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Tuesday, December 07, 2021

ALEX MICHAELS HAS PASSED AWAY

UPDATE: FUNERAL ARRAGMENTS FOR FRIDAY DECEMBER 17 

Friday, Dec. 17, 2021. Funeral is at Caballero Rivero Southern at 15011 W. Dixie Highway, North Miami, Florida 33181. Viewing is from 12-2. The burial will be afterwards.  

Alex Michaels, originally known to us as Alex Micalescu, has passed away. This is sad news. Under any measure, he has been known and will be known as a true Justice Building Legend. That word is not too strong in representing who he was. 

Alex had a super-hero origin story. Escaping communist Romania by swimming across a river. Hustling chess and backgammon in the parks of NYC. Starting as a prosecutor in Miami in Janet Reno's office, until he found his true calling as a defense attorney. 

Alex won cases no one else could win. He did it without regard to any personal or professional costs. When a client hired him, that case became his cause. In an age when the NY Times is writing op ed pieces on dirty prosecutors ruining people's lives and getting away with it, perhaps we should not be too quick to condemn Alex for some of his more public disciplinary issues. Sure he cursed at a prosecutor in court (in Romanian), but Alex often was surprised that his antics were taken so personally. He once made a prosecutor cry, and then sent her flowers as an apology. 

There are legions of stories about the cases Alex won. He caught a prosecutor lying in court during a motion to suppress, and somehow discerned that SHE had actually been in a warehouse with a police officer, canoodling, when his client was accused of breaking in and trying to steal drugs. Case dismissed. Prosecutor quit/fired. 

How many blog readers have had a Not Guilty in a first-degree murder case? Alex could have papered the walls with his office with his NGs. He had a murder case once before Judge De La O, who told us that the cross was right out of a movie, where the eye-witness broke on the stand and refused to continue with the cross.  Alex hammered him. The case was JOA'd.  

The stories go on and on. 

What we are left with is a lawyer who gave his all for his clients, in every case, every time. Law and defense were not a business for him. They were a cause, a passion. Coming from oppression, Alex understood what it meant to be oppressed. He knew what it felt like to have no voice. He was at his best standing up for a client no one else would stand up for. And he did it time and time again, giving no ground, suspicious of everything, fighting for his client until his last dying breath. 

We will not see the likes of Alex Micalescu/Michaels again. But we celebrate his life and mourn his death. 

Goodbye old friend. 

55 comments:

Anonymous said...

The best. And I am not joking. The Miami FACDL should give out an award for professionalism in his name. Yes you read that right. Too many crim def attorneys treat it as a business. Fee em and plea em. Not alex. He acted in the highest traditions of the profession. Fighting for the oppressed and for people no on else believed in.
Rest in peace. You have earned it.

Fake Alex Michaels. said...

I am crying right now. Really. I loved being him.

CAPTAIN JUSTICE said...


Rumpole. You forgot to mention Alex’s nickname. Those who were friends with him, those who knew him best, Alex was “The Mad Romanian” and we called him that in a very flattering way.

Rest In Peace Alex. You will be missed.

RICK FREEDMAN said...


I was an APD assigned to Judge David Gerstein’s courtroom. Alex was one of the ASAs. It was always fun coming to court and trying cases against him.

One of Alex’s most infamous moments as an ASA was a robbery trial we had in that court. One of the issues had to do with a gun and a swimming pool and the defendant wearing a swimsuit.

In Closing Arguments, Alex, quietly slipped out of the courtroom and pulled off his best Clark Kent AKA Superman. He came back into the courtroom wearing swim trunks and proceeded to give his Closing Argument using the gun to explain to the jury how the defendant could have wore the swim trunks and concealed the firearm and committed the robbery.

Alex has a 31 year older son, Jacob. My thoughts are with him during this extremely difficult time in his life.

REAL FORMER JUDGE said...

Heartbreaking.

I used to cringe when Alex walked into court because I knew that when I called his case - it would be an ordeal. It was never a simple plea of guilty.

Alex always knew every detail of the arrest and background of the law enforcement officer. He would slash out deficiencies in the State’s proof and the ASA’s would be on edge - because they knew he was right.

Without a doubt, the next appearance on the next court date, the State was dismissing the charges or breaking down the case - and Alex would proudly walk his client out of custody.

Alex was a one of a kind. Sy Gaer was one of a kind. Richard Sharpstein was one of a kind. There are a few other legends, but Alex certainly makes the Justice Building Hall of Fame!

Rest In Peace Attorney Michaels.

Anonymous said...

Alex and I started together at the SAO when he was known as Alexander Micalescu, the Mad Romanian. We were friends. Yes, I observed the antics over the years, and was once even on the receiving end of it, but I have my own opinion about how and why he did it. He had a great love for his late wife, and he cared deeply for their child--he was broken when she passed away so young. For all his faults, there was a lot of goodness, too. I will miss the way he remarked, "boolsheet," and would laugh every time he said it. Rest in Peace, Alex. You were never boring.

Abbe Rifkin

Rumpole said...

Thank you Abbe. That needed to be said by a prosecutor.

Mari Jimenez said...

RIP Alejandro Miculescu. I still remember your Thunderbird full of cigarette butts, your first new car-the cheapest Sentra I've ever seen, it barely had seats, your crazy Romanian driving, and how all the female jurors would call you after all the guilty verdicts you got as an ASA in DUI court. Hope you are with your mother and Dianne in heaven.
Mari Jimenez

Marc Morris said...

He was my very good friend. I could tell lots of stories about having him as co-counsel. His constant pressure on prosecutors and judges made him unique. He caused frustration and chaos. As a poker player, that was also his strategy. He consistently brought a fighter’s mentality to court. He showed up ready. I’m really going to miss him and our friendship.

Rumpole said...

Again, very nice and heartwarming Mari. Alex had a wonderful side to him not many people saw.
Hopefully he bumps into Sy and they toss back a few as well.

Mari Jimenez said...

RIP Alejandro Miculescu. So many memories-I remember your old Thunderbird full of cigarette butts and the first new car you ever bought-the most stripped down Sentra I ever saw-barely had seats- and your crazy Romanian driving. And I'll never forget how all the females in your juries would always call you to ask you out after all the guilty verdicts you got as a DUI ASA, and how proud you were at your American citizenship party were you officially became Alex Michaels, a proud American. Hope you are in heaven with Dianne and your mother.
Mari

Anonymous said...

As an ASA, I never took Alex's antics personally, although he went out of his way to apologize profusely in the hallway for whatever mud he was flinging my way in the courtroom. After I left the SAO, our offices were in the same hallway on Ponce and we would regularly stop to speak to one another. He was always kind and often with his son, whom I think of now. Rest in peace, Alex.
Amanda Cachaldora

Anonymous said...

He used to join us at the card games at Frank's. He was a great showman. Most of all he was a good person. Please post funeral details so we can pay our respects.

Anonymous said...

What is dis bull@%&!! tribute. I can't statue in front courthouse like Howslrur at UM. I once saw him intoxicated on South Beach in front of Ben & He tries at 7th street A man walking a Rottweiler comes walking towards him . He gere on his knees and fakes bitting the dog on the face. This adult 120 lb dog was so shocked it didn't know how to react. Priceless.1995.

Tristia Bauman said...

Alex was one of a kind, and in the best way. He had unforgettable swagger, a heartwarming twinkle in his eyes (especially when he recounted stories of his effective courtroom antics), and and he was always ready with a funny quip or encouraging word. There will never be another, and I'm grateful I had the chance to know him. Thank you for making me smile, Alex. May that beautiful soul rest in Peace!
Tristia Bauman (former APD)

Anonymous said...

Abbe is right about Alex's wife. When I lived in Miami Beach, Alex and she used to show up at our parties, and you could tell they had a special bond. Alex was never the same after she died. And, as Rumpole notes in his short bio, Alex knew what it was like to lose everything, and no one in the MJB ever fought harder for justice than him.

CK

Unknown said...

There are two few lawyers who do not weigh their marketablity or relationships with judges and the State and put all on the line for their clients we have lost the standard bearer for a lawyer who would fight to the end for his client. As well, the place will be a lot less entertaining Joe Klock

Anonymous said...

I handled plenty of cases with Alex as a former ASA, including one homicide he forced a quick nolle pros on via a speedy demand. He was loved by most because his passion was coupled with insight, know-how, and humor. He knew the facts of his cases, knew why it meant he would “win” whatever specific goal he was advocating for, and he wasn’t afraid to let the handling ASA know why. And he frequently did it in a colorful way, which was both endearing and extremely effective. Rest In Peace, Alex.

Matthew Baldwin

Margie Verde said...

I am so saddened by this news. Alex was a great person, a kind friend, a wonderful father and an incredible lawyer. I know he could be difficult at times but, for me, it was a always a pleasure to see him in the courtroom.

I considered him a friend and will miss him. RIP Alex.

Anonymous said...

If you began practicing with me in 2009 or later, you never saw Gaer. You never really saw Sharpstein. You certainly never saw Reno or Gerstein or any of those names.

For most of us, Alex was the last dinosaur. The last of the names you could break out if you met another Miami lawyer, say in California, knowing that you both had a common reference.

For those who pass the bar in 2022, Im not sure who they will have. Im not sure there will be anyone like that. But I hope there is.

Anonymous said...

Upon first impression, Alex was a difficult person to get But, once you got to know him, and understand his background, the knee jerk reaction definitely warmed up. He was one hell of an advocate. The justice building is getting much more vanilla …and I don’t like it

Anonymous said...

There is truly no one like Alex. On top of being slightly amusing and entertaining, he was super smart. Newer prosecutors would ask how I could be friends with him and how I put up with his antics in court. As to the first, he has a heart of gold and is true to his convictions--you have to admire that. As to the second, if he says your case is boolsheet--you need to check it more carefully--he may sound crazy, lol, but he was likely right about your case.
May he rest in power.
SJ

Anonymous said...

I was frequently at odds with Alex in the courtroom but came to know him personally after I left the SAO. We ran into each other frequently at a small wine shop in Hollywood. In that setting I met an Alex who was very intelligent, extremely interesting and deeply compassionate. May you find peace wherever you land next, my friend.

Anonymous said...

Actually Captain dofusi I was one of his long times friends for over 30 years. Nobody close to him called him that stop trying to pretend you were his friend.

Steven Levine said...

I started in the Public Defender's office January 1984. My first assignement was in the Traffic Court division - Judge Calvin Mapp. Six months later I was transferred to Judge Alphonso Sepe's division and it was there that I first met Alex Michelescu, AKA the Mad Roumanian. Sepe couldn't pronounce his last name so he called him Alex. I was always Mr. Levine, never Steve. One day Sepe was entertaining a motion by former judge Arthur Huttoe, Alex representing the State. Sepe ruled in Huttoe's favor (they were old friends). Alex objected. Sepe said "Denied." Alex objected again. Sepe said "I aready said denied". Alex said "But judge, I object to your ruling" Sepe said "Noted." Alex said "But Judge." Sepe told Alex to sit down. Alex said "But judge..." Sepe said "Alex not one more word". Alex being Alex said "But judge..." Sepe said "One more word and I will hold you in contempt." Alex said But judge... ." That was the first time, but not the last, that I saw Alex almost held in contempt. That Friday we had drinks at the Alibi Longe and laughed abo ut it together. I was writing a lot of poetry those days, and wrote this

Ode To Alex Michelescu

"All rise" calls the bailiff
As the judge walks in
"There's no talking in the courtroom"
And the roar begins to dim

"County Court is now in session
Judge Alphonso presiding
Please be seated" says the Bailiff
"Including the two in the back that are hiding"

The first case is called up
State versus Rodriguez
No witnesses are present
And the Prosecutor says "IF it pleases..."

"Move for Dismissal" cries the PD
And he yells it out of turn
"Mr. Levine this is a courtroom
And if there's one thing you must learn'

'It's patience is a virtue
And eloquence an art
Now Alex make your announcement
So Mr. Levine can do his part"

The Prosecutor's stymied
He doesn't know what to do
Without a single witness
His case he cannot prove

But the Mad Roumanian is clever
And he formulates a plan
His movements seem mysterious
Like a magician's sleight of hand

His messengers are dispatched
They bolt from the courtroom like lightening
His face contorts to a twisted smile
And the outlook becomes frightening

A nightmare flashes through my head
As the tension begins to mount
I hear the Foreman announce to the court
"Guilty on all counts!"

My client desperately grasps my arm
As the Bailiff leads him out
"Don't let them take me away Mr. Levine!'
'Don't let them take me away" he shouts

I need to move, I need to act
"Motion for New Trial"
"Denied" says the judge emphatically
As he looks at Alex with a smile

The end is here, there is no more
Clearly I have failed
And the only thing that's left to do
Is pay a visit to the jail

Then I haear the sound of the gavel
It's ringing in my ear
As the judge continues repeating
"Mr. Levine, Mr. Levine, are you here?"


"Move for Dismissal!' I repeat again
"Lack of Prosecution!"
"Move for Continuance" entreaties the State
with bitter resolution

"Motion for Continuance denied"
'Case dismissed - Lack of Prosecution"
But the judge tells Alex not to feel so bad
'Cause he's improving his elocution!

I look at Mr. Michelescu
His face is hanging down
And these words gnash through his red brown beard
"Iz only ze first round!"

For tomorrow is another day
And new battles shall be fought
As the bailiff mutters under his breath
"Don't worry, he'll soon get caught"

The next case is called up
State versus Dominguez
The Prosecutor slowly rises to his feet
And says to the court "If it pleases..."

I will miss you Alex. The Justice Building loses one great champion and I lose a great friend




Brian Kirlew said...

There is no shortage of superlatives to describe Alex Michaels. He was a legendary one-of-a-kind criminal defense attorney. Many criticized the way he practiced. Believed he was nothing more than a gunslinger. But Alex was a throwback to a simpler time. He was the voice for so many people who found themselves in the criminal justice system and down on their luck. He took on the cases that other people wanted 5x the fee for. When I first went into private practice, I thought he was undercutting everyone else. What I grew to learn is he was providing a service for people who could only afford what they could afford. He made a good living for a long time being the advocate for those who wanted a true street fighter. He always showed up to work. Never stopped running from courtroom to courtroom with his bombastic personality. I would always step out of line to allow him to go first. I knew he had more courtrooms than I did and quite frankly, I loved the entertainment. When I was an APD, he would sometimes show up at our happy hours when one of the lawyers was leaving the office. He was so generous. Buying drinks for everyone. We will all miss him. Enjoy your rest, Alex. You've earned it.

Brian Kirlew

anonymous said...

I have known Alex since he was an Assistant State Attorney in the 1980's and have personal knowledge of the hardships he suffered. While an attorney in his native Romania, he was jailed for speaking out against the communist regime. He eventually came to the US. Janet Reno recognized his many talents and hired him. He eventually entered private practice while still caring and supporting his elderly parents. He was a fierce and effective advocate winning many difficult trials and sometimes spending time behind bars for a few days after getting his client acquitted.

Tragedy struck when his wife died of cancer and left him to raise his young son alone. After his father died in the early part of 2001, he continued to care for his mother to whom he was devoted. She died a few years ago.

His talents in trial advocacy were exceptional. He was 100% committed to his clients, never afraid of going to trial no matter what the odds. I always think of Alex when I read “The Man in the Arena” quote by Theodore Roosevelt.

“It is not the critic that counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds, who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends his himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst knows , if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”

RIP my friend.
Kathy Hamilton

Paul Calli said...

I was a CLE and an Assistant Public Defender from 1992 through 1997. Alex was always kind and humble to me. As a new lawyer, the fact that he would take a few minutes to talk and confide mattered. Once, enduring the abuse of a county court judge during a crowded docket because I had the audacity to fight, feeling very much alone, Alex went out of his way to give me a pat on the back and whispered "that is bull-sheet - you keep fighting." Alex's graciousness made an impression. Once I left, I didn't go back to the Gerstein building often. But every time I went, if I saw Alex, he would always extend his hand and offer a kind word.

He was a good and kind person, a devoted, passionate, highly effective defense attorney, and as you write, a legend. The last of a dying breed.

Godspeed.

Aki said...

I worked for Alex as a legal assistant for a year and words cannot describe how heartbroken I am. We met at a poker table and long after I left working for him we ran into each other in Barcelona- of all places. Alex was difficult to work for, but he was the most amazing man and father and funny as all hell. To this day I quote him yelling at me in his thick accent to get something done. I loved watching him in court, understanding how he approached his cases and his fearlessness against absolutely everyone. As serious as he was, he could always take a joke no matter what the circumstance was. Whenever I would ask about his personal life he would always respond "what are you writing a f*cking book?! get to work!" LOL. I remember he had a client and yelled at me "ALEKSANDRA!!! BRING ME A BIG PLATE OF FRUIT!!! AND NONE OF THOSE F*CKING MELONS. I WANT EXTRA PINEAPPLES!" Then I would return with a huge plate and only one piece of melon until he asked nicely. He would apologize and laugh and roll his eyes.

I will miss you so much- rest easy Alex. Thank you for the memories and sorry I quit a couple days after I put in my two weeks notice. Thanks for forgiving me. You were the best. We have all been so lucky to know you.

Aki said...

Will you ever reveal your identity? I worked for Alex for a year and I would often read your tweets out loud. He loved them and we’d all laugh

Anonymous said...

May he rest in peace. I did not know him. Any link on the web with a picture of him? Want to see if I recognize him.

Phil R said...

I have been too overcome with grief to even bring myself to read these comments until this morning. I cannot add much. Fearless? No lawyer was more fearless. Dedicated ? Perhaps maybe even too dedicated. A good friend and loyal? No. A great friend. And more loyal than I can say. Funny? More than we can imagine. A true zest for life. Devoted to his parents and his son, who as many have pointed out, he had to raise alone because of the devastating tragedy of the death of his wife.
I’ll never meet another Alex in a dozen lifetimes. I watched in awe as a young ASA as he prowled Judge Norman Gersten’s courtroom during the day and then caroused all night.
Did you know Alex was a Francophile? He spoke French. He would sit with my wife Jackie - another Francophile- and discuss obscure French writers in French. And as I say there not understanding anything he would slyly say thy were making plans to elope to Paris.

One day I walked into the Dade County jail and heard “pheel…. Pheel” and saw him in the holding cell on the first Floor. Thinking he was seeing a client, I waved distractedly until he said “No. I’m in here.” with a sheepish grin. It is a long story that ended well. I think of him every time I walk into that jail.
I play some poker. But Alex was playing at a different level. No surprise to learn that as a young man he hustled chess and backgammon in the parks of NYC. We had a memorable dinner in Vegas one night. Check had to be a thousand bucks with wine. I couldn’t even leave a tip even after showing him my pockets were stuffed with poker winnings. He was generous to a fault.

I’m not sure I want to work in a courthouse where there is no possibility of ever hearing “pheel” again and seeing my friend and having a cup of coffee as my blood pressure rises as he tells me a new tale of his antics and figuring out how I can help him out of another mess. And yet. He won more murder trials than anyone else I ever met.

He is and always will be my friend. I will miss him greatly.
Phil Reizenstein

Unknown said...

Rest in Peace Alex! Beneath his very rough exterior I knew him as a kind and gentle soul. He will me missed!

Anonymous said...

So much better when you write as Phil. Thanks for the post. I hope your friend did not suffer in death.

Anonymous said...

Hate to say it but I think the time on suspension and away from the hustle of the REG had a real negative impact on Alex’s health. When he finally came back, it was pretty clear that his health had really deteriorated while away.

Rest In Peace friend

Anonymous said...

Due to the nature of the comment and how we both ended up there, I will keep this anonymous. The first time I met Alex was in an anger management class run by the bar. There was this girl complaining about a Judge who referred her to the bar. After she finishes her rant, Alex says "'Dis is boolsheet!" The girl says "I know! Right?" He says "No! Your story 'da boolsheet! Your calendar is your responsibility." The rest of the class was comic gold!

We were never close, but he was very kind to me and always said hello when we crossed paths.

David Troyer said...

I am so sorry to hear about the passing of Alex Michaels. I remember him well from our days in the State Attorney's Office. He was a remarkable person, with a remarkable personal story, escaping a repressive Communist regime by swimming across a river. He exhibited a level of determination and perseverance rarely seen, even in trial lawyers, while also having a kind and gentle side to him. Rest in Peace, Alex.

Anonymous said...

I did not have the pleasure of knowing Alex personally, but I admired his bulldog courage and utter fearlessness. I loved watching him in court, manhandling the prosecution and filling the room with his presence. He struck me as someone whose gruff demeanor hid a sensitive soul. Reading these heartfelt tributes, I wish I had known him better or had the opportunity to work a case with him. The REGJB is a smaller, darker place without Alex Michaels.

RIP

Adriana Collado-Hudak

Mary Varaitis on behalf of the Varaitis Family said...

When our sistet met Alex we knew she had met her match and she knew how to keep him grounded. Sadly he leaves behind his pride and joy his son Jacob. Thank you all for sharing the stories and memories. We truly appreciate the kind words.

Anonymous said...

Very sad about Alex’s passing. His sense of humor, kindness, warmth and generosity are what I will miss the most. Great guy. May he RIP.
Brian McCormack

Jonathan Blecher said...

Walk into the building for an early coffee and sitting with Alex for just 10 minutes started your day with a smile. Loved that guy for over 35 years. MJB without him will never be the same.

Anonymous said...

Alex knew how to make everyone feel special. He was so easy and generous with his compliments. Even if in other contexts made by others they might have felt extremely inappropriate, it always was fine with Alex. That's because he had a heart of gold and was so compassionate and loving deep down. I always loved running into him. A young ASA I assumed did not even know him said she was distraught and had yelled out loud when she heard the news. I commiserated with her and she said, "I mean, who's gunna tell me I'm hot all the time now??" Of course, she was joking, but it was so perfect. It's just SO Alex. I have to now reckon with the fact that I was not the only girl he flirted with or called princess ;) My friend told me after his passing that he always called her his Syrian Princess. Oh Alex, you charmer. It just makes me smile how you spread your love around. Thanks for being bold, loving, expressive, working with such passion, and even though you made things "personal" it was never REALLY personal. Everyone who knew you well enough knew that. I will miss you and I am so sorry I wasn't able to say goodbye. I echo the sentiments of sadness and dimness in the courthouse without you. What a loss for the justice system and Miami overall. You will remain in our hearts and minds and you should rest easy as you did what everyone hopes to accomplish in life - you made an impact. You lived many lifetimes in one. You should be so proud, just as I know you made proud your family and best of friends. My love to you and them.

Anonymous said...

One morning, Alex was in court awaiting his turn like the rest of us, while a pro se couple were pleading to the judge not to allow the state to call their little child as a witness against a gang of armed home-invasion robbers. The boy had been playing with his friends in the block where the robbery took place and had seen the robbers and had picked up a gun that the robbers had dropped as they fled. The ASA insisted that the kid was an essential witness and had to testify but the parents were obviously terrified of being attacked or killed by the defendants' gang. Alex was listening and said "That's bullsheeet", walked to the podium and offered to represent the child pro bono to quash the state subpoena. The ASA accused Alex of "soliciting" because the parents had not asked him for his services, but after a few minutes, agreed to strike the kid from the witness list.

Anonymous said...

I didn't like the bad Alex, the one that was rude and angry in Court, but I liked the man behind the mask. I knew him as a young prosecutor at Juve, passionate and intense. He grew up in a crushing political system, escaped to the west and came to America. He educated himself and became a loving husband and father, only to be tortured by her untimely death, and survived that to raise his teenage son. Some things aren't fair and the arc of his life was not entirely either. But it was a life I will remember and grieve for.

Anonymous said...

Fake Alex must continue on. Obviously Alex is watching from above and talking shit about all our fine judges on a daily basis.

Theodore Mastos said...

I join in with the many tributes to Alex. He was unique in every way. Tempered by a tragic series of events in his life, he rose above the fray and became one of the greatest advocates ever to walk the halls of the Gerstein Building. Too bad that building has no sense of history because he is worthy of a star status. So many giants have walked those corridors in my 48 years in that building. I am proud to have had Alex as a friend. And, he was truly one of the giants.

Roger S. Kernicky said...

Roger S. Kernicky
I had the unique opportunity to work with Alex as both an Assistant State Attorney
when he worked for Janet Reno and being deposed by him when he was a Defense Attorney
during my time in Miami-Dade County as a Detective/Criminal Investigator. Alex always treated me
fairly and with respect. Alex always had numerous stories about growing up in Romania under oppression.
Years later I ran into Alex at JFK Airport in New York, when I was between flights. Alex remembered me and
picked up where he had left off years earlier, and never skipped a beat!
Alex was always a true professional. I was shocked of hear of his passing, and know he will be missed!
Rest In Peace my friend…..
Roger S. Kernicky
Retired Agent with the Palm Beach Sheriff’s Office/Retired Task Force Officer
with the Drug Enforcement Administration/ Miami Field Division/
West Palm Beach District Office.

Aki said...

Phil, I worked for Alex and he always spoke so highly of you. He really adored you and thought you were an exceptional lawyer and good friend. I hope you find peace and comfort in knowing how much he admired, respected and cared for you.

Anonymous said...

I was shocked to hear of Alex’s death.
I worked with Alex initially when he was
An Assistant State Attorney under Janet Reno
When I worked as a Detective/Investigator.
Alex was always very friendly and professional
And often talked about his growing up in Romania.
I later met with him on several occasions, when he
was a Defense Attorney representing clients that
I had investigated and arrested. Several years later,
I ran into Alex at JFK Airport in New York, while
waiting for a flight to Detroit to visit my parents.
I was surprised that Alex remembered me by name,
and picked-up where he had left off several years prior.
Rest in piece my friend, you Mad Romanian!
Roger S. Kernicky
Retired Narcotics Agent/Palm Beach Sheriff’s Office
and Task Force Officer with the Drug Enforcement
Administration/Miami Field Division/West Palm Beach
District Office.

Anonymous said...

Enough wit deez platitudes and tributes; I just threw my thesaurus against the wall for the 10th time and scared my dog. I can talk like a snobby lawyer so I will leave you all with dis, I mean this. I request a statue similar to one paying tribute to Professor Hausler at the U. of Miami school of law courtyard. Pony up some of that federal drug fee. And a ring of honor should be put outside the Gerstein building, me and Sy Gaer for starters. Better yet dis building is bullsheet and should be torn down and name the library after me because I spent so much time in the library during my career. And all you people wining over my passing, you are bumming me out. I'm having a ball in heaven, I'm taking money from the apostles left and right in speed chess.

Anonymous said...

I think it is AMAZING that Alex gets 50 comments of sadness and praise. That is quite a tribute.

Especially when compared to some of our Judges who passed - and they only got less than 10 comments. It says a lot about the love for Alex.

Anonymous said...

Alex touched everyone because he was so good at what he did yet was never full of himself. He did not take himself seriously and as busy as he was, he always had time to say hello and chat. He was friendly and full of mischievous humor but also so vulnerable and never afraid to be authentically human. He had a theatrical flair and genuinely liked to put on a show. He wasn't afraid to speak his truth and loved to rattle the high and mighty. He fought like hell against injustice in any form. First and foremost, he was a valiant warrior.

Anonymous said...

Tried a 2 month federal multi-defendant case with him. We were convinced he’d be found in contempt. He tried the s%#t out of that case and the very strict Judge loved him because he knew he loved the law and fiught within its limits for his clients. You will be missed. - Rachel Dooley.

Yane & Yusmila said...

R.I.P Pikachu.. You will be missed. It was a pleasure working for you and being your friend for over 20 Years.. So many funny and crazy memories together. You will always be the best attorney in Miami with the most beautiful blue eyes like you liked to be called by us. Thankyou for everything.... LOVE ALWAYS YANE & YUSMILA.

Judy Cullinan said...

I loved Alex, personally & professionally. He was a gentle, funny soul behind the bluster, who genuinely cared about his clients and the law. Alex was an outstanding lawyer;smart, fearless, ingenious in front a jury, a joy to watch in the courtroom. While I recognize not everyone felt joy when Alex walked in a courtroom, I admired that Alex was cognizant of his oft times chilly reception, but just didn't care. He was there to do his job & he did it well,consequences be damned! REG will not see the likes of Alex Michaels again and we are all the poorer for it.
Judy Cullinan