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. THIS BLOG HAS BEEN CALLED "THE DEFINITIVE BLOG ON MIAMI CRIMINAL LAW" BY THE NY TIMES, THE WASHINGTON POST, THE POPE, AND DONALD TRUMP WHO ALSO ONCE SAID IT WAS "REALLY GREAT". POST YOUR COMMENTS, OR SEND RUMPOLE A PRIVATE EMAIL AT HOWARDROARK21@GMAIL.COM

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

APPLICANTS SWARM FOR JUDGE BLAKE'S SPOT


Twenty-two lawyers (including some county court judges)  with visions of black robes dancing in their heads have filed to replace Judge Blake on the bench.

Bonus trivia question: Who did Judge Blake succeed on the bench and how did he get his spot?

Query: How does the JNC not send up Milena Abreu who ran a fantastic campaign and lost by the less than one percentage point?

See you in court.




Monday, September 26, 2016

NEW GRUNTS

The new ASAs, fresh out of law school, shiny new suits, fancy graduation-gift briefcases, and fully indoctrinated on the Miami-ASA way, hit the courtrooms today.

Over the weekend, long time ASA Frank Ledee was honored by the League of Prosecutors as Prosecutor of the Year.

We could tell the new ASAs a lot. But all they need to do is look at Mr. Ledee. Hardworking. Fair. A man of his word. Respected by his peers and the judiciary.

There's lots of advice new ASAs will receive. Some of them unfortunately will be looking to make a name for themselves by being tough. That just shows they have no experience and perspective. Some will be sneaky in trying to win cases. All that will do is get them a bad name. And some will work hard, make mistakes, pick themselves up and dust themselves off after screwing up in court and will try harder the next time but won't hold past failures against future defendants. These will be the ones who will succeed.

It takes a lifetime to make a name for yourself. And about a minute to ruin it.
Good luck and welcome to the REGJB, our work home since before you were born.

See you in court. When you least expect it, we will be the defense attorney whispering some friendly advice in your ear when you need it.

Saturday, September 24, 2016

NFL WEEK THREE 2016

BREAKING ESPN confirming that Miami Marlins pitching ace Jose Fernandez is one of three people killed in a boating accident off of Miami Beach this morning. 

Sad news that reminds us sports is merely a part of life and it is life that is priceless and precious. 

The surprise of the week is that the majority of the Survivor pool is picking your Miami Dolphins, at home against the Browns.

After another scintillating week of picks last week, we confidently take on a difficult week three schedule, starting with the Cleveland Browns +9 to keep it close against the Fins in their home opener. WIN

Staying in FLA, we like the Bucs at home -5 over the tinsel town Rams.

The Raiders + 1 in Tennessee, WIN and Carolina -7 at home over the Peterson-less Vikes. loss

Under 51 Chargers at Indy, and under 44 Bears at Cowpokes.

SURVIVOR POOL 
Losses last week included everyone's favourite "Fake Freddy Moldovan" and (to Dan Lurvey's delight) "A judge smashed my windshield".  27 solider on. BTW if you've never read Stephen King's classic short story (originally published under the nom-de-plume of Richard Bachman in 1979) The Long Walk, now is a good time to do it. One of the best short stories we have ever read. 
(Basco is the late pick with the Fins). 
Update: Sadly, Sharon Cohen and Survive didn't. 

Thursday, September 22, 2016

FIRST DAY OF FALL

Today at 10:21 was the Fall Equinox. 
No, that is not tumbling to the ground at a local gym. 

The Fall Equinox,  or Autumnal Equinox, as any robed reader would tell you, is when (other than the polar regions, duh!) the sun rises due east and sets due west along the horizon. 
The Spring Equinox is the only other day this occurs. From this point forward, daylight is shorter, nights longer, but REGJB judges lunch "hours" remain the same. 

"Rumpole, what does this mean?" you may say. 
Consider this- on September 1, 2016 there was 12 hours and 38 minutes of sunlight. 
On October 1, 2016 there will be 11 hours and 54 minutes of daylight. We are losing one minute and thirty seconds of daylight, per day from now until the winter solstice. 

Peace out- and don't curse the darkness- light a candle.



Monday, September 19, 2016

AFORMS BY EMAIL!!!

Breaking!! Angelina Jolie has filed for divorce from Brad Pitt. !!! (as per TMZ ). While no one should ever celebrate a divorce, and we don't, we sense a slight opening...maybe a few months when she's ready to date again... 

Wanna get an a-form mailed to you? Scroll down and find out how. 
The FACDLers have been busy bees lately. 
They recently received some shocking news: there is gambling going on in this establishment. 


No, really. Word has slowly filtered back to FACDL that lawyers were being forced to wait to see clients at Metro West because a few of the interview rooms were closed. One was closed because a paper-clip was found unaccounted for, on the floor, and a team was pondering the way to remove it safely. A second room suffered from some water being spilled from a paper cup, and the crack staff at Metro West was awaiting the arrival of the team from FEMA.

Colleagues,
 The FACDL-Miami liaison committee met with corrections today to discuss the issues of extended wait times and client access. Please see the update below.
 Our liaison committee recently met with the Department of Corrections.  Many of you have asked about the delays our members have been experiencing when attempting to visit their clients at Metro West due to the closure of certain visitation areas.  We confirmed that this should no longer occur after the end of September.  The fourth visitation room, which had been closed for a period of time, has been re-opened and is in use now.  The larger contact room, which is undergoing repairs due to ceiling leaks and floor tiles being replaced, is expected to re-open by September 30th.
 Michelle Estlund heads up this committee and she will be providing an update as to the issues of getting our non-attorney professionals admitted more easily into all of the county jails sometime next week.
Brian Kirlew, Esq.

And if that wasn't bad enough to age our long suffering president, he received a classified briefing on delays at the clerk's office that was down-right terrifying: (keep reading for the a-form email info)

Colleagues,
 As many of you are well aware, the delays on the 9th floor during peak morning hours is unbearable. It’s taking up to a half hour or more at times to get certified copies or to view documents in the court file. In an effort to relieve the delays, FACDL-Miami, along with the DCBA Criminal Courts Committee, has been in contact with the Clerk’s office to see if something could be done to relieve the backlog on the 9th floor attorneys window. In June, two deputy clerks were let go for budgetary reasons. That directly affected the staffing of the attorneys window. Both of those clerks will be brought back effective October 3rd.
 Also effective October 3rd, in addition to any requests to view files, you may also email requests for A-Forms to felonyfr@miamidade.gov. The A-Forms will be emailed back to you directly and the files will be waiting at the Attorneys service area. Files that are in court or at the record center may take one to two days to be retrieved.  

The email feature is intended to reduce delays for the attorney requesting the A-Form or file, and the attorneys waiting in line for other matters. It will only work if the defense bar actually utilizes the service. So instead of waiting in line for an A-Form or to get copies from the court file, send an email to felonyfr@miamidade.gov instead.

A big thank you to Jude Faccidomo and Jonathan Meltz for their efforts on this issue.
 Brian Kirlew, Esq

A forms by email?? What will they think of next? Wi-fi in the REGJB? We can dream, can't we? 

See you in court with stacks of a-forms being emailed just for fun. 

AS FLORIDA GOES ....

Florida is considered a bell-weather state. The problems a candidate has here are illustrative of the problems they have in other states. 

Item: After a disastrous summer spent insulting the parents of a dead marine killed in combat, and demonstrating a remarkable inability to grasp fundamental issues (for example, Trump did not know what the nuclear triad is and pondered why we spend so much money on nuclear weapons but don't use them) Donald Trump is polling ahead of Hillary Clinton in Florida. 

Why? 

Because Clinton cannot, at the moment, reassemble the Obama coalition in Florida. While she leads Trump among educated voters, women voters, millennials, and Hispanics, she doesn't lead Trump by the numbers Obama won those groups over Romney. 

Thus, Donald J Trump, the least prepared person in the history of this Universe to be president, has a chance to become President of the United States. 

Sorry to ruin your Monday. 

Who's in trial? 

This football Sunday made one thing very clear: it wasn't that the Dolphins were good that kept their game against the Seahawks close in week one. It was how bad the Seahawks were. Thus, the Fins were blown out in week two. 

Newman!
Speaking of the the Fins, we didn't get a invite to a victory party that Circuit Judge Ed Newman's staff threw for him this past Friday, but we heard it was very nice, including the ol-softie tearing up at the end. 

See You In Court.

Sunday, September 18, 2016

NFL 2016 WEEK TWO

We went a nice 5-2 to open the season which isn't perfect, but pays the bills for the nice Cabs and Petit Sirahs we ordered. 

There's been some chatter about the Fins covering this week. We don't like it but we are staying away from the game. The same with the Bucs at Arizona. Some weird comments about the Cardinals looking off kilter in the pre-season have us staying away from this one as well. 

But no reason not to take the Lions -6 at home over the Titans. 

The Skins bounce back with a win over the Cowpokes. DC's coach is 3-0 in the second game of the season after losing the first. 

We're riding the Raiders to the AFC championship game!  Take Oakland (soon to be Vegas) -4.5 over the sinking Falcons. 

Under 47 Broncos/Colts; Over 43.5 KC and Texans

Panthers the consensus pick in the survivor pool.  The weak pick today could be the Ravens. Not a great team. On the road. The Cleveland QB Josh McCown has been with the team a while and has a better feel for the receivers than RGIII did and had a good pre-season. We're picking the Brownies +5 as a home dog (you know we love those) in the Dog Pound to win and the Ravens to regress to the norm and lose one. Baltimore is a 9-7 or 8-8 team at best. 




Waiting on Lucy Lew and Immache. 
Check back around 1- waiting for the last few stragglers to pick and we have cross training until about 12:45. 

Friday, September 16, 2016

LIGHT MY FIRE

Update: Several people think the doors were installed to stop fleeing prisoners. But this doesn't make sense. If a prisoner is fleeing and running down the escalators, then the doors are not in his or her way as they perambulate to the first floor. Which reminds us of a story about a fleeing prisoner, Judge Sepe and Kiko Sarasua and a perfectly thrown punch. Next time you see Kiko, as him about it. 

The Richard E Gerstein Justice Building. An enigma. A riddle wrapped in a mystery. There are hidden courtrooms. A third and fifth floors with original and bizarre courtroom architecture that differs from floors two and four.

If the REGJB was a woman, she would be Ilsa- Ingrid Bergman in Casablanca. Who does she really love, Rick or her husband the resistance war hero Victor Lazlo?

And now the mystery of the second floor doors.
 Why are they there? Why are they always closed? Why aren't the doors to the escalators to the other floors also closed?

There are key holes in remote areas of walls in our aged courthouse. There are secret bathrooms, oddly shaped rooms, and hallways that have desks that haven't been used in thirty years.

And now we have the mystery of the doors.

As to the title? The doors- Jim Morrison. "Come on Baby Light My Fire". The Doors. Morrison was prosecuted in the REGJB by the eponymous original State Attorney Richard E Gerstein.
See? It all fits if you are over fifty.

Have a good football "fall" weekend.