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  • Gavel to Gavel - Supreme Court Oral Argument Broadcasts

    Oral Argument Banner

    Oral Argument Schedule & Briefs

    April 5-9 & 21, 2010

    Printer Friendly Oral Argument Schedule (PDF)

    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.

    Via Satellite: Check with Rick Potrikus WFSU Television (800) 322-WFSU for further satellite information.

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    If you miss a live case, view it from our archive at http://wfsu.org/gavel2gavel/archives/index.html

    Names & phone numbers of attorneys in these cases are available in Acrobat format.

    Questions, comments? publicinformation@flcourts.org


    Florida Supreme Court Oral Arguments

    Monday, April 5, 2010

    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

    St. Johns River Waters Management District v. Coy A. Koontz

    SC09-713

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

     

     

    9:00

    The Fifth District Court of Appeal has asked this Court whether property is inversely condemned when a regulatory agency refuses to approve a permit for development unless the landowner fulfills an unreasonable condition. The question stems from a legal battle over wetlands owned by Mr. Koontz's father. The trial court ruled that St. Johns had inversely condemned the property by conditioning permit approval upon his agreement to mitigate the impact of his development by making improvements to property located miles away. The 5th DCA agreed.

    Orange County

    Juan Pantoja v. State of Florida

    SC08-1879

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

    Approx. 9:40
    Mr. Pantoja was convicted of sexual battery of a child under the age of 12 and lewd and lascivious molestation. He was sentenced to life in prison. On appeal, he argued the trial court erred in refusing to allow evidence about a prior accusation of molestation made by the child against another person. The First District Court of Appeal disagreed.
    Gadsden County

    Renaldo Devon McGirth v. State of Florida

    SC08-976

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

    Approx. 10:30

    Mr. McGirth was convicted of the first-degree murder of Diana Miller, who was fatally shot in her home in July 2006. The jury voted 11-1 to recommend a death sentence and the trial court condemned him. This is his direct appeal. He raises various issues.

    Marion County

     

     

    Florida Supreme Court Oral Arguments

    Tuesday, April 6, 2010

    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

    William Frances Silvia v. State of Florida

    SC09-220

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

     

    N/A

    Removed from calendar; transferred to September oral arguments

    Seminole County

    Willie F. Jones v. Florida Parole Commission

    SC09-612

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

    9:00
    Mr. Jones was paroled from prison in 1982 after serving 14 years of a 99-year sentence. In 1990, the Parole Commission revoked his parole after he was arrested on a cocaine charge. Mr. Jones was never convicted of that charge and he challenged the Commission's action with a habeas corpus motion in 2006. The trial court denied his motion, ruling there was a one-year deadline for such a challenge. The Fourth District Court of Appeal upheld the trial court's ruling but certified a conflict with both the First and the Second District Courts of Appeal.
    Okeechobee County

    Charlene M. Bifulco v. Patient Business & Financial Services, Inc.

    SC09-172

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

    Approx. 9:40
    Ms. Bifulco sued her former employer, alleging she was fired in retaliation for filing a workers' compensation claim and for reporting wrongdoing by a supervisor. The trial court dismissed both claims. On the first claim, the court ruled that Ms. Bifulco had not filed a pre-suit notice required by state law. On the second claim, the court ruled that Patient Business & Financial Services was not covered by Florida's private whistle-blower law because it was a subsidiary of a hospital taxing authority. The Fifth District Court of Appeal reversed the trial court on the workers' comp claim and upheld the trial court on the whistle-blower claim.
    Volusia County

     

     

    Florida Supreme Court Oral Arguments

    Wednesday, April 7, 2010

    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

    Inquiry Concerning a Judge: Angela Dempsey

    SC09-1747

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

     

     

     

    9:00

    The Supreme Court has ordered Judge Dempsey to appear for administration of a public reprimand for improper conduct.

    Justice Canady is recused

     

    Leon County

    Miccosukee Tribe of Indians of Florida v. Southwest Florida Waters Management District

    SC09-1817 | SC09-1818

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

     

     

     

     

    Approx. 9:10
    The trial court validated a $650 million bond issue by the South Florida Water Management District to acquire 73,000 acres of farmland south of Lake Okeechobee. In this appeal, the Miccosukee Tribe and New Hope Sugar Co. challenge the trial court's ruling. They argue, among other things, that the project will benefit the private landowner selling the land and serves no public purpose. The Water Management District argues it needs the land for Everglades restoration and to protect the water needs of millions of people in South Florida.
    Palm Beach County

    Donald William Dufour v. State of Florida

    SC09-262

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

     

     

     

    Approx. 9:50
    Mr. Dufour was convicted of the first-degree murder of Zack Miller, who was fatally shot in 1982. The jury voted unanimously to recommend a death sentence and he was condemned. In 2004, Mr. Dufour filed a motion in trial court arguing he could not be executed because he was mentally retarded. The trial court denied his motion, ruling he was not mentally retarded. This appeal followed.
    Orange County

    State of Florida v. Warren Stang

    SC09-1409

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

     

     

     

     

    Approx. 10:30

    Mr. Stang pled guilty to 24 counts of racketeering, loan-broker fraud and money-laundering. After his release from prison, he violated probation and was sentenced to 27 years in prison. The judge granted him credit for 1,915 days of time already served. In a post-conviction challenge, Mr. Stang argued the credit should be multiplied to apply to each count. The state argued the credit was properly applied once to the entire sentence. Mr. Stang lost his challenge in the judicial circuit where he was sentenced. He also lost a habeas corpus petition in the circuit where he was in prison but the Second District Court of Appeal reversed that decision.

    Hardee County

     

     

    Florida Supreme Court Oral Arguments

    Thursday, April 8, 2010

    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

    In re: Amendments to the Florida Rules of Appellate Procedure

    SC09-118

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

    9:00

    The Committee on Alternative Dispute Resolution Rules and Policy recommends changes to the Florida Rules of Appellate Procedure and to the Florida Rules of Certified and Court-Appointed Mediators to provide for expanded use of mediation in civil cases on appeal. The proposed changes cover procedural rules and training and certification standards for mediators.

    Statewide impact

    State of Florida v. Lemuel E. Isaac

    SC05-2047

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

     

    Approx. 9:30
    Mr. Isaac was sentenced to 20 years in prison for convictions of robbery, kidnapping, and burglary. His sentence was later vacated, and he was resentenced. On appeal, he argued that the trial judge considered evidence the jury did not and exceeded the maximum sentence allowed under the jury's verdict. The First District Court of Appeal agreed, citing decisions by the U.S. Supreme Court. In this appeal, the state argues those decisions do not apply because they were issued after Mr. Isaac was originally sentenced.
    Leon County

    State of Florida v. Julius McGriff

    SC07-436

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

    Approx. 10:10

    Mr. McGriff was convicted of second-degree murder with a firearm and sentenced to life in prison. His sentence was later vacated, but on resentencing he was again sentenced to life in prison. On appeal, he argued the trial judge exceeded the maximum sentence allowed under the jury's verdict by relying on evidence the jury did not consider. The First District Court of Appeal agreed, citing decisions by the U.S. Supreme Court. In this appeal, the state argues those decisions do not apply in Mr. McGriff's case.

    Leon County

    State of Florida v. Christian Fleming

    SC06-1173

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

     

     

     

     

    Approx. 10:50

    Mr. Fleming was sentenced to 25 years in prison for convictions of aggravated battery, shooting into a dwelling, and false imprisonment. His sentences were later vacated, and on resentencing he was sentenced to 20 years in prison. He argued the trial judge based his sentence on evidence the jury did not consider and exceeded the maximum sentence allowed under the jury's verdict. The First District Court of Appeal agreed, citing decisions by the U.S. Supreme Court. In this appeal, the state argues those decisions do not apply in Mr. Fleming's case.

    Justice Polston is recused

     

    Leon County

     

     

     

    Florida Supreme Court Oral Arguments

    Friday, April 9, 2010

    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

    No cases scheduled

     

     

     

     

     

    Florida Supreme Court Oral Arguments

    Wednesday, April 21, 2010

    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

    Howard Ault v. State of Florida

    SC07-2130

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

     

     10:00

    Mr. Ault was convicted of and condemned to death for the first-degree murders of two sisters, ages 11 and 7, who were fatally strangled in 1996. On direct appeal, this Court upheld the convictions but found that a new sentencing hearing was required. At the second sentencing hearing, the jury voted 9-3 to recommend death for the murder of the older sister and 10-2 to recommend death for the murder of the younger sister. The trial court condemned Mr. Ault to death for both murders. This is his direct appeal of his resentencing. He raises various issues.

     Broward County