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Item[Review of the book Take the witness! (a biography of Earl Rogers)]Park, M. M. ( 2008)This hard-to-obtain and out-of-print biography of the renowned Californian criminal defence advocate Earl Rogers is available from the internet. Rogers was the foremost criminal advocate and one of the most celebrated advocates of his period (the late nineteenth to the early twentieth century) and was reputedly the model for Earle Stanley Gardner's Perry Mason. His meteoric career was shortened by his own character defects including alcoholism brought about by the pressures imposed upon him by his career and reputation. There is very little available biographical material on Rogers and this copy - scanned from an American public library and available from www.archive.org - is a valuable resource available to Australian readers given that neither the Australian National Library nor the Victorian State Library holds a copy of this work. In fact, none of the Australian law school libraries hold a copy of this book.
ItemThe strange case of Andrea Yates and Dr Park DietzPark, M. M. (The Victorian Bar, 2008)Following the erroneous testimony of a celebrated expert witness, a mentally disturbed mother was convicted of murdering her five children. The witness’s evidence was the foundation for an inference that the defendant had concocted an insanity defence based upon a popular television drama series episode. In fact the expert had “falsely remembered” a non-existent episode of the series. The conviction was reversed upon appeal on the sole ground of the witness’s erroneous testimony. Upon re-trial, the defendant was found not guilty by reason of insanity.