Thursday, July 30, 2009


(Almost all Milt all the time: Here's the DBR article on Brown/Lederman..et.al.)

The controversy rages on....what did Milt Hirsch say? When did he say it? Are the tapes admissible at any proceeding? Should they be? What about the disparity between Stallworth and Casey? Who is John Galt?

The best of the comments from the last two days:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

rappaport is partners with mike haber's mom. haber and milton share space.
more on this a bit later

Anonymous said...

i decent from rumpole
milt is not an great lawyer and will not be a fair judge to all. i hope he proves me wrong if elected

Rumpole replies: This much we know dear reader- you have not read any legal opinions and you have no hope of becoming a judge, much less a janitor in the courthouse. The word is "dissent".

Anonymous said...

So let me understand. Killing someone while you are driving a car drunk is worth 30 days. But lying about it to the cops, fleeing the scene and then the jurisdiction, not being cooperative and honest is worth 12 year and 4 months? Give me a break. This Stallworth case makes me sick.

intern hottie said...

I wrote in yesterday because I have a crush on an older lawyer. I find out today he is (sigh) married. I will not pursue him. I just have this weakness for older cuddly guys.
Any suggestions?

Rumple says: Anyone know who this "hottie" is? I think I fit the bill. I'm cuddly.

And with friends like these....

abe laeser said...

For what it is worth, I will respond to Rumpole's request to weigh in on the Hirsch quandary.
First of all, in all of the years I have known Milt, my initial duty has been to try to comprehend the intent of his words, while he is busy trying to prove that his GPA was completely earned [Yes, I saw it when the SAO hired him]. How in the world his client thought that he understood that he was being told to commit a crime and flee is beyond the realm of common belief.
Next, I look at the actual words printed in the New Times. Suggesting that the case was so strong against his client that he would have to go to the imaginary planet Vulcan [where Milt probably knows that his descendants lived] cannot be parsed to mean: I cannot defend your case. Go flee the jurisdiction.
In truth, Milt is a bit full of himself [think Graf Zeppelin] and I could not imagine him placing his grand view of himself in jeopardy for ANY client. I do not mean this as a slur, but some people do not care enough about their clients to step one inch over the line. Telling a killer to flee is beyond the pale.
Milt's level of self-assurance has often allowed me to rely upon his word. I cannot conceive of his acting in some way that might permit one to prove that he had fallen from the tower of perfection.
Finally, Milt denied, under oath, any improper advice to his client. The Judge accepted his testimony as truthful. A disgruntled client should not change how we all see Milt - with all his good and bad points [he actually is human], he is no liar.
Judge Glick ruled on admissibility and credibility. Now it is up to the investigators to determine if there is anything else to review. Rappaport's statements and Hirsch's are VERY different.
I see absolutely no reason to think that Milt should not be a Judge. Yes, a potential windbag - but a very bright one. One for whom I will both advocate and vote.

Anonymous said...

Milt is pompous and arrogant and his sense of humor is not what he thinks it is. Nevertheless, I give him the benefit of the doubt because he is a very knowledgeable lawyer. Clients falsely turning on their lawyers to better their own situation (especially in federal court) is nothing new.

And finally, file this under the "more information than we need" file:

Anonymous said...

Rumpole: Let me see if I can explain why a judge might not listen to the tapes before ruling on this motion:

Presumably (though it's not clear from the article) the postconviction motion is premised upon a claim ineffective assistance of counsel. In order to establish a right to relief, the defendant must meet a two-pronged test by showing:
1. Trial counsel's performance was constitutinally "deficient"; that is, his actions fell below an objective standard of reasonableness.
2. As a result of counsel's action (or inaction) the defendant suffered "prejudice." In the context of a plea (as opposed to a trial) this requires the defendant to establish a reasonable probability that, but for counsel's action, the defendant would not have entered a plea, but instead would have insisted on going to trial. (Defendant need not prove he would have prevailed at the trial, only that he would have insisted on going to trial as opposed to entering the plea.)
If a defendant fails to establish either one of the two prongs, his postconviction claim must fail. So, the judge could "assume" for the sake of discussion that Hirsch made the statements which the defendant claims Hirsch made (and which defendant recorded). Even if Hirsch made these statements, however, (and even if such statements are sufficient to establish the first prong of deficient performance), the court could find that the defendant failed to establish the prejudice prong. In this case, for example, the court could conclude that there is no way that Hirsch's statements (assuming they were made)affected the defendant's ultimate decision to enter a plea. After all, the defendant fled the country, was captured and returned to Florida, continued to have Hirsch as his attorney, entered a plea with Hirsch as his attorney, was sentenced, and only then did he raise this issue regarding statements Hirsch allegedly made. The defendant would have to establish that, but for the statements by Hirsch (i.e., encouraging him to flee)there is a reasonable probability that he defendant would not have entered a plea, but rather would have gone to trial. The court could have easily determined that the defendant cannot establish this, and thus rest on the failure to prove the "prejudice" prong, making it unnecessary to determine, as a matter of evidentiary fact, whether Hirsch did or did not make the statements.
As a practical matter, of course, this allows the trial court to avoid opening up the can of worms that would inevitably follow from listening to (and thus making public) the tape-recorded conversations (assuming that they are otherwise admissible).
Very often a trial court will make a decision on post-conviction relief based solely on a finding of no "prejudice" so that the court can avoid the thornier task of having to rule on whether trial counsel's performance was deficient. This saves face for the trial counsel and is a perfectly acceptable way to analyze a motion for postconviction relief when it is clear that the defendant cannnot establish prejudice.


Anonymous said...

The last quoted comment was obviously Milt's....he doesn't even try to hide it.

old guy said...

While I agree with the thinking behind his ideas -- it must be awfully hard for Laeser to be completely kind to defense attorneys.

Anonymous said...

Wow. I just saw a lawyer friend who knows Phil.

He said that he is still a pettifogger.

Love the name. Fits perfectly.



Yesterday, I reported on the following:


The JNC has spoken and sent 6 names to Gov. Crist to replace the retiring Judge Thomas "Tam" Wilson:

Those names are:

Judge Darrin Gayles
Judge Lisa Walsh
Judge Deborah White-Labora
Alan Fine
Judge Victoria Brennan
Judge Antonio Arzola

But take a look at the list of those interviewed by the JNC that did not make the final cut:

Miguel M. de la O
Patricia Kopco
Milton Hirsch
Samantha Ruiz Cohen

Bronwyn Miller
Maria Ortiz
Norma Lindsey
Edward Newman
Robin Faber
Andrew Hague

The first four have all filed to run for Judge in 2010; the next six are current County Court Judges.


Anonymous said...

Hey Rump- back off on the intern- she wants Shumie. Don't mess with the shumster.

fake blake said...

NFL training camps are busting open like an investigation into a Broward Cop. Won't be long before we're in the stands screaming Run you *&^%$&*(( Ricky, Run.

Anonymous said...


A lot of us here who work with Phil Maniatty think very highly of him. That comment is very nasty and you should remove it. Phil is a great guy, highly respected, and that comment serves no legitimate purpose.

SAO staff.

Anonymous said...

The Milt issue is very simple. If the tapes don't prove Milt told the guy to run, Milt would waive his privacy interests and play them. If he doesn't play them, he's worried. I doubt the tapes prove anything, so Milt should be posting the audio on his campaign website and shut everyone up.

Anonymous said...

Ok if the family of whomever has the tapes just post them under a phony name on Youtube. No?

Anonymous said...

We here at the PDs office have a raging debate- Who looks most like Mr. Haney of Green Acres:

Jay White
Roger Elkind
Jonathan Blecher
or Stan Blake?

There's a decent amount of money riding on this.

Anonymous said...

My vote goes to Roger Elkind, although the Mr. Haney I recall may have carried a little more heft than Roger does. Maybe you should ask Mr. Haney's daughter, who I am told is working in the Dade County State Attorney's Office now.

Anonymous said...


As you seem to be a Bruce Springsteen fan, do you agree with me that his newest single ("Surprise, Suprise, Surprise") is a piece of rubbish? I think that Bruce ripped the song off of The Simpsons episode in which Bart composes a birthday song for Lisa with the help of the Michael Jackson imposter who Homer met in the mental institution, and Bart's version of the song actually sounds better than the Springsteen version. I always that that Springsteen was a little overrated but this is really a new low.

Fake Oliver said...

Mr. Haney's daughter works in SAO????? I've got to meet her!!!!!

the trialmaster said...

the trialmaster defeated alan fine, among others.

Anonymous said...

Ignore Judge Lederman's faults for a moment. The DBR adds another public claim that candidate Brown misled judges as to his intent to make changes at Juvenile.

We also have reasonable people concluding that Lederman's demotion was directly related to a political squable over the creation of a unified family court: a fight Brown lost.

Last, there is no doubt, three weeks after the fact, that CJ Brown's actions have crippled his ability to bring the court together and framed the ineptitude of his political acumen.

In sum, the foolishness of Brown no longer depends upon Lederman, per se, but rests on his 'handling' of judges like Lederman. In that regard I take solace knowing he will be voted out in 18 months.

Anonymous said...

Elkind if he gained a few lbs , wins the Pat butram award

Anonymous said...

Just wanted to let the blog know how much I appreciated it the other day in court. Mid-trial, while questioning a state witness on what they said during a hallway interview in order to impeach them, the state vehemently objected to the line of questioning. The judge asks if I have any case law to show that I am allowed to continue down this line of questioning. I knew of the recent 3DCA case that said yes, but couldn't find it in my emails or westlaw and was scrambling. Then almost immediately, co-counsel and I just realized you "briefed" it on the blog when it came out, and a quick search of the blog allowed us to find the case, cite it to the judge, and continue on with our line of impeachment questions of the key state witness. Needless to say, the result was a Not Guilty, and I have to kind of believe the blog had a small hand in that. Thanks again.

Anonymous said...

Ever stand behind Milt in line in court and have to listen to his self important bloviating and attempts at humor?


Anonymous said...

How do we get a transcript of the tapes so that we can all work from correct facts and not assumptions?

We never tell clients to run but, some do.

What do we say when the client is told that the case is hopeless, we are not going to win, the client is facing a long jail sentence and he is from South America?

Then, the client asks us what we would do in his shoes.

Still, we have to encourage them to stay and face the music but, we all know what they are thinking.