Monthly Archives: January 2016

There is no Death Penalty in Florida Right Now

“…there currently exists no death penalty in the state of Florida…”

supreme court facadeSince the Supreme Court struck down the procedure Florida used to impose the death penalty in the Hurst case, there is currently no legal method to proceed on a death penalty case at this time. A Pinellas judge said as much this week, merely stating the obvious, as he rejected a prosecutor’s notice of intent to seek the death penalty. The legislature has already indicated they are going to address the death penalty procedure. The bigger question will be whether the courts apply the Hurst ruling retroactively, which would effectively preclude imposing the death sentence to the current death row inmates.

Background on Crimcourts.

Bipartisan Coalition Looks Targets Florida for Sentencing Reform

Advocates of sentencing reform have been doing a nationwide tour for their push, and came to Florida this past week. Brian Elderbroom, of the Urban Institute, took part in a “Fair Sentencing” event at the Florida State University College of Law. Also taking part was Lauren Galik, who’s report “The High Cost of Incarceration in Florida: Recommendations for Reform” can be found online, HERE.

There is a serious movement from both sides of the aisle to put more common sense in sentencing, and in doing so, reduce the cost and potentially be more proactive in preventing crime. It’s a movement to keep an eye on.

read more here. and here.

LCSO Plans DUI Checkpoint this Weekend

LCSO plans a sobriety checkpoint somewhere

dancin

Dancin’ Fool

in Lee County this weekend. Let this again serve as a reminder not to drink and drive… and be safe out there!

 

FMPD Chief Eads Personally Helped Arrest a Guy for Pooping

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  • Crimcourts Exclusive:

There’s a comment here about the interim chief not being afraid to get his hands dirty… I’m sure. Eads was called over by a citizen who was worried that a hispanic man appeared to be ill. The man happened to be local infamous homeless crazy-person Victor Casiano. When the chief and another officer located Casiano, his drawers were down, as he was pooping in the woods. Eads and the other officer arrested him for indecent exposure.

While we might admire the chief’s willingness to jump to duty, Crimcourts would like to point out it is not illegal to shit in the woods. Bill Bryson is relieved. To qualify as Indecent Exposure, under Florida law, there must be some “lacsiviousness”. Merely pooping, especially if he tried to discreet himself in the woods, is not a crime. Fortunately, Mr. Casiano was released on his own recognizance, but not after spending a night in jail. It’s a bad look that the department still doesn’t use better judgment over when to arrest people, especially after the Nate Allen fiasco just last year.

Related Update: It’s also not illegal to check your mail naked, but it will get the cops called on you, as this guy found out in Collier County. For the behavior to be criminalized, there has to be more, and Collier Sheriff’s Deputies showed a little more, correct, restraint.

Cold Case Killer gets Life

Kultar Goraya

Kultar Goraya

Kultar Goraya thought he had committed the perfect crime… now he has the rest of his life behind bars to think about it. Goraya was supsected of killing his wife in 2007, and dodged the law for over seven years. After his wife’s disappearance, he skipped to India with their child, where he thought he had pulled it off: even bragging to people that he wouldn’t be caught.

The Sheriff’s Office, with the help and resources of the TV show “Cold Justice”, they were able to arrest Goraya and bring him to justice. He was convicted late last year, and now will serve life in prison without the possibility of parole. He will presumably appeal the case, but since he represented himself, he won’t be able to claim ineffective assistance of counsel…

Legislature Acts to Expedite DNA and Rape Kit Testing

senator Lizbeth Beancquisto

Lizbeth Benacquisto

I don’t know why it should take an act of the Legislature to get thousands of DNA samples from Rape Kits tested, but that’s apparently what it takes. Our own Senator from Southwest Florida, Lizbeth Benacquisto (R, Lee and Charlotte Counties), has sponsored a bill to expedite the process, and the bill has now passed the Criminal Justice Committee, an early step in the process of becoming a law. Kudos to Ms. Benacquisto, and AG Pamela Bondi, who has also made it a point to see that these rape kits get tested in the name of justice.

It remains to be seen how long it takes the state to catch up to the backlog of kits, numbering over 13,000 at one point. In addition to Bondi’s urging, Governor Scott has also pushed for money to get the kits tested. It’s a shame that it still has not happened, and Senator Benaquisto has taken real action to see that happen.

See previously: https://crimcourts.wordpress.com/2015/11/19/shocking-florida-has-more-than-11000-rape-kits-left-untested/

Cops Called on Basketball Game, Cops Responds and Dunks it Up

cop dunksI guess some kids in Gainesville were having too much fun or something, playing basketball, and somebody called the cops on them. Why? I don’t know… something about noise perhaps, as if that was illegal. So, somebody literally calls the fun police, and the cops have to respond to the call. He walks up to the guys, and says, “Can you believe it?” I love it.

He hung around to shoot hoops for a little while, and even lowered the rim for a dankaroo! That’s good police work. It was Gainesville PD that posted the video, with a comment that they have no problem with kids being kids. #hoopsnotcrime Good stuff.