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

Saturday, March 25, 2017

DIARY OF A MAD PRESIDENT HEALTH CASE WIN ISSUE

Dear Diary... another big win this week. Destroyed Obama-care by not passing a new health care bill. Now everyone will see Obama-care fail and we will have a new health care bill. 

I promised to repeal and replace Obama-care on day one...just never said when I would start counting. 

Enemies list: Freedom caucus. Doofus idiots. Wait until they need me...just wait. Oregon. They're so smug up there. I'm sure their behind this health care mess. Also Thailand. The CIA. The FBI. Turns out they were bugging me. Recording me as I spoke with my pal Vlad. 

To Do list: Withdraw from Nato. Ditto the UN. That property on the east side would make an amazing Trump Tower. The best. Call it Trump Tower UN. No one will ever see anything like it. An entire building devoted to cultures from around the world...and only Americans will be allowed to live in it. We'll have a Taco Bell, a Wo-Hops, a pizza joint, a sushi- place, maybe even an Indian take-out. Total world culture...all for us. 

That's enough for now diary. Next week I'm going to get a tax bill passed by failing to make payments on the deficit. Then threaten a nuclear conflagration in Asia, belittle a state legislator in Arkansas because I can, and get my picture taken on a pony on the white house lawn. 

I love being president. So much fun to win. 
DJT.  







Thursday, March 23, 2017

THE AGE OF IGNORANCE

The author William Manchester named his book about the dark ages "A World Lit Only By Fire". It was an age of ignorance and suffering. 

In Occupied America, ignorance has become a virtue. The President generates huge applause lines when he threatens to "Shut down the National Institute of Health" or gut the budget of the Center for Disease Control. Invectives against global warming and declaring it "fake news" generate even larger applause, while ice caps melt and polar bears drown after swimming hundreds of miles. 

People don't want to think. And the deeper they get into trouble, the less they want to think. But by some sort of instinct, they feel that they ought to and it makes them feel guilty. So they'll bless and follow anyone who gives them a justification for not thinking. Anyone who makes a virtue - a highly intellectual virtue - out of what they know to be their sin, their weakness and their guilt... They envy achievement, and their dream of greatness is a world where all men have become their acknowledged inferiors. They don't know that that dream is the infallible proof of mediocrity, because that sort of world is what the man of achievement would not be able to bear...
Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged

In "The Death of Expertise" author Tom Nichols writes "Americans have reached a point where ignorance, especially of anything related to public policy, is an actual virtue."  One need only to see the choices of the president for his cabinet to know this is true. 

Nichols further writes "No longer do we hold these truths to be self-evident, we hold all truths to be self-evident, even the ones that aren't true." ("Obama taped me in Trump Tower.")

People think that a liar gains a victory over his victim. What I’ve learned is that a lie is an act of self-abdication, because one surrenders one’s reality to the person to whom one lies, making that person one’s master, condemning oneself from then on to faking the sort of reality that person’s view requires to be faked…The man who lies to the world, is the world’s slave from then on…There are no white lies, there is only the blackest of destruction, and a white lie is the blackest of all. 
Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged. 

Scientific facts are "false news". Lies are truth if repeated enough. The President and Republicans scorn "Washington", the bureaucracy, the federal government. "Return the power and the money to the states, to the people" they bellow at populist rallies. 
Then the Asian flu threatens America, and we turn our eyes to a hollowed-out CDC and wonder why we don't have a vaccine? The Zika virus strikes terror in pregnant women, and those Americans who scorn intellect and who voted for the president ask why won't the government do something? 

The government can't. It's been shut down. The best minds run out of town, scorned for their intelligence and professionalism. 

In Ayn Rand's classic Atlas Shrugged, civilization slowly falls apart as the best and brightest mysteriously disappear, unwilling to work for governments that scorn them, and steal their intellectual property. 


Do you know the hallmark of a second rater? It's resentment of another man's achievement. Those touchy mediocrities who sit trembling lest someone's work prove greater than their own - they have no inkling of the loneliness that comes when you reach the top. The loneliness for an equal - for a mind to respect and an achievement to admire. They bare their teeth at you from out of their rat holes,thinking that you take pleasure in letting your brilliance dim them - while you'd give a year of my life to see a flicker of talent anywhere among them. They envy achievement, and their dream of greatness is a world where all men have become their acknowledged inferiors. They don't know that that dream is the infallible proof of mediocrity, because that sort of world is what the man of achievement would not be able to bear. They have no way of knowing what he feels when surrounded by inferiors - hatred? no, not hatred, but boredom - the terrible, hopeless, draining, paralyzing boredom. Of what account are praise and adulation from men whom you don't respect? Have you ever felt the longing for someone you could admire? For something, not to look down at, but up to?"
Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged


Who is John Gault?

From Occupied America, Fight the Power.


Wednesday, March 22, 2017

A READER INQUIRES




A reader has some questions that deserve answers
Here are some questions for you my friend Rumpy:
 1. Why does the State e-file discovery notices but not the actual discovery, which they send to you by snail mail? Even Broweird e-files the entire discovery package. Don't they have scanners or copies that scan documents or are they just supporting the U.S. Postal Service? Think of all the money they would save on postage! 
Rumpole says: Excellent question.

2. Do you really believe that KFR refuses to ride the elevator with her assistants? She may be more a politician than a lawyer now but she is not that full of herself. 

3. What is it with judges and their J.A.s, who refuse to accept motions by e-filing or email? I had a motion e-filed with a courtesy copy emailed to the J.A. with a proposed order. They don't respond. When I have my paralegal inquire, she is told that we needed to MAIL a copy of the motion, proposed order (3 copies) and self-addressed, postage paid envelopes for us and the SAO. Are we practicing in the 1950's? Should I send over some carbon paper?

Rumpole says: Another excellent question. We know judges read this blog. Any of them care to answer why they will not accept emails of motions with orders? 

From Occupied America, Fight the Power!



Monday, March 20, 2017

HOT WATER

Darren Rainey was an inmate at Dade Correctional Institute.  On June 23, 2012, he died while locked in a hot shower.

Almost five years later the Dade State Attorneys Office is giving the guards and staff at DCI a pass.
If you have insomnia and need help falling asleep then read the report. If you want to skip the gobble-gook butt-covering bureaucratic double speak, then just skip to the Dr. Lew's ME's report which is, in our humble opinion, a complete abandonment of an ME's job.

The deceased had atherosclerosis? What 50 year old poor black man in America doesn't have some calcium in his arteries? So that, along with his underlying schizophrenia caused the ME, after much hand-wringing and dithering and Macbeth-like indecision, the ME came to the conclusion that the mentally disabled inmate who was locked in a hot shower for an extended period of time died...accidentally.

Blame the SAO if you will, but the fault dear Brutus, lies in the ME not the SAO. We've never seen an autopsy protocol that screams "decision to fit the facts" like this one. But that's our opinion. You can read the report and arrive at your own opinion.

From Occupied America...Fight the Power!



Saturday, March 18, 2017

TRUMP & MERKEL

We've obtained the transcript of the private meeting between Chancellor Merkel and President Trump. Conversations in italics are in German, between Merkel and her translator. 

DJT: Welcome Madame Chancellor. 
AM: Thank you. 
DJT: I know you have an election coming up, may I give you some advice?
AM: Certainly. 

DJT: Hire your own crowd counters at the inauguration.  Have them all carry those clicker things. Get your own count. Your opponents will use the crowd size against you. I had the biggest crowd in the history of the world, and yet...
AM-Int: He's mad. 
Int: Steady Madam.
DJT: You owe us money for NATO. You can pay in those German Marks.
AM: Mr. President, we use the Euro now. 
DJT: I've been thinking about using nuclear weapons. We've paid for them. Why not use them? When President Eisenhower ordered General Patton to nuke those German cities, it was tough at the time, but you made it back. I'm told you have the biggest economy in Europe. 
Aide: Mr. President, the Vice President is on the phone. 
DJT: Tell him to call back later. As I was saying, we don't win anymore. And nukes will win for us.
AM-Int: How could the Americans have done this? This man is crazy, and stupid. Nobody can take him seriously. 
DJT: Speaking of winning, We're going to ban all BMWs made in Mexico. I'm sorry about this, but it has to be done. 
AM: We don't make BMWs in Mexico.
DJT: Of course you do. I saw it on Fox News last night. Plus, the tapes show you are. The tapes of you on the phone....hahaha that's just a joke. Obama stopped taping you when he started taping me. 
Aide: Speaker Ryan is on the phone with a health care issue. It's urgent. 
DJT: NOT NOW! Listen, I'm thinking that the way to solve this NATO thing is to have us move our armies to the south and east. Face off against the French. You know how they are. Not trustworthy. 
AM: But to our west?
DJT: Putin has you covered. He's thinking of setting up a buffer zone in Poland. Protect you from the west and Russia from the east, and it will cost a whole lot less. Problem solved. My guy Jared actually thought of it. After he met with Putin last week. 

AM-Int: It's the Hitler-Stalin pact all over again. This nut wants us to divide the Poles...again! I won't be a part of this. Tell him I'm not feeling well. I have to get away from this madman. 
DJT: Here's the people you need to worry about. The British. And the English too.  That James Bond stuff is real. Fox News says Obama can leave a small pen in the room and whamo! they can record everything. It gets sent by telegraph and satellite to the Australians.. by the way didn't you invade Australia in world war two? Big mistake leaving. Tremendous mistake...
AM-Int: He doesn't know the difference between Austria and Australia, I don't know what to do here.
Aide: Mr. Putin on the phone for you Mr. President.
DJT (jumping up) I need to take this. Be right back. ..Mr. Putin....yes...she's here...told her about Poland...loved it...thought it was a tremendous idea....yes....and yes sir....and yes, right away....yup...he did tape me....fake news...yes...I saw it ....yes....yes....anything you say big guy....







Friday, March 17, 2017

HAPPY ST PATRICKS DAY

Today will be the day lawyers wear bad green ties or scarfs or ascots to court.  Afterwards there will be lots of drinking. 

Query: Should there be requirements that a lawyer demonstrate proficiency in an area before handling a case? 

A doctor who passes her medical boards on Tuesday cannot perform open heart surgery on Wednesday. She can't even lawfully remove an appendix. 

Yet a lawyer who is sworn in on Monday can pick a jury in a murder case on Tuesday. The Florida legislature has set proficiency requirements only for death penalty cases. 

Most people who practice criminal defense usually come from the PD or state attorney's office, where they receive training. But as more lawyers enter the marketplace, less have the training necessary to handle a complex case. 

What to do? 
Does a Judge have an obligation at any point to stop a deficient defense? We have seen (notorious) situations arise (rarely) where judges have been caught assisting the prosecution. This of course is both an outrage and a violation of due process of law. But what should a Judge do when an incompetent defense attorney is bungling their way through a trial? 

In other matters, we have been pondering the statements made by the president's aide that "microwaves can be turned into cameras."

Startling information. At the moment, this is the only solution we can think of:

Another beautiful spring Miami weekend

From Occupied America, Fight the Power!



Thursday, March 16, 2017

DIARY OF A MAD PRESIDENT BIG BIRD ALOHA ISSUE

Dear Diary....Hawaii is a State? Who knew? And they have judges? I just figured they have like tribal counsels like on Survivor, which by the way, is an okay reality show but not nearly as good as the Apprentice when I hosted it. Everyone says that. I don't trust any state where you can't get a good bagel or deli. Whoever heard of a pastrami sandwich with pineapples? 

Meanwhile, now I have some wacko  Judge canceling my travel ban. Pretty soon people will be able to travel to and from wherever they want. Whoever heard of that? What a disaster! And only I can save everyone. 

We're canceling PBS. Goodbye Big Bird. Good bye Sesame Street. Goodbye PBS Newshour. Next up, MSNBC. No more funding for them. Get Rachel Medows off the air. That  will show them to publish my taxes. 

Got a new health care bill. Amazing. Fantastic bill. Lowers costs for everyone. Raises fees for doctors. Covers more americans. People can choose their own insurance. It's fantastic. People are saying they have never seen insurance like this. Best part is....get ready...Mexico will pay for it all! Every peso. 

Enemies List: Fraggle Rock. American Experience. That guy who did the Civil War documentary. Those Muppets. Hate em. Messy.  This whole NBAA basketball bracelet thing.  Maybe Obama had time to tell everyone about college basketball, but that's why Obama-care failed and the North Koreans have intercontinental submarines. Avocados. Turns into guacamole from Mexico and Tacos and we ain't paying for that anymore. Girl Scout Cookies (except the Thin Mints. Love the Thin Mints). 

Next week we are going to de-fund kindergarten snack time. Why should some coal miner in Minnesota pay for some fat kid's twinkies? Love twinkies though. Golden. With cream inside. Never goes stale. Amazing snack. Fantastic snack. People have never seen a snack like that. Memo to self- new law- everyone gets one twinkie package a week (except fat kids in diapers). Cut planned parenthood funding to pay for it. Love being President diary. Speak to you soon.  

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

IN DEFENSE OF FIRE

UPDATE: Judge Hanzman didn't hold Gutierrez in contempt. He reset the case for sixty days while the SAO investigates. The PDs have taken the case over for sentencing. 
The Herald article is here. 
Hanzman also expressed a healthy contempt (pun intended) for the claim that the pants caught on fire accidentally. But he also indicated that he thought contempt to be a long-shot.  This is what a good judge does- not rush to judgment. Lets see what happens in sixty days. 

We rise to defend Stephen Gutierrez, Esq. 
When last we left the young defender, his pants had caught fire during closing argument in an arson case. 
We have no inside knowledge, but it probably was a stunt designed for closing argument. 

In the 1970's, young Assistant Public Defenders Roy Black, and Jack Denaro took off their shoes and put their socks on their clients' hands while in court, trying to prevent the prosecution from obtaining fingerprints. They then argued that the prosecution needed a warrant. 

Good defense- nay, good lawyering requires disruption. It requires saying NO when everyone in court says "that's the way we've always done it." 

Judge John Kastrenakis, when he was a Dade State prosecutor, sat in court during his closing argument and didn't say a word for (approximately) twenty minutes (could have been longer) to show the jury just how long Joyce Cohen delayed calling the police when she discovered her husband Stanely shot. 

Clarence Earl Giddeon's petition to the Supreme Court requesting court appointed counsel when he "wasn't entitled to it" was five  handwritten pages. He changed criminal law forever. 

Criminal defense attorneys have an obligation to be disruptors in defense of their clients. 

One of the greatest trial lawyers of the 20th century- Edward Bennett Williams- while defending Teamster leader Jimmy Hoffa in a bribery case in DC, in which the jury had eight African-Americans, brought in former black heavyweight champ Joe Louis to warmly greet Hoffa in view of the jury, and then  sit behind Hoffa during closing argument. 

Miami's own great defense attorney- the Late Richard Sharpstein did a closing argument in federal court wearing an old raincoat, an old hat, and doing an impeccable Colombo imitation. 

Some will point out that Gutierrez's "stunt" endangered people in the court. Probably not, but we all know playing with fire is not the safest thing to do. But we'd rather risk a small fire than the conviction of an innocent man. 

Our point is this- Gutierrez should not be held in contempt. What he did was NOT designed to undermined the integrity of the court. He was trying to be a disruptor. He was thinking outside of the box. He was dedicated to his client and tried to win. He didn't lie to the court. He didn't steal funds from a trust account. He didn't try and falsify testimony. 
All he did was try and do something different to win a case for his client. 

Edward Bennett Williams, in that great courtroom in the sky is looking down. And he sees the drones of male and female criminal defense attorneys walking to the podium. Giving jurors a small smile. Thanking them for their service. Summarizing the evidence. Maybe using that Reasonable Doubt chart that falls in and out of favor every few years. And they probably win a few and lose a few. 

And then he sees Stephen Gutierrez and says:  "I like that kid. He reminds me of myself. He's got guts. Moxie. He's dedicated to his client. He doesn't have a lot of experience, but he has heart and I'll take that every day."

So will we. 

Judge Hanzman, do not hold Stephen Gutierrez in contempt. Do not quash creativity. There is another way to resolve this. 

Your obt' srvt, 
Horace Rumpole, Esq. 






IT'S BACK ..... FLORIDA'S DEATH PENALTY ......


THE CAPTAIN REPORTS:

THE DEATH PENALTY IS "ALIVE" AND WELL IN OUR GREAT STATE OF FLORIDA ........

For those of you that have been following the never ending saga of Florida's Death Penalty Statute, you know it has been through the "Ring"er and back a few times over the past couple of years. 

In January of 2016, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down Florida's death penalty law in Hurst v. Florida because the trial judge, rather than the jury, was responsible for finding critical facts necessary to impose a death sentence.  Then, in Perry v. State, the high court struck down an amended version of the statute, which had permitted judges to impose a death sentence if 10 or more jurors recommended death.

The Florida Supreme Court also ruled that the unanimity requirement would apply to death-row prisoners whose direct appeals had been decided after the United States Supreme Court's June 2002 decision in Ring v. Arizona which held that capital defendants had a right to a jury determination of all facts necessary to impose the death penalty.

Well now the State Legislature has gone and done it again.  They made sure that the first bill passed by both houses of the legislature would address the death penalty statute.  And Governor Scott barely waited until the ink was dry when the bill reach his desk.  Last night, he signed the new death penalty statute into law.  Scott signed  SENATE BILL SB-280, which had passed the Senate by a vote of 37-0, into law.  (The Senate Bill tracked the language in House Bill HB-527, which passed the House by a vote of 112-3). 

The key language in the new law states:

921.141 Sentence of death or life imprisonment for capital felonies:
 
2(c) If a unanimous jury determines that the defendant should be sentenced to death, the jury’s recommendation to the court shall be a sentence of death.   If a unanimous jury does not determine that the defendant should be sentenced to death, the jury’s  recommendation to the court shall be a sentence of life imprisonment without the possibility of parole. 
 
SAD NEWS TO REPORT .......
 
DENISE KELLY JOHNSON has passed away.
 
You may not have known her despite the fact that she worked at the State Attorney's Office for the past 22 years.  But she was a force inside the office.  She was the Chief of the Child Support Enforcement Division and she oversaw more than 20 attorneys in that division that were assigned to work with parents who needed help obtaining child support from a parent who had not met their child support obligations.
 
She had suffered a stroke as she was leaving the office to attend the Investiture Ceremony of KFR on February 23rd.  Although she was released from the hospital last week and had begun physical therapy, she died suddenly on Friday at the age of 61.
 
 
Our prayers go out to her family and to all those that worked with her at the State Attorney's Office.
 
CAPTAIN OUT .....
 
 
 
 
 
 




Monday, March 13, 2017

FREDDIE D'AGOSTINO RETIRES

Update: David Troyer, a legendary Miami ASA who headed the narcotics division during the cocaine cowboy heydays, wrote in about this case:

Anonymous David E. Troyer said...

I was the 24-year-old ASA, fresh out of law school in Philadelphia, who had weekend bond hearing duty in 1982 when that case came in. I remember that A-form like it was yesterday, and remember thinking to myself, "Toto, we are not in Kansas anymore." The A-form recited, "This unit was southbound on US 1 Dixie Highway, when I saw the subject standing under the Metro Rail station holding a human head. This unit told the subject to "Drop that head," at which time the subject flung the head at this unit." I also recall homicide detectives following the trail of blood a few blocks to an apartment, where they found the headless body of a woman, clothed only in a tank top that read, "Sticks and stones may break my bones, but whips and chains excite me." For what it's worth, I do not recall the officer throwing the head back at the defendant.
Dave Troyer, ASA 1982-1990


City of Miami Commander Freddie D'Agostino retired on Friday after a long and distinguished career punctuated by one distinctly Miami 1980's moment. 

D'Agostino was a beat cop. A local guy who patrolled little Havana and Coconut Grove. One year, when he joined SWAT, he received 75 commendations. President Clinton named him one of the top ten police officers in the nation that year. 

In 1985, before most ASAs and some judges were born, Miami was a town in the grip of the crack epidemic. Those buildings on Brickell- faux art deco that now look faded and dated? Built and funded with narco cash flowing through local banks. In 1979,  rival drug dealers opened fire on each other at Dadeland Mall with machine guns as shoppers dived for cover.  Griselda Blanco filled the ME's morgue with bodies, ordering hits with a glance or a twitch of her pinky. 
It was chaos. 
In 1980, after four Miami Police Officers were acquitted in the death of Arthur McDuffie, the city erupted and burned and we and our fellow lawyers walked into the Metro Justice Building under the protection of the National Guard that Governor Graham ordered deployed. 

ASAs left their jobs on a Friday, and had $50,000 in cash on cases by the end of the month- if the first month was slow. 

Time Magazine trashed Miami on the cover as "Paradise Lost?

It was an exciting and glorious time to be a criminal  lawyer at the center of it all. Herald Crime Reporter Edna Buchanan covered it all- showing up at crime scenes, big cocaine busts (nobody really got worked up over a case less than five kilos) and won a Pulitzer Prize for her reporting. 

And one day thirty-two years ago at the Metro-Rail station by Bird Road, while on routine patrol, a man threw the severed head of his girlfriend at twenty-four year old  Officer Freddy D'Agostino, who- startled, threw it back. The man threw it again at Officer D'Agostino. Yes, Officer D'Agostino was hit not once-but twice- with a severed head. 

And now 32 years later, having done his duty and given back to his community and made Miami a safer place for all of us, Commander D'Agostino has retired. 

The Herald covered his career and retirement here

Thank you Commander D'Agostino. We've been in court with you more than a few times. You were always one of the good guys. Well done. Well done indeed. Enjoy a well deserved retirement. 

From Occupied America...Fight the Power!


Sunday, March 12, 2017

DIARY OF A MAD PRESIDENT DAYLIGHT SAVINGS TIME EDITION

Dear Diary...
Daylight savings time needs to go. Saw a great internet news-cast showing that the trail of the idea for  time change leads directly to Obama's father in Kenya. I knew it!  My next tweet: "Just learned Obama's father may have invented daylight savings time. FBI won't investigate. Stuck on Russia. Whose the criminal?" *

They want to call it Trump-Care. I agree. WH staff says no. I say lets add name Trump to as much as possible. Here's what I don't understand about healthcare. If you get sick, why not just go to doctor, get medicine, surgery, whatever, and when bill comes renegotiate it down? If you can't get it to where you want it, threaten bankruptcy. It worked for me hundreds of times. What's a matter with all these people? I'm baffled. All these discussions about single payer, deductibles...nonsense. 

Sunday to do list: Raise rates at Mar-A-Lago. A coke is $6.50? Really? Eight to ten at any swanky place. They still won't put Trump on Air Force One. Heads are gonna roll. Note to self- send Mexico bill for membership to  Trump International Golf course in Florida. If they didn't cause me so much trouble, I wouldn't need to play golf so much.  
Wiretap Paul Ryan, that Indian lawyer in New York who wouldn't leave, Alec Baldwin, Chelsea Clinton. She's the next danger. 

Enemies list: Nobel Peace Prize committee. 

Still no whopeee with Melania in the WH. It's always the kid, or a headache, or some maid knocking on the door. A President has needs. 
Especially the best president. A president like no one has ever seen. An amazing president who will build a big wall. 

*ed note- of course "whose" was used incorrectly. We have a president who cannot spell. See Tweet where he says he was "tapped" by Obama. 

Saturday, March 11, 2017

BYE BYE BIRDIE

UPDATE #2: POTUS FIRES BHARARA!  Say that fast five times. Then get a glass tumbler. Grind sugar with bitters. Pour a jigger of Jameson whiskey, squeeze an orange rind, add ice. Drink your old fashioned. Ruminate. 

UPDATE: NY Times reports here that Bharara is refusing to resign!
PB is refusing to go gently into that good night. Pardon us a moment while we offer PB some private advice. 
(sotto voce:  PB, buddy. You can't do this. We mean, the man is a nut and incompetent and not fit to be dog catcher in Queens, but like some judges we both know in the SDNY, you have to respect the office if not the man/woman who holds it. And DJT is president. And in our humble legal opinion, you serve at the pleasure of the president, even if he is the worst out of the 45...even including Taylor, Tyler, Andrew Johnson, Harding and Hoover. You can't just stay. They will arrest you for trespass and interference with a governmental institution. And the guidelines with enhancements...oy. You've made your point. You read the blog. You're fighting the power. Now pack up the desk, and the paperweight, and the flag, and get out while you can.)

45 and his Rusky contact/AG Jeff Vladirmirovich Sessions sacked all remaining US Attorneys Friday afternoon, including Preet Bharara, the US Attorney for the Sovereign Southern District of New York. 

45 had previously met with Bharara in November, and assured him and Sen Chuck Schumer that Bharara would stay in the sensitive and powerful position. 

But that was then. 
And this is now. 
And certain men's words are not their bonds. 

Just by pure happenstance, Fox news propagandist Sean Hannity gave a rousing diatribe the night before, urging the president to purge the traitors in his midst, including all the holdover US Attorneys appointed by Barack Obama. 

It's reassuring to know that important policy decisions are being made by the White House after long and careful and deliberative thought, and not by the spontaneous reactions of an impetuous nincompoop whose emotions are ruled by the cable TV news shows he watches. 


From Occupied America, Fight the Power. 

Friday, March 10, 2017

46

This is how it all ends for 45; with a bang and then a whimper.

Some international crisis occurs. North Korea shoots a missile that hits a beach in Japan. Or Russia invades a neighbor. Or ISIS blows up a ship in NY Harbor. Or all three occur on a Saturday when Trump is at his singular and solitary best.

The President reacts. Then he over-reacts. The rational professionals around him become concerned. They won't authorize the release of nuclear weapons against North Korea or Iran while the president is sending Tweets attacking Iran, North Korea, Rosie O'Donnell, Warren Beatty,  and the National Parks Service.

The stock market opens the next day down 4,000 points at the open.

Justifiably worried about his mental status, a majority of the Cabinet votes to  remove the president under section 4 of the Twenty-Fifth Amendment by notifying congress that the President is unable to discharge his duties.

The President retreats with his remaining loyal staff to Mar-A -Lago. He places the Strategic Air Command on Def Com 2. He orders the closing of all Dominoes pizza stores for including secret anti-Trump messages in the small print of the Pizza boxes. He orders the shut-down of all cell-phone service  because he tweets that they are being used to listen to his conversations. He tweets disparaging comments about his son Barron's vice-principal after she won't change a B to an A on his history exam. He orders the Justice Department to arrest Presidents Obama and Bush 41 (from his hospital bed) for conspiracy to engage in treason. He appoints Rush Limbaugh and Nyn Eng- the  assistant night manager of a coffee shop in Trump tower- acting counselors  to the president. ( Eng  makes the best cafe lattes. Amazing cafe lattes. No one has ever tasted a cafe latte like this cafe latte)

The acting attorney General (Sessions is under his own impeachment proceedings for perjury) files a lawsuit for the president. It quickly goes before a series of "so called judges " who dismiss his lawsuit. (Chickens coming home to roost). The case goes to the Supreme Court which rules 8-1 against the President. Thomas dissents, citing Lincoln's actions during the civil war. He reads his dissent from the bench.

The house impeaches the president approving two articles of impeachment. Trump orders congress disbanded via Twitter.  Acting President Pence goes on national TV from the Vice President's residence with the Cabinet including both the Sec Def and National Security Advisor  behind him, urging calm and assuring the country that it is safe and the armed forces are listening to the civilian chain of command through his office. The media reports that Presidents Obama and Bush 43 and Bill Clinton were also present.

The stock market opens the next day only down 450, having lost another 8,000 points over the last week.
You can now buy Apple for 11 bucks and Amazon for 15 (down from 850) because Trump has ordered Fed Ex and UPS shut down as a national security risk. Trump orders the arrest of Al Gore for crimes against the environment that he has just been informed about.

Putin thanks Trump for ordering the provisions of 28,000 servings of  Duck'la Orange delivered from Mar-A-Lago to his troops which are massing on the Turkish boarder. Mexico closes ITS  border with the US. So does Canada. Australia requires a six month wait for any US citizen who seeks a visa. The Ayatollah of Iran is interviewed by Jimmy Kimmel and urges the American people to support President Trump.

Senators Graham and McCain are the prosecutors of the president for the impeachment trial in the Senate. Senators Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz are their assistants. (Chickens coming home to roost). Bernie Sanders volunteers for the defense after no other senator else does, but everyone realizes it is just a bit of his cranky-Vermont humor. The producers of Better Call Saul offer legal advice to Trump.

And then it is over. Trump is impeached. He gets no votes in the senate.  He is at Mar-a Lago so there is no historical shot of him getting on Marine One one last time. No Nixonian final wave of the hand as he flies off into infamy.

Instead, from Florida, Trump orders via Twitter  the Bush Carrier Battle group to 1) change it's name to the Andrew Jackson Battle group and 2) position itself off DC to coordinate actions with the Russian super carrier Ulyanovsk. 

Pence moves into the White House. Armed secret service agents remove Trump counselors Bannon who walks out defiantly, and Miller, who has handcuffed himself to his desk and is crying "no, no, no, I wanna stay and be important."

The Russians take the Kurdish oil fields while the US government deals with its constitutional crisis.

Three North Korean ballistic missiles possibly containing nuclear warheads explode on launch on three consecutive days, the effects of a computer virus program implemented by Obama. South Korea, supported by Japan and the U.N,  invades the north, and Pyongyang falls as China stands by and does nothing. Israel successfully bombs the remaining North Korean missile launch sites.

And in a final insult, the President of Mexico via twitter offers former President Trump a two week free vacation at a three star hotel in Acapulco two blocks from the beach.

It will end this way, absent the hyperbole and imagination of Rumpole. The rational people in Washington will continue the whispers that have already begun. The president is unstable. He has accused via Twitter the former president of the United States- without any reason- of a felony. Soon after he attacks a TV reality host on Twitter. These are not the acts of a competent and rational man, and we must all pray that people like senators John McCain, Lindsey Graham, and Sec Def Jim Mattis, VP Mike Pence, minority leader Nancy Pelosi, and Speaker Paul Ryan and others will act- Lincolnesque- to save the Union and the world.

From Occupied America...Fight the Power!

Thursday, March 09, 2017

LIAR LIAR PANTS ON FIRE

We were supposed to be out this week- and the Captain has a great post below on the Tally session and possible judicial term limits. Please read it. But some stories are too good to miss, even when returning from a stroll on the Champs d elysees.  This is a hot story.

When Judge Hanzman left the comfy confines of a successful civil practice, what did he imagine? Perhaps some brown bag lunches and dinners at his desk while he worked. Dealing with new and aggressive prosecutors and PDs? Probably.


A lawyer's pants catching on fire during closing argument in the defense of- we are not making this up- an ARSON CASE? Never.

David Ovalle and the Miami Herald have all the hot details here.

Meet Stephen Gutierrez.



He was arguing that his client's car "spontaneously burst into flames" when at that moment, according to Ovalle, Gutierrez's pants "burst into flames" and he bolted from the court.

Spectators were stunned.

Gutierrez returned a few moments later with a singed pocket, blaming a faulty E-cigarette. Anyone know a good lawyer?

Did the "Stunt" work?  Nope.
Claudy Charles was convicted of second degree arson.

A possible prosecutorial or judicial inquiry into whether this was an accident or not remains a possibility.

Rumpole notes: Some courtroom stunts work.
The widow who waited 11 minutes to call 911 after intruders shot her husband and is accused of conspiracy to commit murder?  Any good prosecutor will show a jury how long 11 minutes is by sitting silently for that time.
Hugh Rodham, brother of Hillary and a Miami PD, was famously caught with his pants down when trying to re-enact the crime of his client who was accused of  robbing a coin laundry mat  and stuffing fifty dollars in quarters into his pockets. As he demonstrated for the jury, he had a clothes malfunction and his pants hit the floor as he stood there before the jury in his skivvies.

The OJ Glove.

But this is a horse of a different color. If it was engineered, it caused a fire hazard. If it was a mistake, it was a golden opportunity at closing that shouldn't have been missed.

From Occupied America...Fight the Power!

Wednesday, March 08, 2017

JUDICIAL TERM LIMITS ARE ON THE WAY .....?????


THE CAPTAIN REPORTS:

FIRST THEY CAME FOR THE JUDGES ...............

On Monday, we introduced you to the Speaker of the House, Richard Corcoran (R-Land O' Lakes).  On Tuesday, Speaker Corcoran called the House into Session.  In his opening speech, keeping with his theme of going to war with the Governor, Corcoran continued to press the fact that he intends to go after and eliminate Enterprise Florida and Visit Florida.

Richard Corcoran is much out of the mold of Donald Trump.  He has his own ideas of how to "drain the swamp" that is Tallahassee politics.  From Corcoran's opening remarks to his House colleagues:

"For anyone waiting for us to slow down, to drop the big ideas, to stop trying to shake up the system, to cower in the face of attacks, or to cave to the demands of special interests, here's our message to you: We will not."

"Because right now, there are some who are suggesting that we pass the largest budget in history. We will not. We will not. Instead of spending more money, we will fight to eliminate waste from the budget."

"Right now, there are some who are suggesting that we pass a massive property tax increase. We will not."

He closed with:

"When we began this journey together, we promised to be better, to do things differently, and to reach for a higher standard, and we will ... Let's fight."

In addition to Enterprise Florida and Visit Florida, Corcoran has also set his sights on the Florida Lottery; he sued them for allegedly misspending their budget.  Also, Corcoran has demanded an audit of the Department of Environmental Protection for mismanagement of a legal contract where DEP has been billed nearly $98 million dollars in legal fees from four law firms.  They have already paid nearly $72 million of the total bill. The four firms have been handling a 16 year lawsuit against the State of Georgia over water right to the Apalachicola, Chattahoochee and Flint River Basin.  $54.4 million of the total was spent in just the past two years after Florida asked the U.S. Supreme Court to intervene. (And you thought that the JAC paid well to our Private Court Appointed Counsel).

And now Corcoran is going after the Judges in our State.  In case I failed to mention it earlier, Corcoran is an attorney, with the law firm of Broad and Cassel.  And Corcoran is pushing for term limits for all Supreme Court and District Court judges.

The first bill filed in the House, titled HJR 1 - Judicial Term Limits has already cleared all Committees and made its way to the floor of the House.  Now, to be clear, the bill is a Resolution and even if passed, does not become law.  That's because it would require an amendment to the Florida Constitution for this to actually take place.  But that is what Corcoran intends to fight for.

The House bill can be found here.  The summary of the bill states:

TERM LIMITS FOR JUSTICES AND JUDGES.—Proposing an amendment to the State Constitution to prohibit the name of a supreme court justice or district court of appeal judge from appearing on a ballot for retention if he or she has served more than 12 consecutive years in the same office and prohibit reappointment of a justice or judge for one year after leaving office. The term limit applies to justices and judges in office on January 9, 2019, and future appointees.

The Senate is nearly in lock-step with the House on this issue.  They have SJR 482 - Supreme Court Justices/District Courts of Appeal Judges.  The language of the Senate Resolution is slightly different.  The Senate bill can be found here.  The summary of that Resolution states:

ELIGIBILITY FOR APPOINTMENT AND RETENTION OF OFFICE OF JUSTICE OR JUDGE.—Amendment imposes a 2-term limit for supreme court justices, 3-term limit for district courts of appeal judges, and 50-year age minimum for both; requires 1-year service as judge to serve as justice. Currently, both serve unlimited terms, if retained, until age 70, or older if less than one-half term remains at 70; there is no age minimum or service requirement. The term limits do not include partial terms and apply to current justices and judges. (A term is six years in length).

No doubt some final version of these two Resolutions will appear on the 2018 ballot as a Constitutional Amendment.

Do you think that our appellate court judges should be term limited?  Will the quality of the appellate bench go down if term limits are passed?

CAPTAIN OUT .....
Captain4Justice@gmail.com

Tuesday, March 07, 2017

HERBERT WALKER III ORAL ARGUMENT ON CONTEMPT




If the video doesn't load, you can see it here. Enter "Walker" in the search for a case space.  

We are admittedly no fans of one of the parties in this case. 

Here is the OA in the contempt case wherein Judge Miranda held Mr. Walker in contempt. 

Things go bad at 1:20 when Judge Suarez inquires  "What did the trial judge do wrong here?" 
"This is just part of the record [Suarez holds up a fist-full of the record] when the trial court  over and over and over and over being patient and ...over and over and over being interrupted, being talked over... and the trial court holding their demeanor. So tell me where the trial court was wrong?"  

Things go from bad to worse when Judge Rothenberg starts at 4:10 to recount Walker's conduct and her soliloquy continues through 6:50. The Judge's recitation of the conduct doesn't bode well for the appeal for Mr. Walker. 

Rothenberg at 7:15: "Frankly she should have done it much earlier (Hold Walker in contempt) but she just kept hoping against all signs  the conduct would stop..." 

Not pretty. And counsel for the Appellant's citation to the Alex Michaels case just doesn't help him or his client that much.  
Rothenberg at 8:03: "That's what direct criminal contempt is..." In response to the Appellant's argument the court should have taken a break. 

Judge Suarez 11:30: "Everything I've read was a judge being restrained, being nice..explaining..saying 'please don't do that again, I've asked you before'... and what she got back were snide comments." 

Judge Suarez at 12:21 [Judge Miranda  says] "I need you to turn the board around... and Mr. Walker says 'I will when I finish.' That's not a proper comment to a judge. And this has been going on everywhere I look...This is a judge that held restraint to the Nth degree... very fortunate it was a small monetary order..." 
(Rumpole notes...so far there is no 'gofundme' campaign to pay Walker's fine.)

On rebuttal at 14:50 counsel for Walker points out that the order says Walker said "This is ridiculous" while the transcript says "This is insane." Seems like a picayune distinction. 

And Judge Rothenberg, a former top prosecutor/trial lawyer, was not ready to let that go unchallenged at 14:40:  "Were either of those comments respectful?" 
(That sound on the transcript you heard was either the trap snapping shut, or the PCA being etched into the record.) 

Final rules of thumb for practicing before Judge Miranda:
Don't mutter curses  in Romanian: Michaels v. State
Don't say "This is insane" when the judge rules. Walker v. State

Judge Suarez gets the last word at 18:58 when he recounts a war story when he was a young trial lawyer: "As judge Levy told me, when I was in the middle of trial: 'if you don't like my ruling, preserve it. That's what the 3rd DCA is for."

Well said Judge Suarez, but on our blog, we get the last (respectful) word: "So what's with all the PCA's?"
To be clear, we wouldn't have said that to you at OA...but we admit we would have thought it. 

From Occupied America...Fight the power. 





Monday, March 06, 2017

STAND YOUR GROUND - THE 2017 LEGISLATIVE SESSION IS OPEN .....


THE CAPTAIN REPORTS:

BANG, BANG, YOU'RE DEAD .......

Florida's Stand Your Ground law could dominate the front page of newspapers later this week with the start of the legislative session set for tomorrow.

On Tuesday, March 7, the Florida Legislature opens its 2017 Spring session.  The session is scheduled to last for 60 days and should end on May 5, 2017.  On Tuesday morning, Governor Scott will give his State of the State speech to a joint session of the Florida House and Senate.

If you have not been following the show that has been taking place in Tallahassee over the past two months, then you have been really missing the fun.  You may have thought that with the Republicans having a Governor, all four cabinets members, and an overwhelming majority in both the House and the Senate in place, they had planned on running roughshod over their Democratic rivals.  If you thought that, you would be wrong.

Instead, it appears much more likely that they will make every effort to run each other over during the next two months.  Driving the lead cars will be Governor Scott, House Speaker Richard Corcoran (R-Land O' Lakes) and Senate President Joe Negron (R-Stuart).  According to most insiders, this is setting up to be the most mean-spirited, marathon battle of an uncivil war, as ugly as anything the state has seen in a long time.

Corcoran fired the first shots by pushing to end two of Governor Scott's biggest priorities: Enterprise Florida and Visit Florida. Scott is pushing for $85 million for Enterprise Florida and $76 million for Visit Florida for the budget year that begins July 1.  Enterprise Florida's objective is to promote Florida as a premier business destination to a targeted audience of corporate decision makers and site selectors, and encourage them to select the state for their next location, relocation or expansion project. Of course, in order to do that, the State uses that $85m to lure the businesses to Florida.  Corcoran calls it corporate welfare.  Visit Florida is the tourism arm that funds programs to attract more tourists to Florida.  They were in the news recently when it was revealed that they paid pop superstar Pitbull $1 million to promote tourism in Florida.  As a result of Corcoran and a lawsuit he filed against Visit Florida, demanding that they reveal the previously sealed contract with Pitbull, the CEO of Visit Florida was forced to resign.

Scott has been traveling the State holding town hall style meetings in an effort to boost support to the two programs.  Where did he choose to hold the meetings.  In every city where a house member that voted against his two programs resided.  Corcoran has been issuing nasty tweets, slash-and-burn videos, and all other forms of medium to trash the Governor and his two programs.  Scott has funded a robo-call campaign blasting the House Speaker. The two men are not speaking to each other.  The Orlando Sentinel wrote about the feud here.  The Tampa Bay Times said of the feud, "it involves philosophical differences, personal animosity and political ambition, all of which have had the state capital teetering on the edge of dysfunction for weeks." 

Corcoran has also picked fights with lobbyists and with President Negron of the Senate as they have butted heads on several new rules that Corcoran instituted under his leadership.  The lobbying changes include no longer allowing House members to text with them during official meetings; not allowing members to enter formal business deals with registered lobbyists; no longer allowing members to fly on a lobbyist-owned plane; and, the creation of a six-year lobby ban when members leave office.  The Sun Sentinel wrote an excellent editorial on Corcoran that can be found here.

Both Scott and Corcoran will be seeking higher office in 2018.  Scott is likely to challenge Senator Bill Nelson, while Corcoran is looking at a wide open Governor's race.

STAND YOUR GROUND ..............

In what may become the first bill up for a vote in both chambers this week, there could be a dramatic change to the STAND YOUR GROUND law in Florida.

House Bill 245 (and it's companion SB 128) aim to place the full burden of proof on the State Attorney.  ASA's and criminal defense lawyers know all too well that the current system places the initial burden on the Defense to establish that SYG should result in the dismissal of charges against your client. 

To read HB 245, you can find that by going here.  Florida Politics covers the story here and the Miami Herald covered it here.

What are your thoughts, not only as an ASA or criminal defense lawyer, but how do you feel as a citizen, that the law might change. As you are pondering your answers to those questions, think about this fact:

According to a recent study published in JAMA, homicides in Florida increased 21 percent — from an average of 82 homicides per month from 1999 to October 2005 to 99 homicides per month from October 2005 to 2014. What happened in 2005 - Florida's first SYG law was passed.  ABC news covered the story here while NBC news covered it here.

With the burden of proof shifting entirely to the State if these bills pass and are signed into law by the Governor, don't you think those numbers will rise even further?

CAPTAIN OUT .....
Captain4Justice@gmail.com





Saturday, March 04, 2017

DIARY OF A BUGGED PRESIDENT

Dear Diary... I'm bugged. No. I mean it. Obama bugged me. He had my phones at Trump Tower tapped. Intelligence services did it. They've been out to get me ever since I didn't give casino credit to that CIA guy in 1990 at Trump Casino in Atlantic City, which by the way, was the best casino in the United States. Fantastic casino. Nobody has ever seen a casino like that casino. Anyway...

I know the Oval Office is bugged as well. Obama is doing it. I know it. Here's how: first- the speaker piece was loose when I got to the oval office. And it had a "Aloha from Hawaii" sticker on it. Very suspicious but he didn't fool me. No Kenyan can ever fool a red blooded american. 

Second, whenever I am on the phone- I sometimes hear someone else say "speak up" in whisper. Like the other day I was reading the riot act to the president of Brussels. "Don't try me" I yelled. "You're in bed with the Chinese on trade. I can smell the egg foo young from here. I'll send mad-dog Mattis with his tank cruise missiles and wipe your island out." And as I said this, I swear I heard some giggling that sounded just like Obama's daughters and someone whisper "a little louder for the tape."

So I know what Obama is up to. Here's how I'm going to get even. I'm going to call the IRS and while he's listening I'm going to tell them to give me his Ugandan birth certificate.  "Hello? IRS guy? This is Trump. I want that Obama birth certificate pronto. The one from Uganda. Call that guy Idi Amin and tell him I got some tickets to the Lion King on Brodway if he can get us the certificate. And also I want Clinton's tax returns, and that commie Bernie Sanders' tax returns. I'm done playing games."

See diary, I know Obama will be listening and that will scare him. I know how to scare people- I scared that little old lady in Atlantic City that wouldn't sell me her house next to the boardwalk. 

Enemies list: Colgate Toothpaste- rubs me the wrong way. Jamba Juice- opened up near the white house and the staff is leaving all those empty cups everywhere. The ASPCA. Those mailers asking for money for sick puppies make me angry. Radio Shack. Where do you think the Obama guys got their bugs to tap my phones?

That's all for now Diary.  Gotta go fire the white house chef. Again. Caught him putting shiitake mushrooms in the burgers.  If I've told him once, I've told him a thousand times- no mexican food in the white house for the next fourteen years while I am president! Do I look like Obama? 







Friday, March 03, 2017

JUDGE HIRSCH RULES ON MAYOR GIMENEZ' FEDERAL DETAINER ORDER .......


THE CAPTAIN REPORTS:

(Rumpole notes: the prior post has a copy of the order, scroll down if you want to see it.)

We interrupt this issue of "Diary of a Mad President" to bring you this BREAKING NEWS:

THE 10TH AMENDMENT IS ALIVE AND WELL - IN MIAMI-DADE COUNTY .....
..... so Order's Circuit Court Judge Milton Hirsch today .....

"No doubt the limitations imposed by the Tenth Amendment, like so many limitations imposed by the Constitution, are a source of frustration to those who dream of wielding power in unprecedented ways or to unprecedented degrees. But America was not made for those who dream of power. America was made for those with the power to dream." (From Judge Milton Hirsch's Order today).

James Lacroix was repeatedly arrested for Driving With License Suspended.  James Lacroix was also a Haitian National living in Miami.  He was here on a "temporary protected status" arriving in the US after the natural disasters that affected his island nation.

After picking up yet another DWLS Felony, at some point, he was ordered deported by ICE.  So, after spending several weeks in jail on his latest DWLS charge, and then pleading guilty to the charge and receiving credit for time served, instead of being released to the outside world, this time, the Miami-Dade Department of Corrections & Rehabilitation (MDCR) held Mr. Lacroix on an Immigration detainer.  Corrections was acting based on the recent Order signed by Miami-Dade County's Mayor Carlos Gimenez which now required them to honor the federal detainers. On February 17th, the County Commission approved Gimenez' Order by a vote of 9-3.

Remember that in January, shortly after his inauguration, President Trump signed an Executive Order promising to cut off federal funding for so called "sanctuary cities".  To avoid the label of being considered a "sanctuary city", Gimenez signed his Order agreeing to hold inmates in local jails for federal immigration agents even if the feds refused to reimburse the county for the expense.

Last Wednesday, Lacroix, after spending a total of 28 hours in jail on the immigration hold, after having already been sentenced to credit for time served, ICE agents came to pick him up and transfer him to their custody.

Enter attorneys Phil Reizenstein and Kristy Kawass.  Handling the case pro bono, they filed a Writ of Habeas Corpus before Judge Milton Hirsch. The Motion was effectively challenging Mayor Gimenez's Order.

Yesterday, Reizenstein argued that the continued detention of Lacroix, even for a minute, violated the 10th Amendment*, which limits the reach of the federal government on states. Reizenstein describes the action of the Trump Administration's threat to pull federal dollars from any city that is a "sanctuary city" protecting criminal illegal immigrants, as "nothing more than the federal government threatening and blackmailing states and Miami-Dade County".

Reizenstein argued that the controlling case on this matter was Printz v. United States, 521 U.S. 898 (1997)where no less than Justice Scalia overruled the federal government's attempts to command state and local law enforcement officers to conduct background checks on prospective handgun purchasers.

This morning, Judge Hirsch, in a 15 page ruling, shot down the Gimenez Order.  Hirsch explains the issues of ICE's detainer requests upon the MDCR this way:


"This practice, however, gives rise to two inequities. First, it obliges the Department to
house, oversee, and control prisoners in whom neither the state nor the county has any ongoing
interest; and it obliges the Department to do so at county expense, because neither ICE nor any
other instrumentality of the federal government makes the county whole for the cost of this
housing, overseeing, and controlling. Second, it results in the continued incarceration in county
jails of persons neither charged with, nor sentenced for violating, any state or county law, and
whose ongoing incarceration by the county is therefore difficult to justify."


Hirsch, citing to Scalia’s opinion in Printz said: "Apparently it was clear to the members of the first Congress that the federal government is without power to compel state authorities to house and maintain federal prisoners – even if the federal government offers to pay a fair price for that housing and maintenance".

Hirsch ruled that:

Lacroix was a county prisoner, but at present the county has neither a reason nor a basis in law to
keep him its prisoner. A federal agency wants Lacroix to be a federal prisoner, but demands that
the county do the imprisoning on the federal government’s behalf. That is a demand that the
federal government is constitutionally prohibited from enforcing, and it is a demand with which
the local government is constitutionally prohibited from complying. "It might well be deemed an
unconstitutional exercise ... to insist that the states are bound to provide means to carry into
effect the duties of the national government, nowhere delegated or intrusted [sic] to them by the
Constitution." Prigg v. Pennsylvania, 41 U.S. 539, 541 (1842) (Story, J.).


Judge Hirsch went further by stating that:

The "people" to whom the Tenth Amendment refers include the native-born as well as the
naturalized citizen; the native English speaker as well as the speaker for whom English is a
second, or third, language; the scion of old Yankee stock as well as the newcomer who took the
oath of citizenship yesterday. Miami is not, and has never been, a sanctuary city. But America
is, and has always been, a sanctuary country. As I have written elsewhere, "America, perhaps
more than any other nation, was made great not by its leaders but by its people: by the refugees
who were called to begin life anew; by the pioneers who were called to build a nation; by ‘the
homeless, tempest-tossed’ who were called by the light that shone from the ‘lamp beside the
golden door’." State v. Robaina, 20 Fla. L. Weekly Supp. 406a (Fla. 11th Cir. Ct. 2013) (quoting
Emma Lazarus, "The New Colossus")


With that, Hirsch GRANTED Lacroix's Petition for his Writ of Habaus Corpus.  The Order will undoubtedly be appealed by the County Attorney's Office.  Kudos to Phil Reizenstein and Kristy Kawass for a job well done.

*10th Amendment: “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.”
 
CAPTAIN OUT ......
Captain4Justice@gmail.com






A WIN FOR THE CONSTITUTION AND THE POWER TO DREAM

Judge Milton Hirsch granted a habeas petition today, striking down the cowardly Miami-Dade policy of letting the federal government bully the county and the dade county jail into holding people in jail, although their case is over, while the feds decide if they want to deport them.

Seems like the feds have a point... "bad hombres" and all that running wild.But there's this little, tiny, insy-winsy thing called the Tenth Amendment. And here is what Judge Hirsch had to say about that:

"No doubt the limitations imposed by the tenth amendment, like so many limitations imposed by the Constitution, are a source of frustration to those who dream of wielding power in unprecedented ways or to unprecedented degrees. But America was not made for those who dream of power. America was made for those with the power to dream."

Here is the entire order for President Bannon Trump to peruse. He could ask the attorney general to take a gander, but he is otherwise occupado for a while on other matters.


Well done Judge Hirsch, Well done indeed.

Lacroix Habeas Order by Anonymous espiON9E on Scribd





From Occupied America...Fight the Power, which Judge Hirsch did so admirably today.