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Marijuana Enforcement in Florida – A Haze of Confusion

Seth Shapiro
By: Seth Shapiro
Aug. 26 2019

At the intersection of illegal cannabis, legal hemp, and medical marijuana Florida is in a haze of legal confusion. What is Legal? Medical Marijuana In 2016, 71 percent of Floridians voted to legalize medical marijuana.  The 2017 bill signed into law by then-governor Scott says “a licensed medical marijuana treatment center shall cultivate, process, transport…
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No More Excessive Fines or Penalties in Florida

Seth Shapiro
By: Seth Shapiro
Jul. 22 2019

Florida criminal defendants facing excessive penalties or seized property can thank Indiana resident Tyson Timbs for relief via the US Supreme Court. Tyson Timbs struggled with drug addiction. A painkiller prescription had escalated to heroin abuse.  In an unfortunate turn he was arrested selling heroin to undercover officers to fund his addiction. Timbs pled guilty…
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Lights, No Camera, Action – Police Body Camera Use In Tampa Bay

Seth Shapiro
By: Seth Shapiro
Jul. 26 2018

Over one year ago we wrote about the use of body cameras by local law enforcement agencies in our blog, “Your Next Interaction With Police May Be Video Recorded.” Today, many of our local law enforcement agencies have still not adopted the technology and are refusing to do so. Today, only the Pasco County Sheriff’s…
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Pinellas Adult Pre-Arrest Diversion (APAD) – Update – 08-23-17

Seth Shapiro
By: Seth Shapiro
Aug. 23 2017

We have written several times on the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office Adult Pre-Arrest Diversion Program (APAD) – read the original blog here: Pinellas Adult Pre-Arrest Diversion (APAD) Program – The Good, The Bad, and the Unknown . Just last week, the Tampa Bay Times reported that there would be no changes to the County’s arrest…
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Can You Legally Record the Police in Florida?

Melinda Morris
By: Melinda Morris
Jun. 01 2017

We recently reported on the potential rise of body cameras being used by law enforcement in the Tampa Bay Area.  While Pasco County utilizes body cameras for every officer, other Tampa Bay law enforcement agencies have yet to implement the technology in any form.  Notably, the St. Petersburg Police department has waffled on the issue…
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Update: Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office Adult Pre-Arrest Diversion Program (APAD) – A Questionable Success

Melinda Morris
By: Melinda Morris
May. 10 2017

We wrote extensively about the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office Adult Pre-Arrest Diversion Program (APAD) in our blog last November shortly after it was launched – read the original blog here: Pinellas Adult Pre-Arrest Diversion (APAD) Program – The Good, The Bad, and the Unknown  – that blog outlined the program, eligibility criteria, as well as…
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Your Next Interaction With Police May Be Video Recorded

Melinda Morris
By: Melinda Morris
May. 08 2017

Recently, Axon the company formerly known as Taser International recognized for their Taser stun guns, has offered a free body camera to every sworn law enforcement officer in the United States.  See https://www.axon.com/info/offer .  The offer is in fact a free body camera and supporting software for a 1-year trial period.  But that may be…
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St. Petersburg Attorney Explains the Effect Supreme Court Ruling Prohibiting Individuals Convicted of Domestic Violence from Gun Ownership in Florida

Melinda Morris
By: Melinda Morris
Jun. 27 2016

Today, in the case Voisine v. United States, the United States Supreme Court upheld federal legislation prohibiting individuals convicted of misdemeanor domestic violence from gun ownership. Under 18 U.S.C. §922(g)(9) it is unlawful for an individual convicted misdemeanor domestic violence to possess a firearm. In an earlier Supreme Court case, United States v. Castleman, the…
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