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

Monday, June 04, 2012

JUST SAY NO

Dear Judge Brown:
After reviewing the new law creating a "Limited Court Registry" for court appointments, and reviewing the FACDL's letter on the matter (attached below) , please accept this as notice that we will NOT be applying for the limited court registry. Allow us a moment to explain why:


Criminal defense is a serious business. People are charged with crimes that have life-lasting and life altering  effects. There is the stigma of being charged with a crime. If convicted there is the black mark of a conviction and perhaps incarceration.  In an era of instantaneous electronic information, a person's criminal history stays with them-at least on the Internet- forever.  In an era when the legislature trusts your profession (the judiciary) less and less and thus creates more minimum mandatory prison sentences, the need for a professional who has spent years training in this specialized area of the law could not be more important.


 Senate bill 1960 represents more than an attack on criminal defendants and their attorneys, it represents an unprecedented attack on the criminal justice system. The bill creates an era and aura of disrespect for the Bill Of Rights. The right to a competent attorney; the right to discovery under the Florida Rules of Criminal Procedure; the right to a trial by jury and thus the right to confront and cross examine those who accuse you- all of these rights are dismissed by the creation of the limited registry.


In place of these rights, the limited registry creates a plea factory. The appointed attorney has NO incentive and little option to do more than work a few hours to obtain a plea for their client. The law implies that the police and prosecution are almost always right, and thus most people will not need- and Florida will not provide- a quality defense attorney.  Suffice to say that neither you, nor I, nor the Governor, nor any legislator who supported this law would accept for ourselves or our family a limited registry attorney.


The Limited Registry codifies what is already being openly whispered about- that in Florida, the amount of Justice you can obtain is directly proportional to the amount of Justice you can afford to pay for.
I for one will not participate in such an enterprise. The letter by Jude Faccidomo on behalf of the FACDL expresses their opinion that their members should also not participate in such a dangerous enterprise. Dangerous- because our criminal justice system teeters on the edge of disrespect by society. When the system loses respect, it is easier for police officers to lie, for prosecutors to abandon their responsibilities, for citizens to commit crimes.


There are times in a society when a tipping point is reached. And the road travelled depends directly upon the actions of individuals faced with a choice. The choice of conscientious criminal defense attorneys is in our opinion clear: at their own financial peril they should not join this attack on our bar, our courts, and our rights.


Your Humble Servant,
HR.
Senate Bill 1960









38 comments:

"American Minority" said...

Wow Rump,emailing my Congressmen and Women now. I propose we all do the same. Pressure the Legislature, State and Federal to do what the Constitution has already guaranteed.

CAPTAIN said...

The Captain Reports:

FACDL should be commended for taking the lead on this issue. During the last couple of weeks, a group of members have been working all avenues looking for ways to challenge this ridiculous excuse for constitutional legislation. Every member of the criminal defense bar should make themselves heard by calling a member of the Florida legislature and expressing their discern for this new law. No member of the current wheel should sign the new Limited Registry contract.

FACDL should post the names of any attorneys who sign the Limited Registry contract.

It's time to take a stand.

Captain Out .....

Anonymous said...

Boo hoo. The pigs can't feed at the trough anymore. Ya'll are just whining because you want money. If serving the needs of the indigent criminal defendnat was so important to you, more of you would be working for the public defender's office or legal aid. but you can't buy a mercedes on our salaries.

Anonymous said...

state court.

yawn...

Anonymous said...

There are going to be some plea attorneys who will see this registry a a way to make a $750-per-hour fees and will figure that with one trial here and there they will still come out ahead.

Anonymous said...

Good job. Well said. What the legislature has done and continues to do is very disturbing and heartbreaking. Its sad that these robots in Tallahassee lack a basic understanding of how the system of justice works and what is required to keep it going. Not one of them who voted for this bill has sat through a trial where the defendant is looking at life. Probably not one of them has ever had to go to trial on anything. The 21 hours a day you work during trial. The 60+ hours you put in before the trial. The level of stress and pressure that one has to endure when fighting that kind of fight. For 1500 bucks. Really? Discusting! The only way they are going to get it is if no one signs this registry. TO: Carmen and all of those involved in the resistance to this bill, thank you. And i say that on behalf of everyone who appreciates their constintutional rights.

Signed
Kid Tortilla

George Frobisher said...

We agree that no self-respecting member of the criminal defense bar should sign-on to the limited registry; but if and when that happens, surely a lawyer or firm from outside the criminal defense bar will see a business opportunity by stepping in a taking all of the conflict cases. Do you think people who start collections firms or foreclosure defense mills care what the FACDL thinks? These same types are going to fill in the void for the criminal conflict cases.

This is a devious, cynical law. Yet, it passed by unanimous votes in both the House and Senate. Why?

Why is the advocacy against the law coming after the fact? Lots of questions...

Rumpole said...

Lets recap the events of last night that did not make the front page: Dwayne Wade has the ball in his hand with a chance to win the game. He pump fakes and the defender bites- now he has an open shot from the top of the key. With the game on the line he shoots and ....misses. Celtics- heat series tied at 2-2. If the Heat choke at home the Celtics return to Bahstan to win it.

Anonymous said...

Anybody who has played basketball could see that Wade's shot was on the mark and was only 1 or 2 inches short. In other words, the Heat was 1 inch away from winning the game and being up 3 games to one. I hope Rumpole gives the Heat (who everybody forgets have been playing without one of their best players) some credit when they win this series. Somehow, I doubt this is ever going to happen.

Rumpole said...

You know, I admit, I never played basketball. And thus I am unaware of the "horseshoes, hand grenades, and close last second shot exception" which means that ...what? The heat still lost right? A miss is a miss correct? A choke is a choke, si? Or can they appeal the closeness of the shot and whine and complain and have the game awarded to them because they really should win? Let me know.

Rumpole said...

HRH Prince Philip has taken ill during the Queen's Jubilee. Hospitalized with a Bladder infection, poor bloke.

Anonymous said...

Missing my girl--- can we call the shumie? Ruling?

Shumie Ref said...

There is no shumie for missing a girl. Indeed of all the reasons to leave work early , a broad is one of them only if she is new and not "your girl". The Shumie, especially one at 1:11 on a Monday (see, Ex Rel Shumie, "the time and contexture of the shumie is relevant as to its appropriatness") is DENIED.

Anonymous said...

the fee structure will get more lawyers than u imagine. your profession is no longer. your trade has spread and reduced your craft to the nothingness that it is.

Anonymous said...

Shumie Ref-- if i had said she was my mistress and calling the shumie at 3 o'clock i'd been given an ok?

Fake Arthur Huttoe said...

Back in the day we had judges who gave a damn about court appointed fees. Judges like Sepe, Gelber, Davis and even County Judge Shenberg worked closely with lawyers to make sure their court appointed fees were paid and accurately reflected the work they performed. Today judges couldn't give a damn. I say take a BROOM and sweep the current COURT away.

Shumie Ref said...

Hmm....mistress...3pm, Monday. Very close call. How old is she?

CAPTAIN said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

early thirties, tight little body, intelligent, she is the complete package and on my mind twenty four, seven.

Anonymous said...

Why does a person have to call the shumie? Why not just do it? Unless there is a secret shumie society watching, how will anyone know?

shumie ref said...

I think an intelligent hottie with a body warrants a shumie. So I would have approved that shumie.

CAPTAIN said...

THE CAPTAIN REPORTS:

SO YOU WANT TO BE A CIRCUIT COURT JUDGE .....

OK, Horace, so it does appear that our little blog does carry some weight after all in the legal community.

On May 15, 2012, as you may recall, I wrote a Blog piece entitled: "Where have all the Virgil Hawkins' gone"? That editorial discourse was a query as to why there were not more black attorneys applying to the JNC for appointment to the bench.

Well, guess what?! Today, the JNC announced their six nominees that they are sending to Governor Scott to replace Judge Silverman. This list comes on the heels of the names to replace Judge Maxine Cohen Lando that were sent to the Governor on May 5, 2012 (ten days before my blog entry).

As a refresher, the names to replace Cohen Lando included:

Judson Cohen
Alan Fine
Judge Hague
Judge Miranda
Judge Rodney Smith

And, drum roll please... The same five names were sent today to Scott along with a sixth name:

Michelle Delancy, senior partner of Delancy Hill. Oh, by the way, she is black and she is also extremely well qualified.

And here is the real kicker. Ms. Delancy was also interviewed for the Cohen Lando opening and her name was NOT sent up (see above). After my blog article, Delancy interviewed again, this time for the Silverman seat and low and behold, her name does go up. Just saying .....

One word of advice Michelle - take down the naked photos of your children on your FaceBook page. In this day and age, you'll likely get investigated for child porn.

Good luck to Ms. Delancy and the other five nominees. We should have two new Circuit Court Judges in Miami-Dade County named shortly; one by the end of this month and one no later than the first week in August.

Captain Out .....

Anonymous said...

If I'm not in court, and I don't want to work, I don't work. Period.

I've never had to call a Shumie, or ask anyone's approval for goofing off.

I've been reading this blog for years. I've never seen anyone claim to be calling a Shumie for any creative reason, so I don't see why anyone would ask about it or care.

If you are taking a break from work for some interesting reason, then I suppose you could share. But otherwise, what's the big deal? Just go do it.

Anonymous said...

Just an inch short??

That is the lamest thing I've ever heard. Wade is paid to make that shot. He freakin blew it.

the trialmaster said...

The bottom feeders will flock to sign up for the pleas.The trialmaster does not accept or seek any court appointments of any nature.If Pollack and gaer were alive they would be the first in line. The reason Sepe, Shenberg, Davis and some others gave generous fees is because they had kickbacks coming from the attorneys they appointed.

"American Minority" said...

Kaufman Case Closing Arguments, recessed for the day. States' rebuttal argument set for tomorrow morning. This case has seem more breaks than a Ford Taurus. Seems like her honor has a very busy after 5pm schedule. Who wants the state to rebut first thing in the morning? What was one more hour, and then let the veniremen/women sleep on it? Geesh #Can someone say Judge in a rush. But all's well that end's well,Notwithstanding an early morning rebuttal a N.G., is a N.G., today or tomorrow. I just think it would have been more feasible to finish the rebuttal this evening and have them sleep on it. Just one man's opinion.

DS said...

I am a little confused on the limited fee . What are the rates ?
IF I was a young ATTY or a laid back Atty, could I take 150 third degrees a year at $750 and gross about $110K (US$).
AFTER Health Insurance, Taxes Parking , and low overhead, you get $65-70K. So much more than most Felony Bs make at SAO or PDs.

DS

Anonymous said...

Captain you are full of it ....you had nothing to do with Delancy getting out of commitee

The Powers That Be

Anonymous said...

Michelle Delancy - dumber than imaginable. And sanctimonious. Also, former partner with Miguel de la O if I'm not mistaken. 3 strikes - she should be out.

"American Minority" said...

Like Tim Russert in 00' "Its going to be the Heat in 7" Rumpy, Like I've been said initially(.) Or like W said: "You can write that down." (Bobbing my head in a cow boy like fashion with a sinister grin.) Well I guess I'll proceed to get my chutzpah in for the day.

First up, George Zimurderman, says his explanation for fabricating in open court was"Confusion,Mistrust, and Fear." Hell, that almost blankets every defendant in America. If the Judge buys that one, then I'll pose as a white guy by the name of "Phil Shiftily".

Saving the Best for last,George W'ya says, while at a White House picture hanging ceremony, says to the President: "When you look at this picture, think what would George do...hmm". How Interesting, the first three things that came to my mind was:1)Call, Karl Rove.
2)Call, Dick Cheney
3)Do something completely incompetent.
What a leagacy, Georgy what a legacy.

Anonymous said...

state court

Rumpole said...

Trialmaster, your shtick is wearing thin. Sy Gaer didn't take court appointments and could probably try rings around you. I don't think Paul Pollock took court appointments either, but they were clearly not the basis of his practice. Real brave attacking the dead. Coward.

CAPTAIN said...

to 8:08 pm. Just following the evidence and letting it take me where it points.

Can you prove otherwise?

Rump - nice comeback to Trialmaster.

DS said...

RUMP
Here Here
Sy wa a great Lawyer
DS

Anonymous said...

closing arguments in Kaufman were fair. Mansfield brought up some great points. Bill was very blah. He wasn't very coherent, boring, and hit on the worst points of the case for his client.

American Minority, you a are a moron.

Anonymous said...

American Minority is starting to grow on me. I agree with his analysis of the Kaufman trial--in long trials, I will sometimes filibuster in the late afternoon so that I can resume my cross first thing in the morning. His comments on George W. are perspicacious and funny, and, most importantly of all, he (unlike the ill-tempered host of this blog) is a true fan of our hometown basketball team.

Anonymous said...

Someone else is posting under the Am Min profile. Look at the writing style. It isn't the the same.

Anonymous said...

No judge would ever appoint Gaer and put up with his antics. he was a walking rule 3. as for Paul, he was in fact appointed and was well known for taking anything a client wore,watches and shoe strings included as a fee. ask tunkey or robbins. as I said, you can bet that todays bottom feeders will take the plea appointments. these idiiots will never practice in federal court. Ub defense of the trialmaster..