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Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Boley Waives Arraignment

I just wanted to reference this story, as reported by the AJC, for a couple of reasons.
One, his lawyer taught one of my classes in law school. Thought it was kinda cool.
Two, to point out an inefficiency in the court system. Most of the time judges will require people to show up in court for their arraignment, even though the whole process takes all of 2 minutes.

Judge: The case of State of Georgia v. Michael Boley.
Lawyer: Judge, Manny Arora for Mr. Boley. He waives his right to a formal arraignment and enters his plea of not guilty.
(Lawyer and Boley sign paper)
Clerk: The plea has been entered.
Judge: Thank you. Next case...

That's it... literally. And there are a lot of judges who won't even let you enter a plea of guilty. The whole process came about in England because most people didn't know how to read, and the first time they would find out what they were exactly charged with would be when the judge read it out to them. Do we really still need this?