Lawyer with Murder Hearings in 2 Counties Misses One, Is Held in Contempt and Given 5-Day Jail Term
What’s a California lawyer with two murder cases on the verge of trial in two different counties to do?
Tim Pori chose to attend one of the two hearings, in Solano County, on Monday, apparently sending another lawyer, former Solano County Bar Association president Daniel Russo, to appear in his stead in the Alameda County case, according to KTVU.
That resulted in Alameda County Judge Carrie Panetta to hold Pori in contempt for failing to be prepared to proceed with a murder trial “without good cause or substantial justification and in disobedience of a court order.”
She sentenced him to five days in jail and a $2,500 fine, but said he could have until Friday to begin serving his time. Russo, who is representing Pori, said he plans to appeal and seek a stay of the sentence while the appeal is pending. He called the contempt sanctions against Pori “grotesquely unfair” and said he couldn’t remember another such sanction being imposed against a lawyer in his 35 years of practice.
The Alameda County murder case is now expected to go to trial in June.