Florida Criminal Appeals Attorney Law

Appellate Law, Criminal Defense and Appeals and Post Conviction Relief in Florida Courts, Federal District Courts and the 11th Circuit

Tag: Supreme Court

Changes at the Eleventh Circuit and 4th DCA

A big change has been announced for the Eleventh Circuit: Judge Rosemary Barkett will be leaving the Court.  According to a press release issued by the Department of State on August 23, 2013, Judge Barkett has been appointed to the Iran-United States Claims Tribunal in The Hague.  She will begin her new position on October 1, 2013.  Although she will no doubt excel in her new position, she will be sorely missed by the federal criminal defense and criminal appeals attorneys throughout the State of Florida and the rest of the Eleventh Circuit.

At least Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has no intention of leaving her position at the nation’s highest court.  At the age of 80, she is still running full steam ahead, and sees herself as the leader of the liberal opposition on one of the most activist courts in history.  For the article published in the Washington Post, click here.

Meanwhile, on a more local note, Governor Scott has appointed 2 new Judges to the 4th DCA in the last 5 months.  Judges Forst and Klingensmith were appointed in March and August of this year.  Since I’ve already seen their names in several opinions, they both seem to have hit the ground running.  You can see the official profiles of Judges Forst and Klingensmith here.  Best of luck to them in their new positions.

Gil v. State: SC11-1983: Florida Supreme Court Reverses Third DCA and Holds That Double Jeopardy Precludes DWLS and HTO Charges Arising From Same Incident

Florida’s criminal defense and criminal appeals attorneys who handle a lot a traffic offenses will be happy to know that the Florida Supreme Court has reversed the Third DCA in Gil v. State, SC11-1983, on an issue that occurs all too often.  I’m sure you’ve seen it before: just as in Gil, your client gets stopped for one reason or another, and during the stop, the officer determines that your client has been driving on a suspended license.  As in Gil, your client will probably be charged with misdemeanor DWLS, under section 322.34(2).  And if your client really lucky, he or she might also be charged as an Habitual Traffic Offender (HTO) under section 322.34(5).  Is that proper?  Not anymore.  According to the Supreme Court in Gil, because DWLS under section 322.34(2) is a degree variant of HTO under section 322.34(5), the State Attorney can no longer charge your client with offenses under both sections–assuming, of course, that the offenses both arise from the same incident.

Van Poyck v. State, SC 73662: Florida Supreme Court Order Requiring Prior Counsel to Remain As Counsel And Other Developments

Florida’s criminal defense and criminal appeals attorneys who are interested in the developments of the Van Poyck death penalty case may want to know that I found the Supreme Court order requiring Van Poyck’s prior counsel to remain on the case.  If you want to read it, click here.  In response to the Order, two of Van Poyck’s previous attorneys have just filed a Motion to Vacate and Alternative Motion for Rehearing of the Supreme Court order.

If you have time and are interested in all the procedural drama, feel free to view the other orders and motions in the case by clicking here.

Eleventh Circuit Finds Florida’s Death Penalty Statute Constitutional: What Now? Rehearing in Eleventh Circuit, or Petition for Writ of Certiorari to Supremes?

You may have read my previous post wherein I mentioned that the Eleventh Circuit has finally ruled that Florida’s death penalty statute is constitutional.  See Evans v. Sec‘y, Dept. of Corrections, No. 11-14498 (opinion issued October 23, 2012).  Well, now what can Evans do?

Only Evans and his criminal appeals lawyers know for certain what will happen next, but any appellate attorney knows that Evans generally has 3 options: (1) do nothing; (2) seek rehearing in the court of appeals; or, (3) seek discretionary review in the United States Supreme Court.  If he is going to try to seek rehearing in the Eleventh Circuit or discretionary review in the United States Supreme Court, he’ll have to act quickly.

A motion for rehearing in the Eleventh Circuit (“Petition for Panel Rehearing”) will have to be filed within 14 days after the entry of judgment.  See Fed. R. App. P. 40.  The Federal Rules of Appellate procedure can be found on the website for the Eleventh Circuit by clicking here.

If Evans decides to seek review in the United States Supreme Court, United States Supreme Court Rule 13 provides that a party seeking to file a petition for writ of certiorari will have to file the petition within 90 days after the entry of judgment.   Rule 13.3 further provides that the 90 days begins to run from the date of the entry of the judgment, not the date mandate issues.  If rehearing is sought in the lower appellate court, the 90 days begins to run from the date of the denial of rehearing or, if rehearing is granted, the subsequent entry of judgment.  The Rules of the United States Supreme Court may be viewed here.

Put simply, seeking discretionary review in the United States Supreme Court is a long shot.  For an interesting article on seeking review in the Supreme Court, view an article posted on the Mayer Brown website by clicking here.

And now the next round of waiting begins . . .

Still Waiting for Florida Supreme Court to Issue Opinions in Adkins and Hernandez Cases; Florida Department of Law Enforcement Concludes Justices Committed No Wrongdoing

Still no word from the Florida Supreme Court on two criminal appeals I’ve been watching: State v. Adkins, SC11-1878 (constitutionality of section 893.13), and State v. Hernandez, SC11-1357 (retroactivity of Padilla).  According to the dockets, oral argument was held in Adkins in December, 2011.  Oral argument was held in Hernandez in May, 2012.  A couple of my previous posts on these appeals can be found here, here, and here.

Meanwhile, attorneys who are following the battle between the Florida Supreme Court and Governor Scott might be interested to learn that FDLE recently cleared Justices Pariente, Lewis, and Quince of wrongdoing with regard to their use of notaries to complete the filing of their financial disclosures.  (Big surprise!)  You can read a report from the Palm Beach Post here.  My previous post on this topic can be found here.


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 82 other followers