bring Brewer and Nash in to construct the wall.

          • Jeana
            07/21/2010 at 4:35 PM

            ChiLaw – I can’t see the US Atty’s Office being permitted to hide behind a Chinese wall on this – not with Cohen heading the homicide office. If he were just a lowly AUSA, maybe, but not head of the division. But Kiki’s right, that a recusal motion would have to come from Dylan (in my hypo) and he may believe it to be to his advantage to have his lawyer’s former partner on the case. In the absence of a recusal motion from the defense could/would the Court intervene? What a can of worms.

            • chilaw79
              07/21/2010 at 4:55 PM

              While it does not matter that much, the real question is why Cohen was observing the case? Perhaps Cohen was going to handle the civil case and this was a good way of familiarizing him with the issues.

              I agree the conflict is Dylan’s to waive, but I am not sure what would happen in the event of a recusal motion at this point.

      • Liam
        07/22/2010 at 7:52 PM

        I wonder if Mr. Cohen is less than enamored with private practice. After all, he previously worked as a prosecutor with the U.S. attorney’s office. Although it seems he would be going back in more of a leadership role.

  2. NeighboronT
    07/21/2010 at 11:30 AM

    Nobody really thought their lives wouldn’t go on. Hope they enjoy paying those monthly invoices for a few years. That, and living with what they know.

    • Also From the Post Story
      07/23/2010 at 11:16 AM

      And, perhaps, living with knowing that cops could come in the door at any time to re-arrest him if the relationship goes south and one of the other two finds Jesus (perhaps literally; stranger things have happened).

      Each will have a major interest for the rest of his life in not upsetting either of the others, while watching them carefully and secretly hoping they drop of heart attacks — while knowing the others are secretly hoping the same thing. Talk about an uneasy marriage.

  3. Laura
    07/21/2010 at 11:49 AM

    Yeah, I can see where their lives might just get back on track. But we can only hope that would be for outward appearances only. These guys deserve to be tormented every single day for the rest of their lives. If not for killing Robert (which I believe they had a hand in) then for not telling all they know. I’ve lived the life of a cushy existence with a six-figure salary and if you’re not happy inside and with yourself, it doesn’t mean all that much. Then again, Joe seems particularly heartless, so maybe he WILL do just fine on this earth. Perhaps it’s the afterlife he should worry about…burn, baby, burn!

    • carolina
      07/21/2010 at 8:39 PM

      You need a conscience for any of that to affect you. Unless they can buy one, I don’t think they’ll be too awfully bothered.

  4. Bill 2
    07/21/2010 at 12:01 PM

    “Since they purchased a home there, they have already bought into the Southern Florida, so there is no hardship acclimating.”

    Perhaps the only reason they purchased a home there is because they hope to have a residence that will be safe from loss in a court case. That was the reason O.J. Simpson bought a posh home in South Florida. He wanted a place that was safe from seizure by the Goldman’s claim. I’m wondering, since O.J. is no longer living in the Florida home, can Fred Goldman get it? Also, can Price-Zaborsky keep their Florida home if they lose in the Wone trial since they haven’t lived in it long enough to establish it as their primary residence?

  5. Bill Orange
    07/21/2010 at 12:20 PM

    Hmmm. I’m going to disagree with Rich just a little bit. I think that in the last two years, most employers have started to look up perspective hires on facebook and/or google, so I think a LOT of prospective employers will find out about the history of these three. (I was surprised to have an interviewer last year tell me that he should have disqualified himself from interviewing me when he found out we went to the same high school.) I agree that Joe Price will likely find work (e.g., “Couldn’t get rid of the body? Call Joe Price!”), as will Dylan. I’m less sure about Victor. The ad business is all about image, and “Victor Zaborsky” is a very unusual name–this is going to stay with him for the rest of his life.

    I don’t see how a name change would help all that much, but I’m curious about Rich’s take on this. Every application I’ve filled out in the last decade or so has asked if I’ve ever changed my name, so I would imagine that most employers are on to this trick. I think that most people could simply lie about this and get away with it, but I also think that most people aren’t on the radar of one of the countries top civil litigation firms, not the mention the current AG of the USA.

    • carolina
      07/21/2010 at 8:42 PM

      Marketing is all behind the scenes. Few people know or care who created the ad that convinced them to buy the latest snake oil, and as long as its selling, the agency doesn’t care, either.

    • Also From the Post Story
      07/23/2010 at 11:33 AM

      Question for an expert: When you change your name, how secret can you keep your old one? Doesn’t the government have an interest in preventing the kinds of fraud that people can change their names to commit? The only exceptions I can imagine are when the government is actively on your side, as in a witness- or victim-protection program.

      Can anyone do a public-records search to locate a name change?

  6. Alice
    07/21/2010 at 12:43 PM

    I’m conflicted by the information Rich has provided. On the one hand, they were acquitted, so they should be able to earn a living. And if they lose the wrongful death suit, a good income will be sent right on over to Kathy to do with as she sees fit.

    On the other hand, I think these guys are are guilty. I don’t think they all murdered Robert, but they all had a hand in covering up the murder, so I don’t want their lives to go merrily along.

    But that’s life, it rarely is tied up neatly with a bow.

  7. Bea
    07/21/2010 at 12:50 PM

    I agree that it’s good to look at things like this from perspectives other than our jaded ones here. Can’t comment on VZ or DW, but I have to disagree about Joe Price’s prospects. Law firms live in the past, reputation-wise, and are very, very “concerned” about appearances. I am not saying that Joe Price won’t get a job – there are any number of ambulance-chasing legal positions (with a salary befitting them). I am saying that he’s done in IP big or even medium law for certain. We are a very small and tight knit group – and at a recent IP event, JP was the subject of discussions AND whispers. Even with an acquittal (and forgetting any looming murder charges) I do not see him getting what I would consider a ‘respectable’ position in the field – there are too many good out-of-work attorneys right now, and they are ‘ladies without a past.’

    Changing identities will present issues – not sure the bar association will look favorably upon this, and certainly law firms will learn this and be very, very afraid of someone who has done so. If our firm’s background check is standard (assume it is) then that would be discovered in three different ways that I can think of before a second cup of coffee. The network of calls to prior employers would end any chance he has, in my opinion.

    Perhaps he’ll land in a non-IP litigation setting, but again, it would have to be a firm that is willing to go way out on the ledge – and these firms would be doing so not out of generosity but because they can get him at a deep discount.

    At a minimum, he’s no longer A-list and will not get an A-list salary. Not even in the murky “Of Counsel” waters, in my opinion. As I’ve long said, he can be a faceless attorney doing bulk work at a low salary/piece work – in other words, he can pay basic bills – but his lifestyle will not be the same. If the civil case goes his way, and the murder charges never materialize, then perhaps he’ll work his way back to mid-level in a decade, but that’s all magic ball stuff to me.

    • CDinDC (Boycott BP)
      07/21/2010 at 1:15 PM

      Maybe Joe could land a government job. I hear the PTO is hiring.

      • Bea
        07/21/2010 at 5:01 PM

        Good for a chuckle – yet I seriously doubt Joe could get an offer to be an Trademark Examining Attorney (Grade 13). Even if the Manager didn’t “know” there would be the little problem of the FBI check since a security clearance is necessary.

        (Before anyone objects – not saying he wouldn’t pass a security clearance since he was, indeed, acquitted. But I’d like to see the Manager’s face as the FBI report is handed to him/her and he/she picks up the phone to get ‘the story’ from Arent.)

        • carolina
          07/21/2010 at 8:48 PM

          If they learned nothing else, the personal photos on the company computer and using the email for his upstart porn business should close a few doors. And if it doesn’t, then I guess the profession deserves the unfortunate reputation that follows it.

        • Ivan
          07/22/2010 at 7:36 AM

          Good point Bea. A lot of govt jobs require security clearances. Also, won’t a prospective employer want to know why Joe left A&F? What will he say? And if he does change his name he’d have to be forthright about it I believe. I don’t doubt the Trouple will rise from the ashes but I think Rich’s scenario is a bit rosy. As for the “Got Milk” campaign that is, and I hate to use the words, so “over”.

          • Rich
            07/22/2010 at 10:41 AM

            Dear Ivan:

            I wasn’t suggesting the defendant’s upward battle was going to be easy or, “Rosy.” They will struggle, but, they will ultimately succeed.

            Prospective employers will respond favorably to the, “Courage,” they demonstrate as they tell their story. That is where employer loyalty comes in play.

            You have to admit, as they roll out their very long story, an easy hour or more to tell, it will be quite compelling and they will illicit support and sadness from the listener.

            As for the, “GOT MILK CAMPAIGN,” ask anyone in marketing, they all rely on yesterday’s news.

            The, “Where’s the Beef,” folks are still selling that one.

          • KKinCA
            07/22/2010 at 10:43 AM

            In my experience most former employers have a policy that the only information they release about their former employees is the start/end dates of employment. Although that is merely a policy unique to each employer, most prudent employers use such a policy to avoid exposure to defamation claims from their former employees. I would think that Arent Fox would be pretty “prudent”.

    • Bill Orange
      07/21/2010 at 1:33 PM

      On further reflection, I’m tending more toward Bea’s viewpoint. I don’t think Joe’s going to be able to get a job at any top-name law firm. Yes, he was acquitted of all charges, but there’s no statute of limitations on murder, and no law firm is going to want their logo in the background if he’s eventually arrested for murder. As Bea has said, there are lots of out-of-work lawyers right now, and I think most law firms would lean toward hiring someone who’s less likely to be led out of the office in handcuffs.

      • NYer
        07/21/2010 at 2:12 PM

        Wow, well-written BillO. The scene from the movie Wall Street, where Charlie Sheen does the perp walk through the office, went through my head. It also made me wonder what things were like around Arent Fox when the search warrants were executed. Was Joe there to assist the investigators? (“Here’s my computer, let me help you with the password…”) Or was he restricted from the building as a security measure? I’m inclined to think the latter but would have wanted to be a fly on that wall that day.

      • AnnaZed
        07/21/2010 at 2:31 PM

        I would rather think that the keeping-porn-of-himself-on-the-work-computer-and-using-his-work-email-to-set-up-a-porn-business stuff would keep any of the bigger fish from taking any Joe-bait anytime soon; leaving aside the whole still-likely-to-be-indited-for-murder problem. White shoe firms frown on that sort of stuff generally don’t they? Besides, it goes to character, and not in a good way.

      • chilaw79
        07/21/2010 at 4:14 PM

        I have no idea whether Joe Price is guilty of murder and he is entitled to the presumption of innocence, but any firm is going to want to know about the gap between Arent, Fox and the new employer. Assuming the firm does even a cursory background check, Judge Leibowitz’ opinion would make me nervous if I was on the hiring committee given her statements regarding his character and conduct. I would not put him in charge of the summer associate program either.

        • Bruce
          07/21/2010 at 4:19 PM

          Chilaw:

          Forgive me, but as to your last sentence. Could you clarify that? Seems like you may have said that simply because Joe is gay. Is that correct? I’m giving you a benefit of a doubt.

          • chilaw79
            07/21/2010 at 5:04 PM

            It has nothing to do with being gay and a lot more about his apparent attitude toward the law firm’s policies.

            I would not hesitate to put a gay or lesbian at the head of a summer program. I would hesitate to put someone who had pornographic pictures on his office computer or used the firm’s e-mail address in outside advertisements not related to legal services.

            • Bruce
              07/21/2010 at 6:25 PM

              Thanks for the clarification. I don’t know what the “law firm’s policies” were, but you apparently do, and that’s fine by me.

              • Bill 2
                07/21/2010 at 6:43 PM

                It doesn’t take knowledge of a specific policy to know that you should not store porn on your work computer. It only takes one thing — common sense. Is it possible that anyone actually thinks it would need to be set down in black and white?

              • chilaw79
                07/21/2010 at 7:29 PM

                Before the murder of Robert Wone and based upon Joe Price’s public persona at that time, I could see him serving on a Recruiting Committee. Joe was in an interesting legal area (IP), did high visibility pro bono work, and would show a commitment to diversity.

                However, a lack of professional judgment (as evidenced by the violations of policies mentioned above) is disqualifying since the firm wants to put its best foot forward. Conduct that was acceptable 30 years ago (e.g., calling women “sweetie” or flirting) is not acceptable today. Thirty years ago in Chicago, litigation partners often had a drink (or two) at lunch at the club.

                Big law firms in DC do have strict policies about use of firm computers and e-mail and make it clear that there is no expectation of privacy for any material on a firm computer. I have had e-mails bounced when discussing various legal issues (e.g., breast reduction surgery)and once when I suggested that a client stop “pussy-footing” around a particular legal issue and address it clearly.

                • Sean
                  07/22/2010 at 2:23 PM

                  I don’t know if he was on the hiring or recruiting committee, but he definitely did some law student recruiting for ArentFox. I met Joe at a networking thing where he was representing ArentFox in March or April of 2008. Joe was easily the most memorable person at the event.

                  Back before I’d heard of this site, I thought he was likable and charismatic, we talked about how he was defending M&M Mars from the Naked Cowboy, (and then he made a joke which I laughed at, but was surprised he made. I chalked that up to his being a partner so he could get away with that).

                  • Liam
                    07/22/2010 at 9:04 PM

                    What was the joke?

                  • Liam
                    07/22/2010 at 9:05 PM

                    Don’t leave us hanging?

                    • Vandy
                      07/23/2010 at 10:25 AM

                      Think I’ve heard this joke before. “Melts in your mouth, not in your hand.”

      • carolina
        07/21/2010 at 8:52 PM

        Maybe he can join a cushy law firm that represents money launderers and drug runners. He’d probably do well there.

        • Clio
          07/21/2010 at 8:58 PM

          Or, what about John Foster Dulles’ old firm — Sullivan and Cromwell?

          • Susan
            07/22/2010 at 8:54 PM

            I’m curious to hear the “joke”-however vulgar or lame–just for more insight into the jokester.

  8. NYer
    07/21/2010 at 12:55 PM

    Rich, while your discussion is interesting and well-laid out, I am curious what you personally as a HR professional would do if Joe’s resume came across your desk tomorrow, and you coincidentally happened to need to place an attorney in a position in a firm outside of the DC area. If you don’t send it to the trash bin (as I assume you wouldn’t do that, based on what you wrote) would you counsel Joe to do anything specific to prep himself for interviewing with the law firm?

    • carolina
      07/21/2010 at 8:53 PM

      I think he said it all– put it up front and play the victim. That really sticks in my craw, but he’s probably right. It’s a slimy world, kids.

  9. CDinDC (Boycott BP)
    07/21/2010 at 1:05 PM

    Re Joe’s prospects…..my firm (a top 100 largest law firm in the US) wouldn’t touch with a 10 foot pole. A former non-equity partner with no portables? Pffft. No portables = no partnership. Of counsel is saved for “awkward situations” at my firm. Attorneys with or without a handful of clients that have been around for 8 or more years. They aren’t going to bring cash business, but they are still useful to the firm. Or a small group of attorneys is merging in from another firm. What to do with the older attorney that didn’t bring anything with him, but is too old to be an associate. Of counsel is so not glamerous (at my firm).

    • Bruce
      07/21/2010 at 2:31 PM

      I agree with Rich that the least impact would be on Dylan, both in the employment field and as to any attemped collection on a civil judgement. No matter what happens in the civil trial, he will likely land on his feet.

      As to Joe and Victor, their situation is different, and they would be subject to wage garnishments and more if there were any collections against them for a civil judgment. Dylan to, but as his current employment is cash-based (I would imagine), that would be more difficult to collect upon.

      As for Joe’s chances, I think that a real threat may be whether the Florida bar would accept him as a licensed attorney in that state with a possible murder charge hanging over him, or a civil judgment against him under the circumstances of the actual civil case.

      Does anyone know if Joe is already licensed in any areas other than DC (and probably Maryland?)? If not, and he tries to pass the Florida bar, there is a real possiblity that there would be an ethics investigation on him. Don’t know how he would end up on that, but my guess is that he would pass under all the circumstances, even with a civil judgment against him.

      If Joe can get over that hurdle, I think that he will find a satisfying well-paying job as an attorney in Florida. Especially in the Ft. Lauderdale/Miami area, there are a number of gay-friendly firms that would not necessarily hold his past against him, particularly if he is very up-front about it. Of all the things we know about Joe, we can all probably agree that he is charismatic, which can go a long way in looking for a job.

      I don’t know the law in Florida, but it is possible that an employer can only ask if someone has been “convicted of a crime.” To which all the Swann 3 could truthfully answer “no.” Even so, Joe should be very up-front with any perspective employer.

      I would imagine that if any prospective employers contacted Joe’s previous legal employers, they would be told he was an excellent trust worthy attorney. I don’t think we have ever heard that any legal employer ever had the least problem with Joe, isn’t that correct?

      Joe is also still young and can change the focus of his practice. He could probably make a fortune as a plaintiff’s tort attorney.

      I don’t know the advertising or PR world at all, so I can’t really speak as to Victor, but his experience on the milk campaign will probably go a long way for him, and, again, there are many gay friendly firms at least in the Ft. Lauderdale, Miami area, such that my guess would be that he will find a satisfying well-paying job in Florida.

      The big threat to Joe and Victor are collection attempts on a civil money verdict, if they are found guilty, which could follow them for the rest of their lives, and tap a certain percentage of their salaries or pay.

      • chilaw79
        07/21/2010 at 4:17 PM

        You don’t think they would mention the pornographic pictures on his office computer or the use of the firm e-mail for his photography venture?

        • KiKi
          07/21/2010 at 4:20 PM

          Any employment lawyers or HR specialists: What are the legal boundaries for what a company may disclose about an employee when being asked for a reference?

          • chilaw79
            07/21/2010 at 5:08 PM

            An HR Department would just confirm dates of employment.

            That said, even law firms use Google and other sources in conducting background checks, especially at a senior level. The real contacts would be made at the partner to partner level and would not be made for attribution.

            I am sure there are some lawyers at Arent Fox and otherwise who would act as a personal reference for Joe Price, but Arent Fox as an institution probably would just confirm dates of employment.

          • Hoya Loya
            07/21/2010 at 5:09 PM

            HR should merely confirm employment, the position and the dates thereof. Anything else exposes them to claims by both the employee and the prospective/subsequent employer.

            • NYer
              07/21/2010 at 5:36 PM

              Reminds me of a story how a friend of mine was called up by surprise to give a reference for a former employee, whose work ethic was at best sub-par. When the conversation and questions turned to work performance, my friend simply kept repeating to the prospective employer: “Use your judgment.” Never once did he say a negative word about the former employee. Nor a positive word.

      • Bea
        07/21/2010 at 4:51 PM

        Joe may claw his way back in some field other than IP but he won’t get hired by a firm with a good salary structure (e.g. where one expects to be paid at the BigLaw dollar rungs). He might get hired on where the structure is (ghastly name) “eat what you kill” – a pittance base salary and then a percentage of what you bill that gets paid. He was a litigator so it’s unlikely he had any portable business (as CD pointed out) – and while he may have some minor client base which is resilient due to friendship, he won’t feed himself on it.

        As to whether Arent would give him a good reference – highly doubt it. Be assured that their outside employment firm will tell them exactly what to say about Price (should someone call) and it is likely to be “he did work here from 1999-2008 but we cannot discuss the reason for his termination/withdrawal from employment”). There is saying “words” and then there is the tone in which those words are delivered. It won’t be pretty.

        I’m sure he’ll have lawyer friends who will provide glowing references (and likely deservedly as it appears that he had merit as an attorney) but I’ve been the Hiring Partner and know that you look behind every ‘provided’ reference. Particularly, as Chilaw noted, there will be a glaring gap in his employment record. If he does go hat in hand and full of explanation to gay-friendly firms (note: most major metro areas are fairly good on this issue) the first thing they do after he leaves is read the opinion. Lawyers may be a lot of things, but renegade in hiring practices they are NOT.

        Perhaps a good friend will get him a placement and he’ll earn a modest living so long as he keeps his nose clean and the billable hours high. He might be able to build a base and go out on his own, but that takes time.

        I do NOT see him being extended a partnership at any mid-sized or large firm, even if he is a good lawyer and a good boy for a long while – we are risk averse, as a group, and I would bet huge sums of money that the day the arrests broke and it hit the legal blogs that MANY law firms winced at the blow taken by Arent – even Arent’s competitors. Their name will always be attached to “the Wone murder case”- law firms are more conservative than even ordinary businesses because they are purely service providers. Their attorney services are the products they sell.

        • Liam
          07/22/2010 at 8:33 PM

          I believe that his opportunities to continue as an IP attorney are very limited. As far as I’ve read, he is a trademark litigator.

          I agree that no large or mid-size firm will touch him. Too much risk of damage to their reputation.

          I would think that most smaller firms don’t do litigation, or at least not the type of deep pockets corporate trademark litigation that brings in the big bucks.

          So, maybe he can file and prosecute some trademark applications. Certainly not the type of work he’s used to and won’t bring in near the salary he was formerly used to.

          Without the type of clients a big law firm provides, I don’t see that his future career as a trademark attorney will bring in more than a “it pays the bills” salary.

        • Deb
          07/23/2010 at 12:01 AM

          In many ways I can agree that law firms are “even more conservative than ordinary businesses”, but then . . .

          As your phrase implies, law firms are businesses that are somehow other than “ordinary”.

          Mr. Wone was murdered in 2006. Price was still with Arent until 2008. Arent likely knew (even if they believe Price innocent of any allegations re: Wone) that Price had some “personal” stuff stored on the company computer that could be embarrassing.

          Yet they kept him on.

          For two years.

          In sum, law firms are VERY conservative as long as the dog keeps wagging.

      • Clio
        07/21/2010 at 8:28 PM

        Dyl may have stiff competition from younger, more muscular, and more masculine-looking therapists, particularly in southern Florida. Thus, going for a legit and elderly clientele may be the only way to survive.

        Victor will do best if he leaves Joe behind: in fact, all of them may benefit from new lucrative alliances with senior patrons, who will have “bought” their sob stories. Enlivening the nursing home may be their pro bono work of the future.

        • Liam
          07/22/2010 at 8:34 PM

          “Stiff competition”? Was that a pun?

          • Clio
            07/24/2010 at 6:00 PM

            On second reading, yes, it is, but it was not intended.

            If fellow readers have the chance, though, to see some of the electronic ads of his counterparts, they — regardless of gender or sexuality — will immediately see what I’m saying. At 40, “Sparkly Cat” is not “all that and a bag of chips”, as teens used to say in the 1990s!

      • carolina
        07/21/2010 at 9:03 PM

        Don’t massage therapists have to be bonded in FL? If he works freelance, he’ll probably do okay, but nowhere near $175k. As we’ve seen, his freelance work was going for $70/hr. Not sure if that included the happy ending.

        If he joins a practice, they’ll do a background check. Would you put your business on the line for someone who was one of three men in a home where another man was murdered? I certainly wouldn’t. Heaven forbid a client turns up with a Wustoff in the chest. I don’t think they can pass that off as a treatment for sciatica.

        As Bea and others have said, in this economy, there are a lot of good people without this cumbersome baggage who are looking for work. If I were hiring, I’d look for the potential employee with the least chance of ruining my business.

    • former crackho
      07/21/2010 at 3:00 PM

      Well, even if he does nothing more than push around the coffee and danish cart, its an opportunity that Robert will never get to have.

      • Bruce
        07/21/2010 at 4:10 PM

        Hey, ya old ugly former crackho:

        Well said!

  10. former crackho
    07/21/2010 at 2:18 PM

    DC is in desperate need of a new bathhouse/sex club since O street has turned into pitcher’s mound and that drunk guy stumbled down the rickety stairs to his untimely death at the Men’s Parties. And JP would be the perfect host, I bet. Dylan can play in the back and keep the guests happy dolling out the goodies (as can brother Michael), and Victor, well, I wonder how he is with a mop, bucket and gallon of clorex? Perhaps Joe can even set up a little office and do some pro bono work on the side, since he’s always been so civic-minded.

    • CDinDC (Boycott BP)
      07/21/2010 at 3:11 PM

      I think that’s a splendid idea, FCH. Maybe some book cooking could keep the profits to a minimum. Maybe some go-go dancing on the side for those undeclared tips. I’ve know a few bartenders in my lifetime that made a tidy living while staying in the lower tax brackets.

      In the words of Dr. Suess, “Oh the places you’ll go!”

      “You have brains in your head.
      You have feet in your shoes.
      You can steer yourself any direction you choose.
      You’re on your own. And you know what you know. And YOU are the guy who’ll decide where to go.

      You’ll look up and down streets. Look’em over with care. About some you will say, “I don’t choose to go there.” With your head full of brains and your shoes full of feet, you’re too smart to go down a not-so-good street.”

      Maybe not.

      • Jeana
        07/21/2010 at 3:34 PM

        Would that have been Swann Street those too-smart guys went down?

  11. curiousdc
    07/21/2010 at 2:58 PM

    If they lose the civil case and end up paying, does anyone know to what extent wages are garnished? Even if they end up with six-figure salaries, they would be reduced to more modest living, right?

    • former crackho
      07/21/2010 at 3:02 PM

      My bet is that they get into a business where they will be able to “hide” their true income. I’m still thinking sex or S & M club.

      • Clio
        07/21/2010 at 8:13 PM

        I’m thinking a hair and nails shop for men with a massage table in the back for special customers. But that’s just me.

    • chilaw79
      07/22/2010 at 10:18 PM

      The extent to which wages and other income may be garnished is subject to state law. I do not know what state’s law would be applied (e.g., DC, Florida, or somewhere else). Generally, the amount that may be garnished is based upon the number of people in the family of the individual being garnished. The percentage that may not be subject to garnishment is enough to live on, but not in the upper middle-class income levels I expect the defendants previously enjoyed.

  12. Rick
    07/21/2010 at 3:35 PM

    I’m one of the average 40 hours a week workers here. I’ve worked in the airline business for the past 27 years and in September of 09, the company I worked for went belly-up and it took me over 5 months to find another job in the same field and I’m one of the lucky ones. I have a BA degree from the University of South Carolina and have taken some graduate studies, and I have never made more than $60,000 a year…and now, it’s much less and I have never been involved in any criminal activity or accused of such!

    That said, I sit here at my computer thinking about these 3 creeps, their lives and the lies they are living and then hear that they’ll all be back to making 6 figure incomes. Rich, I found your editorial interesting, but you left out one very important fact…KARMA…what goes around comes around, and I honestly believe that these 3 guys will be wearing the Scarlet Letter for the rest of their lives and I just don’t see how they will ever escape their new reputations.

    If they do make a successful comeback, I won’t be jealous. It just means that eventually they will lose it all again…Karma is a very powerful thing!

    • CDinDC (Boycott BP)
      07/21/2010 at 3:40 PM

      indeed, Rick….there is a buddhist saying (in part): “down is the seed and you shall taste the fruit thereof.”

    • Bruce
      07/21/2010 at 3:56 PM

      Rick:

      Karma is, indeed, a very powerful thing. But in my experience, it is also non-discriminatory, unfair, and surpasses all understanding. Is it Karma that makes one individual or family suffer endlessly, while others seemingly more worthy of such a fate, lead happy happy lives? I tend to follow the lead of the book “Why Bad Things Happen To Good People” (By Rabbi Harold S. Kushner)and its theory of Karma chaos in the universe, with God there to hold our hands through such unfairness.

      But, hey, I know just what you mean by your post….

  13. alternateguy
    07/21/2010 at 3:51 PM

    Works both ways, doesn’t it? If, per chance, these guys should happen to be quite innocent, then won’t those who rather gleefully assume their guilt and wish them harm, reap what they have coming to them as well?

    • CDinDC (Boycott BP)
      07/21/2010 at 3:56 PM

      Absolutely, Altguy.

    • Bill Orange
      07/21/2010 at 6:54 PM

      “If, per chance, these guys should happen to be quite innocent…”

      If that’s the case, I have to say that I’m not terribly sympathetic. You have the right to remain silent, and the invocation of this right cannot be held against you in a criminal court of law. On the other hand, it can–and usually should–be held against you in the court of public opinion. These three man had a dead body in their guest bedroom. When that happens, people expect you to work with the police to try to figure out what happened. These three men have not done so. I think I’ll save my sympathy for Robert Wone’s family.

    • Clio
      07/21/2010 at 8:05 PM

      That’s a very big “if”, Alt, but “Reap What You Sew” was the title of that segment of Project Runway, the fount of wisdom itself in the reality-TV age.

      • Susan
        07/21/2010 at 8:14 PM

        I agree, Bill O, and Clio. Why didn’t J. Price come clean (literally) to police about what he told Tara Ragone about washing off R. Wone’s blood, AND what he told both TR and S. Hixson about pulling out the knife. And JP’s Catch-22 note.

        Further, Altguy seems to want to equate general opinions of individuals posting on a public blog with actual actions and inactions of individuals directly involved in a crime scene. Silly.

      • Susan
        07/21/2010 at 8:17 PM

        Wow, Clio, unbelievable that that was the title of the PR show that night, but it fits with every other odd aspect of this crime.

  14. mw
    07/21/2010 at 5:39 PM

    I still think their best employment option is an upscale, professional hardcore S&M club. That is where these guys excel. Their unofficial slogan could be, “A party so wild it would kill a straight guy”.

  15. Reinhold
    07/21/2010 at 7:32 PM

    Joe would have to pass the Florida bar and would have to disclose the whole Wone case.

  16. Cat from Cleveland
    07/21/2010 at 7:47 PM

    They can now build that S&M porn empire they always dreamed of. And for anyone looking for snuff films, these guys have instant street cred. . . Now I’m thinking of Robert, whom I have never met, and this whole subject suddenly makes me feel ill.

  17. Clio
    07/21/2010 at 7:56 PM

    “And they lived happily ever after!” — Rich’s predictions for our boys sound a bit like that aforementioned cliche/closer of Dyl’s child lit. Pollyanna squared, or Cassandra be damned?

    I do agree that the murder indictments are far less likely with the legal “musical chairs” reported in today’s Post, but Culuket may continue to be a magnet for controversy and scandal. One hopes for his comrades’ sake that he may have learned his lesson about saying no to drugs, but that particular wagon is easy for anyone to fall off of.

  18. Rich
    07/21/2010 at 8:26 PM

    After a Day of Postings, Allow Me To Share a Few Responses:

    Thank you in advance for the feedback. It was quite entertaining to read.

    The defendants will ask themselves loads of questions as they attempt to rebuild their life in Florida. With all the hype over the past 4 years, they will attempt to review what has happened and focus on what they will do about it in the future. All you need is a game plan. And, they will get one. They have already proven how resourceful and resilient they can be.

    Hopefully, my responses are in order of your posting. The Kirchner and Cohen news through me off.

    Laura:
    “I’ve lived the life of a cushy existence with a six-figure salary and if you’re not happy inside and with yourself, it doesn’t mean all that much.”

    As for the guys being able to live with themselves, you’re right, no amount of money or sense of success will make up for the secrets you carry.

    Bill 2:
    “Perhaps the only reason they purchased a home there is because they hope to have a residence that will be safe from loss in a court case.”

    I thought they had purchased the home long before the murder. I can be mistaken.

    Bill Orange:
    “I think that in the last two years, most employers have started to look up perspective hires on Facebook and/or Google, so I think a LOT of prospective employers will find out about the history of these three.”

    “Cyber Stalking,” with perspective employers does not begin until there is interest in proceeding with the applicant’s candidacy. By then, the boys have come clean and earned points with the interviewer for being so honest. Can you imagine? Honest?

    “The ad business is all about image.”

    Yes, it is. And, his image will improve again, as he was so candid about the circumstances upfront. Trust me on this one. The listener loves it when the, “Bad Boy,” takes ownership for the debacle. Victor will look for coming clean. And, again, “For Being So Honest.”

    “Every application I’ve filled out in the last decade or so have asked if I’ve ever changed my name, so I would imagine that most employers are on to this trick”

    Yes, but, it easy to skirt. Look at all the women with five name changes over failed marriages. And, when they come clean about their story, they add to the name change argument to support their sad story. It works.

    CDinDC
    Lovely! Got Loads on This One.

    “A former non-equity partner with no portables? Pffft. No portables = no partnership.”

    For an, “Of Counsel,” role, there is no need or expectation of portables. (Transferable Business.)

    “Of counsel is saved for “awkward situations” at my firm. Of counsel is so not glamorous (at my firm).”

    Yep. That is the whole point. The acquiring firm will know they have the upper hand in the employment process and can have Joe for a song. They do not have to promise the world to him and they can get away with murder. (So, to speak.) Joe will be so ecstatic for a paycheck; he will accept the terms and conditions.

    “Attorneys with or without a handful of clients that have been around for 8 or more years. They aren’t going to bring cash business, but they are still useful to the firm.”

    Yes, they are. And, Joe can actually bring business to the firm by directing the visible partners to the client and provide all the background information the firm needs to secure the client. Indirectly, he is income producing.

    Bea:
    “Law firms live in the past, reputation-wise, and are very, very “concerned” about appearances.”

    Joe will not be on the front line. He is in the backroom until the firm has confidence they can place Joe in front of the client. Joe is solely being used for his, “Expertise.” (Subject matter)

    “I do not see him getting what I would consider a ‘respectable’ position in the field – there are too many good out-of-work attorneys right now, and they are ‘ladies without a past.”

    But, unemployed attorney’s today who could not keep their job may not be as marketable and as expert as Joe. No one is advocating Joe will have a respectable position. Just a large paycheck until he can prove himself further. Time Heals All Wounds, they Say!

    “Changing identities will present issues – not sure the bar association will look favorably upon this, and certainly law firms will learn this and be very, very afraid of someone who has done so.”

    Joe simply comes clean again in advance and says he changed his name to get out from under the, “Internet Backlash,” which is the only reason to change the name.

    “At a minimum, he’s no longer A-list and will not get an A-list salary “

    In Miami, Joe will not be looking for an, “A List,” job. Just a large paycheck. And, he’ll get it.

    CDinDC (Boycott BP)
    “Maybe Joe could land a government job. I hear the PTO is hiring.”

    Good one. The Government is very NON-IMAGE concerned. Government jobs for the educated are easy to come by. Again, as of now, there are no criminal convictions. Acquitted.

    Bill Orange
    “I think most law firms would lean toward hiring someone who’s less likely to be led out of the office in handcuffs.”

    Again, if Joe is busted for a crime later, they cut bait. “Of Counsel’s are way too easy to cut loose.

    “I am curious what you personally as a HR professional would do if Joe’s resume came across your desk tomorrow.”

    Great Question. Bill, you always make me think. Thank you. I value your postings. If Joe’s resume came across my desk in Washington, DC and I knew what I know about the case, I would trash his resume for any client. I cannot run the risk of problems and losing business.

    “Would you counsel Joe to do anything specific to prep himself for interviewing with the law firm?”

    In my role, I am also a Great Coach to dozens of candidates. I would counsel Joe on several matters. That is if, I could stomach talking to him. I still do not know what I would say or do, if I ever met any of the defendants. Actually, unrelated, if I met Victor, I might counsel him to wake up.

    Bruce:
    “Florida bar would accept him as a licensed attorney in that state with a possible murder charge hanging over him, or a civil judgment against him under the circumstances of the actual civil case.”

    That is a good one, Bruce. Not my field or area of expertise. I have no clue. Although, I once engaged the Washington, DC office of Professional Conduct in a conversation about the ethics of a local lawyer and how she had to reprimanded, they recoiled in horror. I had all of the evidence, but, they were so fearful about pursuing it. Basically, I’m not an attorney, but, I believe, like with any profession, it’s a, “Good Ole Boys Network.”

    “Of all the things we know about Joe, we can all probably agree that he is charismatic, which can go a long way in looking for a job.”

    Charisma is everything in an interview.

    “Possible that an employer can only ask if someone has been “convicted of a crime. To which all the Swann 3 could truthfully answer “no””

    Yep. You got it.

    “I would imagine that if any prospective employers contacted Joe’s previous legal employers, they would be told he was an excellent trust worthy attorney.”

    They would also be concerned about potential litigation from Joe for a bad reference.

    former crackho
    “My bet is that they get into a business where they will be able to “hide” their true income. I’m still thinking sex or S & M club.”

    Bingo. You win the, “Prediction Contest.” They just have to figure out how to hide the income and Joe knows the attorneys to call to find out how.

    Kiki:
    “What are the legal boundaries for what a company may disclose about an employee when being asked for a reference?”

    Very dicey area. Arent Fox has to be quite careful about what they say. Can they allude to trouble? Sure. But, if queried on his relationships with clients and the results he produced (assuming they were good) they cannot get into discussion about his skill level or competence. Very, very dicey. And, everyone is afraid of litigation. And, I’m sure Joe had his friends at the firm that may have still stuck with him. Who knows?

    Rick:
    “KARMA…what goes around comes around, and I honestly believe that these 3 guys will be wearing the Scarlet Letter for the rest of their lives and I just don’t see how they will ever escape their new reputations.”

    I’ve worked with many offenders before. Yes, it’s an uphill climb and struggle for folks to rebuild their lives. But, the resilient do it. And, do it, well. I’m an expert on KARMA, but, I do know, they can succeed at starting over, if given the chance.

    NY’er:
    “Never once did he say a negative word about the former employee. Nor a positive word.”

    And, that is how you structure a negative reference. No positive comments.

    • Bill 2
      07/21/2010 at 9:13 PM

      Rich: “I thought they had purchased the home long before the murder. I can be mistaken.”

      After the murder, Dylan moved to South Florida. Someone posted here several months ago, that he lived in a condo where Dylan was living with a couple who owned one of the condos. He said that Joe and Victor would sometimes come down and stay there for the weekend – 5 in the condo. He mentioned the name of the place so I looked it up. It’s in the Wilton Manors section of the Fort Lauderdale area. I would imagine that Price and Zaborsky were going down there to look for a place to buy.

      • Clio
        07/21/2010 at 9:24 PM

        Doesn’t Wilton Manors feature a rather large cohort of confirmed bachelors? In other words, is it a semi-gilded gay ghetto into which our boys could assimilate rather easily?

        • Bill 2
          07/21/2010 at 9:47 PM

          Yes, Wilton Manors is home to many gays. I don’t know the present political make-up, but in the past they’ve had a gay mayor and council members. Many of the businesses are owned by gays.

          I don’t think the Price-Zaborsky home is in W.M. From other people who have mentioned their place in Florida, I think it’s further south in Dade County – the Miami area.

    • Bill Orange
      07/21/2010 at 10:52 PM

      Rich,

      You’re probably right, but I’d just like to add that this isn’t your run-of-the-mill case of three men trying to get their lives back on track after being acquitted of obstruction of justice in the case of the murder victim in their guest bedroom. One of the country’s top-notch civil litigation firms has them in their cross-hairs, as does the current attorney general of the country (yes, he’s recused himself, but I think most law firms are not going to do anything to annoy the AG if they don’t have to). In addition, the victim’s widow is an accomplished attorney in her own right. She and Robert had no children, and I’m assuming Robert had a reasonably good life insurance policy, which means she can, if she wants, devote the rest of her life to ensuring that no one around these three men are ever uninformed about their role this case. This is going to follow them forever.

  19. AnnaZed
    07/21/2010 at 9:45 PM

    I don’t know, ten years ago these men could easily have moved to Florida or even the South of France and just disappeared only to be remembered as gossip items. Things said about them and their involvement in Robert Wone’s death could be relegated to rumor or even attributed to anti-gay ill-will, but not today. Every single article, every page of each interview (and soon even the videotapes f the interviews themselves), the indictments, everything is there at the touch of a button.

    The New York Times even has a handy article on the matter in this week’s Magazine Section:

    http://www.nytimes.com/2010/07/25/magazine/25privacy-t2.html?src=me&ref=general

    I wouldn’t call their prospects good at all.

    • Liam
      07/22/2010 at 8:54 PM

      Yes. Yes. Yes. And that is why Rich’s analysis regarding their future prospects would be spot on pre-Internet. However, now their future prospects are fraught with impediments, pitfalls and problems. The Internet and, all that it contains, does not go away.

    • Clio
      07/25/2010 at 11:19 AM

      Yes, and even before the “Great Satan” of the Internet (was supposedly invented by massage client Al Gore), Dr. Mengele had to switch careers several times to end up being an unlicensed veterinarian in rural Brazil, because of persistent people seeking justice.

  20. DavidR
    07/21/2010 at 9:47 PM

    I asked this before and got no answer so I’ll try again.

    Why can’t they just say OK you win to Kathy? Not even try to settle for a lesser amount. If they think they will lose the civil case anyway and Kathy will be awarded the 20M she is asking then why not cut their losses? Paying attornies and having to pay the 20M anyway seems like too much of a waste.

    Is’nt there a legal term for this type of surrender?

    And then they will do whatever they are going to do anyway to avoid paying….

    • chilaw79
      07/21/2010 at 10:28 PM

      My assumption would be that the homeowners’ policy does not have a policy limit anywhere close to $20 million. Absent the deep pockets of the insurance company, the defendants may not want to be wage slaves for the rest of their lives.

      The civil case is not a slam dunk. If the defendants continue to stand by the unknown intruder theory and the jury agrees, the insurer easily could argue that the stabbing death of Robert Wone was not readily foreseeable. The wrongful death action rises and falls on foreseeability if the defendants were not involved in the murder and did not know the intruder. After all, any of us could forget to lock a door.

      The wrongful death theory is an easier sell if the defendants were involved in the murder or knew who did it. Such a fact setting would be similar to the DC case of Halberstam v. Welch, where a DC cardiologist (the brother of the author, David Halberstam) was murdered by a burglar, Bernard C. Welch. Welch was a very successful burglar, owned an expensive home, and an investment portfolio. Dr. Halberstam, although grievously injured, managed to run Welch down with his car, and then Dr. Halberstam died. Welch was found by the police in the bushes, injured, with stolen goods in Welch’s Mercedes parked nearby.

      Both Welch and his live-in girlfriend were found liable for Dr. Halberstam’s wrongful death. Although the girlfriend was not directly involved in the burglaries or the murder, she knew of and benefited from Welch’s burglaries.

      Welch claimed that he was the victim and Dr. Halberstam ruined his life.

      • Deb
        07/21/2010 at 10:37 PM

        I haven’t read the complaint for the civil case in quite some time, so I should probably just shut up . . .

        But you remind me that I believe the complaint did not include a premises liability claim at all.

        Not sure how DC goes, but in other jurisdictions a failure to provide a safe, secure premises to an invitee flies. And there is no dispute that Robert Wone was an invitee.

        I also wonder who the three have hired for excess representation. We can pretty safely assume any insurers have sent the letters already.

        • Deb
          07/21/2010 at 10:42 PM

          Ugh. Got ahead of myself a bit.

          Re: the premises liability, they pretty much admit they left the door unlocked. If, in DC, they have a duty to provide a safe, secure premises to an invitee, then they breached that duty without argument.

          Same as if they failed to properly secure the cage door to the pit bull.

          If you CAN make a premises liability claim in DC, I just don’t see how the three could win. They admit they failed to secure, and they admit Robert was an invitee, and they admit Robert was killed on the premises they failed to secure.

          After that, the only reason for litigation is damages.

          • NYer
            07/21/2010 at 10:53 PM

            Does DC law apply common law torts which distinguishes between invitees licensees and trespassers? I believe there are some jurisdictions that have rejected these distinctions.

            • Deb
              07/21/2010 at 10:56 PM

              I asked the same in the first part of my scattered comment. Not sure if premises liabilty would fly in DC, which may be why my memory says it is not included in the complaint.

              • Susan
                07/21/2010 at 11:25 PM

                Would RW be considered an “invitee” if he initiated the request to stay over? If that was addressed before, pls. excuse me for missing it.

                • Deb
                  07/21/2010 at 11:35 PM

                  Yes, regardless of liability.

                  He was not an “invitee” in the sense that he was actually invited over, he was an invitee in the sense that he had invitational access to the property.

                  In a nutshell, the term “invitee” is a way to describe the status of a person present on a piece of property — either they are invited, conducting legitimate business, or a trespassing (as a basic framework).

                  In this situation, Robert Wone was their with the knowledge and permission of the owners and was in that sense an invitee.

                  • Susan
                    07/21/2010 at 11:45 PM

                    Thanks for the clarification, Deb.

              • Bea
                07/22/2010 at 2:28 AM

                Interesting strategy point for Covington to offer up to Kathy Wone:

                1. If they explicitly remove anything smacking of negligence (including premises liability) leaving it clearly to only intentional acts, then the insurance company would bow out;

                2. If there is no insurance coverage, then no insurance attorneys, leaving Joe & Co. footing the bill entirely;

                3. If Kathy Wone does not care at all about money, this would possibly move the case in the direction she wants – whether she’s devoted to a verdict or whether she’s devoted to getting as much information as possible and making the defendants pay for their own counsel.

                My guess is that she is less concerned about getting the insurance company’s money (personal guess is a $3M coverage as that’s what is often sold for the umbrella) than she is getting the truth and making these men do some pay-back (footing own bills, and still paying if there’s a judgment).

                Not that she couldn’t do a lot of good with the $3M – including funding a lot in Robert’s name (not to mention that she has to be under water in bills in not being able to work and having bought a place with a dual-income family income kind of mortgage).

                And perhaps she wants the insurance company doing the rep for Joe and Victor (Needham wouldn’t pay for anyone but Dylan’s – though he could shoulder the load) so they don’t simply throw in the towel saying ‘we did nothing wrong but can’t afford this trial’.

                While Covington is doing this pro bono, there will be significant costs (depos, etc.) that technically the client must pay under ethical rules – again the insurance money may be all there is for a long while, assuming a favorable verdict.

                As to that favorable verdict, it would appear to be a much easier case to go the negligence route since the men left the door unlocked. I agree with Chilaw and others that this is NOT a slam dunk on “wrongful death” as an intentional act. While clearly a preponderance of the evidence (more likely than not) vs. beyond a reasonable doubt would have made the conspiracy/obstruction a ‘slam dunk’ here we are talking about CAUSING DEATH or at least responsibility for his death.

                With the negligence claim (my understanding not among the current claims – need to reread) the evidence must show the defendants owed him a duty to protect him and acted in a way which resulted in his death. Some might say that an unlocked door isn’t enough – not a slam dunk either.

                One final thought: anyone know bankruptcy law really well? I recall that wrongful death awards stemming from simple negligence MAY possibly discharged in bankruptcy but reckless and intentional (of course) acts are not dischargeable. Is this accurate? Another reason NOT to pursue simple negligence.

                Late night ramblings of a mad woman . . .

                • Bill Orange
                  07/22/2010 at 7:24 AM

                  The negligence issue has more evidence going for it than just the unlocked door, doesn’t it? There’s also failure to provide first aid–both the EMT and Dylan Ward said that Joe Price wasn’t doing anything to help Robert Wone, who had allegedly just been stabbed and was bleeding to death.

                  • chilaw79
                    07/22/2010 at 10:30 PM

                    I read the complaint as alleging “willful, reckless, and negligent” acts. As a result, as the complaint stands, the “eight corners” of the policy and the complaint include claims that should fall within the homeowners policy. I would not amend at this point, primarily to make the Fifth Amendment self-incrimination issues tougher. It also provides a point of potential conflict between the insurance lawyers and the criminal lawyers.

                    I would point out the complaint contains a separate claim for failure to provide medical care that encompasses both failing to call 911 right away and failing to apply pressure to the wound. The complaint also alleges a separate tort of “spoliation” (a tort that Patrick Regan has pushed). Often, “spoliation” (essentially, altering or destroying evidence) is used primarily to gain an inference that the evidence would not be favorable to the party alleged to have destroyed or altered the evidence. This looks to be a good leverage point, since it gives Covington an excellent basis to look at blood evidence, movement of the knife, any towels or other items that were laundered, and the like.

                • Hoya Loya
                  07/22/2010 at 9:44 AM

                  Bea:

                  The acts must be willful and malicious in order to be nondischargeable under Bankruptcy Code §523(a)(6). An explicit finding of same in the trial court often will have collateral estoppel effect in the bankruptcy case. If there is no such finding, the bankruptcy court may examine the acts to determine if they rise to the level of “willful and malicious.”

                  • Bea
                    07/22/2010 at 12:34 PM

                    Thanks, Hoya. All the more reason to focus on intentional. What do you think about scrapping any negligence to get rid of insurance counsel?

                    • Hoya Loya
                      07/22/2010 at 4:41 PM

                      It’s an interesting idea.
                      Agree that Kathy wants answers and wants the defendants to take responsibility for what they know and/or did.
                      I was frankly a little startled to learn that two of the three had insurance counsel. Did the carriers do any investigation of this claim?

                      Won’t they be pretty much limited to the intruder defense? I can’t imagine the carriers are too excited about defending this case.

          • chilaw79
            07/21/2010 at 11:40 PM

            Looking at some of the case law, DC seems to be blurring the distinctions at this point, but there does still seem to be a foreseeability standard. Patrick Regan, who is co-counsel for the Estate of Robert Wone, has brought a number of wrongful death cases involving businesses that failed to provide a safe environment. In each of the cases I looked at, there was a pattern of earlier crimes or failure to check backgrounds of individuals given access to premises (for example, a painter who assaulted a single woman in her leased apartment).

            Sarah Morgan’s testimony regarding other crimes in the neighborhood may come back under this analysis. She seems much more concerned about safety issues than the defendants, who regularly failed to use their security alarm and gave out keys and access to the security codes to a number of people, including Joe’s brother, who Joe said, in his police interview, had behavior issues.

            I expect there will be a lot of discovery aimed at determining whether there was an unknown intruder or whether one or more of the defendants was involved or knows who was. It is relevant.

            I am not sure that Kathy Wone is interested in a settlement without any factual admissions; I would not be if I were in her shoes.

            • Deb
              07/21/2010 at 11:56 PM

              Hi, Chilaw:

              I agree with you about Mrs. Wone’s interest — really it is singular – she just wants to know. Not for the sake of the knowledge, but to have the admission made by the person who did this.

              The civil case will be much more complex. You bring up Regan . . . he is smart, savvy, well spoken AND a cliff-walker. Look up the derivation of the word “berserk” and you might find Regan’s name next to it. (And I mean that in a complimentary sense.)

              The staff/fee counsel for any policies that exist will present another problem — if they face a known exposure, they may well make a hard ditch effort to offer out, which would leave the three to their own devices to some extent.

              I really need to go back and read the complaint. It can be amended in DC, as I recall, so may not be such a big deal that failure to secure premises is not mentioned initially. But again, it may have been mentioned and I’m just making dumb stuff here.

              Ah . . . but it’s a blog?

              • chilaw79
                07/22/2010 at 10:33 PM

                It is really easy to amend in DC. I have seen complaints in DC court amended virtually up to the trial date, as long as the same basic operative facts are in play. Premises liability strikes me as being in that ballpark.

              • chilaw79
                07/23/2010 at 10:20 AM

                I have been reading up on Patrick Regan. One fact that interests me in the context of this case is the superb team of investigators Regan can bring to bear. Regan seems to be able to develop witnesses and evidence that others miss, while maintaining a reputation for the highest ethical standards. For example, in the case of a woman who was struck by a Metro bus, his investigator found video footage and a witness that police investigators did not bring forward.

        • chilaw79
          07/21/2010 at 11:46 PM

          Dylan is using the same firm he used for the criminal case. I would be surprised if the criminal lawyers did not remain involved to deal with Fifth Amendment self-incrimination issues during the discovery process. I am not sure most civil litigators would have a great feel for these issues.

  21. AnnaZed
    07/21/2010 at 10:23 PM

    Speaking of employability, you know who is looking good these days? Or own Eds that’s who. This is some impressive work done here. If I were head hunting in their respective trades I would be impressed by this resume line item, better than Julie and Julia (seriously).

    • Rich
      07/21/2010 at 10:54 PM

      Dear AnnaZed:

      I Give.

      Who the hell is Julie and julia?

      The movie with Meryl Streep? wasn’t aht about cooking?

      No, Julie was a Blog Writer.

      I get it.

      Sorry for the confusion.

  22. AnnaZed
    07/22/2010 at 10:31 AM

    In a complete non sequitur, I have been thinking again about the crack house; why was it searched? What evidence linked this sad place to the three men? In rereading this post:

    http://whomurderedrobertwone.com/2009/04/03/north-by-northeast/

    I was struck by this:

    “…The last page of the warrant describes what police were looking for: “Stabbing instruments, strangulation devices, blood stained items such as clothing, carpet, furniture… the decedent’s clothing, DNA, hair samples, cleaning supplies…”

    If they were looking for Robert’s clothes then at least at one point they believed that all of his clothes were not accounted for. Was that even Robert’s W&M shirt that he was found in? What was missing? Why did they not pursue this? I know that they didn’t find them at this location, but if they thought a full inventory of Robert’s clothing wasn’t present at Swann St. why did they not say so at trial? Didn’t Kathy say that she packed (repacked) the case? Wouldn’t she know exactly what was missing?

    • Ivan
      07/22/2010 at 11:46 AM

      Good questions

    • CDinDC (Boycott BP)
      07/22/2010 at 3:01 PM

      AnnaZ…that has always been one of my biggest questions. I’ve always thought that the only way the police would have connected the household to that address was if the address was written on something in the house. So, if that is the case….what is the connection?? It has never been disclosed or discussed in any documents, except for the search warrents.

      • AnnaZed
        07/22/2010 at 3:19 PM

        Tis’ a mystery. Sadly, my prior faith that maybe the USAO was saving up some such good stuff for a future murder trial has been shaken.

        • carolina
          07/22/2010 at 7:32 PM

          If I recall correctly, that house also had a connection to Phelps. I’m sorry that I don’t recall what it was, and the original DL thread is kaput.

          • Jeana
            07/22/2010 at 8:03 PM

            I believe you’re correct, Carolina. Since I’ve only been on this site since mid-way thru the trial, I’ve been trying in my spare (LOL)time to go back to the beginning to see what I’ve missed. I recently read something about Phelps’ connection to that house. Was it searched – or more precisely, was the warrant sought – before or after the burglary of Swann? Maybe it was Phelps’ role in the burglary that drew investigators’ attention to the house. Just a thought.

  23. CC Biggs
    07/22/2010 at 1:01 PM

    Calling Joe a “great backseat” is outrageous gay-baiting homophobia! I am appalled!

    • Clio
      07/24/2010 at 6:42 PM

      LOL! When I first read Rich’s post, upon reading his word choice, I immediately thought, for some odd reason, of that rock anthem: “Big-Bottomed Girls Make the Rocking World Go ‘Round.”

  24. Rich
    07/22/2010 at 1:29 PM

    WHOA CC Biggs:

    “Calling Joe a “great backseat” is outrageous gay-baiting homophobia! I am appalled!”

    Gay man here. Healthy and Happy Homosexual. No Homophobia, Here.

    Your comment is a few clicks off of center. You’re thinking too hard.

    “Backseat,” as in the, “Literal,” definition.

    Joe will serve as a, “Backup,” to other attorney’s in his role as, “Of Counsel.”

    Sorry to create such a unneeded stir.

    The term of art never occurred to me be mean anything else.

    • Deb
      07/22/2010 at 1:52 PM

      Cleansing breath everyone . . . oh, and a smile — it always helps.

    • CC Biggs
      07/22/2010 at 5:34 PM

      I was joking, of course!

      • Rich
        07/22/2010 at 5:54 PM

        Dear CC:

        Whoops!

        At least my response was civil!

        Thanks.

        • Bruce
          07/22/2010 at 9:29 PM

          As mentioned by some on this posting, the issue of insurance for the 3 is of great importance as to their finances now that they are facing a civil trial asking for many millions in dollars. The defense costs will be huge and a judgment could affect them for a number of years.

          I don’t know DC law, but in Illinois, a home owner insurer like the Swann 3’shas two basic duties to the Swann 3:

          (1)

          • AnnaZed
            07/22/2010 at 9:33 PM

            Bruce, doesn’t this also mean that they will be virtually uninsurable now?

        • Bruce
          07/22/2010 at 9:29 PM

          As mentioned by some on this posting, the issue of insurance for the 3 is of great importance as to their finances now that they are facing a civil trial asking for many millions in dollars. The defense costs will be huge and a judgment could affect them for a number of years.

          I don’t know DC law, but in Illinois, a home owner insurer like the Swann 3’shas two basic duties to the Swann 3:

          (1)

          • Bruce
            07/22/2010 at 9:30 PM

            sorry, never mind…….

  25. NYer
    07/22/2010 at 10:34 PM

    I saw this next question raised briefly a few weeks ago, but one or two posters dismissed it out of hand. I hope one (or more of you) can give it a closer treatment and speculation in light of this blog post’s subject:

    What are the chances Price could/would be interviewed/hired at Couzen O’Connor?

    • AnnaZed
      07/22/2010 at 11:03 PM

      I must be missing something important here; why would Cozen O’Connor be different from any other firm in their view of Joe?

      • NYer
        07/22/2010 at 11:17 PM

        For starters, Price has gotten close to one of the firm’s members this past year: Bernie Grimm. I use the word “close” for lack of a better one; still, Grimm has the unique distinction of being possibly the only Price has been in regular, close contact for the past two years of his life. Furthermore, if Price, as some here have speculated, had a hand in preparing and researching his own defense, Grimm then has seen first-hand his abilities as an attorney. In short, Couzen O’Connor arguably may be the *only* firm in DC that just might give him the chance…

        • NYer
          07/22/2010 at 11:18 PM

          [I meant to write: Grimm has the unique distinction of being possibly the only *lawyer* Price has been in regular, close contact for the past two years of his life.]

        • AnnaZed
          07/22/2010 at 11:19 PM

          Ha, ha, ha, I rather see that the other way around. With what Bernie Grimm probably knows about Joe Price I would imagine that he would rather be shot than suggest bringing him into the firm.

        • Liam
          07/25/2010 at 5:21 PM

          Not in a million years would they hire somebody they defended. Just doesn’t happen.

        • Liam
          07/25/2010 at 5:24 PM

          And, rather than being impressed by Price’s abilities, I have no doubt Grimm was completely irritated by his involvement in the legal aspects of the case. Price is a trademark litigator for Pete’s sake. It would be like having a podiatrist advising a cardiac surgeon how to do his job.

          • Clio
            07/25/2010 at 7:57 PM

            Ouch! That is so true, Liam.

  26. Deb
    07/22/2010 at 10:38 PM

    One think I’ve been thinking:

    WHEN this issue comes up in the interview setting, how might that go for each of the three?

    Will Joe be charming, eloquent, endearing?
    Will Victor be emotional, sympathetic, genuine?
    Will Dylan be stunned, distant, haunted?

    Or would Joe be verbose and defensive, Victor seemingly terrified and Dylan catatonic?

    How WOULD that go, I wonder?

    • Clio
      07/25/2010 at 8:07 PM

      These three may have so compartmentalized their behavior that the raising of this mess in an interview setting would lead to the same (if not increased) blase reaction that was expressed on August 2, 2006. Victor may shed a crocodile tear or two, but the other two would smoothly change the subject to, say, their latest trip to Italy and/or their latest correspondence course. They have all moved on, and they cannot understand why the world at large cannot and will not do the same.

  27. Deb
    07/22/2010 at 10:44 PM

    I also kind of wonder to which Bat Channel our illustrious, cape-ed crime fighter has disappeared.

  28. AnnaZed
    07/22/2010 at 10:57 PM

    I wonder if Carol McGee would give Joe a reference or even how she feels now about being in charge of Joe’s legal defense fund?

    • Susan
      07/22/2010 at 11:14 PM

      All that talk about JP’s real estate holdings. But here’s what is reported in an 11/24/09 Law.com article:

      Price also sent an e-mail to friends Nov. 13 in which he said, according to the Washington Blade: “Our attorneys estimate that the cost of a trial, which will necessarily involve a number of experts, will run into the hundreds of thousands of dollars. We have no choice but to sell and liquidate every asset in order to pay this staggering sum as our very freedom hangs in the balance.”

      Did he not “liquidate every asset”? Still owns the place in Florida?

      • AnnaZed
        07/22/2010 at 11:17 PM

        No Susan, he did not liquidate his assets. He was … hummm … ahem … (shocking I know) … lying.

        • Susan
          07/22/2010 at 11:38 PM

          The very truth hung “in the balance,” AnnaZed; and plummetted most precipitously.

          Maybe he should update that email. It’s only fair to those who might have dug deeply for the cause.

    • Clio
      07/24/2010 at 6:51 PM

      This begs several questions: Is Counselor McGee still on board Team Price, after Lynn’s “cold comfort” to all sides? Is Lisa G.? Is Aunt Marcia? Is Kim M.? Have the trouple’s women supporters finally begun to defect?

      Was the legal defense fund, like eyecandy dvds, a flash in Culuket’s (or Dyl’s) pan?

  29. Susan
    07/23/2010 at 12:00 AM

    I’m still reading this site, so a step behind some, and this was already noted in the past, but I’m a bit appalled to learn that JP told police and close friends that he VZ and Dylan Ward were in a three-way relationship, yet outright lies to his friends as he shills for their money in his fundraising missive. That just is not cool. Not cool to lie while asking for the handout, and not fair to this person who was supposedly “the love of [JP’s] life.”

    Excerpt from JP’s personal fundraising letter inn 2008:

    Now, more than two years later, to our shock and dismay, the prosecutor in charge of the case is threatening to bring criminal charges against us and has had our dear friend and former housemate Dylan Ward arrested on a meritless claim of obstruction of justice.

    • anonymous
      07/23/2010 at 8:48 AM

      Maybe Dylan was no longer part of the “family” at that point.

      • Susan
        07/23/2010 at 11:32 AM

        I thought about that after posting, and I appreciate your posting. I want to be fair and accurate. But I think “former housemate” is a bit disingenuous.

        • leo
          07/23/2010 at 3:08 PM

          I’m more of the opinion that Joe came up with the idea of calling the trio a “family” the night of the murder, in order to try to make spousal privileges against testifying etc. available. The only people who referred to them as a family or set of committed partners were the prosecutors and their criminal lawyers during the trial. None of their friends referred to them this way; Dylan was a “dear friend.”

          • AnnaZed
            07/23/2010 at 3:30 PM

            Good point, God knows what advanced level manipulation Victor underwent to agree to that bull-shit, probably something along the order of “if you don’t follow my directions to the letter we could all end up in jail, if you do we won’t,” and, you know, Joe was right.

          • CDinDC (Boycott BP)
            07/23/2010 at 3:37 PM

            In my opinion, Dylan was Joe’s “dirty little secret.”

            • Clio
              07/24/2010 at 6:10 PM

              He may have been a “dirty little secret”, however freshly showered.

  30. The Truth
    07/23/2010 at 1:14 AM

    Hi – I have nothing worthwhile to contribute – just another person who came across this case while looking up something else. I wanted to commend you for maintaining this site and for not giving up on this case. I pray that Robert Wone, his wife and their families will get justice soon.

    • carolina
      07/23/2010 at 7:28 AM

      We forget, in the petty squabbles and moments of trolling, that the editors have put their hearts and souls into this for the sole purpose of finding justice for Robert and his family. Thank you for reminding us.

    • Craig
      07/23/2010 at 11:19 AM

      Truth: That was a very worthwhile contribution. Thank you. -craig

  31. Marcos
    07/23/2010 at 7:32 PM

    Apparently the former defendants are planning on writing a book about their ordeal in order to make some badly needed cash. In fact, I happened to come across with a draft of the potential book title and chapters and I pass it along. If this is true, I think it’s a ballsy move and in poor taste, but here it goes:

    Book Title: How We Got Off (and acquitted too!)
    Authors: Joe Price, Victor Zaborsky, Dylan Ward (DW’s role to be discussed)
    Epilogue: Bernard Grimm(declined). Joe Price
    Publisher: House of the Tiger Aunt

    Ch 1: A classic love story: Boy meets boy, and then meets another boy
    Ch 2: The rise to power: From IP to marketing to happy endings
    Ch 3: Alt.com and Culuket – the good ol’ times
    Ch 4: Got Milk?
    Ch 5: It really could have happened that way, really
    Ch 6: Conspiracy? Yes, but only to commit random acts of bondage
    Ch 7: The real math problem: Who ‘tops’ when you have three big bottoms?
    Ch 8: Thank you, DC MPD! Couldn’t have done it without you!
    Ch 9: No one likes to be ignored – thank you wmrw.com
    Ch 10: We’re morally certain that life is beautiful beyond a reasonable doubt

    • Robert H
      07/23/2010 at 8:32 PM

      I think you might have a problem with Chapter 7…Dylan definetley was not a bottom.

      • Clio
        07/24/2010 at 6:59 PM

        With Joe, yes. With others, we do not know for sure. And, as been pointed out before, even with Joe, Dyl was probably a “service top” at best with the bottom very much in control.

    • Rich
      07/23/2010 at 10:34 PM

      Very Well Written.

      Now, I totally misunderstood CC Briggs’ posting about homophobia.

      Is this a joke, too or are you serious?

      About the book, that is, not the chapters.

      If they do publish a book, it is a brilliant idea.

      And, they know, all the posters on this site will be at the book signing at Border’s.

      It’s fast money, but, lost with a civil judgement.

    • Clio
      07/24/2010 at 7:09 PM

      Don’t forget Chapter 11 — “that’s where we’re going to be after Kathy wins $20 million and more”.

      Chapter 12, then, should survey the gender, sexuality, race, occupation, weight (but not Sarah’s, of course), etc. of leading members of Team Price, whose slogan may be now “Culuket: love him or leave him (be)”!

  32. Bill 2
    07/23/2010 at 7:59 PM

    I like your style. You had me getting pissed through the whole first paragraph. Thanks for the chuckle.

    • Nelly
      07/23/2010 at 8:19 PM

      Pretty darn funny! First 200 copies will include a 10% coupon for Massage by Michael.

      • Robert H
        07/25/2010 at 7:34 AM

        Too funny! I thought it was Dylan who was into the massage stuff (as a ploy),into Asians, and sadistic with others. And I always envisioned him a total control freak as well, not Joe.

        • CDinDC (Boycott BP)
          07/25/2010 at 10:38 AM

          Testimonials given here by people that have met Dylan described him as quiet and mild-mannered. Joe, on the other hand, has been described as “in control.”

          • Susan
            07/25/2010 at 1:15 PM

            I thought there was a poster “No____” over a year ago who described knowing the three and although he described DW as being quiet, I thought he also described him as being “in control.”

            • Susan
              07/25/2010 at 1:34 PM

              Then again, there’s that card:

              “— ‘captures you and what you give to my life — color — attitude — fear — smartassedness”

              Doesn’t make D. Ward sound like a shrinking violet, etc. He is “magic.”

              • chilaw79
                07/25/2010 at 2:47 PM

                Fear? Not exactly the kind of word that a greeting card company would use.

                Talk about questions for a deposition. That might be one right there.

                • Clio
                  07/25/2010 at 4:10 PM

                  The fear referenced in that card, chilaw, could be the theatrical BDSM trepidation for which Dyl was busily highlighting those passages.

                  On the other hand, that unusual word choice could have signaled both an attraction and a revulsion at the talented Mr. Ward’s potential to do truly dangerous things.

                  • chilaw79
                    07/25/2010 at 4:46 PM

                    We can add those books to the documents requested from Dylan, too (or copies of the original).

Comments are closed.