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Lake Legal News A Quarterly Magazine

Issue No. 24

s r e y w a L l L oca

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PHOTO: Bonnie Whicher


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10 11 12 9 8 13 14 7 15 2 1 3 6 16 4 5

Meet A Probation Officer:


From a pool of more than 40 applicants, Kathie Lowe stood out to join Lake County probation in 2013.


Fe at ure: Join us as we trace the 17 ‘sim-




Top-Secret: Lake Legal News Executive


Humor's Last Stand: Some hand-

ple’ steps (minimum!) it takes to go from an idea to a law here in the beautiful Sunshine State. If you missed the recent dual retirement send-off for Sanford Minkoff and Barbara Lehman, we'll share our photos... Editor James Hope shares tips from his personal criminal defense files. “No prosecutors allowed!” picked humor from the finest batch of cartoons available. (Licensed, by the way, not stolen!)


PHOTO: James Hope, J.D.


Legal News

18 La ke Lega l New

PHOTO: Getty Images

A Quarterly Maga


Lake Legal News Nov. 2015



Issue No. 20


th An nive rs ar y Issue! Also: Our Album p. 30 Of Lost & Forgo tten Photos...

La ke 28.

Legal News Issue No. 24

Ma i n Fe at u re :


Book Br iefs:


L ega l Blott er:


Teen Court Report: Get


At t orney Di rec t or y: A


Community Cork Boa rd: A


Last Rol l Of Fi lm: ‘Around town’

Author, radio talk show host and syndicated book reviewer Gary S. Roen shares his book reviews with Lake Legal News.

28 PHOTO: Bonnie Whicher

Lawyers, families and friends volunteered for the third year in a row—packaging 30,388 meals that were then distributed to needy students in Lake County, Florida.


updates and an insider's perspective on local Teen Court events from teenage-reporter Connor Jenkins. helpful directory of attorneys listed by their main area of practice.

PHOTO: Provided

Newsworthy happenings from the civil and criminal arena, with a local emphasis.


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and other photo events—look for someone you know.

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hodge-podge of local announcements and other random tidbits that strike our fancy.

Lake Legal News Nov. 2015



Legal News

Publisher / Executive Editor James Hope, J.D. Website:

Associate Editor Marilyn M. Aciego Contact:

Official Photographer Bonnie Whicher Website:

Official Webmaster Kevin Robson Website:

Advertising James Hope, J.D.

Photo: Bonnie Whicher

Contact: Contact:

Marilyn M. Aciego

Cover Photo Bonnie Whicher Contributing Authors Gary S. Roen Connor Jenkins

All contents 漏 2015 by James Hope D/B/A Lake Legal News. All rights reserved. Printed in the United States of America. Nothing may be reproduced in whole or in part without written permission from the publisher. Lake Legal News is not responsible for the contents, products, or services represented in any advertisements. Statements and opinions expressed in this publication are those of the authors and are not necessarily those of Lake Legal News or its staff. Any advice contained within this publication is general in nature, and is not intended to be relied upon in lieu of an actual consultation with a licensed attorney concerning the specific facts of your own situation and the most current state of the law. Unless pursuant to prior written arrangements with Lake Legal News, all submitted materials, whether written, photographic, or in other form will become the permanent property of Lake Legal News and shall be treated as unconditionally licensed and assigned to Lake Legal News for publication in print, via the internet, or through other medium, however logos and other legal marks as well as original copyrights remain the property of their respective owners. All submissions grant a right to Lake Legal News to edit said materials for accuracy, brevity, legality, or other concerns, and to title, caption, or make editorial comment upon such materials. Persons submitting materials agree to hold the publisher and staff of Lake Legal News harmless against claims of defamation, copyright infringement, invasion of privacy and unauthorized use of any person's name, photograph or personal information.

For advertising information and all other inquiries about this publication, contact the Publisher / Executive Editor: Write: Lake Legal News 路 Post Office Box 790 路 Tavares, FL 32778 E-mail: 路 Visit: Phone: 352-408-6338


Lake Legal News Nov. 2015

Photo: Bonnie Whicher

James Hope, J.D. Publisher Executive Editor

prognostications pontifications platitudes prattle f r^om the Publisher NOVEMBER, 2015

The other day in a daydream I pictured 100,00 lawyers spread out from the state of Washington, over to Maine, down to Florida, then back over to California. It seemed like an appropriate number of attorneys for a U.S. population of more than 300 million people. But then I took the image a step further by squishing all 100,000 lawyers to the east coast. To top it off, something dramatic: I next squished all the lawyers down from Maine—cramming, cramming, cramming— until all 100,000 nationwide lawyers were crammed into just the state of Florida. "Insanity!" I thought. Suddenly my mind pictured a shoebox, stuffed to the top with rats, all trying to gnaw each other's ears off to push aside the lid and escape to freedom. Enter—as I awoke to reality—the Florida Bar and its 100,000+ lawyers... Actually, I must apologize for the deceptive ‘spin’ on my previous assertion that Florida has more than 100,000 lawyers pitted directly against me in flesh-eating competition for clients. For as a recent article in The Florida Bar News clarifies for all of us educated rodents, true, there are an astronomical 101,279 members of The Florida Bar: Comedy-Watch has joined the L ak e L eg al New s But subtract all of the judges, inactive Lake Legal News family of h tc a Comedy-W members, delinquent members, out of quarterly magazines... 5 state lawyers, military personnel and so-forth, and I am in direct competition with a mere 72,160 Florida attorneys. (Suddenly I feel almost alone.) A Quarterly


Issue No. 20


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” For Laughs

ng Rea

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Also: Our Album Of Lost & Forgo tten


p. 30 Photos...


Lake Legal News Nov. 2015



P R ob at i o ff i c e R

A on

Kathie Lowe County Probation Officer If you've ever been around downtown Tavares, Florida, then you have probably seen probation officer Kathie Lowe's smiling face. She spent many years in the courthouse, beginning in the traffic division in 1997 and later serving as a clerk assigned to work with Judge Donna Miller from 1999 through 2013. Never without a smile, you could be having your worst day and still return her bright radiance. After many years in the courthouse, Lowe needed a change. In 2013 she decided to apply for a position with Lake County's probation office. Chosen from more than 40 applicants, Lowe's experience with the judicial system and the relationships she formed over the years landed her the position. “I am truly gifted at encouraging people and lifting people in general [and] now I get to help people hourly!”

Writer: Marilyn M. Aciego Photo: Bonnie Whicher

how to clear up (driver license) suspensions, how to get their GED or simply how to make better choices. Here, I am able to enforce court-ordered sanctions per statute but give people the tools to gain life skills needed to have a better life.” Learning there are consequences for every choice you make and that you are the only person who can make change happen in your life for the better is an invaluable lesson, Lowe tells Lake Legal News.

One of six children, Lowe's mom married her adoptive father when she was 5 years old and they moved to Florida. Her childhood was spent riding three-wheelers, running around the Ocala National Forest in Marion County and flying in her daddy's small plane. She married her husband, Dana, in 2002 and they have two boys, Logan, 12, and Adan, 8. The boys help with caring for their two cats, two dogs, six snakes (and Lowe is convinced that probation is a very they are fostering a baby flying squirrel). important part of reintegrating people back into society. “Most of my clients In the little free time she has, Lowe enjoys have not had a successful person in their her secret talent—decorating—participatlives, ever. Therefore, they are at a loss ing in a church outreach group, or just eatwith how to find a job, how to move for- ing and hanging out at her sister's restauward in life, how to be a good mom or dad, rant (Pastavino's), in Apopka, Florida. 

For her position, Lowe was chosen from a pool of more than 40 applicants. 8

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News Lake Legal News Nov. 2015



17 ’simple steps ' IDEA to a LAW in Florida: ‘Generic’ Florida Senator

Senator decides to introduce bill Photo: Thinkstock / Partick Brieg (Model unconnected to article)



Start: 1 Lake Legal News Nov. 2015

Legislation suggested by legislator, group, or citizen

(minimum!) to go from an 7

Rules Committee sets Special Order Calendar for Chamber consideration. Second reading and debate

Bill drafting-service either writes bill, or reviews for style


Roll call vote after third reading. If passed, delivered to House Clerk



Bill filed with Secretary, numbered, and printed

6 First reading by publication in Journal; President refers to committee(s)


Commitee hearing(s): Bill reported (1) favorably, (2) favorably with amendment(s), (3) favorably, with committee substitute, or (4) unfavorably


Editor's Note: Adapted from internet sources (Office of the Secretary of the Senate) Lake Legal News Nov. 2015


Phew! 17

Becomes effective on 60th day after adjournment sine die (or on specified date upon Govenor's signature

16 To Secretary of State

14 To Sen

Governor: If signs act 15 To (or without signature), then to Secretary of State

to Senate, with or without 12 Returned amendments


Second reading; roll call vote after third reading


Bill read for first time; Speaker assigns to Committee(s) 12

Lake Legal News Nov. 2015

Commitee hearing(s): Bill reported (1) favorably, (2) favorably with amendment(s), (3) favorably, with committee substitute, or (4) unfavorably


There, wasn't that easy?! Just add steps for: Sub-Committees, additional amendments, re-writes, refusals to concur, vetos, overrides, etc., etc., etc., etc., etc...

nate enrolling (as act)

If Senate concurs, goes to Senate engrossing Photo: Getty Images (Model unconnected to article)


Lake Legal News Nov. 2015


Lake Getty Images

Legal News: Photo Essay

By: James Hope, J.D.


he mood was light and jovial, and the main sentiment expressed was that of gratitude, as family, friends, and colleagues from all parts of Lake County, Florida, came together to bid a happy retirement to County Attorney Sandy Minkoff. Also receiving a fond retirement send-off was Lake County Chief Deputy Clerk Barbara Lehman. Accolades for the two included referring to them as “Lake County legends,” with Minkoff singled-out as being “a walking encyclopedia or law book of case law.”

cally), “lawyers were people my parents had great distaste for.” Minkoff thanked his many well-wishes by saying, “It's still amazing to me that I am able to be honored by elected people—the sheriff, constitutional officers—and all of you folks.”

The tongue-in-cheek moment of the afternoon occurred when one government official related a conversation from 1984 which spotlighted Minkoff's own dry humor. The crowd was told, “It didn't take me long to figure out that Sandy was a whole lot smarter than me. And I mean City council member, acting county man- that as a fact, and I told him that. And he ager and county attorney are all titles that (Minkoff) said, ‘Well isn't everybody?!’” Minkoff amassed here locally, beginning in the mid-1980s—using an old fashioned map just to find Tavares. As county attorney since 1995, Minkoff became a trusted stalwart of legal advice for government officials, yet was careful not to overstep his role; he would often be heard to say, “That's a policy question, not a legal question.” As just one example of putting his legal skills to use in a forward-thinking manner, Minkoff is credited with bringing the first waste recycling program to Lake County (beginning with the City of Tavares). When it became his turn to speak, Minkoff referenced fact that his retirement event was being held in the same courthouse where decades ago he participated in his first court hearing as a lawyer. He mentioned, too, that his parents never graduated from high school and (ironi14

Lake Legal News Nov. 2015

Lake Legal News Nov. 2015


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JAMES HOPE's Top-secret CRIMINAL Defense files... RE : Fighting Back Against Bond Revocations Let's face it, prosecutors love to throw people who are out on bond back in jail (Been there, done that.) It's in their DNA. And nothing spells ‘fun’ for a prosecutor more than the rather semi-automatic procedure for revoking the bond of an individual who has ‘breached his undertaking’ by committing a new offense while out on bond. As a defense attorney, on the front end you simply won't be able to fight Parker v. State, 843 So. 2d 871 (Fla. 2003). However, do not dispair! Parker is a starting point, not the end-all, be-all. Once bond is revoked, everything you ever

Getty Images

Pr ose cu tor s

learned about the long-standing pretrial release criteria spelled out in Younghans v. State, 90 So.2d 308 (Fla. 1956), as well authority stemming from the Florida Constitution, Article I, section 14 (i.e., the right to release on reasonable conditions when not charged with a Capital offense or Life offense where the presumption is great or the proof of guilt is evident), still applies. If strategically appropriate in your client's case, file a motion to set bond. AUTHORITY: Ginsberg v. Ryan, 60 So.3d 475, 477 (Fla. 3rd DCA 2011)(Habeas corpus relief granted. “[A] court is required to consider the requirements of section 907.041 and Florida Rules of Criminal Procedure 3.131 and 3.132 before denying a request for pretrial release. Specifically, the State must file a motion seeking pretrial detention within twenty-four hours of the defendant's arrest. §907.041(4)(e), (g); Fla. R. Crim. P. 3.132(c).”) ; Rodriguez v. Jenne, 936 So.2d 933 (Fla. 4th DCA 2007); Resendes v. Bradshaw, 935 So.2d 19 (Fla. 4th DCA 2006); Duffy v. Crowder, 960 So.2d 909 (Fla. 4th DCA 2007). TIP: Literally dozens and dozens of criminal offenses do not even qualify for §907.041(4) pretrial detention at all; depending on your client's charge(s), that additional fact can add persuasive argument as to why a reasonable bond should be set. 

Mr. Hope has been practicing Criminal Law in Tavares, Florida, since 1987. He is Publisher and Executive Editor of Lake Legal News, and is Board Certified by the Florida Bar in the area of Criminal Trial Law.


Lake Legal News Nov. 2015

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INTRODUCTION In June, I sent a memo alerting you to changes in the way images from court files would be available to you. In the memo, I described the various issues we thought you would encounter under the Supreme Court’s new requirements and because of the software we are using to meet those requirements. These changes are now implemented, and I thought it would be helpful to recap and update you on what just happened. These changes were very significant and painstaking, so I thought it would be best to break them down in the format that follows. THE SUPREME COURT REQUIREMENTS The access you are being allowed is very different from the access you enjoyed. As officers of the court, our office has always considered you trustworthy when it comes to confidential information contained within court files. Therefore, with the consent of the judiciary, we generally allowed you to view all of the files and documents in our office in an unredacted form, unless the information, file or document in question was sealed or made otherwise confidential by court order or as otherwise directed by the court. The Supreme Court changed that policy via court order, and ordered us to either allow access in accordance with standards the Court adopted or shut down your attorney access all together. While the Court’s order does not require us to grant access via the internet, if we do grant such access, the standards adopted therein are the most access we are allowed to grant. Your access without the new standards in place was supposed to end on July 1, 2015, but we asked for and were granted an extension until such time as our new database software was implemented. THE NEW DATABASE AND THE INTERPLAY WITH ACCESS Several years ago, my office made the decision to upgrade our database software in order to create a more time and cost efficient work environment. Under the original plan, the court record search function would have remained essentially the same, 20

Lake Legal News Nov. 2015

with only our docket entries available to the general public as required by Florida Supreme Court order. As we worked through all of the issues associated with the database conversion, the Supreme Court issued an order allowing clerks to make images available to the general public, but with specific content restrictions to protect confidential information. This order provided for time deadlines in order for our customers to have any access at all. In other words, based on the Supreme Court order, our options were to either shut down the limited access we were providing to you as attorneys, or expand access to include document images so long as we met hundreds of security protocols. We chose to expand our service to our customers and keep access for you under the new restrictions. THE SEARCH ENGINE In order to meet the security protocols, our software vendor for the new database halted a rewrite of the internet search engine, which rewrite was to make the search engine more platform friendly, and concentrated its efforts on writing software code to meet all of the security requirements by the deadline. Through these efforts, all of our customers are now able to view images of court documents via the internet instead of simply knowing a document exists based upon a docket entry. Unfortunately, the search engine is not compatible with many browsers and platforms, something we could not remedy based upon the time frames required by the Court. Now that our conversion is complete, except for some after installation modifications, we have asked our vendor to resume its work toward making the search engine more platform and user friendly. We realize and understand the importance of providing this capability, and I apologize and regret any inconvenience to you. I do believe, however, the office made the right choice from the options available. We hope to have the rewrite completed in the near future. As it currently exists, the search engine uses a Microsoft technology called Silverlight, and is readable on Window-based PC’s, MAC’s, and Windows mobile devices, but is unfortunately not compatible with iPads and other Apple mobile devices. Silverlight is supported by a small download that is installed on your computer the first time it is used. To use the new search engine, your browser will require the installation of the Silverlight plugin. For those of you using the new Windows 10, you will need to select Internet Explorer as your browser, instead of the new Microsoft Edge. Also, when completing a search, the search engine will try to prompt you to enter an email address by using a pop up box. You will need to allow the pop up from THE ACCESS As mentioned in my previous memo, AOSC15-18 generally requires two different types of access for attorneys. If you are the attorney of record in a case, you should be able to see all documents in your case as filed unless the case is expunged or the case or documents are sealed with no access given by the court to the attorney of Lake Legal News Nov. 2015


record or the parties. If you are not the attorney of record, you will still be allowed to see most images, but any confidential information in those images must first be redacted, and any confidential or sealed documents will be unavailable. You will not be able to see expunged or sealed cases. Public Defenders will be users as attorneys of record in the appropriate cases and will be assigned that role at the first appearance of the defendant. State Attorneys have access to a wide variety of cases, not just the criminal cases assigned to them. Their access stems from the fact of State Attorneys being law enforcement. State Attorneys may view cases which have relevance to their duties. ACCESS VERSUS CONFIDENTIALITY As mentioned above, the access you now have was established by order of the Supreme Court. This order is uniform throughout the state, and we have given you the most access we believe is allowed by the order, while still maintaining confidential information as required by the Florida Rules of Court. It is the Office’s duty to maintain as confidential certain information found within our court files. In order to do so, the Office has a two step process. First, we have every page of every document received reviewed by an automated redaction process which seeks and redacts Social Security, bank account, charge, debit, and credit card numbers. And although this process is 99.9 percent effective, the process is also reviewed for accuracy by a deputy clerk. In other words, we automatically review approximately 22,000 pages per day for the numbers listed above. We do not, however, automatically have a deputy clerk review each of these pages for all of the other types of information we are required to keep confidential. To do so would cause us to use precious staff time on documents which will never be requested. In fact, our experience suggests ninety-five percent or more of our documents will never be requested. The second step review is initiated upon a request to view an image. Once the request is received it is placed in a review queue for the appropriate division. A deputy clerk of the division in question then reviews each page of each document requested and redacts all confidential information. The time it takes from the request to the completion of the review is dependant upon various factors, including the size of the request, the type of documents requested, and the number of documents already in the queue when the request is made. Our heaviest volume in terms of requests made appears to be in the circuit criminal division, while our largest requests by case appear to be in our circuit civil division. REQUESTING IMAGES IN CASES WHEREIN YOU ARE NOT ATTORNEY OF RECORD As you might imagine from the above, if you are searching as an attorney, but not as an attorney of record, images will generally not be available the first time you search for them. The docket will be visible, but the image(s) will not be available until the image or case requested is reviewed for confidential information, and that 22

Lake Legal News Nov. 2015

information is redacted. You may request either specific images or all images from a case, and we will review the images as quickly as possible and post them to the search engine. If you so chose, you will be notified via email when the images are available. Once the images are reviewed and posted, they will usually not need to be reviewed again, and will continue to be available to you in their redacted format. Attorneys of record and parties should be able to see almost all, if not all, documents in their cases without the need for a clerk’s review upon logging in. Please keep in mind, if your assistant tries to look at images, they will be limited to asking for the documents via the review process even if you are the attorney of record. Also keep in mind, you will get the images you really need quicker if you can identify and request only those images instead of an entire case. OPERATING THE SEARCH ENGINE We have heard that the search engine is also confusing to many of you. We tried to avoid this confusion by offering training to you prior to the roll out; however, we did not get many takers. Since you have now had a chance to experience the search engine, we would once again offer personal training to any Lake County attorney who believes it will help. If you want to receive training, please let us know by calling Gary Cooney at 352-742-4105 or Angie Riehm at 352- 253-4904. SUMMARY The outcome of the Supreme Court’s AOSC 15-18 regarding electronic access to court records is the granting of internet access to the public while imposing a more restrictive access for Lake attorneys (as compared to the access our office was providing prior to the order). I do understand your frustration with your new lack of access combined with the new search engine’s limited platform capability. While I cannot change the Court’s order, the Office is working diligently to improve the search engine. Our goal is to provide the enhanced platform capability by the first of the year. I appreciate your patience as we work through these issues. If you have questions or need assistance, please contact Gary Cooney or me at 352-742-4102. UPDATE! Please be assured we have continued to work with our vendor to provide a better search engine for your use. Within the past few weeks, we were provided with portions of a new version of the search engine for our testing. These tests have progressed and we expect to be in test with a complete version of a new search engine in December. If those tests yield the results we expect, we hope to release a new search engine which is usable across most, if not all, platforms by mid-January.

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n a warm Saturday morning in Writer: Marilyn M. Aciego September, 2015, while most of Photos: Bonnie Whicher us were outside still enjoying the weather, members of the Lake County Bar Association were making a difference. paralegals and even Judge Terry Neal were packing meals for our community's Tucked away in the Everett Kelly Convo- less fortunate. Also lending a hand were cation Center and the Leesburg campus of Lake-Sumter State College, attorneys, (Continued on page 30) 28

Lake Legal News Nov. 2015



EN Lake Legal News Nov. 2015


(Continued from page 28)

members of LSSC's Lakehawk Volleyball team, Fifth Circuit Public Defender Mike Graves and his predecessor (now retired), Skip Babb. In its third year, the Lake County Hunger Project packaged 30,388 meals that will stay right here and be distributed in Lake County. And there certainly is an acute, ongoing need. According to preliminary data available through the Florida Department of Education, out of 42,075 Lake County School District students more than half of those students—25,838—qualified for free or reduced lunch. (To qualify for free lunch, a household must be 130 percent of the poverty rate, according to federal guidelines; for a family of four that's an annual income of $31,525 or $607 per week.) With the cost of utilities, transportation and housing, that doesn't leave much left for food. In comparison, neighboring Marion County had 398 more students than Lake County, but a total of only 14,398 students received free or reduced lunch. A 2012 Share Our Strength's “No Kid Hun-


Lake Legal News Nov. 2015

gry” survey found that 6 in 10 children in K-8 public schools regularly come to school hungry and a majority of those students rely on school meals as their primary source of nutrition. That's why projects like these are so important. This was Amy Martinez's second year participating and helping people here is what matters to her. “I love the idea that it stays local,” she tell Lake Legal News. A paralegal with Dahl Family Law in Clermont, she brought her family too. Working in an assembly-line fashion, 13-year-old Isabella helped pack the meals, alongside her mom and grandparents. “I like helping people a lot,” the seventh grader says. How do 120 people pack more than 30,000 meals in two hours? Lentil casserole is the answer, covering all religious and dietary restrictions; the meal contains lentils, white rice, dehydrated vegetables and pink Himalayan salt. In the packing process, each person has a job, from adding an ingredient into the mix, to sealing the package and finally packing the meals up in small manageable boxes. (Story continues on page 34)

Lake Legal News Nov. 2015



Lake Legal News Nov. 2015

Lake Legal News Nov. 2015


(Continued from page 31)

The meals are then taken to the Salvation Army for distribution. Recipes are included with the meals to give recipients ideas and new things to try. The lentil casserole pairs well with beef, pork and chicken and can also be mixed with broth to create a hearty soup. Assistant State Attorney James Argento has participated each year, “It's very important for the legal community to come together for the local community,” he says. Partnered with Feeding Children Everywhere, hunger projects are a opportunity to be directly involved in the fight against hunger. Though a global organization now, Feeding Children Everywhere is the brainchild of Don Campbell and started five years ago in Sanford, Florida. Trying to feed the world was seemingly the next natural step for Campbell: “He was always cooking for everyone and always had a house full of people,” explains intern Annie Snyder. In just over a year, the organization reached its 1 million meal milestone and by October 2014, it had fed 20 million people. Monetary donations are accepted through the organization's web site and just $1 can provide four meals. 


Lake Legal News Nov. 2015

Comments From The Event's Local Organizer: I attended a food packing event with my son several years ago at the global headquarters of Feeding Children Everywhere and had a great time. Shortly thereafter I met some of the key personnel for the organization while I was traveling for work and I decided that this may be a good project for the Lake County Bar Association. We have done this for three years now and it amazes me how excited everyone gets. People are asking for it in advance. In many cases their children want to know when the event is because they are so excited to participate. Food is very basic. There are way too many children that do not know where their next meal is coming from right here in Lake County. Kids have enough to worry about these days and they should not have to worry about their next meal.


Most people are very excited that this is an event that the whole family can participate in, from age 3 to 83. Most people recognize the beauty of empowering other people to help the children right here in our community with very little effort, in a fun way.

Attorney Gregory P. Smith has been practicing law in Tavares, Florida, for nearly 30 years. He is a partner in the personal injury firm of Oldham & Smith, and currently holds a position as a Director for the Lake County Bar Association. As organizer for three years in a row, Smith is the driving force behind Lake County's annual “Feeding Children Everywhere” event.

Lake Legal News Nov. 2015


Tom Mysinger and Cecil Garrett are ready to put a combined 60 years of law enforcement experience to work for you.


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Lake Legal Book

News: Briefs

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By: Gary S. Roen

• Go Set A Watchman By: Harper Lee Publisher: Harper Collins In close to forty years I've been a reviewer, I've never seen a book encounter so much negative attention as “Go Set A Watchman.” In fact I can't recall a bookstore saying if readers do not like the book, it can be returned. Too many critics and readers want “Go Set A Watchman” to be another “To Kill a Mockingbird.” This is the same mind set of many “Star Trek” fans who were so negative to “Star Trek The Next Generation.” In both cases it is their loss because both are very well done but very different. The history of this book is interesting because “Go Set A Watchman” is the first novel Lee submitted along with some other writings. It is the other writings that were expanded to became the novel “To Kill a Mockingbird.” “Go Set A Watchman” was stored away until Harper

Lee's friend and attorney found the original manuscript and a manuscript copy of “To Kill a Mockingbird” in a safety deposit box sometime last year. It was submitted for publication to Harper Collins with no major changes made to the original work. Hemingway cautioned authors to store away and not publish their first novel but work on getting the second one published. That is partly the case with this novel. “Go Set A Watchman” is enjoyable and worth reading. Jean Louise Finch (Scout) is now 26 years of age and been away living and working in New York City. She comes home for a visit and learns that things are not the way she always believed. She is sickened to find that her father Atticus Finch is a racist and that everyone she knew is not what she thought. Through the use of flashbacks Harper Lee shows the difference in Jean Louise Finch's feelings towards the other people she adored until now. For some readers the fact that her father Atticus is a racist is very hard to take because of the depiction of him in

Author, consultant and syndicated book reviewer Gary S. Roen has been writing his appraisals of books for nearly 40 years; his reviews have appeared in hundreds of daily and weekly newspapers and other periodicals. Over the years Roen has been the Promotion / Sales Representative for several publishing houses. He was a talk show host on the Rollins College radio station, was co-host on a weekly radio talk show on “Desperate and Dateless,” was the roving reporter for “The Tourist Breakfast Travel Show,” frequently appeared on The Michelle Valentine show on cable and was a monthly guest on the Bobbie Thomas show. Find him currently on the “My Home Town” show with Jim Turner (WBZW, Orlando) and the Larry Steele show (WPUL, Daytona Beach). Roen also works for numerous companies in the field of market research in the Central Florida area as an independent contractor. 38

Lake Legal News Nov. 2015

“To Kill a Mockingbird” and in that novel he defended a black defendant. In “Go See a Watchman” we learn that he took the case because he could not tolerate the injustice that was being done to an innocent man. People also tend to forget that Jean Louise Finch in “To Kill a Mockingbird” was 6 years old and that she believed her father could do no wrong. Now she is older, wiser and changed because she has been away from her roots that have not changed. How many of us adored our parents as kids and learned something in later life that changed our perception of them? “Go Set a Watchman” is a fast paced wonderful character study of how our perceptions change based on life experiences. • Scarry Bully By: Cathy Finch White Publisher: Tate Publishing Though “Scary Bully” is very short it has a lot of good messages to kids and parents of ways to deal with a bully. The author shows that often if someone stands up to the actions of a bully that he or she will back down. It also shows that many people would knuckle under rather than challenge someone. “Scary Bully” is a good resource to teach kids to understand how to handle situations like this. • Divorce: What an Education—What You Don't Know By: Patrick Vessey Publisher: Outskitrs Press, Inc. There are many things wrong with “Divorce: What an Education—What You Don't Know.” First, the price of $26.95 is over priced for a Trade paperback. The

author tells a reason he got married that sounds like a mistake that began his problems. “I met a woman, got married to rid the family of the biological father and adopted her children because he was detrimental to them. After I signed the court documentation and finalized the adoption, I was no longer a part of the family unit thirty days from the exact date.” He points this out several times in the book and you can see why he continued to make mistakes. He later made more blunders and blames everyone else but himself including his numerous attorneys and the court system itself. Other errors were the way he paid monies ordered by the court to his ex-wife, and not understanding that he is not the only person that his attorney represents are just two of many such errors. “Divorce: What an Education—What You Don't Know” bad mouths the legal system because the author takes no responsibility for his own actions and is not worth the time of anyone going through a divorce involving children. • Lethal Measures By: Leonard Goldberg Publisher: Penguin Group, USA “Lethal Measures” is another novel in the Joanna Blalock forensic pathologist series. This time there are terrorist bombers wreaking havoc on the L.A. area. Blalock is called into investigate and finds there is a link to a forthcoming Presidential visit to the city. She must stop the attacks before they try to assassinate the President. Goldberg keeps the suspense in “Lethal Measures” super charged as the story flows along to the very end. 

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y is that the agenc U.S. statutes t to more than 400 its commitmen citizens enforcing in public safety. iples non-U.S. responsible for al security and ensuring nation shoul only referred nal justic crimi comm ent the a docum possibilities and I.C.E. may issue to a local jail or correctional you then ner” citizen, y of an individual to as a “detai e a non-U.S. al is seeking custod if you engag If you are facility when it instituting remov arning that en for purposes of should heed-w of criminal activity—ev known as an in that facility ing detainer is better a in any type fting—or when simply travel proceedings. This ” A common practice in Florid be to shopli t as you “hold. cause as simple detainers agains immigration itizen, it may using immigration and I.C.E. trial, with another non-c an immigration “hold” placed es involv ’ before ‘without status process—because ed in a criminal arrested and have a defendant l your case in resolv any prosecutoria have grounds for against you until legal status can be determined. often before does not your lly the genera and/or of e court such person of the outcom U.S. regardless legal citizen, the scope remaining in the defendant within ent involving a U.S. al violations is Conversely, a In a typical case nent Resid criminal case. quences for crimin a fine and/or , such as Legal Perma to of possible conse paying immigration status not subject to a “hold” prior g time in jail, lly limited to servin other court-imposed conditions. , unless he/she status, is genera for criminal matter able, remov fulfillment of some many cases, the law allows sion of the state er conclu him/h in tions rendering remain at liberty When arrested, Additionally, has prior convic the accused to in ng removal order. holds) give bail so as to allow matter is pending. However, and has a standi immigration d al (i.e., allowe crimin ed ers the being ument while undoc I.C.E. detain non-citizens, before law requires authority to detain date, pending cases involving y the e local jails the er criminal custod d their releas The to bail out of determine wheth immigrants beyon to immigration officials. ) agency to first y at cement (I.CE. the arresting transfer of custod ration holds on detainees Customs Enfor of and ion of immig ration violat of State in Immig ce in the placement detainee a person st). Hence, once widespread practi illegally placed considers the local jails is a are (and thus of intere of the charges, cases, the holds Immigration laws less ls, judges, and Florida. In many is arrested, regard d and have the enforcement officia immigrants are the non-citizen by local law rities are notifie . undocumented even result, a ions As immigration autho “hold” on the arrested person detent jailers. a y and unauthorized been cleared. power to place subject to length al charges have I.C.E. hold? U.S. though their crimin and what is an cement (I.C.E.) Who is I.C.E., on a jailed imCustoms Enfor an I.C.E. hold is a request to Immigration and igative Agency directly under Who can place It’s invest ration detainer is the largest land Security. nt? An immig detain an indiHome to migra y of tment ty, ement agenc the U.S. Depar t national securi a local law enforc n is to protec U.S. page 38) primary missio integrity of the (Continued on (including the The immigration. public safety s, trade and ity encompass borders), custom author ement enforc agency’s law in Spanish).

are the basic princ ‘detention’ What ding immigration e system? d know regar

is bilingual (fluent Florida, and in Leesburg, practices law Mr. Cardona

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1012 West Main Street, Leesburg, FL 34748

Fla. Bar Board Certified Criminal Trial Law Expert Qualifications: I have practiced criminal law in Tavares, Florida, for 27 years. I am a former Assistant State Attorney, with supervisory experience at the juvenile, misdemeanor, felony and postconviction relief levels, including a designation as Lake County's first sex battery and first careercriminal prosecutor. My actual jury trial experience ranges from shoplifting and DUI to capital sexual battery and first degree murder—and I have stood before a felony jury an average of twice-a-year for 27 years. In fact, I have quadruple the number of felony jury trials required for initial Board Certification.

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Available for a free consultation (“Of Counsel”) through the Law Office of Zachary J. McCormick, 210 N. Texas Ave., Tavares, Florida. To reach me:

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Civil Blotter

● While generally speaking the statutory use of the word “may” signifies something permissive, rather than something mandatory, one choosing to act is wise to heed any time limitations. As one Florida appellate court recently reiterated in Lund v. Project Warm, et al., 40 Fla. L. Weekly, D32237a (Fla. App. 5th DCA, September 29, 2015), time limitations for permissive motions are mandatory. For example: Pursuant to section 397.6977, at the conclusion of a 60-day period of court-ordered involuntary treatment, the individual is to be automatically discharged unless a motion for renewal of the involuntary treatment order is filed. While seeking renewal of involuntary treatment is permissive given the use of the

© / James Benet

● The Florida Supreme Court had the recent occasion to rule on an interesting question of law in State v. Tuttle, Jr., 40 Fla. L. Weekly, S631a (Fla. S. Ct., November 12, 2015). As prosecutors and defense counsel are by and large aware:

Criminal Blotter 42

Lake Legal News Nov. 2015

Double jeopardy prohibits conviction for two crimes where all of the elements of one crime are subsumed within the elements of the second crime. See Pizzo v. State, 945 So. 2d 1203, 1206 (Fla. 2006). In Pizzo, we held that in the double jeopardy context, the lesser crime is that which has each element subsumed by the second crime, and the greater crime is that which requires proof of an additional element not required by the lesser crime. Id. at 1207. The conflict issue concerns which conviction should be vacated to alleviate double jeopardy concerns where, as in this case, the lesser crime carries a higher punishment than the greater crime. * * * [T]he double jeopardy clauses of the United States and Florida Constitutions do not dictate which conviction must be vacated. The double jeopardy clause of the Florida Constitution provides, “[n]o person shall be . . . twice put in jeopardy for the same offense . . . .” Art. 1 § 9, Fla. Const. The double jeopardy clause of the

word “may,” section 397.6975(1) makes it clear that any petition for renewal will be considered timely only if it is “filed with the court at least 10 days before the expiration of the court-ordered treatment period.” We have previously held that similarly expressed time limitations for permissive motions are mandatory. See, e.g., Smith v. State, 113 So. 3d 110, 111 (Fla. 5th DCA 2013). ● In what is essentially a classic expression of the notion that ‘you can't have your cake and eat it too,’ the 5th DCA— in a dissolution of marriage case—expanded upon the fact that where the parties are equally able to pay attorney's fees, the trial court abuses its discretion by requiring one spouse to pay the other's fees.

United States Constitution similarly provides that “[n]o person shall be subject for the same offence to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb.” U.S. Const. amend. V. As this Court explained in Valdes v. State, 3 So. 3d 1067, 1069 (Fla. 2009), double jeopardy protects a person from being subjected to multiple prosecutions, convictions, and punishments for the same crime. Thus, vacating either conviction would resolve the double jeopardy issue. However, we conclude the plain and ordinary meaning of the double jeopardy statute directs that the lesser crime, as defined by Pizzo, should be vacated. See Leftwich v. Fla. Dept. of Corrs., 148 So. 3d 79, 87 (Fla. 2014) (“The plain language of a statute is the primary method through which legislative intent may be discovered.”). The double jeopardy statute unambiguously expresses that the legislative intent to convict and sentence for each criminal offense does not include those “[o]ffenses which are lesser offenses the statutory elements of which are subsumed by the greater offense.” § 775.021(4) (b)3., Fla. Stat. The statute states, in essence, that each criminal offense will be separately punished, except those lesser offenses whose statutory elements are subsumed by a greater offense. Thus, in the anomalous situation in which the lesser offense

[Citation omitted.] Thus in Hutchinson v. Hutchinson, 40 Fla. L. Weekly, D2239e (Fla. App. 5th DCA, October 2, 2015): Where marital property has been equitably distributed and the parties' incomes have been equalized through an alimony award, the trial court abuses its discretion by awarding attorney's fees. [Citation omitted.] (reversing the award of attorney's fees to the former wife where “the trial court's order shows that the former husband's salary is $5,500 per month, that the former wife's net income is $1,033, and that the former wife will receive $3,500 per month in alimony” because “[a]fter the allocation of alimony from the former husband to the former wife, the former hus-

band is in no better position to pay attorney's fees than the former wife is”); [Additional citations omitted.] * * * Here, the trial court equitably distributed the marital property pursuant to the parties' agreement, determined that the Former Husband's monthly total income is $7,420.83 and the Former Wife's is $3,316.66, and awarded to the Former Wife $2,100 in monthly alimony, thereby equalizing the parties' incomes. Because the final judgment left the parties in substantially the same financial positions and equally able to pay the fees and costs, the trial court abused

carries the greater punishment, the conviction for the lesser offense should nonetheless be vacated, and the sentence for the greater offense should be maintained.

ing permitted to opine that a voice heard on a 911 call-back recording belonged to the defendant, even though the detective had no prior knowledge of the defendant and no expertise in voice identification.”

● In Funiciello v. State, 40 Fla. L. Weekly, D2499a (Fla. App. 5th Dist., November 6, 2015), a highly significant decision was handed down with regard to a defendant who went to trial on two counts of lewd or lascivious battery, but was denied a requested jury instruction on the permissive lesser-included offense of unnatural and lascivious act. In reversing the defendant's conviction the appellate court stated:

[I]n this case, Detective Judy was not an eyewitness to the crime, nor was he qualified as a voice identification expert. Therefore, the only basis upon which his identification of Evans as the voice on the 911 call-back recording could have been admissible was if he had already possessed a special familiarity with Evans' voice. Detective Judy testified that he had listened to known recordings of Evans' voice from jail conversations and was able to recognize his voice based upon these recordings. This, however, did not amount to a prior special familiarity.

We hold that the trial court reversibly erred in refusing to issue an instruction on the lesserincluded offense of unnatural and lascivious act because digital penetration and sexual intercourse between an adult perpetrator and a child victim constitute unnatural and lascivious acts in that such conduct is not in accordance with nature or with normal feelings or behavior and are lustful acts performed with sensual intent on the part of the defendant. ● Patrick Evans had his murder conviction and death sentenced reversed for a variety of reasons in Evans v. State, 40 Fla. L. Weekly, S636a (Fla. S. Ct, November 12, 2015). “Among other errors, the lead detective usurped the role of the jury by be-

* * * Further, this error was magnified by the fact that the jury was aware Detective Judy was the lead detective investigating this case. As we have previously explained, “error in admitting improper testimony may be exacerbated where the testimony comes from a police officer.” Martinez v. State, 761 So. 2d 1074, 1080

its discretion by awarding attorney's fees and costs to the Former Wife. Accordingly, we reverse the award of attorney's fees and costs. ● How presumptive, or relatively automatic, do you think it is (or should be) for a divorcing mother to change her child's surname when that mother is herself restoring or changing her own name in conjunction with, or following, a dissolution of marriage? A former husband was legally successful in thwarting just such a move in Airsman v. Airsman, 40 Fla. L. Weekly, D2081a (Fla. App. 2nd Dist., September 9, 2015): “The change of surname is not supported by competent, substantial evidence that the child's best interests are served, or that the welfare of the child is at risk. Consequently, we reverse... .” 

(Fla. 2000). “When a police officer, who is generally regarded by the jury as disinterested and objective and therefore highly credible, is the corroborating witness, the danger of improperly influencing the jury becomes particularly grave.” Id. (quoting Rodriguez v. State, 609 So. 2d 493, 500 (Fla. 1992)). “There is the danger that jurors will defer to what they perceive to be an officer's special training and access to background information not presented during trial.” [Citation omitted.] In fact, permitting questions that elicit a witness's position as a police officer when that witness is identifying a defendant's voice or image has been held to be reversible error even when the identification itself was permissible. In Day v. State, 105 So. 3d 1284, 1286-87 (Fla. 2d DCA 2013), [the testifying officer]... was a “community-oriented police officer” for a specific area of town and, as part of her job, she knew many of the residents, including the defendant.... [T]he trial court committed reversible error, nevertheless, in permitting the State to also elicit evidence that the witness was a police detective. Id. [Additional citation omitted.]  Lake Legal News Nov. 2015


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Lake Legal Teen Court Image: Jamesbin / iStock

News: Report

By: Connor Jenkins


een Court coordinators Stephanie Glass, Justin Null, and Christina Whyte are thought of as the backstage crew, running the entire “courtroom show,” but don't receive the pleasure of the ending bow. Becoming familiarized with the duties of a coordinator brings appreciation to the entire Teen Court process, rather than just the trial. Teen Court coordinators entail more duties than simply the interaction between defendants and their families. They are viewed as the “before and after” facilitators of the courtroom process. Before the defendants are given a court date, the coordinators select eligible youths for the program and 46

Lake Legal News Nov. 2015


assess the future risk factors of the defendant. This also requires the coordinators to conduct intakes and mentally prepare the offender for court. They also recruit the adult and teen volunteers through community presentations and personal messages to ensure active volunteerism. Afterwards, the defendant's progress is monitored to ensure he is complying with imposed sanctions. Aside from that, the Teen Court specialist prepares and manages a budget while compiling statistics.



Teen Court coordinators: (1) Christina Whyte, (2) Stephanie Glass, (3) Justin Null

Starting in the Teen Court program in 2004, Stephanie Glass became the Teen Court specialist to guide astray defendants back on the right

track to be lucrative adults. Previously working as a child protective investigator, child abuse counselor, and alternative school teacher and therapist provided the foundation for Glass to work with the “diverse juvenile population.” She explains that “[juvenile defendants] are not all bad kids. There are so many kids that caught up in a bad situation or that don’t understand the ramifications of their actions, but Teen Court gives them the opportunity to learn from it and move on in a positive way.” After working with troubled juveniles strictly through Teen Court for eleven years, Glass suggests being consistent, firm, and patient when interacting with juveniles on the legal level. The main tip she suggests is being authentic. Teenagers are not as ignorant as some may believe; these juveniles can recognize carelessness and doubtfulness portrayed by coordinators. Justin Null has been a part of the Teen Court program since November, 2011. His main duty includes the interaction with defendants and families through intakes and ensuring their sanctions are fulfilled. When questioned about the remorsefulness of defendants during intakes, Null stated, “While there are times where it appears the offender may feel genuinely remorseful, there are other times where the third party input is helpful.” The guilt of the defendant is easily deciphered from the offender's cooperation and appearance to be remorseful in the affidavit. However, most of the time Null decides remorsefulness through the offender's “dedication to thoroughly completing their sanctions in a timely manner.” New to the Teen Court program since September, 2015, Christina Whyte explains how she was impressed with how serious the offenders were about their case and

Editor's Note: Connor Jenkins is a 2015 Eustis High School graduate, AP Honor's Student, Girl's State delegate, National Honor Society member, and Jefferson Awards member. She has been involved with the Teen Court Program in Lake County, Florida, since 2009. The Teen Court Program is a diversionary program that holds first time juvenile offenders accountable for their actions while affording them a second chance through the court system.

express genuine concern. Through interaction in the jury room, Whyte explained the jurors' earnestness in discussing “the crime, attitude of the offender and how the sanctions could interfere with the offender’s school work and activities.” Previously working for the adult probation office, Whyte compares the attitude of juvenile offenders in contrast to that of adults under probation. Juveniles view their involvement as a learning experience and complete sentences commendably; while, contrarily, adults do not seem to have a sense of urgency to complete their probation successfully. The biggest difference according to Whyte is that “many of the probationers have been arrested before so the threat of going to jail does not seem to make an impact [as it does on Teen Court defendants].” The Teen Court coordinators main focus is on the betterment of society through empowering defendants. Nevertheless, the coordinators have an enormous impact on volunteer aspirations as well. Glass confirms by saying, “I am constantly amazed at the intelligence, motivation and drive to make things better shown by my volunteers. It gives me confidence and hope for the future.”  Lake Legal News Nov. 2015


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Lake Legal News is a high-quality, quarterly magazine, published and distributed in Lake County, Florida.


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