Veteran public defender writes quirky bedtime tales

by Carlos Alcala – The Sacramento Bee David A. Brooks’ “Foresthill” bears a subtitle calling it a “bedtime reader,” but it doesn’t have the usual assortment of fairies, princes and ogres. Its stories are instead populated by a transsexual prostitute, a narcoleptic monster-truck driver who backs over a squad car, Alzheimer’s patients who get naughty and an assortment of dimwitted criminals. “They are hilarious,” said Frederick Reuss, a critically acclaimed novelist who met Brooks in high school. Brooks, who lives in Fair Oaks, is a public defender with decades of experience in Placer and El Dorado counties. “A lot of times people ask, ‘How can you do this?’ ” Brooks said of the public defender’s job. Part of the answer is that he’s defending the Constitution every day, not only his clients. “We (public defenders) do what we can to get the playing field level,” he said. “We try to get the right thing done.” Sometimes, that’s a pretty quirky job. In one case, his narrator frees a falsely accused man who – despite his anti-social technophobia – finds vindication in a computerized machine. In another paradoxical case, a defendant’s loud denials that he is dyslexic appear to convince a jury that perhaps he is dyslexic, resulting in a drunken driving acquittal. ][Full story: ]

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Veteran public defender writes quirky bedtime tales

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