Bar News - May 19, 2006
Michael Sheehan Visits Merrimack Valley High School
Michael J. Sheehan, Law Office of Michael J. Sheehan in Concord and a member of the NH Bar since 1989, spoke to students at Merrimack Valley High School for Law Day. In a lively discussion of the rights provided to anyone charged with a crime, Sheehan led them through the steps of “due process.” He emphasized in particular the protections guaranteed by the Fourth and Fifth Amendments. In an imaginary scenario, Sheehan and the students talked about what happens, for instance, if a policeman stops you for a broken tail light, when in reality he suspects you might have some marijuana in the car. “You are protected against unreasonable search and seizure,” said Sheehan. “There must be probable cause. And in due process, if you are arrested and accused, you must be indicted before you are sent to trial—and you have the right to a speedy and public trial.”
A note from Attorney Robin Fisk of the Fisk Law Office in Ashland, who visited Ashland Elementary School for Law Day:
I spoke to two classes of first graders, the second grade and fifth grade, using the “No Vehicles in the Park” exercise. I started with the younger grades, working my way up. It was interesting to hear how much more eloquent the kids became as the grades increased. As I finished the exercise with the fifth graders, they asked me to continue. Not content to stay in their seats, they had rearranged themselves into a rough court room formation. They wanted additional fact patterns and discussions of how a court would resolve disputes.