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 18, 2008

LOCAL BOYZ MADE GOOD

In a seeming blast from a past,  a couple of Miami Cops were arrested on Thursday and appeared in Federal Court today before Magistrate Dube on charges they were involved with a gang that ran drugs and took bets. 

Rumpole says: What no food? What's a good bet without a little nosh?

The title links to the Herald story.

The officers are Michael King and Antonio Roberts. 

The lead defendant is a former corrections officer who goes by the nickname "cone head".   The Feds apparently said to some snitch "take me to your leader" and Mr. Marvin Coney was subsequently indicted. 

Of course, any state prosecutor will tell you that cops are not dirty and never ever lie. 

That's why the Feds have the case. 

Enjoy the weekend. 

See you in court Monday. 




38 comments:

Anonymous said...

I love this part:

"King lives three houses down from FBI headquarters in North Miami Beach -- agents walked there to arrest him"

Anonymous said...

Here are my suggestions for ways to reduce police corruption.

1) require education beyond high school - most cops have no degree
besides high school and we all know how easy it is to finish
high school.

2) require police to submit to one lie detector test each year.

3) require every department to have at least one undercover Internal Affairs officer.

4) require one three week vacation
every year (banks do this as a fraud deterrent/check).

Anyone else have any ideas?

Anonymous said...

Yeah, everytime a cop says that someone dropped drugs in their presence, don't file the case. See how quickly those cases go away.

Anonymous said...

Rumpole, you state that "Of course, any state prosecutor will tell you that cops are not dirty and never ever lie." Quite to the contrary, every prosecutor who has been on the job for any length of time knows that sometimes a police officer may equivocate, embellish, and even lie. That is one of the many reasons being a prosecutor is such a difficult job - being able to identify when a police officer, or any other witness, for that matter, is not being fully honest, and having the courage to do something about it. Despite your cynisism, there are many such prosecutors who make that call on a regular basis. I don't think your comment is at all fair to those folks.

Momoko said...

How about "CIVILIAN INVESTIGATIVE PANEL"? I wonder if City of Miami Civilian Investigative Panel is any effective?

I attended one of their open meetings and I was impressed with the ways they "scolded" MDPD representatives (they were sitting right next to me and I saw their faces turning blue), as well as suggesting a lot of good implementations measures in order to avoid police abuse.

I think the police departments cannot be trusted because they all tend to protect themselves, and the activities need to be monitored by selected civilians.

Anonymous said...

The civilian investigative panel is supposed to investigate police abuse. Instead they have been "beating a dead horse" ref Timoney and his Lexus. Enough already!! The guy has been reprimanded and fined. Certainly there are bigger problems with the police than the Lexus. CIP, do your job!

Anonymous said...

rumpole you idiot dont you know that if you check the stats you would know that the state prosecutes more police officers that the feds and that this whole case started because of a state investigation

Juan Ponce DeLeon said...

Why does it take more than a High School education to be a cop? That is just stupid. Do you think they teach honesty in school.

School is prison. High School should teach a man all he needs to know. College should be for those who love learning for learning's sake. This country is a police state where the lock you in school or prison for years. You Mr. 9:49 are part of the problem, not the solution.

Anonymous said...

Former Miami-Dade prosecutor George Cholakis pleaded guilty to two counts of reckless driving with injuries on Friday and was sentenced to four years probation.

Cholakis was arrested on the Venetian Causeway on charges of drunken driving after he drove his convertible into a scooter, sending two California tourists to the hospital, on New Year's Eve 2006.

As part of the plea, Cholakis agreed to pay restitution to both of the victims, said his attorney, Richard Sharpstein.

''Nobody's been more remorseful and regretful than George,'' Sharpstein said. ``He's lost his chosen job as a prosecutor. It will affect his [attorney's] license, though he has the utmost confidence he'll be back practicing in hopefully a short time.''

Anonymous said...

Rumpole you have gotta love the comments left on the herald web site:

Comments
Reck-E-less? Are you sure you don't mean Wreckless?
Morons!

Posted by: Yahoo999

7/19/2008 6:46 AM
51030.1 Report as Violation

Avg 4.00, 4 votes

What do you expect from The Herald, accuracy, editors, spell check? This is what happens when you let interns run the asylum.
Pathetic.

Posted by: conkyjoe

7/19/2008 7:05 AM
51030.2 Report as Violation

Avg 5.00, 3 votes

We support George Cholakis, he madea a huge mistake, thankfully no one was killed, thankfully the victims will recover and justice was served.

Good luck to George, he served our community for many years, choosing not to go into private practice where he would have been financially better off. I say this he is a hard working and smart attorney.


Posted by: mehollywoods

7/19/2008 8:21 AM
51030.3 Report as Violation

Avg 2.60, 5 votes

The Herald can't spell and the defendant's lawyer misuses the word "hopefully". Who says Florida is last in the nation for literacy?

Posted by: johnlawyer

7/19/2008 8:22 AM
51030.4 Report as Violation

Avg 5.00, 3 votes

Name callers and nasty people are posting in the comments section. This is bad and will end it soon. What idiots you all are. Thank You.

Posted by: fosimmons

7/19/2008 8:34 AM
51030.5 Report as Violation

Avg 1.00, 3 votes

"There, but for the grace of God, go I." I hope this man will continue with his life and continue being a productive, hard working citizen, wiser, much wiser, for the experience.

Posted by: MiamiChico1

7/19/2008 9:00 AM
51030.6 Report as Violation

Avg 1.00, 4 votes

This guy should do some time in jail for such an irresponsible act. An inner city kid gets 6 months for stealing a cheap set of hub caps but this guy walks free. Where is justice here?

Posted by: miami64

7/19/2008 10:12 AM
51030.7 Report as Violation

Avg 5.00, 3 votes

What a sweetheart deal! Runs over 2 people while DUI, and pleads to "reckless driving"? Looks like the drunk driving charges were totally dropped. As usual, the Dade State Attorney's Office shows favoritism when it's own employees get arrested, which happens more often than you hear about.

Posted by: TJ_Hooker

7/19/2008 10:56 AM
51030.8 Report as Violation

Avg 5.00, 4 votes

Like I wrote before - one set of rules for them, another set for the rest of us pee ons.

In Florida having a badge is a get out of jail card, get out of trouble tickets.

You all look at dirtbag David Farrall - gets drunk, kills 2 people while going the wrong way on I95, gets put in a hospital under an assumed name, investigation total disaster by the FHP, then he gets 6 months in jail from which almost half he weezles out with some fancy attorney gimmick.

Ken Jenne - should have been in prison for 10 years. Got off the hook with little time.

Chief Scarberry - totally off the hook.

John Timoney - slap on the hand.

Donald Warshaw - slap on the hand.

Where does it end?


Posted by: MiaKoolpa

7/19/2008 1:22 PM
51030.9 Report as Violation

Avg 5.00, 2 votes

"nobody's...more remorseful and regretful?" ask the two poor bastahds on the scooter if they regret getting on a scooter that night!

Posted by: juggy

7/19/2008 3:41 PM
51030.10 Report as Violation

Anonymous said...

"Civilian panels" are ridiculous. Untrained people who have no idea how to solve crimes or run departments and no appreciation for the dangers cops face have no business telling them what to do.

Anonymous said...

Years ago a judge called Miami Police Officers "Keystone Cops".
Unforyunately we have good and bad in all professions.

Anonymous said...

i love momoko

Anonymous said...

Juan Ponce 4:23 - how many college educated FBI agents get accused of the stupid corruption charges that these high school educated cops do?

Going to college doesn't make them smarter, but people who go to college generally have a little more invested in their careers.
Most have invested money and/or taken loans out and they aren't going to waste it all just to
make an extra couple of G's via
corruption.

A profession which is relatively high paying (compared to the average American salary)and gives the professional such a huge amount of power over the average person should require a college degree. We require doctors, lawyers, teachers and social workers to have college degrees -
why not cops too?

Make an intelligent argument for your position instead of just posting garbage Mr. deleon.

Momoko said...

Miami Herald ...

I think reading Miami Herald every day causes partial brain damage and reading readers' comments on it causes clinical depression.

Miami Herald is a health hazard.

Anonymous said...

George Cholakis receiving a plea to reduced charges (DUI Serious Bodily Injury to Reckless Driving Serious Bodily Injury), a withhold of adjudication and probation raises an interesting dichotomy vis a vis the previous Hanlon discussion. Hanlon made one very big mistake (covering up a serious crime) and then spent many years "redeeming" himself. Cholakis spent many years serving the public well and then made one very big mistake (driving drunk and causing serious bodily injuries to 2 persons). Perhaps Abe Laeser can explain why Cholakis is deserving of a second chance but and not Hanlon. Sounds hypocritical to me.

Phil R said...

I will partially answer the question about George. I have come to know many more aspects of George's case recently although I am not his lawyer.

George's case was not as slam dunk as many have been led to believe. First, no one lost a leg, nor was anyone in danger of losing a leg.

Second- George stopped and immediately rendered aid to people he was in an accident with. Which is what the law requires of anyone, but is not something I have found a lot of people who are impaired do.

Third- for better or worse this prosecution was driven by a civil lawyer seeking money. The more money that could be squeezed out the better the deal. I was not in the inside of this deal, but I was nearby, and from my limited perspective, the reason money became the driving factor was because among other reasons, the case was not great.

In the end, George has a felony withhold, four years of probation, an enormous amount of restitution that would swamp even the more successful of us in private practice, and based on my view of the current Florida Supreme Court, his ability to practice in the near future is far from a slam dunk.

And finally, although I was not present in court, I can tell you who was there standing by his friend, as his friend, and as was his right to do with any friend- Abe Laeser.

And without speaking for Mr. Laeser, I will note this- Hanlon committed acts which subverted justice. He lied under oath, and attempted to cover up a murder.

George's acts, however you view them, do not involve dishonesty, and they did not subvert the administration of justice.

I think there is a world of difference between what Hanlon did and what George did. I would hope in the coming months and years George will be welcomed back into the Justice Building. He has taken responsibility for his acts, and there is no reason he cannot once again work as a lawyer Certainly in the field of criminal defense he will bring a unique perspective to clients and that will be a good thing.

Anonymous said...

Phil:

Here!!! Here!!!

Anonymous said...

I bet George will get a great deal from the Bar. The Bar has been really weak in the recent past. Public censure.

Anonymous said...

Very well said Phil. George did not do anything with the intent of causing harm. Anyone who knows George knows how difficult this process has been. He would do anything to step back in time and uno what he did.

Comparing his conduct to Hanlon's is not just illogical, it's asinine. Anyone who can't appreciate the difference between the two doesn't understand the the first thing about intent or culpability and needs to stay far away from the justice system.

PS----covering up a murder is far more than a "serious mistake," especially when the crime is a homicide committed by police officers. Hanlon's conduct undermined the integrity of the entire system. No, I'm not a screaming liberal. I'm as hard-core pro-police/law enforcement as anyone I've ever known. My beliefs make this crime even more appalling to me. It sickens me when a colleague working in law enforcement bastardizes everything law enforcement stands for. How can anyone not understand that?

Anonymous said...

hey rumpole - is there such a thing as a motion to dismiss a criminal case in FEDERAL court prior to trial?

Anonymous said...

12:24, give the $7500 back and stick to DWLS cases

NOT the Captain said...

New Voting System Description
The state has mandated that all counties using touchscreen (computer) voting equipment convert to an optical scan (paper ballot) system. The first time this equipment will be used in Miami-Dade County is for the August 26, 2008 Primary Election. This campaign will focus on the preparations required, training for poll workers, voter re-education and continual outreach throughout the community.

On Election Day you will be given your corresponding paper ballot and escorted to a privacy booth to review and make your selection by bubbling in your vote on the ballot. After bubbling the circle next to your selection, insert the paper ballot into the DS200 optical scan unit, which scans the ballot to capture and tabulate your vote. The optical scan unit is user-friendly and will notifiy you in case of a blank ballot and/or over-voted contests giving you the opportunity to correct your ballot.

Primary Election
The optical scan voting equipment will be available at all Election Day precincts on Tuesday, August 26, 2008, as well as all Early Voting sites from Monday, August 11, 2008, to Sunday, August 24, 2008.

General Election
The optical scan voting equipment will be available at all Election Day precincts on Tuesday, November 4, 2008, as well as all Early Voting sites from Monday, October 20, 2008, to Sunday, November 2, 2008.


Please note, ADA touch screen units (iVotronics) will still be available for people with disabilities.

worm, esq. said...

RUMP, im in trouble. Big trouble. Can you help?

I had to go to Broward for a few months, and I guess I left some outstanding bills for coverage and stuff. Well, that rat fink fake County Dave went around with the Moldovan crew behind him and bought up all my debt.

I can't even figure the amount with the juice that's been running since day one.

Now Moldy is being backed by CIA Shumie and if I can't come up with like 15 large by next week, I'm toast.

The last lawyer who didn't pay ended up copying disco for state attorney branch court cases with two secretaries named Shaniqua and Taniqua bossing him around.

Rump- I can't face that. Can you lend me some quick dough?

Anonymous said...

I have known George for close to twenty years, he is a great guy and a good man. Any one of us could have found ourselves in the exact same situation. He did not steal, Lie, act corruptly,or engage in any behavior that should garner any of this nastiness. He has lost a job he loved, he has lived in fear of an uncertian fate, he has felt the finger pointed at him and has come to know the the knawing fear of an uncertain future. His life is smashed to bits. Feel for him, because it could be any one of us, any time we leave for home from dinner. kudos to Mr Laeser. Sharpie, as always, You are the Man. Jason Grey

attorney-rejected-by-the-princess said...

"Of course, any state prosecutor will tell you that cops are not dirty and never ever lie."

Next they'll be saying Miami is a violent free city.

CAPTAIN said...

THE CAPTAIN REPORTS:

Well, it's finally done. JT has been traded to the Redskins and the Dolphins got their 2nd round draft pick that they wanted, and, they got a 6th round draft pick too.

Timing is everything, and when the Redskins lost their starting defensive end today for the year, it made the trade doable for both sides.

All true Dolfans will miss the best defensive player in the history of the Miami Dolphins.

Cap Out .....

Anonymous said...

Unfortunately, George will lose his license to practice law by pleading to a felony, even though he received a withhold.

RULE 3-7.2 PROCEDURES UPON CRIMINAL OR PROFESSIONAL MISCONDUCT; DISCIPLINE UPON DETERMINATION OR JUDGMENTOF GUILT OF CRIMINAL MISCONDUCT

(a) Definitions.

(1) Judgment of Guilt. For the purposes of these rules, “judgment of guilt” shall include only those cases in which the trial court in the criminal proceeding enters an order adjudicating the respondent guilty of the offense(s) charged.

(2) Determination of Guilt. For the purposes of these rules, “determination of guilt” shall include those cases in which the trial court in the criminal proceeding enters an order withholding adjudication of the respondent’s guilt of the offense(s) charged, those cases in which the convicted attorney has entered a plea of guilty to criminal charges, those cases in which the convicted attorney has entered a no contest plea to criminal charges, those cases in which the jury has rendered a verdict of guilty of criminal charges, and those cases in which the trial judge in a bench trial has rendered a verdict of guilty of criminal charges.

f) Suspension by Judgment of Guilt (Felonies). Upon receiving notice that a member of the bar has been determined to be or adjudicated guilty of a felony, the bar will file a “Notice of Determination or Judgment of Guilt” in the Supreme Court of Florida. A copy of the document(s) on which the determination or judgment is based shall be attached to the notice. Upon the filing of the notice with the Supreme Court of Florida and service of such notice upon the respondent, the respondent shall stand suspended as a member of The Florida Bar as defined in rule 3-5.1(e).

Rumpole said...

I don't publish comments about peoples' wives, even if you call them hotties. And I did not publish a comment because we all don't know his history about drinking and until you show me otherwise and why that is relevant you should go to another blog jerk.

Anonymous said...

"He did not steal, Lie, act corruptly,or engage in any behavior that should garner any of this nastiness."

that applies to most who are trashed on this blog, but alas, we are anonymous, and can laugh in our own living rooms while expressing our filth to the world

Anonymous said...

Rump------good editing. Thanks for keep things sane.

BTDT

Anonymous said...

New blog....
www.ILOVEMOMOKO.blogspot.com

PS I heard Jerry Cooney is training Bill Barzee for a fight against Mickey Roarke at the war memorial auditorium... the Irish tri-fecta

Anonymous said...

Its good to hear that George's case has been resolved. Good Luck George!!!!
E. Garcia

Anonymous said...

Just goes to show you how important it is to have a great lawyer. with the wrong lawyer chilotis could have easily ended up in prison.

Anonymous said...

As usual, too many people, including you Rumpole, need more facts or better glasses or a wider sense of vision before expressing their prejudices/opinions here.

Point#1: Rumpole, when you said that "Of course, any state prosecutor will tell you that cops are not dirty and never ever lie" did you fail to notice that the SAO & the Feds were both prosecuting this case from two different perspectives? Why else would the State Attorney & the US Attorney be holding a press conference & why else would there have been ASAs & AUSAs there? So was this an expression of a point or just the expression of a prejudice?

Point#2: TJ_Hooker's comment that "As usual, the Dade State Attorney's Office shows favoritism when it's own employees get arrested, which happens more often than you hear about" is simply wrong since the case was prosecuted by the Broward SAO. Those kinds of cases are always conflicted out by every SAO for exactly the type of misguided sentiments TJ_Hooker's comment exemplifies.

Anonymous said...

ah, sharpstein, or 1:02 pm, check your ego at the door. its a DUI case . yawn.....

Always Amazed said...

As usual, too many people, including you Rumpole, need more facts or better glasses or a wider sense of vision before expressing their prejudices as facts here. If we respect the truth, we need to speak it as well.

Point #1: Rumpole, when you said that "Of course, any state prosecutor will tell you that cops are not dirty and never ever lie" did you fail to notice that the SAO & the Feds were both prosecuting this case from two different perspectives? Why else would the State Attorney & the US Attorney be holding a press conference & why else would there have both been ASAs & AUSAs there? So was this an expression of a point of view or just the expression of a prejudice?

Point #2: TJ_Hooker's comment that "As usual, the Dade State Attorney's Office shows favoritism when it's own employees get arrested, which happens more often than you hear about" is simply wrong since the case was prosecuted by the Broward SAO. Those kinds of cases are always conflicted out by every SAO for exactly the type of misguided sentiments TJ_Hooker's comment exemplifies.

Anonymous said...

Poor Phil. He seems to still not have enough cases to stay of the Blog. What gives? Is Jackie still doing all the work?