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Capital cases panel to appeal judge’s ruling

first_imgCapital cases panel to appeal judge’s ruling Judge says lawyers handling death penalty appeals can ask a judge for more compensation Capital cases panel to appeal judge’s ruling Private attorneys handling collateral appeals for death row inmates can ask a judge for more compensation than allowed in state statute and cannot be banned from seeking future cases because they sought the higher pay, a Second Circuit judge has ruled.But the legislature’s Commission on Capital Cases has voted to appeal that March ruling by Judge Terry Lewis, although members said that decision could change if state lawmakers approve pending legislation.On March 21, Lewis ruled on a case brought by Tallahassee attorney Mark Evan Olive challenging the state statute that caps payment to registry attorneys. Registry attorneys are private lawyers who have signed up to handle capital collateral appeals. Those lawyers handle overflow and conflict cases in the southern and middle parts of the state and under a pilot program all of the collateral appeals in the northern part of the state.F.S. §27.7002 provides that registry attorneys may not seek compensation above caps set in state law and that the executive director of the Commission on Capital Cases “is authorized to permanently remove from the registry list” any attorney who requests higher compensation.Olive raised three points in his suit: The law violates Article V by precluding trial judges from ensuring that adequate representation is provided by awarding compensation above the caps when necessary; it violates the separation of powers by interfering with trial courts’ authority; and it infringes on the Florida constitutional right to effective assistance to counsel for death row inmates.Judge Lewis ruled for Olive on the first point, saying the law had to be interpreted in light of several court decisions which give trial judges the authority to control compensation to ensure adequate representation. He also noted that the state has regularly issued payment above the caps when approved by a judge.He ruled for the state on the other two counts, finding as long as the statute is interpreted as not undermining trial judges’ authority there is no separation of powers issue and that in Florida there is no constitutional right to effective assistance of counsel in post-conviction proceedings.At the Commission on Capital Cases, members debated what effect an appeal would have, before voting 5-1 to appeal Lewis’ ruling to the First District Court of Appeal.Commission member Sen. Victor Crist, R-Tampa, said he was happy with the system when there were three CCRC offices and registry attorneys only handled overflow and conflict cases. He noted the privatizing of the northern CCRC cases was sought by the governor’s office and is currently in a three-year pilot program of using only registry attorneys. If fee caps aren’t upheld, it’s possible that it won’t be cheaper using registry counsel than the former CCRC office, he said.“We had a system that wasn’t broke and was functioning well before we went into this private counsel,” Crist said. “If we can’t get this functioning well, maybe we need to go back to the three regional counsels.”Commission member Rep. Dan Gelber, D-Miami, noted that he and commission Chair Sen. Skip Campbell, D-Tamarac, have bills in the legislature addressing capital collateral appeals, including the fee caps issue.“We’re trying to focus on a procedure that focuses on efficiency but allows attorneys to be paid fairly when things are extraordinary,” Gelber said. “Ultimately, going back to the old system with whatever we’ve learned through this process will be the thing to do.”Commission member Fourth District Court of Appeal Judge Leslie D. Rothenberg cast the only vote against the appeal.“I don’t think it’s an excess fee if the court grants it,” she said. “I think this is a ruling that simply holds that an attorney cannot be permanently barred from the registry merely for requesting extra fees.”Rothenberg added that it does not affect attorneys who try to abuse the system and get unjustified fees or costs. April 30, 2006 Regular Newslast_img read more

Boys track Lakers dominate league championship meet

first_imgAngelo Annotto won the discus, throwing it 129’4″ as Gordan Wester was third with a season-best 116’4″ and Kyler Hathaway was fourth with 108’9″. Annotto also had a second-place shot put toss of 41 feet as Hathaway was fifth in the long jump, going 17’8 1/2″.With a time of 23.96 seconds, Slater DeLeon held off Hannibal’s Fenix Burger (24.05) to claim the 200-meter dash, Sam DeLeon (24.39) edging Jack McNerney (24.40) for fourth place.  It was Sam DeLeon’s turn to finish on top in the pole vault, clearing 10’6″.Also, Slater DeLeon, Sam DeLeon, Justin Gagnon and Josh Maxwell were victorious in the 4×100 relay in 46.15 seconds, nearly a full second ahead of Jordan-Elbridge (47.03). An undefeated run through its five Onondaga High School League Liberty National division foes was just the starting point for the Cazenovia boys track and field team.When the Lakers met up with all five league opponents at once in Wednesday’s OHSL Liberty Small School meet at Marcellus, it pulled away to win the title with 213.33 points, nearly double the total of runner-up Hannibal, who had 113.33 points.Ray Satchwell led the way, his first-place triple jump of 41 feet 4 1/4 inches beating out Dalton Sevier, who was third with 38’8 3/4″ as Josh Maxwell (36’8 1/4″) was sixth. Satchwell added a second-place long jump of 19’7 3/4″. Tags: boys track and fieldCazenoviacenter_img Slater DeLeon  got third place in the long jump with 19’1 1/4″, and was second in the 100-meter dash in 11.68 seconds, with Sam DeLeon third in 11.79 seconds and  McNerney fourth in 11.85 seconds.Gagnon went 15.31 seconds in the 110 high hurdles, just behind Hannibal’s John Ruggio (15.25) as Josh Maxwell got sixth place in 17.18 seconds. In the 400-meter hurdles, Gagnon was fourth in 1:01.67 and Connor Wilson (1:04.65) was sixth.Andrew Kent got second place in the 800-meter run in 2:07.35, inches behind J-E’s Kenny Williams (2:07.35), with Jared Smith third in 2:13.63 and Hunter McCullough (2:15.37) fifth. Smith got the runner-up spot in the 3,000-meter steeplechase in 10:50.48, while Noah DeRochie (11:12.79) was fourth.Dalton Sevier, clearing 6’2″, earned second place in the high jump, with Austin Sanders third (5’8″) and Kyler Hathaway fifth, Sevier also finishing fourth (9’6″) in the pole vault.Jack Aronson went 53.35 seconds in the 400-meter dash to finish second, while Cormac Race (56.68) finished seventh. In the 3,200-meter run, DeRochie got fourth place in 10:43.22, while Senehi was sixth.Race, Kent, Aronson and Satchwell were second in the 4×400 relay in 3:44.65 as Smith, DeRochie, Kent and McCullough finished third in the 4×800 relay in 9:10.03.Jason Olkowski earned 1,953 points in the pentathlon and took third place. Smith got fourth place in the mile in 4:50.76, with DeRochie (5:03.24) beating out Mike Senehi (5:04.32) for sixth place.Cazenovia will move from here to next Thursday’s Section III Class B-2 championships, which will take place at 4:30 at Canastota High School.Share this:FacebookTwitterLinkedInRedditComment on this Story last_img read more