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TFB - Daily News Summary - Dec 7, 2017

Thursday, December 7, 2017  

THE FLORIDA BAR

Daily News Summary

An electronic digest of media coverage of interest to members of The Florida Bar compiled each workday by the Public Information and Bar Services Department and distributed to the Board of Governors, section and committee chairs, voluntary bar presidents, members of the judiciary and others.

 

Dec. 7, 2017

 

Legal Profession

BAR ASSOCIATION’S PRESIDENT CHAMPIONS COMMUNITY

Palm Beach Post | Article | December 06, 2017

Dedicated to making a difference in her practice and in the community, Rosalyn Sia Baker-Barnes was elected president of the Palm Beach County Bar Association, an organization of more than 3,000 lawyers. She’s the first African-American female to serve in this role. In her legal practice at Searcy Denney Scarola Barnhart & Shipley, P.A. , where she is a shareholder, she focuses on assisting victims in personal injury, medical negligence and product liability cases.

 

Judiciary

ST. LUCIE JUDGE PHILLIP YACUCCI JR. RECEIVES PUBLIC REPRIMAND BY FLORIDA SUPREME COURT

TCPalm | Article | December 06, 2017

The Florida Supreme Court on Wednesday [Dec. 6] publicly reprimanded St. Lucie County Judge Philip Yacucci, who was engaged in a long-running battle with an attorney that included an altercation between the men. In presenting the reprimand, Chief Justice Jorge Labarga said Yacucci acted improperly in the dispute with attorney Stephen Smith, including refusing to recuse himself in a case involving Smith. The Supreme Court also imposed a 30-day suspension without pay after a panel of the state Judicial Qualifications Commission investigated Yacucci’s actions.

ALSO READ:

FLORIDA SUPREME COURT REPRIMANDS, SUSPENDS ST. LUCIE JUDGE YACUCCI

Palm Beach Post | Article | December 06, 2017

 

Criminal Justice Issues

JUVENILE ARRESTS IN ORANGE, OSCEOLA DECLINE AS LAW ENFORCEMENT TURNS TO CIVIL CITATIONS

Orlando Sentinel | Article | December 06, 2017

Orange County has seen its juvenile arrests decline as more children and teens are issued civil citations, sparing them from having often permanent criminal records. Orange County led the state in the number of juvenile arrests made in three of the past four years, beating much more populous counties. Minors who receive citations are less likely to enter the judicial system later. Their recidivism rate is 5 percent, according to the department. By comparison, the recidivism rate for an offender who enters the system is about 9 percent. Chief Judge Frederick Lauten called for a Feb. 15 summit to get all law enforcement agencies in the same room to discuss best practices and improvements.

 

Judiciary

FOURTH JUDICIAL CIRCUIT JUDGE VIRGINIA BAKER NORTON A FINALIST FOR FEDERAL BENCH

Jacksonville Daily Record | Article | December 06, 2017

Fourth Judicial Circuit Judge Virginia Baker Norton of Jacksonville is one of four attorneys nominated to fill three vacancies on the U.S. District Court Middle District of Florida bench. The state Federal Judicial Nominating Commission Middle District Conference interviewed 10 candidates on Monday [Dec. 4] in Orlando. The commission nominated Norton, along with Second District Court of Appeal Judge John Badalamenti, Fifth District Court of Appeal Judge Wendy Berger and 13th Judicial Circuit Judge Tom Barber of Tampa as finalists to U.S. Sens. Bill Nelson and Marco Rubio. The senators will make recommendations to President Donald Trump for his consideration regarding the vacancies.

 

Civil Justice Issues

NEW HOUSING PROTECTION FOR VETERANS AND DOMESTIC VIOLENCE VICTIMS

South Florida Sun-Sentinel | Article | December 05, 2017

Broward commissioners unanimously voted to expand the county’s housing anti-discrimination regulations Tuesday [Dec. 5] to ensure military personnel and returning veterans have access to housing and that victims of domestic assault aren’t victimized again. The discrimination exists, said Wynnora Wilson of Legal Aid Service of Broward County, who has worked with a variety of housing programs.  Under the new regulation, landlords can no longer refuse to rent to someone simply because that person is a military veteran or domestic violence victim.

 

Criminal Justice Issues

PROSECUTORS RETURN TO STATE ATTORNEY’S OFFICE, MANAGEMENT CHANGES FOLLOW

Daytona Beach News-Journal | Article | December 06, 2017

Three former prosecutors have returned to Seventh Circuit State Attorney R.J. Larizza’s office as management changes have been made, according to a statement released this week. John K. Reid, a former prosecutor who left the office to work as a criminal defense attorney, is back and will become the State Attorney’s Office Director of Operations South. Also returning is Spencer S. Hathaway, who previously served as the State Attorney’s public information officer, and will now serve as managing attorney for the Daytona Misdemeanor Division. New public information officer Bryan L. Shorstein will also become Larizza’s new executive director.

 

Legislature

NEW FLORIDA BILL COULD HELP THOSE WITH CONVICTIONS RESTORE VOTING AND GUN RIGHTS

Florida times-Union | Article | December 06, 2017

State Rep. Cord Byrd filed a bill Wednesday [Dec. 6] that allows those who have served prison and probation sentences for felonies to seek to have their voting and gun rights restored by petitioning judges. The bill would allow people to file petitions in court that argue they deserve to have their rights restored, and it allows state attorney’s offices to oppose the petitions. The Florida Constitution Revision Commission, which is considering constitutional amendments that would automatically restore voting rights, has said that the current clemency process has a backlog of more than 20,000 cases.

 

Other

ETHICS COMPLAINT FILED WITH STATE COMMISSION AGAINST ASSISTANT STATE ATTORNEY AMIRA FOX

Fort Myers News-Press | Article | December 06, 2017

Daniel Endrizal, a Fort Myers attorney and vice president of the Lee County Bar Association, has filed an ethics complaint with the state against Amira Fox, claiming she violated state statutes by campaigning for the state attorney’s position while working as second in command in the 20th Circuit. Ayala has not declared for the race and has said on multiple occasions that she will make a decision in the future. However, behind the scenes, she has been making the rounds seeking support from local residents. If she declares for the race she would need to step down from her post as mandated by state attorney office policy or be given a waiver by the state attorney.


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