Sexual Battery – Defendant Entitled to New Trial

Posted by John Rutkowski | Jul 27, 2017 | 0 Comments

Complainant told the jury that she lived with her mother but periodically visited fathers home. During one visit, when she was fourteen, she woke up to find father on top of her, raping her. In pain and in shock, she pretended she was asleep and waited for father to stop. The Complainant returne...

When Must The Police Read Me My Rights?

Posted by John Rutkowski | Jul 17, 2017 | 0 Comments

Law enforcement must advise a suspect of his rights (Miranda Warnings) when a suspect is in custody. The Florida Supreme Court stated four criteria to help the court determine when a suspect is in custody for Miranda purposes: 1) The way police summoned the suspect for questioning; 2) the purpose...

Sexual Battery and Lewd and Lascivious conduct

Posted by John Rutkowski | Jul 04, 2017 | 0 Comments

Sexual battery means oral, anal, or vaginal penetration by, or union with, the sexual organ of another or the anal or vaginal penetration of another by any other object; however, sexual battery does not include an act done for a bona fide medical purpose. The terms Lewd, lascivious, and indecent ...

Pretrial Detention Failure to Hold Detention Hearing

Posted by John Rutkowski | Jul 02, 2017 | 0 Comments

Defendant petitioned the appellant Court for issuance of a writ of habeas corpus, challenging the lower court's denial of pre-trial bond. Because the defendant was not given a proper pre-trial detention hearing the Court granted the petition and direct the trial court to hold a proper hearing pur...

Warrantless Search of Cell Phone Illegal

Posted by John Rutkowski | Jun 29, 2017 | 0 Comments

Criminal law -- Search and seizure -- Good faith exception to warrant requirement -- In conducting warrantless search of cell phone, officers could not rely in good faith on district court of appeal decision which was under review by Florida Supreme Court. In this case officers confiscated a cel...

Illegally Seized Evidence

Posted by John Rutkowski | Jun 28, 2017 | 0 Comments

Criminal law -- Search and seizure -- Trial court erred by denying dispositive motion to suppress cocaine in pill bottle stashed in concrete latticework attached to foundation of rooming house where defendant was staying. A dispositive motion is one in which the decision by the trial court will ...

Burden of Proof

Posted by John Rutkowski | Jun 22, 2017 | 0 Comments

In Reid v State of Florida, 42 Fla. L. Weekly D1413a, Reid was charged with murder and attempt murder. In his closing argument, the prosecutor improperly shifted the burden of proof to the defendant by asking jury multiple times to return guilty verdict based upon Reid's failure to call certain w...

Ineffective Assistance of Counsel

Posted by John Rutkowski | Jun 21, 2017 | 0 Comments

In Munoz v State of Florida, the defendant filed a petition alleging his defense counsel's representation was so poor that it violated his Sixth Amendment Right to counsel which in effect left him with no counsel, commonly known in the law as ineffective assistance. Defendant asserted his counse...

Hearsay Evidence

Posted by John Rutkowski | Jun 21, 2017 | 0 Comments

In North v State of Florida the defendant was charged with dealing in stolen property based upon his taking and selling of his employer's scrap metal. Defendant's defense was the employer gave him permission, in an email, to take the scrap metal. The trial court refused to allow the defendant's ...

Burglary to a Conveyance (Car)

Posted by John Rutkowski | Jun 21, 2017 | 0 Comments

In the case of Fualk v State of Florida, 42 Fla. L. Weekly D1383a, the trial court committed reversible error when it failed to give the defendant's requested jury instruction on his affirmative defense of consent to the crime of burglary. The prosecution asserted during defendant's trial that t...

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