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THE DEATH OF DIGNITY

2018-10-10T14:05:53+00:00Uncategorized|

There will be no winners in the confirmation process of  Judge Brett Kavanaugh. Americans were shown the true colors of our two-party system miserably at work. Mudslinging is too kind of a term to use in describing "the search for the truth."  It seems that the "agenda" of the parties takes precedence over fairness, civility and downright professional conduct. Senators were seen trying their best to get their fifteen minutes of fame before a national audience in the hopes that [...]

Taking blood in DUI crash cases

2018-09-11T08:45:42+00:00Uncategorized|

      In Birchfield v. North Dakota, 136 S. Ct. 2160 (2016) the United States Supreme Court ruled that warrants were necessary to extract blood from a motorist involved in DUI crash cases where someone was injured.  Although some exceptions exist, this changed the way police obtained blood to determine alcohol content.  However, more recently, Florida’s [...]

STAND YOUR GROUND

2018-08-08T11:20:43+00:00Uncategorized|

Much has been said lately about the "stand your ground" law. There are some misconceptions that the public has concerning its applicability. Some people believe that the law allows a person to use deadly force in any situation where they are not the aggressor. If they are the victim of a simple battery, they believe that [...]

U.S. Supreme Court rules a warrant is required for cell tower data

2018-07-05T14:27:27+00:00Uncategorized|

Recently, the United States Supreme Court in Carpenter v. United States (June 28, 2018) ruled that law enforcement must apply for a warrant to obtain the cell tower records of a citizen to establish what the court termed "a virtual timeline and map of a person’s whereabouts — information that is detailed, encyclopedic, and effortlessly compiled".  The opinion extends the [...]

Jury’s deliberations questioned

2018-05-31T09:13:15+00:00Uncategorized|

The United States Supreme Court handed down an opinion that changed the law on whether a citizen or the court can involve itself in the deliberations of a jury (See: Pina-Rodriguez v. Colorado, 580 U.S. ___ (2016)). In the past, all matters that inhere in the verdict could not be looked into. In other words, [...]

New Proposed Constitutional Amendment

2018-04-04T11:57:11+00:00Uncategorized|

Proposition 96 also called "Marcy's Law" is a proposed Constitutional Amendment to Florida's Constitution that would add significant rights to victims of crimes.  On its face, it is well intended, however there are unintended negative consequences that the drafters did not anticipate. For example, anyone who thinks that some people don't "game" the system are [...]

Not Everything Legal is Moral

2018-02-05T13:22:56+00:00Uncategorized|

Florida law allows the office of the state attorney to issue subpoenas for investigative purposes pursuant to Florida Statute chapter 27. When such a subpoena is issued, it commands the presence of the individual involved. Because there may be Fifth Amendment issues (self-incrimination) Florida Statute 914.04 holds that the individual subpoenaed to give testimony is [...]

Police can stand their ground

2018-02-05T13:24:11+00:00Uncategorized|

The question as to whether or not police officers, employing deadly force while conducting an arrest were limited to the force permitted by statute in making arrests was recently taken up in an appellate decision out of Florida’s fourth District Court of Appeal. In State v. Peraza, 226 So. 3d 937 (Fla. 4th DCA 2017) [...]

Supreme Court changes a long standing rule

2017-11-16T11:10:26+00:00Uncategorized|

A general rule has been broken by the U.S. Supreme court this past term.  It ruled that when clear evidence emerges after a jury verdict that there was racial bias during deliberations, the trial judge must make an exception to the usual rule protecting the secrecy of deliberations in order to determine whether the defendant [...]

Evidence Destruction

2017-09-19T14:41:36+00:00Uncategorized|

The Florida Supreme Court has recently come down with two cases which deal with due process when the state destroys evidence. The first is Patterson v. State found at 199 So. 3d 253 (Fla. 2016). That case involved the arson of a vehicle. The state's expert conducted a forensic analysis of the truck and before [...]

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