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Category archives for: Circuit & County Court

4 Years In, Judge Dennis Craig Is Reassigned To Volusia and Replaced By Michael Orfinger

| December 10, 2014

Craig has been reassigned to the civil division in Daytona Beach. He will be replaced in Flagler by Michael Orfinger, who was elected to the bench after running unopposed last summer.

Flagler Opens 1st Secure Site For Supervised Children’s Visits in Sally’s Safe Haven

| December 8, 2014

It took three years and $400,000 from a federal grant, but on Monday county officials dedicated the safe haven in the old Bunnell Post office location, ensuring that parents don’t have to travel to Volusia or St. Johns to execute court-ordered, supervised children’s visitations.

In Reversal, Accused European Village Attacker Daniel Noble Found Competent to Stand Trial

| December 8, 2014

Daniel Noble appeared ready to shoot his Uzi-style assault weapon at a crowd at European Village in March before he was wrestled to the ground. After being deemed incompetent to stand trial three months ago, a judge ruled today that trial can proceed.

Eric Niemi Is Sentenced to Life in Prison, No Parole, for R-Section Murder of Leonard Lynn

| December 8, 2014

Niemi killed Leonard Lynn, his 72-year-old landlord, in a savage beating last year. The sentencing hearing reflected Niemi’s own demeanor: stark, almost shorn of emotions, dispirited, more matter-of-fact than anguished.

Guilty of 2nd-Degree Murder in Killing of 72-Year-Old Landlord, Erick Niemi Faces Up to Life in Prison

| October 24, 2014

Erick Niemi, 43, of Palm Coast, killed Leonard Lynn, his 72-year-old landlord in the R-Section, by savagely beating and strangling him in May 2013, because Niemi felt he was being mistreated.

Joseph Bova, Found Incompetent to Stand Trial for Mobil Murder, Is Committed to State Hospital

| October 8, 2014

Joseph Bova, the inscrutable and unnerving suspect accused of murdering Zuheily Roman Rosado in an execution-style shooting at the Mobil Mart in February 2013, will be committed to a state hospital.

U.S. Supreme Court Takes Up Florida Lawyer’s Appeal of Ban on Judicial Candidates’ Campaign Solicitations

| October 2, 2014

Lanell Williams-Yulee was disciplined by the Florida Bar for violating a rule barring judicial candidates from soliciting money when running for judgeships. The U.S. Supreme Court may reverse that rule, affecting 30 states where similar bans are in place.

Michael Dunn Is Guilty of First-Degree Murder in Shooting of Jordan Davis as Jury Rejects Self-Defense Claim

| October 1, 2014

Michael Dunn murdered 17-year-old Jordan Davis at a gas station in Jacksonville the day after Thanksgiving 2012, in a case that again put the focus on Florida’s Stand Your Ground law and racial implications.

“Sexsomnia” Case: Man Convicted of Molesting 7-Year-Old Girl Is Sentenced to 30 Years

| September 29, 2014

Caleb Ruh, a 29-year-old Flagler County man accused two years ago of molesting a 7-year-old girl in his care, claimed he was asleep at the time. He faces life in prison when sentenmced on Sept. 29.

“You Are the Shining Stars,” Flagler’s Drug Court Graduates Are Told at Inspirational Ceremony

| September 26, 2014

Five graduates joined today the 101 who have graduated from Flagler County Drug Court at a ceremony before Judge J. David Walsh, where emotions, celebrations and relief gripped much of the full house.

Shaun Whitt of Palm Coast Is Sentenced to Life in Prison For Serial Rapes of 11-Year-Old Girl

| September 17, 2014

Shaun Whitt, formerly of Palm Coast’s F-Section, would assault the girl in her bedroom for more than two years after she turned 11, after her mother would go to work. He denied the allegations.

Judge Raul Zambrano Sentences Kentrell Johnson to Death For FSU Student Vincent Binder’s Murder

| September 16, 2014

Vincent Binder’s mutilated body was found in a St. Augustine field in April 2010, weeks after he was murdered by three convicts escaped from a Louisiana prison. Two were sentenced to death, one to life in prison.

Reagan Assemblies’ “Watchdogs” Can’t Take Defeat: As One Suit Is Tossed, a Pledge to File Another

| September 4, 2014

Just after a judge threw out a lawsuit this afternoon, the attorney for an obscure “Watchdogs” group said he’d file a new lawsuit alleging illegal conversations outside of meetings by county commissioners.

Appeals Court Orders City Government to Release “Shade” Meeting Transcript

| August 28, 2014

In a highly critical opinion, an appeals court Wednesday ordered the city of St. Pete Beach to release a transcript of a closed-door discussion about the settlement of a lawsuit.

Skeptical Judge Grants Delay in “Watchdog” Suit Against County Over Old Hospital Buy

| August 27, 2014

A suit by a group that calls itself the Flagler Palm Coast Watchdogs, raising a conflict of interest issue with a county commissioner during the Memorial Hospital buy last year, does not belong in circuit court, the county argues.

Trial Judge Denies “Stand Your Ground” Immunity Hearing For Marissa Alexander

| July 21, 2014

The trial judge overseeing the case of Marissa Alexander, who faces 60 years in prison for firing a shot in a domestic dispute, has ruled that she is not entitled to a second immunity hearing under Florida’s controversial “stand your ground” self-defense law.

Find a Lawyer: Flagler Duo Launches Unique Web Venture Rating Attorneys’ Success Rate

| July 15, 2014

CourtCaseResults.com, the brainchild of Trevor Tucker and Darren McGuire, is a freely accessible website that gives consumers full histories of lawyers’ success and failure rates in Flagler cases. Launched Monday, the site is gradually moving to include cases statewide.

Lawsuit and Ethics Charge Cite Flagler Commissioner Revels Ties to Business Associate in County’s Old Hospital Buy

| July 1, 2014

A group calling itself the Flagler Palm Coast Watchdogs filed a lawsuit against Flagler County, seeking to stop construction on the old Memorial Hospital property slated to be the sheriff’s headquarters, and alleging that Commissioner Barbara Revels did not disclose owning shares in the bank run by one of the men who sold the hospital to the county for $1.23 million last August.

At Flagler Drug Court Graduation, Gratefulness Humbled By Clean Living’s Demands

| June 24, 2014

Graduating in a ceremony at the Flagler County Courthouse Friday, drug court participants–most had suffered of prescription-drug abuse–spoke of lives changed by the demanding program, which keeps two-thirds of participants from re-offending.

This Time Palm Coast Shows Up in Court, But Source of Red-Light Camera Hitch Unresolved

| May 30, 2014

Hundreds of red-light camera tickets issued by ATS, the private company running Palm Coast’s red-light camera system, end up undelivered, triggering court-issued citations and, often, suspended licenses, even though it’s neither the driver’s nor the city of Palm Coast’s fault–but rather ATS’s inability or unwillingness to better follow through on undelivered mail.

For 2nd Time in 6 Weeks, a Flagler Judge Declares Palm Coast’s Red-Light Camera System “Improper” and Issues Stern Order

| April 30, 2014

After a hearing on red-light camera citations where Palm Coast was, inappropriately, a no-show, Flagler County Judge Melissa Moore-Stens on Wednesday ordered the city to show why it was circumventing the court’s authority by telling drivers they could settle their camera citations by directly paying the city rather than follow legally required steps–and pay fines–through the court system.

Grand Jury Declines to Indict Ex-Flagler Beach Cop Bobby MacDonald Over Wife’s Gunshot Wound, But Case May Remain Open for Years

| April 9, 2014

A Flagler County grand jury found no probable cause to go forward with an indictment against Robert “Bobby” MacDonald, who brought his wife Kathy bleeding from the head, from a gunshot wound, to an ambulance in July 2012 in western Flagler County.

Judge Refuses to Revoke $400,000 Bond on European Village’s Would-Be Shooter; Bova Behaves

| March 25, 2014

Daniel Noble, accused of attempted murder in the March 15 European Village incident, was in court today, as were the men who disarmed him, as prosecutor tried unsuccessfully to revoke his bond. Joseph Bova, the accused murderer of Mobil Mart store clerk Zuheily Rosado, was also in court, subdued this time, and is scheduled for a pre-trial hearing in May.

Judge Craig Indicts Palm Coast’s “Bad Faith” Red-Light Cameras and Exposes City’s Legal Flaws as He Contests Violation

| March 20, 2014

In a half-hour hearing before Palm Coast’s red-light violations officer, Flagler Circuit Judge Dennis Craig on Thursday ridiculed the city’s guilty-until-proven-innocent standard as well as the council’s claim that cameras are intended to improve safety. The city dismissed his citation not on the grounds he raised, but by inventing a case of “prudent” driving that the evidence did not show.

Anthony Fregenti, Palm Coast Ponzi Schemer, Is Sentenced to 5 Years in Prison

| March 13, 2014

Anthony Fregenti, 42, was sentenced to five years in prison, followed by twenty years’ probation and ordered to pay restitution of $3 million dollars to his victims. The Palm Coast man must pay $100,000 a year once he is released from prison and on probation.

Judge J. Michael Traynor’s Alarming Equivalence Between an Attempted Murderer and His Victim

| February 2, 2014

When Judge J. Michael Traynor sentenced Nathaniel Juratovac to four years in prison for the attempted murder of Flagler County firefighter Jared Parkey last week, the judge managed to blame both men for the violent incident that led them to the courtroom, a stunning and immoral leveling of blame in a state that too easily excuses gun violence.

Ex-Flagler Beach Cop Juratovac Sentenced to 4 Years in Prison in Attempted Murder of Flagler Firefighter

| January 24, 2014

Nathaniel Juratovac, the 41-year-old ex-Flagler Beach cop who twice shot an unarmed Flagler County firefighter in what was then termed a road-rage incident by the side of U.S. 1 was sentenced this afternoon to 51 months in prison in a plea agreement. Had he been convicted at trial, he could have faced up to 25 years in prison on the attempted murder charge.

Six Gay Couples and Equality Florida File Lawsuit in State Court Seeking Freedom to Marry

| January 21, 2014

The lawsuit argues that Florida’s laws barring same-sex couples from marriage violate the United States Constitution by denying them the legal protections and equal dignity that having the freedom to marry provides.

Your Backpack Please: Florida Appeal Court Rules Legal Search Based on Anonymous Tip

| December 27, 2013

A high school student who took a loaded gun to school argued that the search of his back-pack, based on an anonymous tip, was illegal. A 2-1 ruling of the Third District Court of Appeal disagreed.

Florida Sentencing Guidelines

| December 10, 2013

Overview of Florida’s sentencing policies, guidelines, first, second and third degree felonies, life sentences.

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