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Daily News Summary

The purpose of this summary provided by the Communications Department of The Florida Bar is to present media coverage that may be of interest to members. Opinions expressed in the articles are attributable solely to the authors. The Florida Bar does not adopt or endorse any opinions expressed below. For information on previous articles, please contact the publishing newspaper directly.

October 07, 2019

  1. Civil Justice

    FEDERAL JUDGE HEARS CASE TO RESTORE VOTE TO FLORIDA FELONS

    WPTV | Article | October 07, 2019

    Monday [Oct. 7], a federal judge is set to begin hearing a case that could decide if Florida lawmakers exceeded their authority to strip voting rights from former felons who still owe fines and other financial obligations once freed from prison. Amendment 4 was overwhelmingly approved by voters last fall, but earlier this year, state legislature specified former felons had to complete their financial obligations before they could regain voting rights. Voter advocacy groups immediately sued the state in U.S. District Court in Tallahassee, arguing the requirement constituted a poll tax.

  2. Criminal Justice

    ELECTED FLORIDA COURT OFFICIAL INDICTED ON FRAUD CHARGE

    Keys News | Article | October 05, 2019

    U.S. Attorney Lawrence Keefe announced Friday [Oct. 3] that former Holmes County Clerk of Courts Kyle Hudson was indicted by a federal grand jury on a federal wire fraud charge. Hudson claimed he traveled to professional conferences and turned in fictitious meeting agendas and minutes and fake hotel folios for reimbursement totaling more than $6,800. If convicted, Hudson faces a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

  3. Civil Justice

    NEW COURT TERMS FOR MAN JAILED FOR MISSING JURY DUTY

    Lakeland Ledger | Article | October 06, 2019

    On Friday [Oct. 3] Circuit Civil Judge John Kastrenakes reduced the probation of Deandre Somerville, a 21-year-old man who spent 10 days in jail after he overslept and missed jury duty, from 12 months to three months, and community service from 150 to 30 hours. The judge also said he would drop the contempt of court conviction from his record if he met the conditions of his probation.

  4. Civil Justice

    JUDGE THROWS OUT LIBEL LAWSUIT AGAINST COMMISSIONER DOUG UNDERHILL

    Pensacola News Journal | Article | October 07, 2019

    A defamation lawsuit filed against Escambia County Commissioner Doug Underhill was thrown out of court Friday [Oct. 4]. A political consultant sued Underhill in June alleging that Underhill libeled him in an exchange on Facebook in a public discussion group earlier this year. Escambia Circuit Court Judge Stephen Pitre ruled Underhill has immunity from a defamation lawsuit under Florida law in this case because a discussion with the public of county policy, even on Facebook, falls in the “orbit” of a County Commissioner.

  5. Civil Justice

    CONVERSION THERAPY BAN OVERTURNED IN TAMPA COULD IMPACT PALM BEACH COUNTY

    CBS 12 | Article | October 04, 2019

    On Oct. 4 a federal judge blocked Tampa’s 2017 conversion therapy ban after a Christian-based group challenged it. In February, a different judge upheld a similar ban in Palm Beach County. There are now two federal districts that are in conflict because Palm Beach County falls within the Southern District of Florida and Tampa falls within the Middle District of Florida.  It is possible these cases are going to go up through the federal courts, the appellate procedures, and eventually end up in the U.S. Supreme Court.  Right now, the City of Tampa can appeal this ruling.

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