Kobe Accuser Hires Famous Lawyer

This is the smartest move the accuser in the Kobe Bryant case has made to date: She's added Atlanta libel guru Lin Wood to her legal team. Lin Wood is the lawyer for John and Patsy Ramsey and Richard Jewell, among others. He will be a forceful advocate for her privacy rights. In addition to trying to keep the media from publishing the mistakenly released sealed transcripts of the rape-shield hearing, he'll likely begin scrutinizing all media comments for potential libel lawsuits.

As a legal analyst, the hiring won't silence us or change our commentary, we'll just be on high alert (as opposed to our current state of "cautious") as to how we phrase it from now on. As we told the Los Angeles Times the other day:

....Merritt said that too often the public thinks defense lawyers are attacking an accuser's character when instead the issue is their credibility. In rape cases that hinge on consent, she said, witnesses' credibility is crucial...."The defense attorney has an obligation to bring out any facts to the jury that support his or her client's defense," she said. "The defense lawyer is not needlessly attacking the victim of a rape. They're going after that person because her story doesn't ring true."

Ampersand politely disagrees with us. We understand her position. But credibility is fair game.

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