[SUPREME COURT OF FLORIDA]
Oral Argument Press Summaries
April 5-9, & 21, 2004

The following summaries are drawn from briefs and lower court judgments. They are meant to provide a general idea of facts and issues presented in cases, and should not be considered official court documents. Facts and issues presented in these summaries should be checked for accuracy against records and briefs, available from the Court, which provide more specific information.

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[ETCHING: SUPREME COURT OF FLORIDA]
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Florida Supreme Court Oral Arguments
Monday, April 5, 2004
Arrive early. Times & order of appearance are tentative and subject to change with no notice. Cases may be postponed due to exigent circumstances.
Case Time Facts & Issues Place of Origin
John J. Ryan, IV v. Leonor Lobo deGonzalez

SC03-933

View briefs in Acrobat format by clicking the case number(s) here

9:00 At issue in this case is a dispute over the possession of shares of the Chiriqui Sugar Mills Corporation. The trial court held that the suit over the shares was untimely and that equitable estoppel did not revive the Ryans' claims because they did not have knowledge of the underlying claim during the statute of limitations period. The Fourth District Court of Appeal affirmed, holding that a party must have knowledge of a cause of action during the limitations period in order to effectively assert equitable estoppel against a statute of limitations bar. The Ryans seek review on the grounds of express and direct conflict with a Florida Supreme Court case.  Indian River County
John Steven Huggins v. State of Florida

SC02-2364

View briefs in Acrobat format by clicking the case number(s) here 

Approx. 9:40 Huggins was convicted of the first-degree murder of Carla Larson, committed in Orlando on June 10, 1997, as well as kidnaping, carjacking, and petit theft. The jury recommended and the court imposed the sentence of death. This is Huggin's direct appeal. Orange County
Albert Goble v. Mark E. Frohman

SC03-1245

View briefs in Acrobat format by clicking the case number(s) here 

Approx. 10:40 Section 768.76, Florida Statutes, instructs courts to reduce compensatory damages awards by the amounts available to plaintiffs from statutorily-defined collateral sources. The certified question before the Court is whether discounts off medical bills, given by medical providers as required under an HMO contract, constitute "collateral sources" to reduce an award of damages under section 768.76.  Hillsborough County
Florida Municipal Insurance Trust v. Village of Golf

SC03-1598

View briefs in Acrobat format by clicking the case number(s) here 

Approx. 11:20 The insured, the municipality of the Village of Golf, settled a claim with a farmer based upon alleged damages to a crop from a chlorine leak at a City facility. The City then brought this suit against its insurer, Florida Municipal Insurance Trust, claiming that it was prejudiced by the insurer's inadequate pre-suit investigation, which should estop the insurer from denying coverage. The trial court agreed and awarded damages to the insured based upon estoppel, which was affirmed by the Fourth District. This Court granted jurisdiction to review the Fourth District's certified question of great public importance.  Palm Beach County

Florida Supreme Court Oral Arguments
Tuesday, April 6, 2004
Arrive early. Times & order of appearance are tentative and subject to change with no notice. Cases may be postponed due to exigent circumstances.

Case Time Facts & Issues Place of Origin
Ronna Martino v. Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.

SC03-334 | SC03-956

View briefs in Acrobat format by clicking the case number(s) here 

9:00 These combined cases pose the question of the whether people can sue someone, who allegedly has negligently injured, them for failing to preserve evidence that might prove the negligence. Palm Beach County

Polk County

Kenneth Louis Dessaure v. State of Florida

SC02-286

View briefs in Acrobat format by clicking the case number(s) here 

Approx. 9:40 Dessaure was tried, convicted, and sentenced to death for the February 1999 first-degree murder of Cindy Riedweg. This is his direct appeal. Pinellas County
Darryl Walker v. State of Florida

SC03-1555

View briefs in Acrobat format by clicking the case number(s) here 

Approx. 10:40 Darryl Walker was sentenced to 5 years in prison for a burglary. The First District Court of Appeal certified the following question to this Court: Is the Florida standard jury instruction on "possession of property recently stolen" an impermissible comment on the evidence?  Duval County
Indemnity Insurance Co. v. American Aviation, Inc.

SC03-1601

View briefs in Acrobat format by clicking the case number(s) here 

Approx. 11:20 Indemnity Insurance and Profile Aviation Services, Inc. filed suit against American Aviation alleging that the latter negligently serviced and repaired an aircraft purchased by Profile. The United States District Court for the Middle District of Florida dismissed Indemnity's claims, finding them barred by Florida law. Indemnity appealed to the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals, which certified to this Court five questions concerning the application of Florida law to the facts of the case.  Central Florida

Florida Supreme Court Oral Arguments
Wednesday, April 7, 2004
Arrive early. Times & order of appearance are tentative and subject to change with no notice. Cases may be postponed due to exigent circumstances.

Case Time Facts & Issues Place of Origin
Roderick Michael Orme v. State of Florida

SC02-2625 | SC03-1375

View briefs in Acrobat format by clicking the case number(s) here 

9:00 Orme was convicted of first degree murder and sentenced to death in 1993. His conviction and sentence were upheld on direct appeal. In these proceedings, he challenges the validity of both the conviction and sentence. Bay County 
State of Florida v. James Christopher White

SC02-2277 | SC03-166

View briefs in Acrobat format by clicking the case number(s) here 

Approx. 9:40 These consolidated cases disagree on the issue of whether, in a civil commitment proceeding pursuant to the Jimmy Ryce Act, the jury must be instructed that the respondent has "serious difficulty in controlling behavior." The First District held that the jury must be given the instruction, while the Fourth District held to the contrary.  Bay County

Hillsborough County

Paul Glen Everett v. State of Florida

SC03-73

View briefs in Acrobat format by clicking the case number(s) here 

Approx. 10:30 Appellant was convicted of first-degree murder, burglary of a dwelling with a battery, and sexual battery involving serious physical force, which occurred on November 2, 2001. The jury unanimously recommended and the court imposed the sentence of death. This is Everett's direct appeal. Bay County
James A. Zingale v. Robert O. Powell

SC03-1270

View briefs in Acrobat format by clicking the case number(s) here 

Approx. 11:30 In 1992, voters adopted a constitutional amendment known as "Save Our Homes" that limits increases in tax assessments on homestead property. The amendment went into effect in 1994. The Powells, who have owned and lived in their home in Broward County since 1990, first applied for and obtained a homestead exemption in 2001. The Fourth District held that despite the Powells' failure to seek a homestead exemption before tax year 2001, they were entitled to the "Save Our Homes" cap's limit on an increase in the assessment for tax year 2000. That decision is being challenged by the state Department of Revenue and numerous county property appraisers. Broward County

Statewide impact

Florida Supreme Court Oral Arguments
Thursday, April 8, 2004
Arrive early. Times & order of appearance are tentative and subject to change with no notice. Cases may be postponed due to exigent circumstances.

Case Time Facts & Issues Place of Origin
Anthony Floyd Wainwright v. State of Florida

SC02-1342 | SC02-2021

View briefs in Acrobat format by clicking the case number(s) here 

9:00 Wainwright was tried, convicted, and sentenced to death for the April 1994 murder of Carmen Gayheart after abducting her in a Lake City grocery store parking lot. His sentence was affirmed on appeal. He now challenges its validity. Hamilton County

Lake City connection

Daniel Jon Peterka v. State of Florida

SC02-1410 | SC03-482

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Approx. 9:40 Daniel Peterka was convicted of the 1989 murder of John Russell. He was sentenced to death, and his conviction and sentence were affirmed on direct appeal. Peterka now challenges the validity of both his conviction and sentence. Okaloosa County
Errol Austin Rollman v. State of Florida

SC03-1871

View briefs in Acrobat format by clicking the case number(s) here 

Approx. 10:30 Errol Austin Rollman was sentenced to ten years of imprisonment and ten years of probation, and was required to pay restitution for his role in an armed robbery. Prior to sentencing, Rollman engaged in plea bargaining with the trial judge, who stated that Rollman's sentence would be capped at ten years of imprisonment. The First District Court of Appeal affirmed the sentence, but certified as a question of great public importance to this Court, whether a judge may engage in plea bargaining, state the maximum sentence on the record, and later render a more severe sentence, without any apparent justification from the record.  Okaloosa County

Florida Supreme Court Oral Arguments
Friday, April 9, 2004
Arrive early. Times & order of appearance are tentative and subject to change with no notice. Cases may be postponed due to exigent circumstances.

Case Time Facts & Issues Place of Origin
Court Holiday


Florida Supreme Court Oral Arguments
Wednesday April 21, 2004
Arrive early. Times & order of appearance are tentative and subject to change with no notice. Cases may be postponed due to exigent circumstances.


 
Case Time Facts & Issues Place of Origin
Nathaniel Charles Jones v. State of Florida

SC03-1363

View briefs in Acrobat format by clicking the case number(s) here 

9:00 a.m. Jones sought this Court's review of a district court decision overturning the trial court's decision to exclude from trial a police officer's identification of Jones from a video taped lineup. This case asks the Florida Supreme Court to decide whether the right to counsel guaranteed by Florida's Constitution requires a defendant's attorney to be present when the prosecution shows a video taped lineup to a witness for identification purposes.  Miami-Dade County



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