Both child pornography and solicitation to have sex with a minor cases are on the rise. Police departments have committed numerous resources to monitoring chat rooms and trying to lure people into attempting these crimes. A recent Florida case, State v. Martinez, illustrates just how far some law enforcement officers are willing to go. [(12th Cir, Manatee County (May 8, 2014)].
The firm has once again been a Tier 1 law firm by U.S. News - Best Lawyers In America for 2015. This ranking is based "on a vigorous evaluation process that includes the collection of client and lawyer evaluations, peer review from leading attorneys in their field, and review of additional information provided by law firms as part of the formal submission process." At least one member of the firm must be included by Best Lawyers in a particular field.
Are there any limits to the warrantless search of a vehicle anymore? Can the police search everywhere in a car once the occupants are removed under the justification of a "protective sweep"? At least one Florida judge recently said that there are some limits under the Constitution. State v Copeland, FLW Supp 2201 COPE (2nd Circuit, Leon County, August 13, 2014).
The Supreme Court has agreed to decide whether law enforcement must get a warrant to inspect hotel registries, a very interesting question. On Friday, the Florida Supreme Court held that warrantless GPS monitoring by police is unlawful. This has a very active time for both courts and more important decisions are expected in the coming months.
This is an important position, a significant appointment, and a step in the right direction for the DOJ. The Senate should act quickly to confirm her, a doubtful outcome given its current state of obstructionism.
Once again, members of the firm have been selected by their peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America for 2015. Mr. Kachergus was selected in the practice area of Criminal Defense: White Collar and Non-White Collar. Ms. White was selected in the practice area of Appellate Practice and Criminal Defense: Non-White Collar. Mr. Sheppard was selected in five practice areas: Appellate Practice, Criminal Defense: Non-White Collar, Criminal Defense: White Collar, Employment Law - Individuals and First Amendment Law.
For many people, especially those of certain age, life is lived in the social media spotlight. Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram have become the popular way to communicate. Ordinary citizens are not the only people who use social media. User beware: If your friends can see your posting, so can law enforcement. A recent survey of agencies throughout the country found that over 80% of those agencies use social media in their criminal investigations. Lawyers also routinely use it to discover evidence about litigants, witnesses and even jurors.
Elizabeth White has been selected to join the Chester Bedell Inn of Court as a Master. The American Inns of Court, modeled after their English counterparts, were implemented to promote professionalism, ethical conduct and competent advocacy among lawyers. The Chester Bedell Inn of Court was the first Inn established in Florida and the fourteenth in the nation. For the past three years, it has achieved platinum status, the highest level of recognition available.
BREAKING NEWS! We have just learned that our clients have successfully challenged the same sex marriage ban in Florida. Judge Hinkle issued his 33 page opinion, today, declaring Florida's ban to be unconstitutional. In doing so he noted, " To paraphrase a civil-rights leader from the age when interracial marriage was first struck down, the arc of history is long, but it bends toward justice." In the words of Leonard Cohen, "hallelujah!"
Certain cases define moments in history and, for those lawyers fortunate enough to litigate such cases, the receipt of an order granting relief often feels like Christmas in summer. Therefore, it is with great pride and more than a little relief, that the members of this firm received Judge Hinkle's Order declaring Florida's same-sex marriage ban unconstitutional. The judge's entire order has been printed on this site. No additional words are necessary, except a deeply felt "thank you" to our Plaintiffs: James D. Brenner, Charles D. Jones, Stephen Schlariet, and Ozzie Russ.