Comments and private emails have been flooding in from the lawyers attending the Federal PD conference in the Florida Keys.
We can summarize the topics and the prevailing trends in the case law:
Supreme Court Update: Roberts Court to 4th Amendment: “Drop Dead”
Sentencing Update: “New trends in the federal guidelines: How high can you count?”
Death Penalty Update: zzzzshocking.!
Local Trends: More work, less money, hurrah!
Guantanamo: After July 1, 2007, the new “I’m Proud To Be An American” Act passed by Congress and signed by the president makes it a crime to say "Guantanamo", or print "Guantanamo" in a newspaper. There is a special “terror enhancement” under the federal guidelines for writing or saying "Guantanamo" with references to individuals being held there without any protections or rights that a supposedly free democracy affords its inmates.
State Court Update: In light of the success of the changes to the Florida Rules of Criminal Procedure, the Florida Legislature will consider next year the following measures to “make trials more fair”: 1) Prohibit the defense from making an opening statement. As Florida State Senator Clem “Hap” Wilkes-Booth said “Them darn criminals are always talking bout their dag gun right to remain silent, so let em remain silent I says.”
2) Prohibit the defense from conducting cross examination in any case where the defendant has a prior arrest record.
3)And finally, a bill proposed by the Florida Association of Prosecutors will propose to eliminate closing arguments on behalf of the the defense. As one prosecutor said: “They (liberal pinko commie defense attorneys) complained when we eliminated their right to rebuttal. If they don’t give a closing, the prosecution does not give a rebuttal, so this bill is really a pro-defense bill sponsored by prosecutors who are just trying to be fair to the defense.”
For those of you who missed it, we hope the above summary proves useful.
Several confidential informants emailed us about Federal Death Penalty Ace Steve Potolsky and his display of our blog during the death penalty update, wondering if in fact we were in the Keys sipping a Pina Colada as we said we might be?
We’ll never tell….but we appreciate the publicity.
NORTH OF THE BORDER UPDATE:
As we previously reported, the DBR was doing a blockbuster article on the Broward Blog. The entire article is listed in the comments section of The Broward Blog's Thursdays post. But here is our little gem of a quote that made the paper:
Gelin’s actions impressed a Miami-Dade courthouse blogger who has operated the popular Justice Building Blog for the past year and a half under the pseudonym “Rumpole.” “I was surprised the lawyer who started the [Broward] blog did so openly,” Rumpole, who says he’s a Miami-Dade criminal defense lawyer, said in an e-mail to the Daily Business Review. “He should be applauded for his bravery.
I, of course, am not so brave.”
Apparently those who run the blog and those who post on the blog have been the subject of bar complaints that have been dismissed. We just mention that in passing for those concerned with such things.
And finally, these two gems from the Broward Blog:
The Blog reported that Chief Judge Dale Ross had this to say about the blog he has never read (and by the way, file this Dale Ross gem under the "we couldn't make this up if we tried" category):
"“I like folks who are serious people, who come up to me face-to-face and say, ‘Hey Dale, I have a problem I’d like to talk to you about,’ ” he said. While Ross said he doesn’t read the blog, he complained that he hadn’t “seen one thing yet that was factually correct.”
Rumpole notes: If this was a fight between Ross and the Broward Blog, it would have to be stopped for humane reasons. You gotta love the Chief's pluck- he just keeps slugging away in a battle of wits without having any ammunition.
Ross treats the blog like our motions to suppress: he doesn't read them, but knows they are wrong anyway. It's just not fair that the Broward Blog gets to have Judge Ross and all his amusing comments. If we had a Judge Ross in Dade, we wouldn't have to struggle so hard with topics to write about every day.
And the Broward Blog has this wonderful quote from the Daily Business Review from Fred Haddad about attorneys who post on blogs:"Despite the Bar complaint, Conway recently forwarded a JQC complaint he filed against Aleman to JAABlog, and it was posted. Conway “can post all he wants,” said his attorney, Fred Haddad of Fort Lauderdale. “What are we in Russia?”
See You In Court Monday, and to Mr. Haddad we say: Das Vadana.