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Florida Registered Paralegal virtual seminar draws nearly 900

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'How to Prepare for Trial When the Client Is Innocent, and the Deck Is Stacked Against Them: The Brenton Butler Murder Trial'

FRP logoAlmost 900 people attended the Florida Registered Paralegal Enrichment Committee’s virtual seminar, “How to Prepare for Trial When the Client Is Innocent, and the Deck Is Stacked Against Them: The Brenton Butler Murder Trial,” at the recent Florida Bar Annual Convention.

Frank Digon-Greer, assistant director of programs at The Florida Bar, along with paralegal Asha Maharaj-Lucas, chair of the FRP Enrichment Committee’s Special Events Subcommittee, led the event.

The presenters included Ann Finnell and Patrick McGuinness of Finnell, McGuinness, Nezami & Andux in Jacksonville, who were featured counsel in the film, “Murder on a Sunday Morning,” which followed the local murder case they defended that ultimately drew international attention.

After the successful conclusion of the case and the vindication of their client, Brenton Butler, the film was featured on HBO and won an Academy Award for the best documentary in 2002.

Drawing from their case, Finnell and McGuinness’ presentation focused on the defense’s preparation techniques for a criminal case going to trial.

Topics included how to interview your client, what information can be obtained during pretrial depositions, discovery documents from opposing parties as well as potential witnesses and experts. They also discussed interviewing eyewitnesses and experts, motions attacking the voluntariness of confessions and eyewitness identification, and arguing those issues to the court. The presentation also identified specific strategies on how to prepare a juvenile for testimony.

The program may be accessed here and has been approved for 3.0 hours of General CLE Credit. The course is also applicable for 3.0 hours toward the Appellate Practice; and Criminal Appellate, Criminal Trial, and Juvenile Law continuing education certifications.



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