Broward lawyer Bill Gelin posted this on the Broward Blog and it bears repeating here:
Because I believe it is highly unlikely that Broward State Attorney Mike Satz will take the necessary steps to uncover the truth in the controversy involving his friend Judge Gardiner and his prosecutors, it is once again up to the rest of us to make sure justice prevails in Broward County.
Therefore, I am preparing a witness list for the JQC for an investigation of Judge Gardiner. I am looking for information, evidence, or witnesses who can prove or disprove allegations that the Judge and certain Assistant State Attorneys (whether or not named in the New Times article) may have compromised criminal prosecutions. Please email me at email@example.com with the heading "Re Judge Gardiner". You can also send information through the "Anonymous Tip Box" or through an anonymous email address, or through a comment on the blog.
Additionally, I am preparing public records requests for the State Attorney, the Public Defender, the Clerk of Courts, the Department of Corrections, and BSO. The goal is to compile a list of current inmates who may have been improperly prosecuted or who are currently being prosecuted before Judge Gardiner.
I will do my best to assure they receive a copy of the New Times article, so they may pursue or preserve any remedies that may be available. I am also interested in contacting individuals who may have completed their sentences, though I feel current inmates should be the priority. If you have the name of an individual defendant who you feel may have been mistreated, please send the name and case number along.
I will also be contacting the Supreme Court, The Innocence Project, The CCRC, and federal authorities on the death penalty issue. I would appreciate it if anyone experienced in death penalty matters could contact me with additional suggestions on how to proceed with this particular situation.
The death penalty allegation, if proven, would have to rank as the most egregious malfeasance by any judge I have ever heard of. However, as serious as the death penalty matter may be, I believe the allegations regarding Mr. Patanzo, the former lead prosecutor in Judge Gardiner's division, warrant even greater scrutiny. The sheer volume of defendants who may have been impacted, to say nothing of the tenor and inexplicable zealousness of the pre-ROC prosecutions and sentencings (which often required action by the 4th DCA), demand it.
Lastly, I call on Judge Gardiner to come forward immediately to publicly refute the allegations or to admit them in the interest of restoring integrity to the numerous prosecutions that may have been compromised. Judge Gardiner is, of course, entitled to the same protections as any judge accused of wrongdoing. However, most JQC proceedings have to do with aberrational behavior by judges that typically does not impact prosecutions. In this situation, a man’s life hangs in the balance, and hundreds, if not thousands, of prosecutions have been called into question. I therefore hope that Judge Gardiner will subordinate her individual rights to the greater need of restoring integrity to the Florida and US Constitutions, which will remain tarnished until the Judge and the Broward State Attorney’s Office are cleared of all allegations.
Rumpole says: This is a remarkable undertaking by a lawyer who practices every day in the Broward courthouse, before judges -many of whom are probably friends of Judge Gardiner.
But when something is wrong it is wrong and Mr. Gelin possess rare courage take this battle on.
"All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing."
Attributed to Edmund Burke.
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