Kindly act accordingly: (Now if they could only get the escalators to run)
THE HONORABLE SAMUEL J. SLOM
COUNTY COURT JUDGE
1351 N.W. 12 STREET ROOM 513
Miami, Fla. 33125
TO: ALL ATTORNEYS
FROM: SAM SLOM, ADMINISTRATIVE JUDGE – COUNTY COURT CRIMINAL DIVISION
RE: COUNTY COURT CRIMINAL DIVISION CHANGES
DATE: JUNE 30, 2009
Within the next month or two, the County Court Criminal Division will be implementing two changes to our current case setting practices:
- 1. Misdemeanor sounding/trial dates will be announced in court: Whenever a misdemeanor case is set for sounding/trial, the judge will announce that future date in open court. Notices will still be mailed by the Clerk’s Office but the selection and announcement of the future date will be made by the judge in open court. In cases where lawyers have filed written pleas of not guilty, those misdemeanor files will appear at the arraignment calendar in order to receive their future date but the lawyer and their client need not appear. Traffic cases will continue to be set as they currently are and thus are not affected by this new procedure.
Exception: An exception to the above procedure will exist for misdemeanor cases which are arraigned at one courthouse location and transferred to another courthouse location for their future setting (i.e. a misdemeanor arraigned at a branch court but set for trial at the Richard E. Gerstein Justice Building). The Clerk’s Office will continue to set the future dates on such cases.
- 2. Bifurcated calendar settings: Within the next 60 days or so, judges will (hopefully) have the ability to set their calendars so that the private defense bar’s cases, Public Defender’s cases, and unrepresented defendant’s cases are set at different times. For example, on sounding dates for a DWLS calendar, unrepresented defendants might have their DWLS sounding set at 9:00am, Public Defender DWLS cases could be set at 9:30am and unrepresented defendants could have their DWLS sounding set at 10:00am. Currently, judges lack the ability to set bifurcated calendars and thus all cases of a similar type must be given the exact same time. Computer programming changes however will provide judges with the flexibility to set cases in a bifurcated manner. Each judge will have the capability to set their caseloads as they deem appropriate - taking into consideration the number of cases pending in their division and the courtroom capacity to deal with those numbers. Judge Luise Krieger-Martin will conduct a pilot program in her division implementing this process before it is rolled out to the other divisions. This case setting flexibility has become crucial due to the fact that our limited courtroom capacity has not kept pace with our ever increasing caseload.
As always, if you have any questions or concerns I will be more than happy to meet with you.