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

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

MACUG. POLITICS AND THE JUDICIARY.

As usual, the denizens of REGJB and readers of this blog are never at a loss for words. Here are their opinions on

Anyone who quotes former VP Spiro T Agnew gets top billing in the posts. Anonymous writes:

Judge Slom: 1. Nattering Nabobs of Negativism: O

A reader has a question:

What is the reason that people charged with domestic violence Must appear before a judge before they post can post bond? So they can cool down. They sit about 24 hrs before they get out of jail. If dui defendants are getting out on PTS b/c the Court thinks that they have no prior dui record then that is the fault of the prosecutor present at the Bond Hearing. You're a good judge but you made a mistake by injecting yourself here. Without your mouth, the bill does not exist. Stick to being a judge rather than brain storming about new laws with politicos. Cause politics is a tricky business.

A reader writes on judicial activism:


Slom is basically right. It's not judicial activism for a judge to be involved in the crafting of legislation intended to ensure an efficient justice system. Judicial activism is when judges create law from the bench to suit their personal policy preferences. And we must give him credit for trying to something about the 2 yr DL suspension for weed convictions. If you bash him for being too pro-state on the dui bonds, at least credit him for trying to liberalize some aspects of the marujuana laws.


A defense attorney writes:

A worthy defense of his conduct. I think we should stop picking on Judge Slom. (A defense attorney).

Anonymous writes:

Judge Slom is right. Would the spelling police please cut it out. A DUI suspect, out on bond for DUI who has prior convictions for DUI is crying out for someone to help him or her but, locking them up, is not the answer. Judge Slom is very state oriented but, he is not a bad person.


Representative JC Planas, who makes it clear that blogs are beneath him, was kind enough to answer our email, and wrote this:

I don't really respond to blogs but the information was so blatantly inaccurate, I feel the need to correct the record. This bill was withdrawn back in January. The idea was originally floated to me by the State Attorney's office, way before I even talked to Judge Slom on it. I sent it to bill drafting. After speaking to several attorneys and the sheriffs around the state, who had concerns, I realized the bill was flawed. While I realize that we may need to look at the way DUI bonds are set, this is a topic that needs much more discussion. For that reason I withdrew the bill way before session started. Additionally, Brian Tannebaum is a trusted friend and advisor and I would never sponsor any bill dealing with Criminal Law without listening to his opinion which I value greatly even though I may not always agree.

I hope this clarifies the record


Mike Catalano wrote:

Rumpy,

I spoke with Judge Slom today. I do not always agree with him, but, misinformation about him or anyone is a bad thing.

He told me he only spoke with JC Planas as he called him and asked him some questions. He told JC that the judges complain that they see DUI cases where the Defendant has other DUI cases pending and no one seems to do anything about it. He also told me he was concerned that the current law suspends a DL for 2 years if you get adjudicated for pos'n of a roach and you gotta wait 6 months before you can get a hardship DL and that is rather harsh. I agree, that is a bad law.

Hey, In my opinion, the problem is that the Dade Clerk does not send a client with an existing DUI back to the same judge when he or she picks up a new case. If they did that, there would not be such confusion.

Mike Catalano


Rumpole opines:

Judge Slom joins the hallowed hall of Judges who have favored us with a post. And his post was a well reasoned defense of his actions.

Judge Slom appears to be on firm ground citing Cannon 4 of the Judicial Cannons of Ethics. But he does not address the interplay between Cannon 4 and Cannon 2, the mandate to avoid the appearance of impropriety. Thus, the question is whether a Judge should ever work with any organization or legislator to promote any bill. Wouldn’t Cannon 4 be better followed if a Judge limited his/her activities to testifying when called before the Legislature about the effects of a law?

Why is the crime of DUI and the possibility of repeat offenders so much more important than the misdemeanor crimes of possession of an undersized grouper, or possession of marijuana, or petit theft, or disorderly conduct? Why shouldn’t wayward fishermen who catch and keep small grouper, get arrested, bond out, and then do it again, not be required to appear before a Judge before bonding out a second time? Why just DUI and Domestic Violence?

The answer: There is no political group called Mothers Against Catching Undersized Grouper. (MACUG) Politics is the reason. MADD raises money, lobbies, and routinely flexes their muscle with Judges and the SAO.

So if politics is the reason, then we go back to problem one: the appearance of impropriety.

We do not join in the group of people calling Judge Slom state oriented. We think his explanation is sound and he was truly trying to address a problem. But why is this a problem that needs redress more than people who commit retail theft over and over again? Because of politics. Our difference with Judge Slom is that we think, as can be seen on this blog, that his activities created an appearance of impropriety, and that is enough for him and the other members of the judiciary to keep their noses out of drafting legislation.

Aren’t there enough important conferences for these Judges to attend on Longboat Key to keep them busy when they are not holding court every day from 9-12?

This has been a nice issue this week, but now we move on to bigger prey.

Has anyone read what those lunatics North Of The Border have been up to?

Coming soon: Morning In America and Broward County :2021.



11 comments:

Anonymous said...

"If dui defendants are getting out on PTS b/c the Court thinks that they have no prior dui record then that is the fault of the prosecutor present at the Bond Hearing."

Enough said. This is the typical, let the defendant go free because of some incompetent prosecutor bit that is a bit cliche -- since the beginning of time, it is always fun for the defense to find a loophole to get a defendant released on custody status when some prosecutor is sitting at a 40 page bond calendar like a deer in headlights and all of the computers are down. Blame the state, blame the state, and oh yeah, did I mention? Blame the state.

Anonymous said...

bondman are great. But when they demand part of my retainer for a client I see where this business is really flawed. it really stinks.

Anonymous said...

Rump. If this blog and our profession are worth anything we should be able to show it now. Corrupt bail bondsman and their attorneys should be expelled from our community by the forces we control. if we do not defend our profession soon we will not be considered professionals. Rump, focus on this issue, make this one narrow issue an important one for the well-being of our profession, and your place in history will be yours forever.

Anonymous said...

rumpole, 'history will be yours forever'. drama queen!

Anonymous said...

J.C. Planas and Brian T. are perfect team....

Anonymous said...

To the one mocking the "history will be your forever," it sounds like you too are a Mr.67% retainer guy.

Anonymous said...

Warren still holding on. The people's choice. Bye-bye, Birdie.

Anonymous said...

i dont pay 4 points

Rumpole said...

Fear Not honest attorneys, we have been working for some time now on a great Bondsman/dirty attorney post. Their day is coming.

RaymondBurr said...

im ready to take some well-deserved pot shots at broward, rump. you WILL NOT BELIEVE what i heard on a broward county court judge's answering machine outgoing message. start the thread i'll give it up.

Anonymous said...

was it sexual?