Law Office of James R. Snell, Jr. September 2017

SEP 17

Road to justice |

It’s Not Fall, It’s Football Season

Why College Football Is King in South Carolina

We may not really dip into fall temperatures until

November, but there is one huge thing that arrives at the end of every August that means it might as well be fall. Anyone who lives in and around Lexington knows what I’m talking about. That,

“When you think about how exceptional the sports teams at both

of course, is college football, by far the biggest sport in South Carolina. Every year, as soon as the season starts, it feels like that’s all anyone in town can talk about — not that I’m complaining. I thought it was funny that even though we were in the path of totality for the recent total solar eclipse, the courts stayed open all day. This eclipse was basically a once-in-a-lifetime event, but it was business as usual for judges and lawyers. If the University of South Carolina or Clemson are playing on a Thursday, however, you can bet court hours will be changed. That small detail lets you know just how big a deal football is here. Lexington is still definitively a Gamecocks town, but I’ve noticed a surge in Clemson fans over recent years. Some of that, of course, is due to the success of the Tigers. For years, I went to every Clemson home game, sitting on the lawn behind the goalposts. When I was attending, tickets were easy to come by. After last year’s national championship victory over Alabama, not so much. South Carolina may not have been at the top of the football polls recently, but they’ve also had plenty of athletic success. From big sports like women’s basketball and baseball to less heralded programs like equestrian, the prowess of the USC athletic department never fails to impress me. When you think about how exceptional the sports teams at both of these public schools have been recently, it’s hard not to wish that every government institution could function so well. Anyone who’s been to the DMV will tell you that they are definitely not running a no-huddle offense. Good gosh, I wonder how much easier all of our

these public schools have been recently, it’s hard not to wish that every government institution could function so well. Anyone who’s been to the DMV will tell you that they are definitely not running a no-huddle offense.”

lives would be if every public office was as well-managed and funded as Clemson football. I know my job would be a lot less stressful.

Unfortunately, the courts don’t work like that. There are logjams, delays, and complications at every turn. The process should be smoother, but all too often it’s not. I’m sometimes left wondering if the government is taking a TV timeout, which is a frustrating position to be in. It’s pretty confusing, but I’m not holding out hope for the situation to change soon.

I want to wish everyone an excellent football season, no matter which team you root for. The pageantry, atmosphere, and excitement

surrounding college football is enough to get anyone’s blood pumping. If you stop by the office, maybe we’ll talk a little football before we get down to the business of discussing your case. – Jim Snell | | F: 803-359-7691 | P: 803-753-1476 1

The New Journaling System That’s Taken Social Media by Storm

The Unstoppable Rise of the Bullet Journal

In the modern age, where the internet is constantly flooded with productivity apps and trends promising to fix our schedules, unlock our potential, and improve our lives, it’s difficult not to wish for something simpler. We want an object we can hold in our hands that doesn’t come with a bunch of unwanted features.

Bullet journals may seem simple, and they are, but they’ve acquired an explosive following on social media. At the time of this writing, there are over 791,000 posts on Instagram tagged with the #bulletjournal hashtag; there are posts upon posts of users’ beautiful layouts, bearing intricate calligraphy and embellished with incredible designs. As the bullet journal’s creator, Ryder Carroll, told New Republic writer Josephine Wolff,“The most valuable part of the bullet journal [is] the inventiveness of its community.” But don’t be daunted by users who seem to spend hours on every page of their journals. Really, it’s a simple system that only takes a few minutes to learn. Check out to learn how to start your own modular notebook. But be warned: You may get obsessed.

Enter the bullet journal: the humble, easy-to- use notebook system that’s taken the world by storm.

Instead of maintaining a separate to-do list, calendar, and diary, the bullet journaling system rolls everything into a single economical notebook. Partitioned into minimalistic “modules”— the Index, the Future Log, the Monthly Log, and the Daily Log — bullet journals encourage you to write down everything on your to-do list, single-line tidbits recounting important daily events, and little notes you take throughout the day. Everything is marked by a particular bullet: dots for tasks, circles for events, and dashes for notes. At the beginning of each month, bullet journalers examine last month’s list, eliminating completed or now-irrelevant tasks and migrating long-term or continuing tasks to the current month.

Emily Jones just joined the team in May, but she already feels like a member of the Snell Law family. We’re a tightknit staff here, relying on each other to provide the best service for our clients, so we’ve been beyond fortunate that Emily meshed with us from day one. Four months into her tenure, it’s hard to imagine what the office would be like without her. In her role as a receptionist and runner, Emily is essential in ensuring the office runs smoothly every day. She’s often the person greeting our clients as they walk in the door, and her friendly demeanor makes everyone feel welcome. She also has a mind for organization, which gives her the skills to make sure client files are in perfect order. When she’s running documents to court, you can bet nothing will be lost along the way. This is Emily’s first job at a law firm, but she’s hit the ground running. Some of that, no doubt, is due to her current enrollment as a paralegal studies student. When she completes her coursework, she’ll be ready to provide even more for the firm. Outside of the office, Emily is focused on school, and she enjoys spending time with her friends and family. She’s also the owner of two adorable dogs. Emily calls Koda, a husky-German shepherd mix, her “Wild One.” Her other dog, Phoebe, is an Australian shepherd-boxer mix she rescued from a shelter. Whether caring for her dogs or for our clients, Emily shows compassion and determination, and we’re lucky to have her at the office.

A Friendly Face at Snell Law Introducing Emily Jones

The Law Office of James R. Snell, Jr. LLC | P: 803-753-1476


South Carolina Shoplifting Cases What You Don’t Know About Shoplifting

In South Carolina, shoplifting is considered a “crime of moral turpitude.” Because of this distinction, if you are convicted of shoplifting, it will never be expunged from your record. Even if you are convicted of stealing one tube of mascara, the ramifications can be serious and long lasting. Luckily, if you are charged with shoplifting, you have a number of ways to go about fighting it. Unlike nearly every other crime, the first person to handle a shoplifting case is usually not a police officer. Instead, it is a loss prevention employee, especially at large retail chains. These loss prevention employees are often encouraged, and sometimes required, to make a certain number of stops every month. With the pressure placed on them by management, they can be overzealous and act unlawfully. Even worse, most sophisticated thieves will never be apprehended by loss prevention. The stops are usually made on teenagers and regular folks.

Unfortunately, loss prevention officers are not bound by the rigors of police, and a criminal defense attorney is often your only recourse against impropriety. Another common issue in shoplifting cases is mental health. People with six-figure incomes will end up pocketing an item of menial value, because they are depressed or otherwise unhealthy. Circumstances like these can affect the outcome of your case.

To learn more about shoplifting cases in South Carolina, call our office today and ask to receive a free copy of James R. Snell Jr.’s book “What You Don’t Know About Shoplifting Can Ruin Your Life.” The Law Office of James R. Snell, Jr. has defended those accused of shoplifting for many years and are experts in the field.

To prove a shoplifting charge, it’s not enough for someone to conceal an item or walk out of the store with it. The burden is to prove

the intent to steal. If a loss prevention officer has acted unlawfully, your charge can be thrown out.


Winning Apple Crisp


1 cup all-purpose flour

1 cup sugar

3/4 cup rolled oats

2 tablespoons cornstarch

1 cup packed brown sugar

1 cup water

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 cup butter, softened

Vanilla ice cream, optional

4 cups chopped, peeled apples


1. Heat the oven to 350 F. In a large bowl, combine the first four ingredients. Cut in butter until crumbly. Press half of mixture into a greased 2½ quart baking dish or a 9-inch square baking pan. Cover with apples. 2. In a small saucepan, combine

cook and stir 2 minutes or until thick and clear. Pour over apples. Sprinkle with remaining crumb mixture. 3. Bake 60–65 minutes or until

apples are tender. Serve warm, with ice cream if desired.

the sugar, cornstarch, water, and vanilla. Bring to a boil;

Recipe courtesy of | | F: 803-359-7691 | P: 803-753-1476 3


The Law Office of James R. Snell Jr., LLC 316 South Lake Drive Lexington, South Carolina 29072

Don’t hesitate to give our office a call! (803) 753-1476

Inside this Issue

It’s Not Fall, It’s Football Season PAGE 1

The Unstoppable Rise of the Bullet Journal Introducing Emily Jones PAGE 2 What You Don’t Know About Shoplifting Winning Apple Crisp PAGE 3

Put Positive Thinking to Bed PAGE 4

Why This Way of Thought Isn’t What It’s Cracked Up to Be

Can the power of positive thinking change your life? Bookstores brim with self-help books written to guide readers toward positive thinking and countless websites claim to do the same. But what is positive thinking? Essentially, it’s shutting out negative thoughts. One website,, says,“Negative thoughts drain you of energy and keep you from being in the present moment. The more you give in to your negative thoughts, the stronger they become.” This sentiment is ironic considering the Buddhist philosophy of detachment (or non-attachment) suggests that one should let negative thoughts and emotions enter the mind, but not dwell on them, so they pass with the moment. Research into the subject agrees. In the 1960s, researchers studied grief — or the lack of it. When people attempted to suppress grief, it took them longer to recover from what caused the grief in the first place.

In reality, the biggest factor at play when it comes to positive or negative thinking may be stress. Stress comes with its fair share of negative consequences. Stress can influence overall health, both mentally and physically. If you are stressed, chances are you are not in a good mood and, by extension, are thinking negative thoughts. And this presents another problem with positive thinking. Anne Harrington, Franklin L. Ford Professor of the History of Science and director of undergraduate studies at Harvard, and author of “The Cure Within: A History of Mind-Body Medicine,” says,“It’s just as stressful to keep up a performance of positivity as it is to [keep up] a bad mood. It’s very stressful to be inauthentically upbeat all the time.” So, what can you do? Let yourself think negative and positive thoughts. Don’t dwell on the negative, and let it run its course. Then, turn your attention to your sources of stress and do what you can to minimize them.

Put ‘Positive Thinking’ to Bed

The Law Office of James R. Snell, Jr. LLC | P: 803-753-1476


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