Never Put Off Until Tomorrow …

Submitted by Mark Esposito, Guest Blogger

As an undergraduate I learned the wisdom of management guru, Peter Drucker, who reminded us that, “Efficiency is doing things right; but effectiveness is doing the right thing.” True words, indeed, but I wonder how Professor Drucker would explain Franklin, Tennessee native, Mark Burgen.

Burgen was standing trial for an  alleged armed robbery committed in 2009, but had some time to kill during the luncheon recess. Permitted to stroll through the quaint southern town while still enjoying his bail bond, Burgen took a fancy to a watch in a local jewelry store. Entering the store and seeing the counter momentarily unattended, he took the opportunity to reach over  and add new meaning to the retail practice of “self-serve.” He got the Rolex and also grabbed about $30,000.00 in diamond bracelets.

On his way to the street, he was accosted by an employee who noticed the watch in his hand.  Remorsefully, he handed it over and apologized profusely. So much so, that the tender-hearted employee forgave the indiscretion and sent him on his way without reviewing the diamond stock.  Returning to the counter she was horrified at her generosity and summoned the police.

Surveillance tapes told the story and the search was on for Burgen. The police really didn’t have to look very far as Burgen had stashed the loot in the bushes near the courthouse and returned in time to finish up the trial in which his innocence to the 2009 charge was loudly and forcefully argued. The Franklin police did catch up with Burgen seconds after the guilty verdict was read, however.

“You would think he would be on his best behavior, but this guy I guess just can’t contain himself,”  said store owner, Mike Walton.  Police Sergeant Charles Warner was no less puzzled. “This is one of those compelling stories that leaves you scratching your head, and as you’re walking away asking yourself, ‘Did that really just happen?'” he said.

Source: msnbc

~Mark Esposito, Guest Blogger

18 thoughts on “Never Put Off Until Tomorrow …”

  1. As far as property goes, I’ve handled a number of “anonymous” turn-ins.

    (Uncharged but scared) Client “A” turns over the item to Attorney “A”. Attorney “A” gives it to Attorney “B,” who gives it to Investigator “C,” who, unable to disclose the source of the item under “Work Product Privilege, gets to hit the edge of the legal envelope w/o tearing it. WPP trumps impeding an investigation.

    Have also been there when cops’ wired snitch has tried to get attorney to admit he received cash from a back robbery for legal fees. Case blew up for said snitch when counsel said something to the effect, “You never told me the money was stolen, but yet you knew about it when you bonded the client out. You sure you don’t need me to represent you?”

  2. AY,

    Probably, but … how is one to think that a personality like that can be rehabilitated? Incorrigible in that he has absolutely no impulse control and appears to like sparkling things. A very dangerous dinner guest.

  3. raff,

    That is an interesting response….But if I recall correctly….an attorney cannot reveal any information about a clients past criminal activity….That is what I recall from almost 20 years ago….So, the proposition is that if a crime is complete…would you violate the ethics rule by reporting it…if it is not a continuing crime….But suffice it to say that if you hold on to stolen property it is a continuing crime….But can you rat your clients past uncharged criminal behavior…I do not think so….

    Cash is fungible….So the proof is in the possession and receipt….with scienter….

  4. AY,
    if he knew about the theft, I believe that he would have had to disclose the information, whether it was cash or hot items. Now, I would be surprised if the criminal would tell his attorney that he stole the items or the cash. I will qualify that I stay away from criminal matters!

  5. raff,

    Question for you….If he gave the item to the attorney to pay attorney fees, would the attorney be under any obligation to return it to the rightful owner…saying that he did not initially know…..and if your answer is in the affirmative…would you still feel the same way if say…the crook stole the money or earned it by selling the items or vis-a-vis drugs….

  6. A metaphor or microcosm for the 1% 99% it would seem. Just can’t get enough of those sugar crisps.

    But there may one day be a vaccination for these maladies, and if so it would come from ongoing microbial research:

    Microbes may indeed be subtly changing our brain early on — and for what purposes we cannot yet say” … “Our results suggest that during evolution, the colonization of gut microbiota has become integrated into the programming of brain development, affecting motor control and anxiety-like behavior

    (The Germ Theory of Government). Politicians would be required to get vaccinated with the anti-toxin to immunize them from the “power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely” germ.

    Guys like Burgen too.

    “It could happen.”

  7. Hopefully by a panel of 12 versus a 5 finger discount….Maybe his defense will be biblical….Never let the left hand know what the right hand is doing….

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