Nichole Warren represented a client facing a prison adjudication before an Independent Adjudicator (District Judge) earlier this week.
Almost all independent adjudications are now heard remotely. Nichole represented her client by video link. She was wearing her kick-ass slippers during the hearing.
Her client had been charged with refusing to provide a specimen for a mandatory drugs test. This is a charge which can lead to additional custody time. Her client was adamant that he had not deliberately refused to provide a specimen. His hearing had been adjourned for Nichole to seek medical evidence to support her client's defence that he had difficulties urinating.
Nichole managed to get evidence from the prison's lead doctor to confirm her client's health issues. She submitted it together with a statement from her client explaining his medical problems.
During Nichole's submissions, a prison officer who was present at the hearing kept trying to interrupt and intervene. Nichole had to remind him that she was addressing the judge and if he wanted to be named as a witness he could ask for permission to give evidence.
The Judge decided to call the officer to give evidence. He asked if there was any more relevant evidence that the prison wanted to provide.
Nichole made various legal and procedural submissions on her client's behalf. The hearing lasted for almost an hour (most adjudications take a lot less time than this). It ended with the judge dismissing the charge against Nichole's client...