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, February 04, 2009

BRRRR

Good morning. It's 46 degrees. And a cold front is moving through that may make it colder. 

Welcome to Miami. 


More on jury questions: 

The comments section to yesterday's post  contained pro and con thoughts on jurors asking questions. But we still have this question:  Is it now mandatory to allow jurors to ask questions?   If it is mandatory, and the court does not make provisions for jurors asking questions, then is a defendant entitled to appeal if s/he loses at trial? 

Also, some lawyers wondered whether some questions would require a mandatory mistrial? As we understand it, the rule requires the judge to review the questions before asking those the judge deems appropriate. If a question is not asked, how can what a juror is thinking cause a mistrial? 


A MISTAKE. 

Former President George W Bush (has nice ring to it, doesn't it?) Was famous for not being able to recall one mistake he made four years into his presidency. 

How times have changed. President Obama, not a month into his presidency, s quoted here in the WSJ as admitting "I screwed up" in his handling of the Tom Daschle matter. 


FLORIDA'S IMPENDING INSURANCE CRISIS:

As cold as it is, the hurricane season is approaching and we have a full blown insurance crisis here in Florida. Republicans- those free market fun guys, have inexplicably imposed strict price controls on insurance companies. Now those companies, who cannot raise prices without permission from the State (and the Republicans did this?  What happened to free market capitalism? We thought price controls was something those Socialist-French loving Democrats did. ) are leaving Florida. That leaves the state created insurance company-Citizens- (another Republican creation) as the largest insurer in the State. And that leaves all of us on the hook for the next big hurricane.  


State created corporations. Price controls. Sounds like the Nixon administration. Wait a second, wasn't he a Republican too? What's going on here? 


See you in court, with lots of questions about questions.



7 comments:

fake Panunzio said...

Dudes! It' hump day. Cutting out work for the beach!!! Warm rays, hot babes, toasty waves, cool brews. It's why we live in South fla.

Come and join me.

Anonymous said...

Rumpole,

It is NOT mandatory to allow jurors to ask questions in criminal trials. The answer is found in Rule 3.371:

Rule 3.371. Juror Questions of Witnesses

(a) Judicial Discretion. At the discretion of the presiding trial judge, jurors may be allowed to submit questions of witnesses during the trial.

(b) Procedure. The trial judge shall utilize the following procedure if a juror indicates that the juror wishes to ask a question:

(1) the questions must be submitted in writing;

(2) the trial judge shall review the question outside the presence of the jury;

(3) counsel shall have an opportunity to object to the question outside the presence of the jury;

(4) counsel shall be allowed to ask follow up questions; and

(5) the jury must be advised that if a question submitted by a juror is not allowed for any reason, the juror must not discuss it with the other jurors and must not hold it against either party.

That is the procedure that Judge Miller followed long before the rule took effect. For discussion on the rule, you can look at In re Amendments . . . at 967 So.2d 178 (Fla. 2007).

eye on Shumie Time said...

Rump. those crazy wacky Hollywood guys who spent a week plus partying at the Super Bowl and shamelessly promoting Shumie Time the TV show, Shumie Time the movie, and the Showtime special "the making of Shumie Time" have finally packed their bags and left Tampa, a string of strippers, party girls, and some drunken housewives in their wake.

Their hospitality tent was perhaps the hottest spot at the Stadium, where the wine never stopped, the ribs were hot and spicy, and the cigars were mostly Cuban. One a week!!!

Anonymous said...

Errr...had a little too much Shumie time- that should read "what a week!"

Anonymous said...

Here is my beef on jury questions.

As a defendant I want to answer all the questions posed (if innocent) I should be able to answer the questions of the people deciding my freedom, (if guilty) I do not the procedure invoked at all, why? The moment I refuse to answer a question that question wil remain in the mind of the single juror and he will use it against me.

The fact that this juror had the balls to ask a question in and of itself tells me that this juror has the guts to sway the other jurors with his/her thoughts.

If the defense agrees to answer the question and state objects what happends? Will the juror be told who objected so the juror knows the defendant wanted to answer the question? Can the Judge object when the State and Defendant agree to answer?

Seems like a prejudicial procedure for the defendant.

CAPTAIN said...

BREAKING NEWS, ....

Judge Abramson, of Palm Beach County, is a Judge no more. He, of the suspended 91 days fame, had his case argued before the Fla. Sup. Ct. and they issued a ruling today that reads in part:

"Based on cases from other state supreme courts, it is the 'common sense understanding' that where Bar membership is an eligibility requirement for judicial office, one may not be a judge in a court in which one's own practice as a lawyer would be disallowed," the Supreme Court's ruling said.

To his credit, Abramson indicated that his legal fight is over and that he will concentrate on getting readmitted to the Bar.

Cap Out ...

Anonymous said...

Rump
Jurors asking questions releive the State fromproving the cases since the jurors can try to fill in the holes the State cannt fill. I did in in front of Miller uears ago and my professionalopinion is it Fucking Sucks. Judges should stop helping the State to try to get convictions.
D. Sisselman