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. POST YOUR COMMENTS, OR SEND RUMPOLE A PRIVATE EMAIL AT HOWARDROARK21@GMAIL.COM. Winner of the prestigious Cushing Left Anterior Descending Artery Award.
Monday, August 13, 2018
JUDICIAL ELECTIONS 2018 - EARLY VOTING BEGINS: PART ONE - CIRCUIT COURT
THE CAPTAIN REPORTS:
JUDICIAL ELECTIONS 2018 ..... EIGHT CONTESTS .....
Voters will go to the polls on Tuesday, August 28th to elect eight new judges in Miami-Dade County, three Circuit and five County Court seats. But, instead of waiting until election day to vote, you have two other options. First, you can do what THE CAPTAIN does - order an absentee ballot and vote from the comfort of your kitchen table; bonus - postage is free. Or, beginning today, you can hit one of 19 early voting locations and you should benefit from the shorter lines.
Here is the ballot the voters of Miami-Dade will see for the eight contested judicial elections:
This contest pits the only incumbent who drew opposition in the 2018 election against an attorney from the largest insurance defense firm in the State of Florida, Cole, Scott & Kissane.
Elisabeth Espinosa - she worked as an Assistant State Attorney in Tampa for six years before joining CSK in 2014. She handles the defense of insurance claims. Her firm appears before Judge David Miller regularly. When Espinosa filed against him, CSK filed Motions to Recuse Miller in all of their cases where he was the judge. Miller denied the Motions and CSK appealed those denials to the 3rd DCA. The 3rd affirmed Miller. Espinosa has raised $105,000 from some 320 contributors; she also kicked in $25,000 of her own money.
David Miller - INCUMBENT - he first won election in 2000 defeating Arthur Spiegel and David Peckins (in a runoff). In 2012, his last election, he soundly defeated Mauricio Padilla with 62% of the vote. Miller is known throughout the courthouse circles to be a tough no nonsense judge. In criminal court he gained a reputation for tough sentencing. In civil court, he in known as one of the hardest working judges on the bench, showing up to work at 6 AM. Miller has raised $289,000 from 659 contributors and loaned his campaign an extra $51,000.
GROUP 14 (OPEN SEAT - Judge Cindy Lederman retiring)
The only three person contest, this seat could end up in a runoff if no candidate garners 50% plus one vote. The runoff would take place during the November general election.
Vivianne del Rio - she is an ASA and has been with the Miami-Dade State Attorney's Office (SAO) for her entire 26 year career. Since 2012, she has headed the Post Conviction Unit and she reviews claims of actual innocence. Del Rio has raised $110,000 from 261 contributors and loaned her campaign $53,000.
Renee Gordon - she is an Assistant Public Defender (APD) and has spent her entire 22 year career at the Miami-Dade Public Defender’s office, part of that time as a contract attorney for the office. She has devoted much of her career to bettering the juvenile justice system including by managing the Miami Halfway House and as a participant in the Dept of Juvenile Justice’s Quality Assurance Program. Ms. Gordon ran for an open Circuit Court seat in 2016 in a four person race eventually won by Mark Blumstein. She missed out on the run-off by a mere 1,737 votes. She has raised $103,000 from 471 donors and she has kicked in $47,000 of her own money.
Louis Martinez - he began his law career in Chicago spending six years with the Cook County SAO. He spent his next five years working in Miami for the Office of the Attorney General, most of that time with the Medicaid Fraud Unit. Since 2007 he has been in private practice concentrating in the areas of administrative and criminal law. He is also Of Counsel to Diaz Reus & Targ. Also, since 2008, Martinez has been a member of the Miami Dade Expressway Authority including acting as its Chairman from 2015-2017. He has raised $56,000 from 117 contributors and loaned his campaign $30,000.
GROUP 25 (OPEN SEAT - Judge Dennis Murphy retiring)
Yery Marrero - she spent the first ten years of her career as an APD with the Miami-Dade PD. In 2000, she went into private practice forming Marrero Bozorgi where she has continued in the field of criminal defense law for the past 18 years. She has also served as a Traffic Court Magistrate. She has raised $89,000 from 292 donors and added $105,000 of her own money.
Joe Perkins - he has been an attorney for more than nine years and works for the law firm Garbett, Allen & Roza. His practice is in the area of complex commercial litigation, with an emphasis on representing small and large businesses, banks and financial institutions, and governmental entities, including the FDIC. He has represented individuals who are victims of fraud, the State of Florida, Department of Financial Services seeking to recover from insurance company executives accused of fraud, and financial institutions seeking to recover loss caused by bank fraud, among other experience. He has raised $82,000 from 153 contributors and kicked in $5,000 of his own money.
So, readers, two questions: 1} Who will you be voting for; and 2} Who do you think will win?
COMING TUESDAY, COUNTY COURT .......
CAPTAIN OUT .......