Is This What is Best for Kyle Rittenhouse?
Kyle Rittenhouse is a 17-year old facing double-murder charges. No matter one’s political beliefs, there should be agreement that Rittenhouse deserves the best defense he can muster up. Since John M. Pierce was tabbed as the Kenosha Shooter’s lawyer, skepticism has been raised about the #Fightback Foundation funding effort, as well as Pierce’s ability to provide Rittenhouse the best defense.
After reviewing the ten points below, ask yourself:
Is This What Is Best for Kyle Rittenhouse?
1. Criminal Law Experience.
John Pierce has focused his career as a civil lawyer, not a criminal lawyer.
- Has Pierce ever tried a murder case?
- How many?
2. The Chase?
How did John Pierce come to be involved in the Rittenhouse case?
· Different stories are out there; this post from Pierce may shed some light.
3. The Turnover.
John Pierce’s law firm is on its 4th name in less than 4 years.
- January 2017 — Pierce Sergenian LLP
- December 2017 — Pierce Burns LLP
- March 2018 — Pierce Bainbridge Beck Price & Hecht LLP
- May 2020 — Pierce Bainbridge P.C.
4. The Reported Placement on Leave for Financial Issues.
The New York Law Journal reported in March 2020 that Pierce’s was put on a leave of absence over financial issues. Pierce has denied this.
- According to the New York Journal: “Pierce Bainbridge Beck Price & Hecht founder John Pierce is on a leave of absence from the firm as an internal investigation showed he accepted money from a lender for personal use, according to a statement from a law firm spokeswoman Monday.”
5. The Financial Mess.
The personal (Pierce) and firm (Pierce Bainbridge) financial pictures are not pretty.
- An Income & Expense declaration prepared by Pierce in November 2019 makes for sobering reading.
- A filing from a lawyer — who has sued Pierce Bainbridge, Pierce and his ex-fellow name partners: James D. Bainbridge (Bainbridge Law APC), Carolynn K. Beck (Goldstein & McClintock), Maxim Price (Hecht Partners) and David Hecht (Hecht Partners) — summarizes the Pierce declaration.
- In June 2020, Law360, a leading national legal periodical, reported that Pierce Bainbridge defaulted on a debt estimated at $65 million.
6. The Lawsuits.
Pierce and/or Pierce Bainbridge have been named as defendants in eight (8) lawsuits in 2020 alone.
- Will Pierce be able to focus on Rittenhouse case? On the trial?
- How will Pierce pay his own lawyers?
- Why have 4 cash advance lenders and 2 legal vendors sued Pierce and/or Pierce Bainbridge? (Two of the matters appear resolved.)
7. A $4 Million Judgment.
An approximately $4 million money judgment was entered against Pierce, Pierce Bainbridge and related entities in New York State Supreme Court in July 2020.
- How does Pierce Bainbridge intend to satisfy or pay this approximate $4 million judgment?
- The judgment relates to a $2.5 million “merchant cash advance” Pierce signed for in February 2020. The other entity was described by the New York Law Journal as a “essentially a payday lender” at a “residential address” in Queens, New York
- The Agreement called for daily repayments of $37.5K until $3.75 million was paid. Months later, Pierce Bainbridge had not paid a dime.
8. Broad Permitted Use of #FightBack Donations.
The permitted use of funds donated to #Fightback appears extremely broad.
- Given Pierce’s personal finances does this raise red flags?
- What about the massive debt of Pierce’s law firm?
8. The Fundraising Posts.
Pierce’s social media fundraising efforts have reportedly been, well, draw your own conclusions…
- Is the tone one would expect from a seasoned attorney?
- Does it seem odd?
- Keep in mind the broad permitted #Fightback Donation uses, Pierce’s personal financial picture, the Pierce Bainbridge massive firm debt and the approximate $4 million money judgment.
9. The Temperament.
Tweeter @Willdollis has opined that Pierce may be “thin-skinned.” A potentially illustrative exchange.
- Does this seem fitting for a lead attorney in a high-profile double-murder case?
10. The Bombastic Statements.
Pierce has a penchant for over-the-top rhetoric. He has referred to Pierce Bainbridge as an “army of killers” and claimed the firm “cracked the code for building the law firm in the digital age.”
- Pierce’s made the “dominant global” statement in August 2018.
- Less than two years later, Pierce Bainbridge ended up with:
> a debt in the tens of millions of dollars
> 1 trial win in 3+ years (with a net verdict of $500K)
> numerous lawsuits filed by the firm thrown out with $0 dollars recovered
> attorneys abandoning Team John Pierce in droves
> Marc Mukasey — who reportedly has “deep, personal connections to Washington and within Trump’s orbit” — quitting as outside counsel for Pierce and Pierce Bainbridge due to ethical concerns
And then there is this…#NoComment.
Kyle Rittenhouse is 17-years old. People have staked extremely strong positions for him and against him. Ultimately, it will be for the court system and a jury of his peers to decide Kyle’s fate.
When Rittenhouse’s day in court finally comes, whether you are for him, or against him, the question is a simple one:
Is John M. Pierce best for Kyle Rittenhouse?