WELCOME TO THE OFFICIAL RICHARD E GERSTEIN JUSTICE BUILDING BLOG. THIS BLOG IS DEDICATED TO JUSTICE BUILDING RUMOR, HUMOR, AND A DISCUSSION ABOUT AND BETWEEN THE JUDGES, LAWYERS AND THE DEDICATED SUPPORT STAFF, CLERKS, COURT REPORTERS, AND CORRECTIONAL OFFICERS WHO LABOR IN THE WORLD OF MIAMI'S CRIMINAL JUSTICE. THIS BLOG HAS BEEN CALLED "THE DEFINITIVE BLOG ON MIAMI CRIMINAL LAW" BY THE NY TIMES, THE WASHINGTON POST, THE POPE, AND DONALD TRUMP WHO ALSO ONCE SAID IT WAS "REALLY GREAT". POST YOUR COMMENTS, OR SEND RUMPOLE A PRIVATE EMAIL AT HOWARDROARK21@GMAIL.COM

Friday, July 29, 2016

NUTS




You think you have a hard job? Pity poor Herald Scribe David Ovalle who, in writing articles covering the legal community of Miami, must navigate unscrupulous clients, manipulative attorneys, judges who wander in hours after court was supposed to start, and, of course, the ever present watchful eye of the fearsome "National Peanut Board." (cue ominous  music)

Much to the delight and satisfaction of long time and careful blog reader Paul Cali, the Florida Bar recently filed complaints against Bernardo Roman and others for their shenanigans in representing the Miccosukee tribe.  After superb lawyering, Cali turned the tables on Roman and his clients, saving his clients Lewis and Tein from what had been nightmare civil proceedings, the allegations which, to quote our vice-president, "was a bunch of malarkey."

During a deposition in the case, a peanut problem arose, as is wont to happen. Part of the Herald's story is here.

The deposition was being overseen by a retired judge, Ellen Leesfield, who placed bowls of peanuts and pistachios on a conference room table at a Coral Gables law office. Roman’s clerk, Shenna Perez-Martin, announced that she was allergic to the nuts, and the bowls were moved to a reception room.
During a break in the deposition, Perez-Martin said she was having an allergic reaction just by having been near the nuts, according to the Bar complaint. In the reception room, she told Roman she was leaving to an urgent-care clinic for treatment.

At that moment, Lewis and Tein’s attorney, Paul Calli, emerged from the conference room, grabbed a handful of nuts and walked back, weaving between the two opposing lawyers. Perez-Martin left.
An hour later, after lunch was delivered, Roman called 911 to allege that Perez-Martin “was just the victim of a battery.”
“He purposely put pistachios in her food and in front of her, and she had to be taken to the hospital. That’s where she is, in urgent care right now,” Roman said, according to the Bar’s complaint.
But Perez-Martin told investigators that never happened — and that Roman got angry at her for not changing her story or agreeing to press charges, the report said. Judge Leesfield and another judge who were present said the whole episode “was a setup” by Roman to get Calli in trouble.

With a nose for news, and in the finest traditions of Wooward and Bernstein, Ovalle sunk his teeth into the story, peanuts, no butter, no jelly, and ended up with his groundbreaking reporting as listed above. 

We imagine Ovalle, after the story was printed, having repaired to some Herald watering hole, sharing with colleagues the mystery and intrigue involved in bringing the "Nuts" story to light. 

Then enter the National Peanut Board, who sent our hero this tweet:

Nixon had his enemies list, at the top of which was the Washington Post and their reporters. Now comes the National Peanut Board. 






Read
 more here: http://www.miamiherald.com/news/local/community/miami-dade/article91989482.html#storylink=cp

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

UNIFORM DRIVE

In this summer of hate, and shootings, and rantings and ravings and political conventions and speeches by Chachi and Duck Dynasty and mediocre female golfers  (and Bill Clinton, Michelle Obama, and President Obama) 
we here in Miami are trying to do a little good. 
Raising money to buy clothes for needy kids for the new school year. 
Go. 
Donate. 
Have a drink. 
Feel good about yourself. 











2nd Annual Uniform Drive
Thursday, August 4, 2016    
5:30 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.

Fado Irish Pub
The Shops at Mary Brickell Village
900 S. Miami Avenue
Miami, FL 33130

Hosted by:
DCBA Criminal Court Committee
Jude M. Faccidomo, Chair
&
League of Prosecutors
Marie E. Mato, President

Sponsored by:
Casanova  & Rasmussen, P.A.
  Jurney & De La Grana, P.A.
  Law Offices of Sabrina Puglisi
Ratzan & Faccidomo, LLC

RED LIGHT CAMERAS - THIRD DCA SPEAKS .....


THE CAPTAIN REPORTS:

RED LIGHT, GREEN LIGHT ..... IT'S A GREEN LIGHT FOR THE COUNTY IF YOU RESIDE IN MIAMI-DADE, FOR RED LIGHT TICKETS .....

So, for now, if you see this:



 
Then, you can expect to see this:

 


That's because, today, the Third District Court of Appeal, finally issued their long awaited opinion ruling on Judge Leifman's Order that dismissed a red light citation.  The case was heard before Judges Wells, Emas, and Logue, with Logue writing the opinion, that can be found here. (go to page 29 of the 36 page opinion to read the three certified questions).

In their opinion ruling against the driver and for the City of Aventura they "distinguish City of Hollywood v. Arem, 154 So. 3d 359 (Fla. 4th DCA 2014), in which the Fourth District dismissed a traffic citation on the grounds that a city’s process of using red light cameras gave unfettered discretion to a vendor."

But, "because of the broad public and institutional interest in red light cameras", they certified three issues to the Florida Supreme Court as having great public importance.  Judge Wells did not agree that the matter was of great public importance but she did agree to certify the case as being in conflict with the 4th DCA.

h/t DBR and they cover the story here.

CAPTAIN OUT .....
Captain4Justice@gmail.com

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

"WE. WILL. RISE." .....


THE CAPTAIN REPORTS:

CORY BOOKER, YOUR NEXT BIG STAR OF THE DEMOCRACTIC PARTY .....

While some of you may be supporters of Hillary, and others may support The Donald, I think we can all agree, as trial attorneys, that we all love it when we get to watch great public speakers making great speeches.

Tonight, at the Democratic National Convention, the headliners included Elizabeth Warren (snoozer of a speech); Bernie "Can you feel the Bern" Sanders (did a very good job); FLOTUS Michelle Obama (did a fantastic job); and Senator Corey Booker.

In case you missed it, (he spoke before the ten o'clock hour), New Jersey Senator Corey Booker, who was on Clinton's "short list" for VP, spoke last night, and, well, let's just say he pulled a Giancarlo Stanton, and simply and purely, knocked it out of the park.

Here is his 20 minute "WE. WILL. RISE." speech, (the last five minutes are the best part):






CAPTAIN OUT .....
Captain4Justice@gmail.com

Monday, July 25, 2016

IN COLD BLOOD

Here's our take on the police shooting an unarmed black therapist who was lying on his back with his hands in the air:

Trial and appellate courts often hold that people who the police claim consented to search had a right to refuse. 

We who actually practice criminal law know that is what is known as a legal fiction. Meaning that courts will rely on that while they damn well know that people who tell the police no are frequently beaten and/or arrested on trumped up charges. 

So here is our question: if a black man with a professional degree is shot in cold blood while he lay on his back with his hands in the air, how can any court really believe poor people of color can actually refuse a simple request from a law enforcement officer when this poor man begged police not to shoot him and they did anyway?

See you in court.  


Friday, July 22, 2016

Thursday, July 21, 2016

ANCHORS AWEIGH

Ahoy there matey!

Who is this swabby? Why is he running for judge?

Is it ethical to appear in active US Military uniform while running for judge? 

Should the official Navy Emblem be on his website?



We're sorry and most of our readers are too young to get the references, but when we first saw this, we laughed because the only images it brought up in our mind was Gilligan and McHale's Navy, neither of which are the type of serious thoughts a judicial poster should create. 

Avast and see you in court. 

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

WHEN WE ARE WRONG WE ARE WRONG

Yesterday we posted our disappointment in the speakers at the Republican National Convention. 

But then the wife of Donald Trump (motto "I'm de vife, del vit it")  spoke, and having filled her speech with the words of First Lady Michelle Obama from 2008, we are forced to reconsider our criticism. 

Sometimes when we're wrong, it just pays to admit it and move on.