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Friday, March 28, 2014

PHIL MANIATTY CALLS IT A CAREER

This post is a day too late and for that we apologize. 

Friday March 28, 2014 was the last day at work for Assistant State Attorney Phil Maniatty. For thirty seven years he has hauled the mail, shown up to work and done his job and done it very well. Along the way he earned the well deserved reputation as a fair and honest prosecutor. Phil was the type of prosecutor you could sit down with before trial and explain your defense without worrying that he would try and change his witnesses testimony. 

When Phil started as an ASA the State Attorney was a tall, imposing, balding man with one good eye named Richard E Gerstein. For you ASA's born in the 1980's, the building you work in is named after him. When Phil started work at the Dade SAO they didn't have computers, much less cell phones and Al Gore had not yet invented the internet. A couple of guys named Gates and Allen were testing a program called DOS for their fledgling company called Microsoft. Apple was just a fruit and coffee cost maybe a quarter, but you could probably get a cup of joe for a dime at the S & S.  You dialed a phone with your finger in a rotary dial. The State Attorneys Office was on six, the PDs on  7 8, and MDPD was headquartered at what is now the PDs office. The SAO was called the Graham Building and housed various state agencies.  Judges were mostly male, almost uniformly white and non-hispanic. Lincoln road was desolate and Ocean drive was populated by retirees living out their days on small pensions in small apartments. Crack had not yet really hit Miami. Lawyers could take cash over $10,000.00 and not worry about getting indicted for money laundering. It was a different and simpler time. 

Phil Maniatty came from a time when lawyers made deals and shook hands and that was all you needed to know your case was settled. Especially if the prosecutor was Phil. A person's word was his/her bond and pleas and sentences in cases weren't governed by a slew of minimum mandatory sentences and they didn't have to be approved  by civilians who weren't lawyers.  Defendants did about a third of their sentences and lives weren't ruined by 40 year sentences on probation violations. Common sense and experience governed pleas and sentences. 

We wish Phil well in his well deserved retirement. More time for poker and handicapping and the small pleasures in life. 
Be well Phil Maniatty. 


12 comments:

MC Waste Services, Inc said...

http://miami.cbslocal.com/2014/03/28/court-prison-guard-can-use-stand-your-ground/ WHAT A SHIT LAW THIS IS BECOMING

Anonymous said...

Phil has always been great. I benefited from his kindness and patience as a 2nd year asa in felonies. Really good and humble man.

Scott Saul said...

I cannot give enough compliments to Phil concerning what it is like to work with him. Phil Is not only an excellent lawyer, but, even more so, he"s a class act. I hope to see him in the private sector.

Steve Kramer said...

I first became acquainted with Phil when we were roommates at the UM Law School dorm in 1974. I was the New Yorker and Phil from Burlington, Vt. Two very different people who have been friends for 40 years. I won't bore you with the many stories that Phil loves to tell, but you should know that Phil is the same small town, unassuming, and pleasant guy he was all those years ago. He became one of the most effective and diligent prosecutors I have ever encountered, yet never losing his smile and common sense.
Enjoy your retirement my friend. You've earned it.

Anonymous said...

I have worked with Phil and against him and find him to be a truly fine person who knows how to seek justice and now to do the job and still be a nice guy.

Phil, I wish you well.

Phil R said...

Kramer said it all. Enjoy your retirement Phil. I hope the river of life is kind to you and you avoid the bad beats.

Anonymous said...

In State v. Nelson Santoni (F14-4513), the docket indicates that as of March 27, the State is seeking the death penalty and is PERP'ing the Defendant and the arraignment is set foe April 28. Looks like the State got their indictment and that the Markus maneuver didn't work. Will the 3rd DCA force judge Lobree to accept the defendant's guilty plea to the information filed on March 26? Judges can accept or refuse to accept guilty pleas, but does that extend to circumstances such as the ones in this case where the State objects to the guilty plea so that they can get an indictment? Does a competent and fully advised defendant have the right to freely and voluntarily plea to the charges for which he is being arraigned objection from the State or electoral considerations by the court? Let's see what the Third says.

Anonymous said...

Great. Now who's going to tell me who's running in the fifth at Gulfstream or Calder?

Anonymous said...

Breaking Shum: A mild mannered lawyer becomes a brutal cutthroat club owner in Miami. Danny Glover stars as the Shum. Edward James Olmos as the unscrupulous club promoter. John Malkovic as the bartender on the take; Wynona Ryder as the fetching hostess. Samuel L. Jackson as the rival club owner down the street.
This summer on AMC.

Anonymous said...

Phil is a good guy. He ran for judge once and lost to Stan Blake, another nice guy.

Both are friendly to each other today.

Enjoy your retirement Phil.

DS said...

Phil is / was the best. String and forceful as an ASA, but he had common sense and intelligence. He was always a pleasure to oppose, but you knew you had to be on your toes.
Phil is the ultimate Gentlemen Attorney.
DS

Anonymous said...

Phil was a great division chief. He was a great teacher and supervisor.

As the writer states, he was from a simpler time.

When I was assigned to his division he took all of us to the old Marine Bar for a couple of beers and a game or two of pool. Hell, once he even took the division to lunch at Joe's.

We had espirit de corps. There isn't too much of that anymore.

Phils's a gentleman.