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Daily News Summary

An electronic digest of media coverage of interest to members of The Florida Bar compiled each workday by the Public Information and Bar Services Department. Electronic links are only active in today's edition. For information on previous articles, please contact the publishing newspaper directly.

Dec. 27, 2013

--The Florida Bar--

BOARD CLARIFIES LAWYER AD RULES ENFORCEMENT -- The Florida Bar News, http://www.floridabar.org, Jan. 1, 2014. [Also: BOARD WRESTLES WITH LINKEDIN ISSUES -- The Florida Bar News, http://www.floridabar.org, Jan. 1, 2014.]
The Florida Bar Board of Governors, at its Dec. 13 meeting in Ft. Lauderdale, approved a recommendation from the Board Review Committee on Professional Ethics to adopt guidelines for Bar lawyers who review ads submitted by attorneys. Billboards, radio, and TV ads will be presumed misleading if they refer to past results of cases and give a monetary amount won by clients. The guidelines are intended to clarify recent advertising rule amendments that allow lawyers to refer to past results if they are objectively verifiable. Also, the board has narrowly decided not to issue a proposed advisory opinion relating to the deceptive use of hidden text and metatags on attorney websites but has authorized a committee to explore preparing an opinion on lawyers using the business networking site LinkedIn. While that opinion is being considered, the board also withdrew a Bar staff opinion that advised an attorney that using LinkedIn violated Bar advertising rules.

BOARD AGREES TO EXPAND LEADERSHIP ACADEMY -- The Florida Bar News, http://www.floridabar.org, Jan. 1, 2014.
As the Bar accepts applications for its second class, the Board of Governors has approved expanding the size of the Wm. Reece Smith, Jr., Leadership Academy. The board at its recent Fort Lauderdale meeting agreed with the recommendation of the Program Evaluation Committee to expand the number of participants from 60 to 75 and also give sections more say in the selection of some academy members. The Academy, a project initiated by Bar President Eugene Pettis, seeks to train a diverse group of lawyers for future leadership positions in the legal profession and their communities.

--Criminal Justice Issues--

MAN POSTED ONLINE DEATH THREAT TO BROWARD PROSECUTOR AND JUDGES, FEDS SAY -- South Florida Sun-Sentinel, http://www.sun-sentinel.com, Dec. 27, 2013.
Mark Robert Hillstrom, a South Florida man with a history of arrests and mental health problems, is facing federal charges after authorities say he posted a threat to kill Broward State Attorney Mike Satz and some judges in a posting on a courthouse blog. Hillstrom, who has lived in Broward and Palm Beach counties in recent years, will remain locked up for now after an appearance Thursday [Dec. 26] in federal court in Fort Lauderdale. Hillstrom was arrested Dec. 18 on allegations that he made an online threat in a Nov. 27 comment on the JAABLOG blog, which covers the Broward County courthouse. The poster used the pseudonym "Rouge asa will die." A.S.A. is an abbreviation for assistant state attorney. An unidentified person swiftly reported the comment to law enforcement officials, who got a subpoena to identify the computer that was used, according to the FBI.

--Civil Justice Issues--

APPEAL COURT: BOOK-BAG SEARCH DID NOT VIOLATE STUDENT'S CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHTS -- Miami Herald, http://www.miamiherald.com, Dec. 27, 2013.
The attorneys for a Miami Northwestern Senior High School student who brought a loaded gun to school in 2011 argued that school administrators had violated his constitutional rights when they unreasonably searched his backpack. The attorneys fought to keep the weapon from being used as evidence in the case. In an opinion released Thursday [Dec. 26], the Third District Court of Appeal ruled the search was reasonable. The three-judge panel was divided. In her dissent, Judge Linda Wells wrote that school administrators lacked legal grounds to conduct the search, in part because they were acting on an anonymous tip. In the majority opinion, Judge Thomas Logue wrote that students have a decreased expectation of privacy in schools. He also made reference to recent school shootings, and said safeguarding students in schools was a top national priority. Chief Judge Frank Shepherd joined in the opinion.

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[Revised: 12-30-2013]