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

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

THORNTON SEALS THE HIRSCH TAPES




BILL TAKES AIM AT DC?
And with all the politicians out of town, what a waste of a good hurricane. 



The South Florida Lawyer's blog and the Sun Sentinel (the title of the post links to the Sun Sentinel article) report that Judge Thornton has SEALED PERMANENTLY the "Milt Hirsch" tapes. 

Thornton is quoted as saying that he listened to the tapes "not once, but several times" and that the tapes DO NOT, repeat, DO NOT SHOW THAT HIRSCH TOLD HIS CLIENT TO FLEE. 


Rumpole says: this must be some vindication for Milt Hirsch. It is not easy to have your reputation bandied about with rampant speculation on what was said or not said on tapes on which it is alleged wrongdoing was discussed. 

We can't help but think that since Judge Thornton was very clear that Milt Hirsch was NOT advising his client to flee, that it would have been better for Milt Hirsch to have the tapes released. However the decision was not Milt Hirsch's to make and he has to live with the decision of the judge. 

We can't help but think that it was 35 years and one week ago on August 11, 1974 when President Nixon was forced to resign the presidency when tapes showing his complicity into the Watergate break in and cover-up were released to the public.  Many people have commented in retrospect that it would have been better for Nixon to destroy all the tapes. 

In Mr. Hirsch's case,  it appears his actual innocence is on the tapes. 

We have a few questions: did Judge Thornton deny the motion for post conviction relief? And if so, did the specific conversations on the tape affect his decision. put another way- did the Judge listen to the tapes and did that contribute to the decision to deny the motion? 

If so, then we applaud Judge Thornton for reaching a decision on the full merits and considering all the evidence. 

26 comments:

Anonymous said...

I got to cross-examine Milton years ago when I was a prosecutor during a Rule 3 hearing (yes, I won despite his attempt to fall on the sword for his client). He was extremely pleasant outside the courtroom and a fighter in it. Say what you want, but he'd be on the short list of folks I'd want to represent me if I was ever accused of doing something. He's extremely bright, knows the law, and honest. It's a shame that so many insecure/jealous people have to slam him (and everyone else who's name appears on this blog) publicly every chance they get.

Anonymous said...

Fabricating DNA evidence? Yes, folks its possible...

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/08/18/science/18dna.html

Anonymous said...

Why such a rush to seal tapes that say nothing?

Anonymous said...

"Gentlemen, the killer's DNA profile is in. Be on the lookout for a Swede, jet-black hair and dark-eyes that keep pulling you in. It says he's likely to be well-above average height and wear a size-6 shoe.

Of course this means, Dr. Cutter, the suspect's wife and beneficiary of the victim's massive insurance policy deserves an apology after she returns from her honeymoon."

Anonymous said...

"we applaud Judge Thornton for reaching a decision on the full merits and considering all the evidence."

Dont all the judges to that?

Anonymous said...

Congratulations to Judge Perez! The newest County Court Judge.

Anonymous said...

Be warned: judge Miller gave a PTI rejector 5YEARS in the pen after trial. This despite the fact that the state recommended 364, the PSI said probation and the Defendant was the sole supporter of a family with a disabled child.......

Rumpole said...

707 pm- As I understand what occurred here-
Judge Glick denied the motion and refused to hear the tapes. So to answer your question- NO- Judges do not always consider all the evidence before reaching a decision.

Sometimes that is the correct thing for a judge to do. In a Franks v. Delaware hearing, a Judge is required to review a search warrant that was previously issued and NOT consider information in the warrant that is false and determine if the remaining information was sufficient to establish probable cause.

There are many times Judges are required to not consider certain facts in reaching a decision. But in this case- with a person serving a long prison sentence and making a very serious allegation that he alleged was supported by tapes illegally obtained, it was our opinion that Judge Leonard Glick should have listened to the tapes. In this instance- unlike many others- we think the facts required the Judge to consider ALL the evidence.

Anonymous said...

Judge Miller is heartless and should not be in criminal court. There is a difference between being a tough judge and being heartless. The Cheryll Aleman of Miami-Dade.

Anonymous said...

Its hard to believe that the author of this blog is the same man who started it.
Seems like a different man is writing today.

As for Milton Hirsch, he got a big break by Thorton. The media should be able to listen to the tapes.

Anonymous said...

Why the relentless Miller bashing, Jeff? He works his tail off and I personally know that he agonizes over decisions trying to do the right thing.

Why don't you cruise by the building when he comes in early and stays late so everybody gets to be heard without being cut off? Or when he calls the state out on BS cases?

Sour grapes.

Rumpole said...

I'd like to think that my writing has evolved.

What probably happens is that it's hard to maintain the facade of the character when in real life I am a humble lawyer scratching out a living notarizing papers. I've never even been to criminal court.

Hahahahahahahahaha

Rumpole said...

I am assuming Thornton sealed the tapes because they are essentially illegal. My understanding is that the defense filed transcripts of the tapes and those should be attached to the motion and in the court file and available to the media. Also, absent a court order, those transcripts should be available by the defense to any reporter who wants them, although the media would have to rely on the accuracy.

CAPTAIN said...

THE CAPTAIN REPORTS:

GOVERNOR CRIST APPOINTS GLADYS PEREZ TO MIAMI-DADE COUNTY COURT

As a reminder, the six finalists were:

Joseph I. Davis
Tamara I. Gray
Gladys Perez
Anita Margot Moss
Lourdes Simon
Marie Jo Toussaint

The Press Release said:

"Governor Charlie Crist today appointed Gladys Perez of Miami to the Miami-Dade County Court. Governor Crist also swore in Judge Perez today during a ceremony at the Lawson E. Thomas Courthouse Center in Miami.

“Gladys’ public service has given her an in-depth understanding of a broad variety of issues,” Governor Crist said. “I am confident she will serve the people of Miami-Dade County with fairness and impartiality.”

Perez, 38, is a sole practitioner in Miami. Previously, she served as assistant general counsel to both Governor Jeb Bush and Governor Crist from 2005 to 2008, assistant attorney general in the Fort Lauderdale office from 2003 to 2005, and senior staff attorney in the Fourth District Court of Appeal from 1998 to 2003. Perez was also a sole practitioner from 1997 to 1998. She earned her bachelor’s and law degrees from Nova Southeastern University.

“I am humbled by the confidence that Governor Crist has entrusted in me throughout the years,” said Judge Perez. “I am excited to serve the people of Miami-Dade County.”

Perez will fill the vacancy created by the resignation of Judge Ada B. Pozo.

Next up is the appointment to replace Judge Tam Wilson. The finalists are:

Darrin Phillip Gayles
Lisa Sharon Walsh
Deborah White-Labora
Alan S. Fine
Victoria R. Brennan
Antonio Arzola


CAPTAIN OUT .....

Anonymous said...

How disappointing. There were some very qualified candidates for the County Court position, with years of experience practicing in this building. I'm just guessing, but there's a chance that the morning calendar in County Court is a wee bit different than a day in the life of the governor's asst. general counsel.

Grey Tesh said...

Rump,

According to today's daily business review,

Judge Thornton also specifically found that the transcripts in the motion were misleading. Ironically, Thomas Julin, representing Casey, said he had not heard the tapes. Are you kidding me?

Judge Thornton warned both Casey and his mother not to disseminate the tapes or their contents to anyone.

Judge Thornton issued a final warning that the tapes were contraband in media outlets that disseminate them do it at their own risk. Hirsch was quoted as saying "I'm pleased that the court treated this nonsense as nonsense and brought an end to it."

Grey

Anonymous said...

Given the appointment of Perez, does anyone doubt that Vicki Brennan will get the circuit court spot?

South Florida Lawyers said...

I don't think the Grinder is done with these tapes just yet.

Anonymous said...

Rumpole says to put 150 Penningtons on Vicky Brennan getting the circuit court spot.

Fake Bennett Brummer said...

IF YOU DRIVE DRUNK YOU WILL GET CAUGHT
CLICK IT OR TICKET!!

and Fake Carlos Martinez says:

Brett Favre coming back has no impact on our attorneys or divisional assignments whatsoever.

Anonymous said...

Q #1: Which former Public Defender is editing Wikipedia pages to include his own name?

Q #2: Which former Assistant Public Defender has the biggest Wikipedia page? (hint: it's not Roy Black)

Q #3: Has Rumpole moved on to Wikipedia or is he still obsessed with Twitter?

Anonymous said...

Judge Miller needs to be replaced soon. How could a Judge who batters another Judge remain on the Bench without opposition? Hello!

Anonymous said...

What Fake Carlos really meant to say was: Brett Favre coming out of retirement again means that the PD's Office now really does not have the money to hire any more new lawyers. The PD's Office is also going to file Notices of Inadequate Quarterbacks and move to withdraw from all 3rd degree felonies involving NFL Players.

Anonymous said...

tamara gray and marie tousaint for judge? what a joke take two people in the land of broken toys in both offices, Juvie and felony screening, and send thier names to the governor. the election of judges sucks but the appointment process sucks almost as much. the jNC should be ashamed of itself for sending the names of two such hacks and refusing to send bill altfield who has more trial experience than the two of them combined.

what a joke the jnc is

Anonymous said...

hugh rodham for the biggest wikipedia page

Anonymous said...

Judge Miller at 9:21 - who the hell are you talking to? I am in the building all the time. I work there. I have nothing to sour grape about. What planet are you on?