Merrilee Ehrlich says she is staying put in the Family Division.  Despite strong rumors of a transfer to Criminal to replace Bill Haury, Ehrlich just confirmed on the phone she is not moving, and definitely not resigning, as was also rumored.

Was there a standoff between Ehrlich and judicial administration?  Did Ehrlich threaten to quit if moved?  Is it possible Ehrlich may still be targeted for a transfer?  And where is Tarlika Navarro going now if Ehrlich is still in Family?

Developing …


Matt’s Back! Back! – Destry wrote a response over on LinkedIn, and since no one will ever see it there, it’s been printed in its entirety in the comments section, despite substantial inaccuracies.

Destry does get one thing right, in that he certainly touched a nerve. We’re happy to take criticism and debate almost anyone, but it’s galling to be lectured about ethics by someone who stands mute instead of angrily refuting allegations that he bartered a human being’s freedom in exchange for help with his losing judicial campaign. Pretty disturbing stuff even by Broward standards, and in his quest to rehabilitate his shattered reputation, or by blind conceit, he goes so far as to reference the Oath of Admission to the Florida Bar. His belief that he’s the kind of person that should be upholding in others the integrity of the legal profession unfortunately says a lot about what has transpired in Broward County legal circles over the years, and ignores JAABLOG’s considerable efforts and demonstrable results in making things a little better. It shouldn’t escape anyone’s attention reading here that he’s one of the individuals now deservedly out of a job.

Underneath the sour grapes, Destry makes an argument for blog moderation. Agree or disagree, but until laws change, or the Bar changes the rules of professional conduct under which JAABLOG operates, things will remain the same. Why? Because for better or worse, the blog has always been a reflection of the community it serves, and it’s now more important than ever to let the racists, misogynists, homophobes, and alt-righters have their say, lest we forget where we’ve been as a nation, or where we may be headed if we turn a blind eye.  And for honest citizens or parodists with legitimate gripes who may fear retribution, the forum must remain intact.  Those that seek to destroy will not dictate the terms.  It’s just that simple.

The Oath of Admission Destry cites starts with the words “I will support the Constitution of the United States”. That’s what it’s all about. And if someone doesn’t like it, including a disgraced former judge, they have the right to work to change the rules, or simply quit reading …

Sexist or Solicitous? – attorneys from both the Public Defender’s Office and the State Attorney’s Office have now filed Motions To Disqualify Bobby Diaz for claims of bias against female attorneys.  At issue is Diaz’s habit of calling women lawyers “Miss“, and the Esquires’ belief that Diaz’s alleged disdain for women barristers will taint the outcome of their cases.

Both motions are found here.  Take a moment to read, and You Make the Call!

Mike Gottlieb running for Florida House


Disgraced former judge Matt Destry is calling for the Florida Bar to clamp down on JAABLOG.  He joins Jack Thompson, Charles Morehead, Carlos Llorente, and Barbara Heyer in making his distaste for the blog known, although he would certainly be the first to use LinkedIn as a platform.

Destry, known by reputation as a ladies man during his time on the bench, takes a stand for female judges like Tarlika Navarro, whom he feels are unfairly blasted in the comments section.  Having starred in more than his share of blog articles while riding the downward trajectory of his career path, Destry’s antipathy for your humble author is also palpable, if inconveniently misplaced, seeing as how the Bar has previously ruled that JAABLOG is not liable under the rules of professional conduct for the blog comments.

Given this, and the fact Destry quit the bench under a cloud of damning JQC accusations that, if true, could have caused serious problems with his own Bar license, we posed the following two questions to Destry in an email earlier this evening:

The first question is whether or not you are aware that the Bar, many years ago, reviewed the issue of JAABLOG “provid(ing) an anonymous public forum”, and found my role to be acceptable practice? If you are, is there any reason why you can justify the Bar revisiting the issues?

Secondly, given that we are discussing the Bar, and the fact that you are no stranger to controversy yourself, have you ever been, or are you currently, being questioned or investigated by the Bar in relation to any of the JQC accusations that preceded your resignation from the bench?

We haven’t heard back just yet, but we’ll be sure to follow-up if Matt finds the time to respond.  In the meantime, his LinkedIn article will be printed in the comments section in its entirety, despite factual inaccuracies …

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