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Adultery in Virginia–Proving It

Posted by Bill on October 11, 2009

A popular topic in Virginia law is adultery. (NOTE: NO LEGAL OPINION HERE)  Usually, adultery is considered in light of grounds for divorce.  In Virginia there are two kinds of divorces: 1. bed and board divorce and 2. absolute divorce.  I am not going to bother using the latin terms that the Commonwealth favors, but suffice to say that the bed and board divorce amounts to a perpetual separation protecting persons and property. If you get a b&b divorce, you cannot remarry during the life of your ex spouse.  An absolute divorce, permanent and you can remarry, may be granted on one of three fault grounds or on a no-fault separation ground.

Adultery is one of the three grounds for an absolute divorce.  So, what is adultery? A person who, being married, voluntarily has sexual intercourse with another person who is not his/her spouse commits adultery.  If a spouse finds out about the adulterous act, he/she could file for an immediate divorce, but to get the divorce based on adultery, you must prove adultery by clear and convincing evidence based upon proven facts and reasonable inferences drawn from the facts. The Virginia courts have said that “strongly suspicious circumstances are insufficient.”

So, adultery can be proven based on circumstantial as well as direct evidence. It all depends on the facts in a case. A lot depends whether the trier of fact finds the witnesses credible. In addition, adultery grounds must be corroborated by a third party other than the husband/wife. Many people use private investigators to gather evidence of adultery, and the investigators may testify about their investigation.  The Virginis courts have noted in the past that a private investigator’s testimony will be subjected to the strictest scrutiny by the courts and acted upon with caution. 

In next post I will give examples from various Virginia cases dealing with adultery.

Bill Lowrance

NOTE: I am not giving legal opinion and I am not your lawyer if you read this page.

If you want my legal opinion contact me at 703 506 1600, www.lowrancelaw.com

Posted in attorneys, Investigations, lawyers, PIAVA, private investigator, surveillance, Virginia | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Finding An Investigator

Posted by Bill on September 21, 2009

Well, it has been a while since any good investigative resources were posted, but I will be back in the future.  No longer associated with PIAVA–Private Investigators Association of Virginia.  Good content will continue, however, for all those interested in investigations and investigative resources.  In fact, in you have a question about investigations or need investigative resources, call me for a consultation. 

I continue to operate a private investigation business at Information Insights Inc.com and I also opened a solo law practice–see Lowrance Law LLC.  I have many years of investigative and legal experience.  My legal practice includes family law matter–divorce, custody and support and most important enforcement of post divorce custody, support, visitation and other matters.  Contact me if I can assist you in legal or investigative matters.  Contact information is in upper left corner.

When hiring a private investigator always check the Department of Criminal Justice’s website to determine if the individual or business is properly licensed.  See VA DCJS

Also, check on the experience and dedication of anyone you employ as an investigator.  Fees for private investigators may range from $55 per hour to $150 per hour–sometimes even more depending on the type and complexity of the matter.  Remember the lowest charge does not always mean the best service–experience, education and professionalism count.

Bill Lowrance

Posted in attorneys, Investigations, lawyers, private investigator, Research, Virginia | Tagged: , , , , | 1 Comment »

VA Freedom of Information Advisory Council

Posted by Bill on June 8, 2009

Interesting public records activity in Virginia.

The Virginia Freedom of Information Advisory Council, FOIA Council , is having a meeting today the Personal Identifying Information Subcommittee of the FOIA Council. Meeting is today, Monday, June 8, 2009, 1 p.m., in the Speaker’s Conference Room, Sixth Floor, General Assembly Building, 910 Capitol St., Richmond, VA.  See Memo and agenda HERE

Agenda includes:

Review of bills referred by the 2009 Session for further study by the FOIA Council:

Department of Game and Inland Fisheries; disclosure of official records; exceptions. Provides that records of the Department shall be subject to the disclosure provisions of the Freedom of Information Act, except that personal information, as defined in § 2.2-3801, of individual applicants for or holders of any hunting, fishing, boating, or trapping license issued by an agent of the Department shall be withheld from public disclosure, provided that such individuals have requested that the Department not disclose such information. However, statistical summaries, abstracts, or other records containing information in an aggregate form that does not identify individual applicants or licensees shall be disclosed. The bill provides, however, that such information may be released (i) in accordance with a proper judicial order, (ii) to any law-enforcement agency, officer, or authorized agent thereof acting in the performance of official law-enforcement duties, or (iii) to any person who is the subject of the record.

HB 2471 (Hugo); Freedom of Information Act; salary records of teachers. Provides that the disclosure of the names of individual teachers is not required under FOIA in response to a request for the official salary or rate of pay of employees of a local school board.

HB 2630 (Crockett-Stark); Law-Enforcement Officers’ Privacy Protection Act. Allows a law-enforcement officer to request that personal information about the officer be withheld from disclosure on public records. For purposes of the Act, “personal information” includes the officer’s name, social security number, address, phone number, and any other information that could be used to physically locate the officer. NOTE:  You will recall that Delegate Crockett-Stark was present at the April 27, 2009 FOIA Council meeting to discuss HB 2630.  She indicated that there is a similar law in place in Ohio that was enacted because a family member of a law enforcement officer was murdered after personal information about the officer was made available. She stated that her sheriff had requested a similar law in Virginia.  Staff noted that in Virginia personal information about public employees is exempt from FOIA; however, real property assessment records and court records are open to the public as a matter of law.   The Council noted that there are two competing policies at work in this instance– privacy versus a community’s awareness of the identity of its officers.  The Council asked Delegate Crockett-Stark to have her contact call Delegate Griffith to identify the specific issue of concern so that the scope of the bill could be narrowed to address the issue.

SB 1332 (Cuccinelli); Private entities operating, managing, or supervising any portion of the state highway system. Provides that a private entity that operates, manages, or supervises any portion of the state highway system and receives funding from the Commonwealth or any of its political subdivisions shall be considered a public body for purposes of the Virginia Freedom of Information Act (§ 2.2-3700 et seq.) of the Code of Virginia as it relates to that portion of the private entity’s business operations responsible for operating, managing, or supervising the portion of the state highway system. 

At the April 27, 2009 FOIA Council meeting, members of the Council agreed that the issue behind this bill was unclear.  Senator Griffith directed staff to re-invite Senator Cuccinelli to address the Council at its next meeting.  Therefore no action is required by the Subcommittee at this time.
 
Social Security Numbers and the Government Data Collection and Dissemination Practices Act (GDCDPA):

Collection of SSNs: The Council has already indicated its intent to continue studying this area, which will coincide with the analysis of the results of last year’s survey regarding collection and use of SSNs.  This year’s study will focus on identifying and eliminating the unnecessary collection of SSNs by government. It is hoped that by limiting collection in the first instance, the need for additional protections to be added later will be reduced or eliminated.  In addition, because the SSN survey produced an unexpectedly large volume of responses that necessitated additional time for analysis, SB 1318/HB 2426 were passed in 2009 as recommendations of the FOIA Council to delay until 2010 the implementation date prohibiting the collection of an individual’s social security number unless collection of such number is (i) authorized or required by state or federal law and (ii) essential for the performance of that agency’s duties.  Note that in light of HB 2427 (May), establishing the Protection of Social Security Numbers Act, as discussed below, the Council needs to decide what further action, if any, needs to be taken

Disclosure of SSNs: HB 2427 (May) establishes the Protection of Social Security Numbers Act (the Act), which will become effective July 1, 2009.  In brief, the Act exempts from FOIA the first five digits of SSNs except under certain limited circumstances, and provides penalties for improper disclosure.  The final four digits of SSNs found in public records will remain open to public disclosure under FOIA.   In past meetings the Council has debated the merits of this and other protective schemes that would limit the disclosure of SSNs.  Again, the Act’s passage in 2009 raises the question of whether any further action regarding disclosure of SSNs is necessary at this time, and if so, what form should that action take.

Bill Lowrance

Posted in attorneys, Investigations, lawyers, PIAVA, private detective, private investigations, private investigator, private investigators, Public Records, Research, Virginia | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Service of Process By E-Mail?

Posted by Bill on January 2, 2009

av_bryan_federal_courthouse

 

 

 

  Earlier this month The Virginia Lawyers Weekly reported that an Australian attorney attempted service of process via a Facebook account (see  Click Here.  Of course, this is a unique way to serve a lawsuit since most service of process is by personal service, publication, posting or via mail. 

Now the Virginia Lawyers Weekly reports that a similar situation is happening in Federal District Court in Virginia.  Virginiaattorneys for indicted US Representative Willian J. Jefferson, D-La., asked US District Judge T.S. Ellis III to allow service of prcess by e-mail to an elusive international witness.  Read the whole story:  Click Here  Go directly to the motion filed Here.

Happy New Year to all.

Bill Lowrance
www.lowrancelaw.com

Posted in attorneys, crime, fraud, Investigations, law enforcement, lawyers, private detective, private investigations, private investigator, private investigators, Research, Virginia | Leave a Comment »

Blog Roll and Links

Posted by Bill on December 23, 2008

computer-thumb.jpgWe have a lot of good links in the left column.  I added AltSearchEngines to the blog roll today.  Check out AltSearchEngine when you want to know the latest, newest, specialized and unique search engines out in the web.

Charles Knight, AltSearchEngine guy, says:  “Our goal for AltSearchEngines is to make it the definitive destination for everything related to alternative search engines – over 1,000 of them!Our motto: “The most wonderful search engines you’ve never seen.”

AltSearchEngines is edited by Charles Knight, a respected industry analyst and reformed SEO from Charlottesville, Virginia.

Bill Lowrance

Posted in Investigations, Links, PI Chatter, private detective, private investigations, private investigator, private investigators, Research, Virginia | Leave a Comment »

Pitfalls When Using The Web To Find Someone

Posted by Bill on November 24, 2008

Posted by:
Ed Hruneni
VP PIAVA

When interested in finding an old friend or an associate whom you have lost contact with many people search the web and use Google among other web resources.

Often this works but then again often it leads to just frustration. The next step usually is looking on the web for free or pay services which advertized that they will locate old classmates, missing family members and loves of your past! Find anyone!

The free ones sometimes only get you on another junk mailing list, without getting anymore info than you already had. Other free sites are really not free at all, they do the check for free but then there is a cost for providing you any info they found. The cost can vary from $30 to $100.

You’re so close you go for it, and then results come in and, it’s the same info you already obtained from Google and sometimes even less. You want to complain but you notice that there are no addresses or telephone numbers listed so that you can make a complaint.  Consumer-complaint sites are loaded with complaints about these types of scams.

What could be next, try another web only company that charges up front for their services. Many people have tried this approach and many have lost chunks of money with little or no results.

Give Up? Do what you probably should have done to begin with. Find a Licensed local Private Investigation company that has the resources to obtain the information you’re looking for. Get the cost up front from a real person whom you can talk to, of which you have their name, address, and phone number.

To get access to data bases needed for this type of work, a real legit company has to be licensed, and checked out by the data base service. Information obtained needs to be analyzed by a real licensed/registered Investigator often a person with a past law enforcement background. This produces more accurate and better cross checked information. A computer geek without investigative experience who does not have the time to spend on your case (since he/she deals with volume not accuracy, and gets no additional money for providing more info) will not give you the same results.

Good luck with your future searches. Be aware there are companies like American Security Programs that will provide this type of service and only charge the customer if the information requested is obtained. No results no cost.

Ed Hruneni
VP American Security Programs
Investigative Services
www.securityprograms.com<

Posted in crime, Investigations, PI Chatter, private detective, private investigations, private investigator, private investigators, Research, Virginia | Tagged: , , | Leave a Comment »

VA Law Firm Named To Top Ten List Of Names

Posted by Bill on October 30, 2008

 A Virginia law firm was named on the “Ten Law Firms Names That Make You Scratch Your Head” according to very popular The Greatest American Lawyer Blog, See GALB.  The GALB posted the names for readers to vote on the top name.

The Virginia law firm making the list is Allen, Allen, Allen & Allen of Richmond, Allen, Allen, Allen & Allen–a great firm BTW.

Other names are:

  1. Payne & Fears
  2. Low, Ball & Lynch
  3. Weiner & Cox
  4. Smart & Biggar
  5. Ziffren, Brittenham, Branca, Fischer, Gilbert-Lurie, Stiffelman, Cook, Johnson, Lande & Wolf
  6. Ball & Weed
  7. Boring & Leach
  8. Bickers & Bickers
  9. Slaughter & Slaughter
  10. Allen, Allen, Allen & Allen  

Posted in attorneys, lawyers, PI Chatter, private detective, private investigations, private investigator, private investigators, Virginia | Tagged: , , , | 2 Comments »

Human Mystery From 1920

Posted by Bill on September 28, 2008

The Virginia Lawyers Weekly, VLW Blog,recently reported on this story that orginated from the Roanoke Times.

The great, Mountain Lake, in Giles County, VA, recently revealed human remains dating from the 1920s.  The lake has dried and receded somewhat.  Last Saturday, Timmy Dalton and his son Chris were walking the dried area of the lake looking for old bottles and other treasures.  Instead of treasure, they found human bones along with a belt buckle, a 1910 dime, a tooth and shoes. 

Read about this interesting mystery: Roanoke Times and Here

Bill Lowrance

President PIAVA www.piava.org

Posted in crime, Investigations, law enforcement, police, private detective, private investigations, private investigator, private investigators, Virginia | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

New Laws In Virginia–July 1, 2008, More Sangria Please

Posted by Bill on August 1, 2008

From the Excellent:  The Fairfax Times Fairfax Times Here New Laws Now in Play

As of July 1, 2008, Virginia

Virginians are now free to drink sangria and dessert wine in restaurants, but they can no longer use the Department of Motor Vehicles driving test as a substitute for behind-the-wheel driving classes.

Here is a small sampling of the dozens of new state laws that went into effect Tuesday, from alcohol to zoning.

Alcohol-Restaurants with mixed beverage licenses may now sell sangria and other beverages that mix liquor with wine or beer. Restaurants with limited mixed beverage licenses may sell dessert wine.

Animal fighting-The fighting of any animals, except dogs, is a Class 1 misdemeanor. Dog fighting is a felony. Officers investigating animal fighting allegations may now conduct searches at night.

Driving-Anyone who fails the DMV drivers test three times must attend driving school before attempting to take the test again. Anyone under 21 who is convicted of drinking and driving loses his or her license for a year and has to pay a $500 fine or perform 50 hours of community service. The penalty for second and subsequent violations of the child restraint law is now up to $500.

Mental health-The standard for involuntarily committing someone to mental health treatment is lower. The person must have a significant risk of harming himself or others. Anyone who has been declared to be mentally incompetent or who has been involuntarily committed to psychiatric treatment is prohibited from purchasing a gun.

Miscellaneous-Anyone who knowingly buys or receives stolen goods is also culpable for the theft. Anyone who is fired from a job for failing a drug test is ineligible for unemployment compensation. The term “mentally retarded” has been replaced with “intellectually disabled” in state code.

Sex offenses-Legislators removed a loophole in state law that allowed men to escape prosecution by marrying girls 14 and older whom they were accused of attacking. Sex offenders who are prohibited from having contact with children may not go within 100 feet of a playground, athletic field/facility or gymnasium. Violation is a Class 6 felony. It is a Class 1 misdemeanor for someone 18 or older to tongue kiss a child 13 or younger. Anyone found guilty must register as a sex offender.

Zoning-Localities may carry over zoning violations when a property is sold, an effort to prevent illegal boardinghouses from re-emerging.

 

Times Community © 2007 | Fairfax Times

 

Bill Lowrance

President PIAVA

www.piava.org

 

www.informationinsightsinc.com

 

Posted in attorneys, crime, Investigations, law enforcement, lawyers, PI Chatter, private detective, private investigations, private investigator, private investigators, Public Records, Virginia | Tagged: , | Leave a Comment »

At The NALI Conference Today

Posted by Bill on June 13, 2008

PIAVA is at the NALI conference today in Arlington, VA.  Yesterday, NALI members and conference attendees toured the Library of Congress learning all the various types of information available through research.  After that the members/attendees walked up to Congress to talk with their representatives about current issues in the professional investigative industry.

Today, various people are giving presentations on attorney/private investigator relationships, “At Risk Protection & Investigations,” managing large investigations, locating hidden assets, fraud investigations, business due diligence investigations and digital forensics.  Attendees receive continuing education credits for going to the sessions.

Some of the exhibitors here are Jimmie Mesis, PI Magazine, www.pimagazine.com, IRB’s Kristen Gilley, www.irbsearch.com, is here along with OTL Tactical, Beth Kalyan, www.otltacticl.com, Tina Green, El Dorado Insurance, www.eldoradoinsurance.com, Mike Yergey, Yergey Insurance Agency, www.yergeyins.com, Paige Arrington, G.A. Public Records Service, www.gaprs.biz, Shawn Monroe, www.paraben.com, and Amanda Cunha, Locate Plus, www.locateplus.com.

Our good friend Rosalie Folino, J&R Folino, LLC, www.jrfolinollc.com, stopped by and assisted the writer in clarifying information and, most importantly, spell checking live time.

Now is lunch time, and we will be back with more news later.

Bill Lowrnce

President PIAVA

Posted in Investigations, PI Chatter, PIAVA, private detective, private investigations, private investigator, private investigators, Virginia | Tagged: , , | Leave a Comment »

Troy Fleming Attends NALI Conference

Posted by Bill on June 12, 2008

Troy Fleming, legal investigator for Brown & Jennings PLC law firm in Roanoke, VA, is attending the NALI Conference in Arlington, VA. Troy is the Southeast Regional Director of NALI.  NALI is the National Association of Legal Investigators headquartered in Lansing, MI. see www.nalionline.org

Troy is a member of PIAVA and represents the Roanoke, VA, chapter.

Troy is also a member of the Inner Circle of Investigators, www.icinvestigators.com, an elite group of investigators specializing in sophisticated civil litgation matters.

The National Association of Legal Investigators (NALI) was formed in 1967 with its primary focus to conduct investigations related to litigation. Membership in NALI is open to all professional legal investigators who are actively engaged in negligence investigations for the plaintiff and/or criminal defense, and who are employed by investigative firms, law firms or public defender agencies. An applicant must have a minimum of 24 months of documented full-time employment in this endeavor.

Posted in Investigations, PI Chatter, PIAVA, private detective, private investigations, private investigators, Virginia | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

NALI Conference Social Hour Starting Arlington VA

Posted by Bill on June 12, 2008

The NALI members attending the conference here in Arlington, Va, are arriving for the social hour.  Later tonight there is a dinner and PIAVA will be around to see if the food is good.

Follow the news and events at the NALI conference here at the PIAVA Blog.

Posted in Investigations, PI Chatter, PIAVA, private detective, private investigations, private investigator, private investigators, Virginia | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

National Association of Legal Investigators–NALI

Posted by Bill on June 12, 2008

NALI is having its national conference today through Saturday in Arlington, VA. Click here for information, at the Doubletree Hotel, Arlington, VA. City-National Airport, 300 Army Navy Drive,Arlington, Virginia 22202, Tel: 703-416-4100.

PIAVA is an exhibitor at the conference and will be posting news and information from the conference live.  Check back through out the next few days to updates and information.

Bill Lowrance

President PIAVA

Posted in Investigations, PI Chatter, PIAVA, private detective, private investigations, private investigator, private investigators, Virginia | Tagged: , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Virginia Courts Digitally Scanning Court Records

Posted by Bill on May 11, 2008

  Virginia Clerks of the Courts are scanning court records allowing electronic access to court documents normally seen only in the paper file in the clerk’s office.   Lawyers have expressed concern about their client’s personal information in the court records will be seen by anyone on the Internet. 

Read the whole story here: Virginia Lawyers Weekly

Bill Lowrance

President Piava

Information Insights Inc.

 

Posted in attorneys, Investigations, lawyers, private detective, private investigations, private investigator, private investigators, Public Records, Research, Virginia | Tagged: , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

US Supreme Court Rules In VA Case–Search & Seizure

Posted by Bill on April 23, 2008

From VA Lawyers Weekly

The Issue: “Whether VA police officer violates the Fourth Amendment by making an arrest based on probable cause but prohibited by state law.”

A unanimous U.S. Supreme Court ruled today that the illegality of a search under Virginia law does not require the suppression of evidence seized during the search.

Writing for the court in Virginia v. Moore, Justice Antonin Scalia said in that the high court long has held that probable cause to arrest justifies a search. Virginia is free to make exclusion of evidence seized in violation of Virginia Code Sect. 19.2-74(A)(1) a remedy for an arrest that is illegal under state law but allowed by the Fourth Amendment, Scalia said. The state has not done so, however, and the Fourth Amendment cannot be used as a remedy for an act that does not violate the constitution, he wrote.

The case from Portsmouth involved the arrest of David Lee Moore on a charge of driving without an operator’s license, a misdemeanor for which state law required his release on a summons. Although the attorney general’s office conceded that he was arrested in violation of state law, it contended that the search did not violate the Fourth Amendment because police had probable cause to search Moore. The search produced 16 grams of crack cocaine and $516 in cash. Moore was sentenced to 3 1/2 years in prison.

Bill Lowrance

President PIAVA

Information Insights Inc., McLean, VA

Posted in attorneys, crime, Investigations, law enforcement, lawyers, PIAVA, police, private detective, private investigations, private investigators, Virginia | Tagged: , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Oklahoma Supreme Court Reverses Closing Court Records

Posted by Bill on March 26, 2008

gavel-768279.jpg  The Oklahoma Supreme Court issued an order last week that would have restricted access to on-line court records and would have required that most identifying information be redacted from court filings.  The order was intended to prevent “identify theft,” although most identity theft, according to the Federal Trade Commission, is not a result of accessing court records.  The Court’s rule required that Social Security Numbers, dates of birth and addresses be excluded from public court records.

In Oklahoma the public reaction to such a restrictive rule was immediate and in opposition to the new rule.  Yesterday the Court reversed the proposed rule for further consideration.  The Enid Oklahoma News summarized the story yesterday and stated that “It appears the court did not fully realize or understand the overwhelming use of these records by all citizens of Oklahoma.”

The article pointed out two good reasons for the Court to reconsider its rule:

1.)  It would have been a giant leap backward in providing access to the public, and;

2.) The records are needed “for many users of such court documents to have access to identifier information, primarily birth dates. We can understand restricting access to Social Security numbers, but taking out birth date information could have led to people being misidentified for public information purposes.”  Click Here to Read Story

One significant item mentioned above is the lack of information in court records leading to “people being misidentified for public information purposes.”  As noted in a previous post yesterday, Virginia Court Records, the ability to identify persons involved in public court records is essential for all investigators, whether law enforcement or private security/investigators.  There are many reasons identification is so essential, but a major one is the right to due process of law and a fair trial.  In a criminal prosecution, the prosecuting attorney and the law enforcement authorities have all of the identifying information needed to locate witnesses, to interview witness and to obtain all background information on the alleged defendant.  If public or court records do not contain certain identifying data, criminal defense attorneys and private investigators are hindered in properly representing an accused.

PIAVA encourages the Virginia Supreme Court to consider the proposed changes in Virginia’s rules to restrict information in public court records, and allow identifying data to be included in the court records and filings.  If such data is not available the result will be, as the Enid News said, “people being misidentified for public information purposes.”
 

Bill Lowrance

President PIAVA

Posted in attorneys, Investigations, law enforcement, lawyers, PIAVA, police, private detective, private investigations, private investigators, Public Records, Virginia | Tagged: , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Virginia Supreme Court Restricts Access To Court Records

Posted by Bill on March 25, 2008

justice.jpg  Recently (March 18, 2008), the Virginia Judicial Council sent a report to the Virginia Supreme Court on a proposed, formal set of Rules of Evidence and on proposed changes to Part Nine to the Supreme Court Rules that would regulate access to public court records. 

Virginia and Massachusetts are the only two states that do not have a formal evidence code.  According to the Virginia Lawyers Weekly, VLW Blog, Click Here, the new evidence code would be similar to the Federal Rules of Evidence, but would adopt most rule language from Virginia case law.  Read the proposed rules Click Here.

Proposed changes to Part Nine of the Supreme Court Rules address concerns of personal and private information being accessible in court records.  The proposed rule provides for sealing of court records, procedures to unseal records and limiting personal information in filings with the court.  Read the proposed changes Click Here

We initially wrote about this in a previous post last year Click Here.   While the Virginia Supreme Court did not act upon the first set of proposed rule changes for access to court records, the Court is considering the Judicial Council’s most recent set of proposed rules for access to public court records.  Chief Justice Leroy Rountree Hassell Sr. told the council that he expects the court to take some time before acting on the proposed rules.  Hopefully, the Supreme Court will consider public comments on the proposed rules.  We shall see.

Access to public court records is important to the legal and professional investigation industry.  Private investigators work for the public, businesses, law firms and attorneys.  In all cases, whether involving fraud, litigation, criminal trials or business due diligence, private investigators must be able to identify, verify and locate individuals referenced in public records.  Without the ability to gather this information, many investigations will fail or the costs will increase so that the public and others cannot afford to prepare their case or conduct due diligence or complete fraud investigations. 

Bill Lowrance

President PIAVA

Posted in attorneys, crime, FOIA, fraud, Investigations, law enforcement, lawyers, PIAVA, private detective, private investigations, private investigators, Public Records, Virginia | Tagged: , , , , , | 3 Comments »

Proving Adultery In Virginia

Posted by Bill on March 18, 2008

justice.jpg  Fairfax County, VA, Circuit Court Judge Michael P. McWeeny issued an opinion letter granting a divorce in which one of the parties alleged the other party committed adultery.  Proving adultery in Virginia is not easy, and alleging adultery as a ground for divorce in Virginia is not common.

This published opinion letter, see VA Lawyers Weekly, was issued in December 2007.  The parties in the case had been married for 35 years and the husband and wife were 65 and 60, respectively.  The court found the evidence of adultery was supported by a private investigator’s testimony and surveillance video.  The evidence reflected that the husband was observed coming and going from the home of his “friend,” grocery shopping with her and remaining until late evening in her home.  There was no direct evidence of husband spending the night with his “friend,” nor were they ever observed making displays of public affection (often proof of adultery in Virginia).

The “killer” evidence was that husband was seen coming out of his “friend’s” home on two occasions in a “state of partial undress.”  One time he was seen in pants with no shirt.  Then, he was seen coming out of the house in only his tee-shirt and boxer-style underwear.  From all of the above circumstances, the court found that husband, indeed, did commit adultery.  Read the case Here VA Lawyers Weekly

Posted in attorneys, Investigations, lawyers, PIAVA, private detective, private investigations, private investigators, Virginia | Tagged: , , , | 7 Comments »

Spammers Beware In Virginia-Case To US Supreme Court?

Posted by Bill on March 3, 2008

  wantedspammers_12p.jpg  The Virginia Supreme Court has upheld the country’s first felony spam conviction in a 4-3 ruling, holding that the state’s groundbreaking anti-spam law did not violate the First Amendment.

The majority rejected free speech arguments by Jeremy Jaynes, regarded as the world’s eighth most prolific spammer before he was sentenced to nine years in prison for violating the 2003 law, the Richmond Times Dispatch reports.

The opinion (PDF) said Jaynes was prosecuted for sending almost 46,500 spam e-mails within a three-day period that had disguised his identity as the sender.

See ABA Journal VA Supreme Court

But Jaynes’ attorney said he will ask the US Supreme Court to hear the case. 

Bill Lowrance

President PIAVA

Information Insights Inc.

McLean, VA

Posted in attorneys, crime, Investigations, law enforcement, lawyers, PI Chatter, PIAVA, private detective, private investigations, private investigators, Virginia | Tagged: , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Traffic Cameras–See Where You Are Going

Posted by Bill on March 3, 2008

traffic3.jpg  If you have to travel, check out the traffic first. PIAVA member, Ed Leary of E.R. Leary & Associates LLC, Fairfax, VA, ER Leary & Assoc., sent in this great travel planning site for driving in your area. Thousands of traffic cameras are available to view road and freeway conditions in all states and the District of Columbia. You can select the state and cities to view. The traffic camera picture is update every 2 seconds. There is even a pay service that allows you to get the pictures and information on your cell phone or Blackberry device. This is great for efficiently driving about your local terrain. See TrafficLand

From the site:  “TrafficLand launched its public website on Monday, September 10, 2001, feeding video from 32 roadside cameras in Northern Virginia. The tragic events of the next day immediately made TrafficLand.com an invaluable tool for area residents seeking to evacuate the city after the attack on the Pentagon and local media seeking reliable information about ground conditions. The one day old TrafficLand public website met the challenge. The company has since built a record of success in each of its market segments and today provides live video from thousands of cameras worldwide.”

Drive carefully,

Bill Lowrance

President PIAVA

Information Insights Inc. 
McLean, VA

Posted in Investigations, PI Chatter, PIAVA, private detective, private investigations, private investigators, Research, Virginia | Tagged: , , , , , | Leave a Comment »