Jennifer Stisa Granick

Attorney donated her services to defend cyclists who were illegally arrested and assaulted by police during the July 25th
Critical Mass ride

Granick visiting the offices of E-Media

Attorney to the Rescue

Slipping inexorably in popularity polls, San Francisco's Willie Brown thought he'd found the perfect scapegoat to distract the public's attention from his increasingly obvious failure to address the city's failing transportation system: Critical Mass.

Critical Mass, an informal, community bicycle ride held each month through downtown San Francisco, seemed like an easy target. Because the group lacked a formal leader, and therefore was without legal or press representation, Brown was able to whip up a frenzy of media antagonism towards the riders. As carefully planned in advance by the city's top police brass, scores of people who participated in the July 25th ride were arbitrarily arrested, including pedestrians and tourists watching from the sidewalk.

Not so fast

What Brown hadn't counted on was that a group of San Francisco attorneys led Jennifer Granick were going to provide aid to the arrested - some of whom were clubbed and pepper sprayed - and challenge the arrests.

To make a long story short, of the 115 arrests made that night, charges have been dropped against all but six, and even those are unlikely to be taken seriously by a judge and may, in fact, result in the police officers involved being brought up on perjury and brutality charges.

Out of the east

Granick, a criminal defense attorney in private practice, was born and raised in Glen Ridge, New Jersey and graduated from New College in Sarasota, Florida. Seven years ago she moved to San Francisco to attend Hastings Law School in San Francisco and has been practicing law for the last four years. She has special expertise in the area of computer crime.

Asked why she came forward to help, Granick said: "I've been following the progress of Critical Mass and in my opinion it's a unique and important political event. It's one of the things that makes San Francisco a great place to live and I'd like to see it continue and grow unharassed."

- Ken McCarthy

Postscript from Ms. Granick:

Special thanks to lawyers Daniel Bornstein, Jim Bustamente, John Forsyth, Liz Givens, Pam Herzig, Sarge Holzman, Doug Horngrad (specifically Rob), David Michael, Maitreya Badami, Sarge Holtzman, Eric Johnson, Amir Tadjedin, Kristin Wodalho, Alexandra Clay and David Miller for their extra work on the Sacramento-Montgomery cases and discovery issues.

Articles by Jennifer Granick

  • "PAS or Fail: The Use and Abuse of the Preliminary Alcohol Screening Test"
    - The Champion, April 1996. The Champion is the National Association for Criminal Defense Lawyer's Magazine.
  • "Scotty, Beam Down the Lawyers: When Free Speech Collides With Trademark Law"
    - Wired, October 1997.

    For more information:

    The Law Offices of Jennifer S. Granick
    A Criminal Defense Practice
    Ghiradelli Square
    Chocolate Building
    900 North Point, Suite 220
    San Francisco, CA 94109

    Your can write Jennifer Granick here.