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Today’s Guest: Ilona Holmes!

Discuss: In light of the Supreme Court’s recent Order dictating unadorned, basic black robes for all judges, should a circuit judge’s bench resemble a personal trophy case?  And should it display religious or near-religious iconography, like a kneeling, praying, winged angel?

Or should the principles enunciated in In Re:  Amendments To The Florida Rules Of Judicial Administration-New Rule 2.340 apply only to judicial dress?


From the Order:

Presiding judges wearing different colored robes or robes with varying embellishments could result in uncertainty for those coming before our courts and serve to counter the efforts the branch has employed to gain the public’s trust. For example, one could question whether there is a “status” attributed to the varying colors or embellishments worn by different judges, e.g., whether the color or embellishment denotes a rank of judge based on tenure, ability, or some other factor—is this judge more or less qualified or maybe the chief judge? Depending on the color or pattern of the robe or the type of embellishment worn, some may wonder whether the presiding judge is a “real judge” or whether the judge will take the proceedings seriously. Robe color also could be seen as a reflection of a judge’s mood or attitude that day. Should a defendant facing the death penalty feel trepidation when the presiding judge appears in a red robe or feel more at ease when the robe is green? The possibility that the unique attire of the judge assigned to one’s case could raise these concerns and thereby diminish public trust and confidence in the proceedings is not acceptable.

The public should not have to guess as to the meaning of different colored, patterned, or embellished robes. Promoting uniformity in judicial attire, by requiring all judges to wear unembellished, solid black robes, will no doubt avoid these concerns and promote public trust and confidence. The people of Florida have a right to expect equal justice every day, in every court in this state, and should not have to question whether equal justice is being dispensed based on the color of a judge’s robe.


Tampa Tribune: It’s basic black for judges says FL Supreme Court

NYT: SCOTUS Questions Florida’s Death Penalty System

98 thoughts on “COFFEE TALK WITH ILONA”

  1. 0


    It’s not bad enough that she looks and sounds like Eddie Murphy as Fat Momma (unrated version) but the junk and crap she keeps stacking up all over the bench looks like she’s having rummage sale instead of presiding over a court of law.

    Was willing to overlook her robe with the colors of the African flag as just another cry for desperate attention by another Broward judge who’s starting to go soft in the head, but put it all together with the inane babble you’re subjected to every day before proceedings even get started and it’s looking more and more like a slaphappy tent revival of Pentecostals without even so much as the fried chicken than even vaguely resembling a Court of Law where Justice is being dispensed.

    Leave it to Ole Ilona to push the envelope on her own misguided sense of style but thankfully at last
    the Supream Court has seen it necessary to clamp down on what it deems to be thoroughly inappropriate for our Courts.

    Ilona can dress anyway she wants dancing around the campfire, just tone it down and try to maintain some dignity when handing down harsh sentences in a Court of Law.

  2. 0


    Reminds me of Woosey Suzie bringing her German Shepard to work and Whiney Weinstein’s response. Broward courts are the laughing stock of the state. Holmes is just another example of Broward Big Top on flakka ! Lol

  3. 0


    All the junk should be removed from the bench and she should cool it with the colored robes. It’s not a church choir. The rest of her act is entertaining.

  4. 0


    She needs to be careful. With the price of scrap metal rising and all the thieves facing charges in there all that junk might disappear.

    1. 0


      In Broward it’s the Bailiffs to worry about not the defendants. Resale items or sodomize someone with the pointy end.

  5. 0


    She’s always been a little over the top if u ask me, always making what should be a somber proceeding appear more like a tribute to herself. All that stuff sitting all over the place should have to be removed. This isn’t her living room.

  6. 0


    Guess she’s not up to speed with separation of church and state. What’s with all the religious stuff ?

  7. 0


    Geez what does Chambers look like if she’s smeared a public place so bad the back must look like a rummage sale at a Little League trophy factory.

  8. 0


    There’s one award Judge Holmes is entitled to. A statue for not getting arrested or being a liar. Unfortunately that is award worthy in Broward.

  9. 0


    Don’t see what the big deal is.

    Justice Rehnquist used to wear a robe with gold stripes on the sleeves. Apparently, it was inspired by a character in a Gilbert and Sulllivan musical.

    I’m sure you all remember Fred Berman’s blue/grey/whatever robes. Never found that to be a distraction.

    Half the defendants dress like clowns when they come to court anyway .. why shouldn’t the judge’s join in on the fun?

    So what if she has a few tchotchkes on her bench. I remember one civil court judge (name escapes me at the moment) who had his chambers filled with a collection of dozens of clocks. You’d go in there for a hearing and all you would hear is “tick tock tick tock”. Sounded like the crocodile from Peter Pan.

    The supreme court should stick to real legal issues and stop being the fashion police.

  10. 0


    Judge can dress up like General Patton if it makes her happy but the religious stuff is off base in a court of law.

  11. 0


    what they should do is make all attorneys appear in suits. everyday is less than casual friday with the broward bar. maybe most of them can’t afford a jacket but they could at least press the shirt it looks like they slept in….

  12. 0


    The only thing she and the rest of the judges in Broward should keep at the front of the bench is the breathalyzer machine they are required to blow into every morning when they take the bench. That’s if they take the bench. They don’t work but a few days a week if that, and then only for a couple of hours, but never on Fridays.
    That’s the Broward Judiciary for you. What they do in chambers when they actually show up to work is still highly debatable.

  13. 0


    Looks like Ilona spends a lot of time at the Swap Shop. I’ve often wondered why she keeps all that junk there.

  14. 0



    a spiritual being believed to act as an attendant, agent, or messenger of God, conventionally represented in human form with wings and a long robe:

    “God sent an angel to talk to Gideon”

  15. 0


    President Obama is a pretty accomplished person. Harvard Law Review, etc. Then the whole public service thing that followed. Is the Oval Office full of self-aggrandizing gizmos? No! Take a hint!!! That’s not for public places!!!!

  16. 0


    The crap and stuff sitting all over the place doesn’t belong in courtroom but it’s Holmes speaking in the third person all the time that is really irritating!

  17. 0


    I pray every time I have to go to her courtroom for a miracle. Usually that when I wake up I’ll find that my case has been assigned to another judge.

  18. 0


    It was the Gardiner thing that did it for me with judge Holmes. I sort of lost much of the respect I had for her when she pulled that BS to try to save Gardiner. Especially since she knew what was really going on. It was wrong and she knew it.

  19. 0


    Religious items have no place in a courtroom. If she thinks it brings her some sort of notoriety she couldn’t be more mistaken.

  20. 0


    Reading the order it seems the Supremes simply want uniformity. The all black robe worn by everybody. If that’s the case, the mantle full of trophies should be ok if all Judges do the same.
    I would expect an order shortly directing Judges to gather up all their summer camp swim team ribbons, archery patches, boys and girl scouts badges, debate team trophies et al and pile them up on the dias. And since this is Broward, Special Olympics Medals too.

  21. 0


    I’ve never had a client get a bad break with Holmes as a judge. She has always been fair which is all I ask for.

  22. 0


    They kicked her out of Civil because of the haughty airs. Why is Criminal the place the ones who can’t do teamwork have to go?

    1. 0


      It’s not about teamwork. It’s about leadership . If someone isn’t respected they resort to affectation.

  23. 0


    The civil boys knew just how to dump Holmes where she was out if her depth anyway. They’re the ones that control the big campaign contributions. One phone call to Whiney and she was knocked back to criminal where she belongs along with all the knockoffs and junk stacked up on her bench with her little adage plaques . She’s a slightly bigger fish in criminal but she was a nobody small fry in civil where she was way over her head. One might say she’s exactly where she belongs where she can spout her self important crap and who’s to complain. Keep going for it girl!

  24. 0


    Ilona’s biggest problems don’t involve the tchotchkes sitting all over her bench. It’s her big mouth. It always has been.

  25. 0


    Guess it’s Ilona’s way of showing everybody how she spread her wings to take flight to the sky symbolic of the meteoric success in her career. How she ever thinks she’ll ever get off the ground now is anybody’s guess !?

  26. 0


    You’d have to buy her a gag to stem the flow of self serving leakage and self aggrandizement … She can’t seem to help it. It’s like gag me with a spoon every time I have something in there.

  27. 0


    Being in her courtroom is like an invitation that went out when the party has been canceled. Not my favorite judge with all the constant babble about herself. Eliminate that and she’s not that bad. Otherwise it’s like pulling teeth.

  28. 0


    We who labor here seek only to see the Judge who is obscured behind the Franklin Mint’s 2015 fall collection.

  29. 0


    She spends way too much time on the home shopping network.
    Couldn’t help but crack up this morning when I saw all the junk all over the front of her bench !

  30. 0


    Just more of the same arrogant guff from old time Broward judicial officers who still think they are more important than everyone else. Why doesn’t the prosecutor bring his awards and plop them down on the podium while making his argument? Or the defense lawyer bring her awards and do the same? The witnesses too? Judge Imperato can’t be removed fast enough so they all finally get the message that theirs is a position of service and not rock star in the spotlight free to say do as I say and not as I do while the rest suffer the embarrassment of their antics.

  31. 0


    Is it true Stephanie Jean got fired? I am surprised Ari would fire Stephanie Jean who is married to his friend Alan Jean. Sad, there is not enough diversity amongst the JA’s.

  32. 0


    I’m wondering. If Ilona can have her Jesus Angel in court, can my client the Santeria Priest have his dead chicken in there too?

  33. 0



  34. 0


    Can you do something about that pass the plate tip bowl while you’re at it in the middle of her bench ?!Ain’t got no tips for Ilona no matter how entertaining she thinks she is.

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