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Articles Tagged with U.S. Supreme Court

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Cases throughout Florida may end up coming unraveled if judges take note of what courts in Miami and Manatee County have done recently with drug cases that have been ruled unconstitutional, the Sarasota Herald-Tribune reports.

Cases of drug possession and drug sales may be dropped after Judge Mary Scriven, of the U.S. Middle District of Florida, ruled that Florida’s drug possession statute is unconstitutional because it lacks the element of intent — opponents argue that violates due process because it puts the legal burden on the defendant. Three circuit court judges have now asked the Florida Supreme Court to address the constitutionality question of Florida Statutes Section 893.13.

152342_no_smoking_4A Fort Lauderdale criminal defense attorney who is familiar with recent case law can often use evolving law to a client’s advantage. These precedent setting cases typically start at the trial-court level when a defendant and experienced lawyer see a legal issue that permits them to fight the charges.

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In May, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that juveniles who commit crimes in which no one is killed can’t be sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

In the 6-3 majority opinion, Justice Anthony Kennedy wrote that the Eighth Amendment, which bans cruel and unusual punishment, forbids such sentences. The state must give youths “some meaningful opportunity to obtain release based on demonstrated maturity and rehabilitation,” Justice Kennedy wrote.

Fort Lauderdale Florida Juvenile Crime LawyerThe case, Graham v. Florida, involved Terrance Graham, who in 2003 robbed a Jacksonville restaurant at age 16 with an accomplice. Sentenced to probation, Graham was arrested a year later for a home invasion robbery and sentenced in 2005 to life in prison for violating probation. The case was argued before the high court in November 2009.

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The United States House of Representatives yesterday (10/7/09) took action that will hopefully lead to the end of discriminatory treatment of soldiers injured by medical malpractice.

Since the Feres decision by the United States Supreme Court in 1950, soldiers have not been able to bring actions for medical malpractice against the government; this is true irrespective of the level of disregard for their well being. Since the 1950’s untold numbers of soldiers after serving acting duty have been subjected to substandard treatment in military medical facilities. The House Judiciary Committee has now approved the Military Medical Accountability Act which would allow soldiers the same rights as  private citizens injured by medical malpractice.

The bill named after Marine Sgt. Carmelo Rodriguez, who served his country with honor for nearly a decade, including a tour of duty in Iraq, and died as a result of preventable medical negligence. A blotch on his buttock went untreated and misdiagnosed multiple times by military doctors.  By the time Sgt. Rodriguez learned it was a cancerous melanoma the damage was done. Sgt. Rodriguez, the father of a 7 year old son passed away shortly after a proper diagnosis.

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