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About Melissa Butcher

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So far Melissa Butcher has created 31 blog entries.

TLC Podcast Episode 86: ‘What Do Trial Lawyers Do?’ With Personal Injury Attorney Tom Dickerson

2021-01-11T05:10:01-07:00January 12, 2021|TLC Podcast|

“Part of being a trial lawyer is being a good investigator — getting out of the office, visiting clients, visiting the scene, visiting witnesses, talking to people — and getting the evidence you need for your cases.” In this second installation of our podcast series titled ‘What do trial lawyers do?’ host Rafe Foreman chats with Kansas City civil law attorney Tom Dickerson to discuss the ins and outs of representing personal injury plaintiffs. By exploring his own successes and setbacks, Tom offers a treasure trove of tips and tricks for burgeoning personal injury lawyers to elevate their skills both in and out of the courtroom and be fearless advocates for their clients. From motor vehicle accidents to dog bites [...]

TLC Podcast Episode 85: ‘What Do Trial Lawyers Do?’ With Military Law Attorney Patrick McLain

2021-01-04T07:37:34-07:00January 5, 2021|TLC Podcast|

“We help the people that have been neglected, left out, and desperate, and we give them life when everybody else has left them for dead.” In this first installment of our four-part series titled ‘What Do Trial Lawyers Do?’ TLC graduate and faculty member Patrick McLain shares the intricacies, peculiarities, and triumphs of being a military trial lawyer. Hosted by Rafe Foreman, this engaging and informative dive into military law guides listeners through its unique structure and the ways in which it compares to other areas of the legal system. As a military law attorney with an impressive track record representing military members, Patrick connects these topics with the Trial Lawyers College methods and the turbulent atmosphere of 2020. By [...]

TLC Podcast Episode 84: Stan Dokmanus on Substance Abuse, Justice, and the Criminalization of Addiction

2020-12-15T12:10:33-07:00December 15, 2020|TLC Podcast|

“The most important thing to help people in the system is to address their thinking errors, and this all starts with their limiting, permission-granting beliefs and values about drug use or criminal thinking and conduct. There will be no long-term behavior changes without this work being done.” In this week’s podcast, host Rafe Foreman sits down with Hawaii’s Stan Dokmanus, a Certified Criminal Justice and Addictions Professional and Certified Substance Abuse Counselor, to discuss the overlap between criminal behavior and addiction. Throughout the episode, Stan draws from his extensive experience treating individuals with substance abuse disorders to give his insight into drug crime, the criminalization of addiction, and potential solutions. Stan’s deep dive into this topic is centered on discovering [...]

TLC Podcast Episode 83: Mike Smith on Vulnerability, Connection, and the Value of the TLC Methods

2020-12-08T08:28:53-07:00December 7, 2020|TLC Podcast|

“We might be on different sides of a bridge but we’re both human. We can get closer on that bridge than we ever thought possible if we truly open up and try to listen and hear each other and find something in ourselves that connects with what that person has just said. You’d be surprised that we have more in common than we have different.” In this week’s podcast, TLC graduate and F-Warrior board member Mike Smith shares his riveting testimony to the value of the TLC methods. An Atlanta-based workers' compensation and personal injury lawyer, Mike is a firm believer in the power of the TLC methods to positively change both the personal lives and practices of those who [...]

TLC Podcast Episode 82: Jerry Bosch on the Art of Discovering the Story

2020-12-01T10:15:42-07:00December 1, 2020|TLC Podcast|

“The newspaper quoted, ‘the defendant hugged his lawyer after the verdict was read.’ That’s the relationship we had, and you only get there by caring about your client.” In this week’s episode, TLC graduate and faculty member Jerry Bosch guides host Rafe Foreman through the ways in which the TLC methods helped obtain a not guilty verdict on an attempted murder charge, detailing the months he invested in discovering the story and innocence of his client. As you listen to this captivating podcast, you’ll hear Jerry describe the value of the listening exercise in regard to an adverse witness. Jerry involves psychodramatic tools and techniques in this case to gain understanding from all sides, skillfully complementing this with improvisation methods [...]

TLC Podcast Episode 81: Sarah Toney on DUI Defense

2020-12-01T10:22:29-07:00November 23, 2020|TLC Podcast|

“They’re people who made a mistake. If you’re willing to put in the time and hold their hand through the process, they’ll never forget that.” In this week’s podcast, Sarah Toney, a criminal defense specialist and TLC faculty member, discusses the world of DWI/DUI and the interplay between the TLC methods in both trial and pretrial settings. As a national leader in DUI defense, Sarah shares her insight into defending these crimes and how best to apply the TLC methods toward that goal. From flaws and inconsistencies in field sobriety, breathalyzer, and blood testing to unnecessarily harsh sentencing practices, Sarah shines a light on a range of statutory issues, exploring the many ways in which everyday drivers can be subject [...]

TLC Podcast Episode 80: Chris Trundy on Institutional Racism in the Court System

2020-11-24T04:21:36-07:00November 17, 2020|TLC Podcast|

Chris Trundy, a TLC faculty member from Massachusetts, discusses the delicate and powerful issue of institutional racism in the United States court system and the crossroads between civil prosecution of these claims and the TLC methods. Standing among the top trial lawyers and psychodrama experts in America, Chris’ career took off in the early 90s when he served Massachusetts as a private court-appointed lawyer. Despite taking a high volume of cases and seeing first-hand how institutional racism impacted the lives of those he was representing, Chris is open about his initial skepticism. As you listen to this week’s podcast, you’ll learn the stories and circumstances that influenced Chris’ burgeoning awareness — from sentencing biases to poor jury diversity — and [...]

TLC Podcast Episode 79: Max Mitchell on His Role as a Public Defender & Flaws in the Criminal Justice System

2020-11-11T14:09:41-07:00November 11, 2020|TLC Podcast|

In this riveting interview, TLC alum and faculty member Max Mitchell draws upon his extensive experience representing Missouri’s most vulnerable criminal defendants to passionately and earnestly identify the good, the bad, and the ugly in the criminal justice system. As a district public defender in Sedalia, Missouri, Max represents individuals with charges ranging from DWI to first-degree murder. This role has given him an inside look at the destructive effects that limited funding, insufficient resources, and unjust sentencing practices can have on the lives of individuals facing criminal charges in Missouri.  The interview begins with a brief discussion on Gideon v. Wainwright, the landmark U.S. Supreme Court case which upheld a defendant’s right to effective counsel at every stage of [...]

TLC Podcast Episode 78: Greg Antollino on Supreme Court Win for LGBTQ Workers

2020-11-06T13:54:42-07:00November 2, 2020|TLC Podcast|

TLC alum Greg Antollino (TLC July 2003) discusses his recent Supreme Court victory, in which the SCOTUS ruled that employment discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity is prohibited under federal civil rights laws. Greg's client was dismissed by his employer after a customer complained that he revealed his sexual orientation to her during the course of his work. Greg's client passed before the SCOTUS decision, but Greg persevered on behalf of his client and all LGBTQ Americans. The June decision represents the most significant LGBTQ ruling since the SCOTUS legalized same-sex marriage in 2015. Important Links  Our September webinar, Rodney Glen King vs. City of Los Angeles: Revisiting History with Milton Grimes, and a Demonstration of [...]

TLC Podcast Episode 76: TLC Faculty Member Mel Orchard on Civil Rights, Qualified Immunity, and the Erosion of the Judiciary

2020-10-24T20:02:30-06:00October 23, 2020|TLC Podcast|

In this wide-ranging interview, TLC faculty member and former TLC Board member Mel Orchard lends his wisdom, knowledge, and experience to the issue of Civil Rights and qualified immunity. Mel has served as a trial lawyer for over 27 years, and his passion for his work still burns bright. Here he discusses his concerns about efforts underway to further limit the liability of corporations for harm to their workers and to the public - an issue of particular urgency in the harsh light of the Covid-19 pandemic. "Of the three pillars of our democracy, our judiciary is still, in American life, the most respected," Mel says. "We still have plenty of good judges; we still have plenty of good lawyers. [...]

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