After hearing allegations from both parties regarding the other’s drug use, the judge called a recess and ordered them to both undergo drug testing at a laboratory that is located a few block from the courthouse. He said he would take the results under advisement when making a final decision about which of them should be awarded custody of their nine-year-old son. The next morning, both parties and the lab technician who performed the tests were back in court. The technician testified regarding the test results and what happened after the testing was completed.
Lab Technician: The mom tested negative for any illegal drugs. The dad’s test came back positive for marijuana. The dad showed up at the lab along with his girlfriend. They were both wearing dark glasses and red baseball caps. When the dad was asked to remove his cap and glasses, he became extremely agitated. I explained that I could not verify his photo identification while he was wearing the glasses and cap. I also told dad that if he did not cooperate, I would be forced to share this information with the court. Dad finally removed his glasses and cap, and I collected the urine sample. Dad asked how long it would take for the results to come back and if he could get a copy of the results before they were sent to the judge. I told him that the results would be sent directly to the judge, and he left. However, his girlfriend returned a few minutes later. She wanted to know the results of the test. I told her I could not discuss the results with her and asked her to leave. She asked if it was okay if she waited in the lobby until her ride returned to pick her up.
He said at some point the lab’s receptionist had stepped away from her desk, and when she returned she noticed that dad’s girlfriend was no longer in the lobby and the files that were on her desk had been moved.
Lab Technician: She could not locate the file that contained copies of the dad’s test results. She immediately brought this to my attention. I got on the phone and called Dad. I told him if he did not have his girlfriend return the file I was going to call the police and press criminal charges against her. At first he denied knowing what I was talking about, and then he said he would pass the message along to her. About thirty minutes after I hung up phone, his girlfriend had someone return the file to our office. There was really no point in stealing the file. If she had not returned it, all I had to do was print another copy of the report. The results of all our drug tests are stored in our computer.
Jackie’s Note: The cases posted in Courthouse Chronicles are real-life court cases that involve real people. For the record, I do not include any of the cases I have actually worked. If I hired a lawyer to represent me I would not want him or her writing about me so that’s why I don’t write about any of my clients. My research for these posts consists of sitting in the back of courtrooms listening to the testimony and witnessing the antics of other lawyers, their clients and people who chose to represent themselves.
Photo Credit: Magnum PPI on Visual Hunt