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US Supreme Court to Hear Crucial Free Speech Case, Where Student Was Charged for Speaking About His Religion

By The Baez Law Firm |

Free speech is a crucial First Amendment right that police and government frequently infringe upon when they choose to criminalize or otherwise target our right to express our opinions without censorship or restraint. This can often be seen when protesters are arrested for disorderly conduct or unlawful assembly, or even assault, battery, or hate… Read More »

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Florida Appeals Court Upholds Decision That Videos Recording Robert Kraft Violated Fourth Amendment Protections

By The Baez Law Firm |

In a salient case for Fourth Amendment constitutional rights, in August, a Florida appeals court unanimously upheld a district court ruling that the police violated the rights of the New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft and others last year when they secretly set up ongoing recordings in a massage parlor in order to capture… Read More »

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Murder Charges Over Stillbirth Raise Concerns Everywhere

By The Baez Law Firm |

A current prosecution in the state of California could set a dangerous precedent around the country in terms of criminalizing choices women make while pregnant, including here in Florida, where there is also a state law on fetal homicide. The case involves a defendant, Chelsea Becker, who is being charged with murder after her… Read More »

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Synthetic Marijuana Case Involving Split Fault Between Defendant & Manufacturer Goes to Florida Supreme Court

By The Baez Law Firm |

The Florida Supreme Court could soon hear an interesting case that involves criminal charges related to drug and homicide charges, as well as product liability issues, and how they overlap in terms of determining fault in cases where defendants were under the influence of a substance. There is no question that the outcome could… Read More »

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Pretrial Release Conditions: When They Violate Your Constitutional Rights

By The Baez Law Firm |

We previously reported on federal agents being deployed to cities across the country to arrest protesters without warrants and placing them into unmarked SUVs. A number of those arrested are now awaiting trial on federal misdemeanor charges even though they did not do anything illegal upon arrest, and are now facing petty offense charges,… Read More »

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Preventing & Defending Against Federal COVID-19 Fraud Charges as A Result of PPP Loan Applications

By The Baez Law Firm |

There have been a number of recent arrests and fraud charges in connection with the Small Business Administration’s (SBA) Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), including here in Florida, resulting in authorities seizing property and millions from bank accounts.  The program was created by the federal CARES Act to help small business owners obtain forgivable loans… Read More »

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How The First Step Act Has Failed Many Serving Decades for Nonviolent Drug Crimes

By The Baez Law Firm |

When the First Step Act was signed into law, there were high hopes that it would institute some real criminal justice reform that included allowing for those who had been unfairly punished with especially lengthy prison sentences for nonviolent crack cocaine charges, including for first time offenders, to petition to have their sentences reduced…. Read More »

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11th Circuit Court of Appeals Vacates Previous Opinion Regarding Epstein’s Agreement, Opening The Door for Victims’ Rights in Florida

By The Baez Law Firm |

After ruling in April that the non-prosecution agreement entered into between Jeffrey Epstein and the US Attorney‘s Office for the Southern District of Florida could not be overturned and Epstein‘s victims could not challenge it under the Crime Victims’ Rights Act, in August, a group of judges with the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals… Read More »

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A Closer Look at The Constitutionality of Florida COVID-19 Arrests and Charges

By The Baez Law Firm |

There have been a number of serious criminal allegations made by both federal and state authorities in connection with COVID-19 around the country, including here in Florida. From charging individuals who coughed on groceries with threats to use biological agents and felony terrorism, to accusing business owners who sell face masks with violating the… Read More »

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US Government Rushes to Execute First Prisoners in Almost Two Decades in Spite of Serious Constitutional Concerns

By The Baez Law Firm |

After almost two decades, the federal government executed its first death row prisoners in July when it put Daniel Lee Lewis and Wesley Purkey to death. In doing so, the Department of Justice took the irregular act of seeking emergency orders from the US Supreme Court to rush through two very controversial executions, where… Read More »

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Judge Blocks Federal Execution Due to COVID-19 Concerns

By The Baez Law Firm |

After Attorney General Barr announced the reinstatement of the federal death penalty in 2019, in spite of the many problems associated with it, in July, a judge blocked what would have been the first federal execution in 17 years due to a request from the family of the defendant’s victims, who made a plea… Read More »

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Federal Agents Deployed to Cities to Arrest Non-Violent Protesters Under Questionable Circumstances

By The Baez Law Firm |

The federal government recently deployed federal agents with the Department of Homeland Security to Portland, Oregon, a number of which then arrested protesters without warrants and identification badges, and placed them into unmarked SUVs. They also indiscriminately used acoustic weapons, rubber bullets, and tear gas against non-violent protesters, legal observers, and journalists, which has… Read More »

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US Department of Justice Updates Prosecutor Guidance On Evaluating Corporate Compliance Programs in Criminal Investigations of White Collar Crimes

By The Baez Law Firm |

In June, the US Department of Justice released an updated Evaluation of Corporate Compliance Programs, which is used at the time of a white-collar offense, as well as at the time of a charging decision, by prosecutors in conducting an investigation of a company and in deciding whether to bring chargers or negotiate a… Read More »

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Congress & Lower Courts Take Up Qualified Immunity Doctrine as US Supreme Court Passes

By The Baez Law Firm |

We’ve previously discussed the doctrine of qualified immunity and how it affects both criminal defense and civil rights; specifically how it affects determining whether police used excessive force and therefore whether a defendant’s Fourth Amendment protections against unreasonable search and seizure have been violated. The doctrine arguably plays a significant role not only in… Read More »

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Jose Baez Wins New Trial & Release for Charlie Ely, Who Was Wrongly Accused & Convicted of Murder in 2011

By The Baez Law Firm |

In late June, Charlie Ely, one of the defendants who was accused and convicted of murdering Seath Jackson in Marion County, Florida in 2011, was released after the court found that she received ineffective counsel and was denied due process during her original trial and appeal. Although Ely entered a 10-year plea for a… Read More »

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Ford Once Again Recalling Millions of Vehicles Due to Dangerous Defects

By The Baez Law Firm |

In June, Ford recalled more than two million vehicles due to the vehicles’ doors coming open while the cars are on the road—a serious defect that could cause death or serious bodily injury. The problem is reportedly due to faulty door latches, which contain a part that can crack, especially as it is subject… Read More »

Jose Baez and Charlie Ely's Mother

Florida Woman Wins Freedom After Her Conviction for First-Degree Murder is Vacated

By The Baez Law Firm |

Charlie Ely was just eighteen years old when she was arrested and charged with first-degree premeditated murder in Marion County, Florida. In 2011, Charlie lived alone and allowed several other teens to move in with her. One of Charlie’s roommates shot and killed a fifteen-year-old boy at Charlie’s home. After the shooting, several other… Read More »

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Florida Supreme Court Once Again Reverses Precedent & Violates Constitution By Creating Unacceptable Risk That Intellectually Disabled Will Be Executed

By The Baez Law Firm |

In late May, the Florida Supreme Court once again astonished many in reversing well-established precedent and allowing the state to execute intellectually disabled individuals. The court also did so on its own initiative, and not as a result of a request from the state of Florida. The decision defies a 2002 US Supreme Court… Read More »

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Criminal Defendants in Limbo as Rights to Speedy Trial Affected by Pandemic

By The Baez Law Firm |

Criminal defendants have been left in limbo as they wait for stalled cases to continue to move forward while jury trials have been put on hold due to the pandemic. This means that, on any given day, more than 630,000 people are being held in jails, of which approximately 75 percent have not yet… Read More »

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Many Charged with Unlawful Assembly in Florida for Protesting After George Floyd’s Death

By The Baez Law Firm |

With protests erupting all over the country, including here in Florida, many are being arrested on a daily basis and charged with unlawful assembly and resisting police – a second-degree misdemeanor – in connection with these activities. Several have also had additional charges added on, including battery on a law enforcement officer, criminal mischief,… Read More »

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If The US Supreme Court Modifies or Abolishes Qualified Immunity, This Could Completely Transform Arrests & Police Brutality

By The Baez Law Firm |

The tragedy that occurred involving George Floyd and the officer who killed him after kneeling on his neck for more than eight minutes during an arrest – when video footage indicates that Floyd was not resisting arrest – has sparked widespread protests around the country, highlighting the issue of an overall lack of accountability… Read More »

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Experts Hypothesize That Federal Judges May Rethink Sentencing in The Future After Dismaying Experiences with Bureau of Prisons During Pandemic

By The Baez Law Firm |

Experts have speculated that federal judges having to deal with the Federal Bureau of Prisons up close may permanently affect how they approach sentencing in the future, and while judges have limited control over the release of inmates, they have significant discretion when it comes to the length of incarceration. It will largely be… Read More »

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A New Civil Rights, Racial Profiling Issue During the Pandemic: Being Arrested for Wearing a Mask—While Being Black

By The Baez Law Firm |

A serious civil rights and police misconduct issue has come up during the coronavirus pandemic, and involves innocent African American men being arrested for wearing masks in accordance with recommendations made by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). For example, earlier in April, an officer in Miami arrested a black man who was wearing… Read More »

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Florida Supreme Court Hears Arguments On Decriminalizing Recreational Marijuana & The State’s Medical Marijuana Licensing Scheme On Same Day

By The Baez Law Firm |

On May 6, the Florida Supreme Court heard arguments about proposed constitutional amendments that would legalize (i.e. decriminalize) recreational marijuana here in Florida. As it is currently drafted, the amendment would allow adults 21 years or older to display, possess, purchase, transport, and use up to 2.5 ounces of marijuana and marijuana accessories for… Read More »

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Fifth Circuit Dismisses Charges Brought Against Florida Man in Stand Your Ground Deputy Shooting Case

By The Baez Law Firm |

In April, an important Florida ‘stand your ground’ case involving a defendant accused of shooting a sheriff’s deputy during an arrest that took place in front of his house several years ago was decided by the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals. The Court dismissed the charges and held that the defendant never should have… Read More »

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