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Wednesday, April 13, 2011

A WELL FED JUDICIARY

We seem to remember a part of the Constitution that goes something like "A Well Fed Judiciary being necessary for the security of a free state...."

Careful and savvy social media readers saw our Twitter earlier in the week on the article entitled

We did an informal survey this week and judging (no pun intended) from the groaning of the judicial benches we observed in our fair building, it appears the answer to the article must be big fat (pun intended) "no", as our judges appear to be exceedingly well fed. Thus, passing no opinion on the collective merits of the sentences handed out in Miami, we feel obliged to point out that at least in the Magic City, hunger cannot be the cause of an unduly harsh sentence. Black robes hide more than arrogance.


Barry Bonds was found guilty on one count Wednesday afternoon, breaking the hearts of Giant Fans and one Miami Blogger.

Judge Leebow's pooch in court gets a defendant an evidentiary hearing. (Hat tip Jaablog)

Rumpole says: While we don't have a dog in that fight, reading the merits of the defendant's allegations, well, that dog won't hunt.

And finally, "What's in a name? That which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet."

But for one unfortunately named defendant, the name sadly says it all.

See You In Court, handing out Dr. Atkins books to our robed readers.



24 comments:

Anonymous said...

Any idea what kind of dog it was?

It is my intention when I get appointed to the bench to bring my dog to work with me. I had actually not considered bringing her into the courtroom itself, but in my chambers.

This story makes me reconsider, and leads me to believe that because she is just the cutest little thing, I should have no reservations about having her sit on the bench with me. Certainly no one could mistake her for a guard dog which the court felt was necessary for additional security.

If this sets some kind of "no dogs allowed" precedent, I will have to purchase my own version of Mr. Biggelsworth. I don't know if I could handle the burden of sitting on the bench without a true friend up there to console me.

PAB

Jonathan Blecher said...

This is a DUI court-related post. If you're not interested, just skip to the next post.

Can we address the serious problem of the PDO filing WPNG and discovery demands within days after they are "appointed" at first appearance?

I'm not going to address the lack of a financial qualification inquiry at first appearance, but two larger problems rear their ugly heads for the private attorney who takes the case over days later... by the PDO filing this WPNG/Discovery Demand, the case is set for sounding in three weeks after the arrest, lopping off 30 days of speedy trial time; the state sends discovery to the PDO, despite a subsequent (normally within days) WPNG/Discovery Demand by private counsel.

PDO cant get the discovery into their file by sounding and I'm left holding the bag in court and getting hit with a defense continuance.

Solution:

PDO can file an APPEARANCE ONLY, not triggering discovery. Case will be set for arraignment giving time for the private attorney to file pleadings and demand discovery from the state.

The case won''t be set for sounding, it will be set for arraignment and speedy trial is still ticking. BONUS: The PDO still gets "credit" for the appointment (the reason for all of this).

If I'm missing something, please let me know, respectfully.

What say ye, DS, FACDL?

Jonathan Blecher

Anonymous said...

related story:

http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/notrocketscience/2011/04/11/justice-is-served-but-more-so-after-lunch-how-food-breaks-sway-the-decisions-of-judges/

Anonymous said...

Chris Lyons gets all the big cases. Lebron's mom the latest. Is he that good?

Anonymous said...

G;ag the guys in Tally are busy tackling Important issues.
DS

School Prayer Bill Advances In State Senate....
\
http://miami.cbslocal.com/2011/04/14/school-prayer-bill-advances-in-state-senate/

Anonymous said...

Hungry judges issue reminds me of Judge Alan Postman.

When he was hungry, you had to stand back and be careful.

Actually, he was a nice guy but, had a real bad desire to eat bagels all day and loved to make lawyers who were late bring bagels to chambers as their punishment.

Anonymous said...

To: April 14, 2011 5:21:00 PM
You are mistaken about former Judge Postma. It was doughnuts, not bagels. I remember him sitting on the bench with the remnants of a powdered doughnut on his robe.

Anonymous said...

Jonathan
I know nothing about it . Likely could not do a DUI w/out lots of studing up, I havent since '89. Sorry, but no comment. But Speak to the powers that be, there are lots on the local Miami FADCL
DS

Anonymous said...

JB,

Isn't it a waste to have cases where the PD remains on set for an arraignment?

RFB said...

JB is DA MAN

Anonymous said...

WTF IS A WPNG?

JB said...

To 8:32>> PD gets appointed on all these DUI cases that make it to bond hearing. I can't say for sure, but my guess is that they get to stay on maybe 10% of those cases, due to financial inquiry or no jail certification. Rather than setting for sounding and having the PD removed then, just do it at arraignment, since they won't be on the cases anyway.

That way, the private attorney can file their WPNG/Discovery with no time lopped off speeds.

JB.

Judge deemed hot by picture contributor said...

From our local judiciary. Check out picture 9 in http://thechive.com/2011/03/25/daily-afternoon-randomness-27-photos-9/

Anonymous said...

WPNG = Written Plea of Not Guilty.

I wrote about that issue a few posts ago when I got a new DUI client whose case was in "continue set for trial status". I looked at the docket and saw that the PD's had filed a WPNG and demand for discovery right after the jail arraignment.

Anonymous said...

Written Plea of Not Guilty. Really?

Anonymous said...

Blecher is whining that his main defense in every case, speedy trial, is being affected. Listen up JB, if you are charging 5K or more for a DUI case, you owe it to your client to do REAL work on the case not just trying to scam state continuances at every sounding. It's embarrassing to hear you do that.

Anonymous said...

WPNG

Written Plea of Not Guilty

Anonymous said...

WPNG - Written Plea of Not Guilty

Anonymous said...

With Plea Not Guilty?

Anonymous said...

Perhaps 'Written' not 'With'.

Jonathan Blecher said...

To 8:32: PDO is going to be bounced off the case anyway (maybe 90% of the time, might be more). Better to get it done sooner rather than later.

Bonus to State: They won't have to seriously prep those pesky unrep DUIs for the next sounding

Bonus to PD: They don't spend time on a file that they are going to get booted off of (most likely)

Bonus to Private Counsel: Preserves speedy trial time and allows for time to get fees paid

Bonus to Court: Court will clear more DUI cases at arraignment, making Wednesday soundings less zany.

JB.

Anonymous said...

"White People Not Guilty?"

Anonymous said...

more often than blacks, fo sho.

Anonymous said...

Client pays $5k.

Case dismissed on speedies.

Client does not care if case got dismissed because of death of entire judiciary.

Client refers others to brilliant attorney.

Defendant $5k.

Attorney researches case, files mtn for depos, files various motions to Supress.

ASA threatens that if the motions are argued, non jail plea offer goes away. Client gets scared, takes 1mm plea.

No referral forthcoming, because it cost client more due to trial day enhancements, than if he had plead at arraignment.

When I win, I'd rather be lucky than good, and rather be speedy than thorough. That's the bottom line n