The Florida Bar’s Criminal Procedure Rules Committee (committee) has submitted to the Florida Supreme Court an out-of-cycle report proposing amendments to Florida Rules of Criminal Procedure 3.130, First Appearance, that would require the state attorney and the public defender to attend the first appearance either in person or by electronic means. The court invites all interested persons to comment on the proposed amendments, which are reproduced in full below. An original and nine paper copies of all comments must be filed with the court on or before December 15, with a certificate of service verifying that a copy has been served on Judge Thomas H. Bateman III, Committee Chair, Gadsden County Courthouse, 24 N. Adams St., Quincy 32354, as well as a separate request for oral argument if the person filing the comment wishes to participate in oral argument, which may be scheduled in this case. The committee chair has until January 5, 2009, to file a response to any comments filed with the court. Electronic copies of all comments also must be filed in accordance with the Court’s administrative order In re Mandatory Submission of Electronic Copies of Documents, Fla. Admin. Order No. AOSC04-84 (Sept. 13, 2004).
IN THE SUPREME COURT OF FLORIDA
3.130. FIRST APPEARANCE
(a) Prompt First Appearance. Except when previously released in a lawful manner, every arrested person shall be taken before a judicial officer, either in person or by electronic audiovisual device in the discretion of the court, within 24 hours of arrest. In the case of a child in the custody of juvenile authorities, against whom an information or indictment has been filed, the child shall be taken for a first appearance hearing within 24 hours of the filing of the information or indictment. The chief judge of the circuit for each county within the circuit shall designate 1 or more judicial officers from the circuit court, or county court, to be available for the first appearance and proceedings. The state attorney or an assistant state attorney and the public defender or an assistant public defender shall attend the first appearance proceeding either in person or by other electronic means.
(b) – (d) (No Change)