Thursday, September 12, 2013

In Which I Draw a Venn Diagram

Yesterday I started telling you about our marathon session before Master Cooper. We were dealing with multiple issues as between myself, the Professors, and the Schoolteachers, and the Master had decided that it was high time the Court assigned a single Master to oversee the whole ball of wax. We've now been scheduled to reconvene on the 27th of September. We'll see how that works out.

In the meantime, there was one more item on the day's list. It didn't concern the Schoolteachers, so Mr. Mackwood left. It was just me, Lindsay, and Master Cooper.

This was an item I had placed on the agenda just a few days earlier. I've told you how I was arrested last winter for trespassing on University property, sent to jail, and now I'm in court fighting criminal charges from that incident. Well, I'm looking over my previous blogposts and I'm not at all sure that I ever told you just how the trespassing charges came about. Yes, I was barred from the property...but why was I barred? Well, you know I'm suing the University for kicking me out of my teaching practicum at Gordon Bell. But that's not my only lawsuit. I had a particular grievance against one Professor Bush, who I felt had done some very bad things to me in class, things that unfairly singled me out and identified me as a troublemaker. So I put together a Statement of Claim charging Professor Bush with defamation. And on a cold Friday evening in January, I went to his home to serve him with the papers. One thing led to another, yada yada yada, and a month later I was sitting in Headingly Jail.

For now, like Elaine, I'm just going to yada yada over the best parts. (Yes, I know...she mentioned the bisque.) The point is that I actually withdrew the lawsuit I went there to serve that evening, and instead ended up suing Professor Bush and his wife for accusing me of home invasion. The University hired Mr. Meronek's firm to defend the Bushes, and they quickly filed a motion for Summary Judgement, including affidavits from both the Bushes denying any wrongdoing. (Looking over my old posts, I see I already summarized some of these things here, in a post titled "Trouble in Paradise".)

So anyhow in May we were in court, before Master Sharpe, and she asked me if I would be cross-examining the Bushes on their affidavits. I said no, I wouldn't; because I thought I could beat the motion without the need for cross. So then Master Sharpe told Lindsay (who was there for Mr. Meronek) that she had three weeks to file her Motions Brief. I was pretty surprised. "I thought that I had to file my Affidavit before they filed their Brief," I interjected. I mean, I was just learning this as I went along, but just a month earlier I had been before Master Lee and I was surprised when he told me that I had to file my affidavits on Mr. Meronek's Motion for Summary before he filed his brief. And here was Master Sharpe, doing it the other way around. But no one seemed to find it that unusual. Lindsay didn't object, so that's how it was set down.

Well, it seemed like I was being given a bit of an unfair advantage, but what could I do? I would get to see their arguments before I had to enter my evidence. The Master had given opposing counsel two or three weeks to file, and then we would have another appearance. A day or two before the scheduled appearance, I got a package from opposing counsel. It wasn't their Brief. They had filed additional affidavits, from Professor Metz and security chief Martin Grainger, denying that the Bushes had said the things I accused them of in my Statement of Claim. This was a complication.

When we appeared before Master Sharpe the next day, she asked if the brief had been filed as ordered. "No, your Honor, we have filed additional affidavits." Okay then...does Mr. Green wish to cross-examine on these new affidavits? Well, this was a new wrinkle. I'm not allowed to cross-examine on their affidavits and then subsequently file affidavits of my own. All affidavits have to be in before anyone goes to cross. But then I would lose the strategic advantage of having them file their brief before my Affidavit. I had hardly even had the chance to review the new material, and here I was having to make a difficult choice. "Your Honor, I'm going to have to get some advice on this and then get back to you". Okay, in that case, we will adjourn the matter sine die (without fixed date) and come back after the parties have worked this out between themselves. Those were the Master's instructions.

It didn't take me long to decide that I wasn't going to be drawn in. I carefully read over the new affidavits, and figured out that I could still beat the Summary Judgement motion without having to cross-examine. I wanted them to put their arguments on the table first, without the benefit of seeing my Affidavit evidence. And that's what I told Mr. Meronek.

And then I waited. Meanwhile, action was heating up on various fronts. Over the summer I reminded Mr. Meronek that he still owed me a brief, but I received no response. Now here it was, September already, and I was in court defending the criminal charges which ultimately stemmed from those very accusation of home invasion that I was suing the Bushes for, and they still hadn't filed their brief.

I realized that I was about to lose the strategic advantage Master Sharpe had given me back in May when she ordered briefs before affidavits...because in my criminal case, I was arguing the same evidence that I would ultimately be putting in my Affidavits on the Civil Case. So I wrote Mr. Meronek, telling him I wanted his Brief as soon as possible, and then put in a Requisition to have the Master set a timeline at our next hearing. Which brings us up to the present. I was asking the Master to instruct opposing counsel to cough up, pronto.

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I hadn't realized how much catch-up there was for me to do in bringing you up to date. So I'm going to have to continue this story tomorrow. But in the meantime, there was one more item of unfinished business from yesterday. I told you how there were so many motions and counter-motions on the table, it was getting hard to tell which was which. I actually told the Master that maybe we needed a Venn Diagram to organize things. Well, here it is:

These are all actions involving me: the green circle involves the Schoolteachers, the red circle is the Professors, and the orange circle is the Crown. The actions above the horizontal blue line are those initiated by other parties, the ones below...initiated by me. The matters to the left of the vertical black line are being argued before a judge, the ones to the right...before a master. You can see that I've grouped three actions in the middle with a purple ring....these are the motions with regard to my discovery rights, that I proposed the other day that we should argue them all together.

Actually, after putting this together, I noticed there were a few more actions and proceedings that I forgot to include. Maybe I'll try to add them in for next time. But the main order of business, when we return, is to tell you about the conclusion of our appearance on Tuesday before Master Cooper. Stay tuned....

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