The Law Office of Jeffrey H. Garland, P.A.

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The Law Office of Jeffrey H. Garland, P.A.

Articles

  • July 16, 2019

Spencer Scott (not his real name) is a “marine officer”, licensed by the U.S. Coast Guard to operate a variety of vessels. Captain Scott’s career would have been negatively impacted by a guilty verdict. His clients are, after all, large corporations and wealthy individuals. Capt. Scott’s sister accused him of battery on 1/21/2018. She would, the next day, apply for a domestic violence injunction. The sister lost the injunction hearing, then appealed the ruling to the Fourth District Court of Appeal (DCA). Capt. Scott retained Jeffrey H. Garland to handle the appeal and the battery case. Attorney Garland was successful in securing a dismissal of the sister’s appeal by 4th DCA order dated 6/14/2018. Capt. Scott was always going to take this battery case to trial. At no time did he entertain any other option. After all, he had already…Read More

  • May 14, 2019

Jessica Daniel (not her real name) is a good mom who thinks misbehaving children should be reprimanded in some fashion. On August 16, 2018, Jessica was arrested, because a Port St. Lucie police officer disagreed with Jessica’s parenting practices. You see, Jessica had been visiting a friend in a nice part of Port St. Lucie. When it came time to go, Jessica’s five-and-a-half-year-old daughter threw a tantrum. She wanted to stay because she liked playing with the dog. Several houses away from the friend’s house, Jessica put the daughter out of the car onto the side of the road. This was the same street upon which the child had been previously playing. Jessica drove around the street corner but never lost sight of her daughter. From the moment Jessica put her daughter out of the car, until Jessica returned, was…Read More

  • August 17, 2015

Watch Out For The Angry Ex-Girlfriend Barney Mello (not his real name) probably moved the relationship along too fast. After just several months, he moved in with his new girlfriend, Lola Mulekick (not her real name). Barney maintained a superior level of income. His presence immediately advanced the financial security of Lola’s home, and the lifestyle of her three sons, ages 8 – 12. Barney’s relationship with Lola lit the sky like a bottle rocket. Later examination of e-mails, texts, cards and letters demonstrated an “over the top” exuberance for such a short term relationship. Predictably, both Lola and Barney had wandering eyes which caused significant conflict to develop. Eventually, Barney moved out. Before they ever had problems, Lola had warned Barney that she knew “people” in town; and that she was especially wired into the St. Lucie County Sheriff’s…Read More

  • August 6, 2015

A search warrant was executed on 8/13/14 on 1604-A Avenue K in Fort Pierce, Florida. According to the arrest affidavit, Jamie Baucomb (not his real name) was charged with possession of cocaine, possession of cocaine with intent to sell and possession of drug paraphernalia. These charges were based upon nine crack cocaine rocks which were found “on the seat of the lawnmower near where Baucomb was standing”. The State subsequently filed an information formally charging Baucomb with these crimes. Baucomb was initially represented by the Public Defender. As some nine months passed, he lost confidence in the Public Defender due to a failure of communication and what Baucomb perceived as a lack of interest in his defense. Baucomb retained Attorney Jeffrey H. Garland on 5/8/15. Garland immediately identified the defense as a matter of construction possession. Baucomb provided Attorney Garland…Read More

  • July 29, 2015

Okeechobee Stampede Bar Brouhaha Resolved – The Case For a Better Defense Something happened at the Okeechobee Stampede bar around 1:30 – 2:00 A.M. in the early morning hours of 2/14/15. This was not a lovers’ quarrel. Whatever it was, no one involved thought it important enough to complain about that night to the Okeechobee County Sheriff’s Office (OCSO). A month later, on 3/15/15, Jacob Geronimo (not his real name) was picked up on a warrant charginghim with a battery which allegedly occurred at the Stampede bar on 2/14/15. Geronimo made themistake of not retaining Attorney Jeffrey H. Garland until several weeks later on 4/6/15. Thisdelayed the normal progression of “discovery” in the case. Before the initial discovery responses had been received, Geronimo was cited for driving withouta valid license on 4/19/15. Although he was initially issued a “Notice to…Read More

  • June 17, 2015

Hector Long (not his real name) was arrested on 3/6/15 by Fort Pierce Police. What makes this arrest unusual is that Long is the owner of a “motel”. He was arrested for trespass when he entered the room of a tenant. Initially, Long thought that he could “do-it-yourself”. He was thinking that the criminal courts were just like a do-it-yourself project from Home Depot. After getting nowhere with State prosecutors, he finally retained Jeffrey H. Garland on 5/28/15. Attorney Garland realized that Long had allowed his State “transient occupancy” license to lapse. Although the facility was still zoned as a motel, still licensed by the City of Fort Pierce as a motel, and still named a motel, it technically was not a motel due to the lapse of the transient occupancy license. A transient occupancy license allows a motel owner…Read More

  • March 24, 2015

Rodney Rockaway (not his real name) was arrested for DUI and possession of cannabis under 20grams on 10/20/13 by the special investigations unit (SIU) of the St. Lucie County Sheriff’s Officeand by Officer Michael Acevedo of the Fort Pierce Police Department. Initially, Rockaway “wentwith” the public defender’s office. Later on, he retained Jeffrey H. Garland on 2/25/14. After obtaining discovery, Attorney Garland filed a motion with Judge Kathryn Nelson seeking to obtain an authorization for issuance of a subpoena duces tecum to the laboratory for testing records. Judge Nelson granted the motion on 5/2/14. The laboratory was Wuesthoff Reference Laboratory, which is located in Melbourne, Florida. The documents requested from Wuesthoff Reference Laboratory included the “laboratory procedure” for cannabis testing. Page 7 of the provided materials explained that a single urinalysis is insufficient to establish impairment: A single positive urine…Read More

  • March 16, 2015

In the case below, St Luice Criminal Appeals Lawyer Jeffrey Garland was able to reverse and remand a new trial for his client Edwin Jose Garrido. Attorney Garland was able to get a new trial for his client due to ineffective assistance of counsel by failing to investigate defenses as to the amended dates and failing to discuss with defendant the benefit of doing so. DISTRICT COURT OF APPEAL OF THE STATE OF FLORIDA FOURTH DISTRICT EDWIN JOSE GARRIDO, Appellant, v. STATE OF FLORIDA, Appellee. No. 4D13-3739 [April 15, 2015] Appeal of order denying rule 3.850 motion from the Circuit Court for the Nineteenth Judicial Circuit, St. Lucie County; Robert E. Belanger, Judge; L.T. Case No. 562008CF001155A. Jeffrey H. Garland of Jeffrey H. Garland, P.A., Fort Pierce, for appellant. Pamela Jo Bondi, Attorney General, Tallahassee, and Melanie Dale Surber, Assistant…Read More

  • January 15, 2015

Astor Johanson (not his real name) had just helped unload the catch from a commercial fishing trip. Johanson drove away from the docks in his SUV, happy to be back on dry land after a successful fishing excursion. An overly alert St. Lucie County Sheriff’s detective noted that Johanson was not wearing a seatbelt. Thus began the drama of a “traffic stop” and arrest for possession of drug paraphernalia. The eagle-eyed detective spotted a “clear capsule” on the floor. Without consent, the detective seized the empty capsule and the opportunity to “search” the SUV. Based upon the capsule – which never tested positive for illegal drugs – the detective literally tore the SUV apart. During the course of the search, the detective uncovered a “used syringe” under a seat. The overbearing and presumptuous detective asserted that such syringes are “commonly…Read More

  • January 13, 2015

Attorney Jeffrey Garland was retained to represent Emilio Garcia (not his real name), just after his arrest for domestic violence. The wife is the person who actually retained Mr. Garland. As is so often the case, police responded to the Garcia residence in Fort Pierce, Florida, on 6/20/14, shortly after midnight. Mrs. Garcia was upset and described a verbal altercation. She would later deny telling officers that she had been hit or pushed. The police observed no evidence of injury. Pictures also documented the absence of injury. Because of a prior domestic battery conviction, Mr. Garcia was looking at deportation back to Mexico if convicted. Of course, the prosecutors were seeking jail time. The strategy from the start was to avoid waiving speedy trial. Mr. Garcia was in jail because of an astronomical bond. The defense sought to force the…Read More

  • September 16, 2014

Recently Attorney Garland was published in the Southern Reporter regarding one of his appeals. To view the article Click Here.Read More

  • August 13, 2014

Revoked Bond Lands Citizen in Jail…Thrice Ready for Trial Secures His Release Ron Wilson (not his real name) ran into trouble upon trouble. Initially jailed on the say so of aneighbor with known mental instability, Ron secured his release on bond. He then ran into problemswith his estranged wife, with whom he was attempting a reconciliation, which again landed him injail. The second arrest resulted in the revocation of the bond on the first charge. After spendingsome quality time at the St. Lucie County crossbar Hilton, the court reinstated the bond.Unfortunately, Ron was again arrested, because his daughter spoke to his estranged wife about thepossibility of dropping charges. Police misconstrued the daughter’s communication as direct orindirect contact by Ron, causing him to be arrested for violation of domestic battery bond restriction.Ron was returned to the quality accommodations provided by the…Read More

  • May 14, 2014

Aggravated Battery Charges Dropped in Okeechobee County Newt Ranger (not his real name) was arrested for an aggravated battery that allegedly occurred on10/26/13, at about 1:30 A.M. 17-year-old Newt, together with a number of other juveniles andadults, were at Douglas Park in Okeechobee. The State accused Newt of hitting a 22-year-old manin the head with a hammer. After Newt’s initial arrest as a juvenile, the State elected to “upfile” the charge to adult court. Newt retained Fort Pierce Aggravated Battery Lawyer Jeffrey H. Garland as soon as he was arrested as a juvenile. By the time the case was upfiled, Attorney Garland had already interviewed witnesses and secured sworn statements of two eyewitnesses that Michael Hernandez attacked Newt, and that no hammer was used. The altercation occurred in a paved park area. The pugilists hit each other while on their…Read More

  • March 12, 2014

Racing on Highway Charge Reduced Alan Jasper (not his real name) was charged with racing on the highway in violation of Section 316.191(2)(a), on November 19, 2013. Shortly after bonding out of jail, he hired Attorney Jeffrey H. Garland. A Florida Highway Patrol (FHP) trooper alleged that he observed Jasper engage in a high speed acceleration contest. The FHP report asserted that the race began at the intersection of County Road 561 and U.S. Highway 27 in Lake Minneola Shores (Lake County), Florida. The trooper stated: “[I] observed two vehicles side-by-side proceeding to accelerate at a high rate of speed and subsequently proceeded to travel at a high rate of speed.” The charge of racing on the highway is no laughing matter. It has a maximum sentence of one year in jail and a $1,000 fine. Importantly, on just a…Read More

  • February 18, 2014

Pot Charges Dropped Magnum Jones (not his real name) was arrested for possession of marijuana under 20 grams on August 27, 2013. Police approached two men who were simply standing next to a van located in a public place. The police officer claimed that there was nothing on the ground when he first engaged both individuals in conversation. Suddenly, the police officer asserted that a small plastic bag appeared “next to both males”, but “lying just beneath the vehicle”. The alert officer determined that the small plastic bag contained an enormous amount of marijuana, weighing in at nearly 1.5 grams. The police officer arrested both “suspects” in order to enforce the drug laws of the State of Florida. Of course, the arresting officer could not say where the small plastic bag came from, nor could he state which man (if…Read More

  • February 3, 2014

State Drops DUI Based on Lack of Proof of Actual Physical Control The Defendant, Ajax Monroe (not his real name), was arrested for this DUI on 12/12/12. The underlying charge had, allegedly, occurred on 8/14/11. Ajax was hospitalized as a result of the accident. He was arrested on a warrant. Ajax retained Jeffrey H. Garland on 4/9/13 to represent him in connection with this matter, not being fully satisfied with the way the case had been previously going. Attorney Garland immediately requested medical records from the hospital; ambulance records from the St. Lucie County Fire District; and detailed photographs of the pickup truck involved in the single-vehicle accident. The State’s theory of prosecution was fairly simple. There was another individual at the accident scene who was barely injured. He denied that he was driving the vehicle. The State was perfectly…Read More

  • January 30, 2014

Allstate’s “Drive Wise” Records Show Squatter to be Liar: Stalking Charge Dropped at Jury Selection A 77-year-old man was arrested for “stalking”. The “victim” made a sworn statement as follows: [Mr. Cook] has be[en] coming by my house 3 to 4 times a day dating to back to last year. If we go to the store, he follows me driving behind my car and he follows my son. Last Sunday he was on property cursing at the lawn man telling him to get the hell off the property and that he was the owner. He isn’t the owner. I [Bob Squatter] (not his real name) am the owner of the property and the land on Bitter bush [Lane]. When my son came [home] at 2:00 P.M. yesterday, he pulled up in his black Cadillac and then pulled off. He takes…Read More

  • January 9, 2014

Dealer Plate Defeats Charge of Attaching Unassigned Tag Alex Anderson (not his real name) was driving a fully restored 1978 Chevy down a public highway minding his own business. Unbeknownst to Alex was the practice of local law enforcement to stop white folks driving in a “black” part of Fort Pierce at about 11 in the evening. It did not matter to these law enforcement officers that Alex was driving on a State highway (Orange Avenue/SR 68), in a lawful manner and fully complying with all traffic laws. This police practice of stopping vehicles in violation of the State and federal Constitutions goes by many names. Sometimes it is euphemistically referred to as “high intensity traffic enforcement”; and other times it is known as “weed and seed”. Most often, the police involved are violating their oath to serve and protect,…Read More

  • November 18, 2013

State Forced to Drop Trafficking in Cocaine and Oxycodone Charges Fletcher Bowdoin (not his real name) was arrested on 12/20/12 by the Fort Pierce Police Department. The police report states that Bowdoin was found hiding under a bed. The police claimed that 20 grams of “crack cookies” were found in the kitchen trash, together with 89 30mg oxycodone pills and 54 alprozalom pills. A Taurus .45 caliber semi-automatic pistol was also found in the same trash can. The police reported that $1,860 cash was found in a bathroom waste basket, and that Bowdoin had $475 in his right front pocket at the time he was placed under arrest. State Drops Fort Pierce Drug Bust Charges Natalie Waldron (not her real name) was also arrested in connection with this situation. Waldron was observed walking out of the same bedroom where Bowdoin…Read More

  • November 5, 2013

On 2/18/13, a Fort Pierce police officer arrested Carlos Montoya (not his real name) for allowing an unlicensed person to drive. Carlos is an “undocumented alien” who is trying to gain permanent resident status. A conviction for this charge – even with a “withhold of  adjudication” – would be potentially disastrous. Treasure Coast Lawyer Defeats Driving Charge Carlos retained Attorney Garland on 9/20/13, to represent him on the criminal case. Garland immediately identified a “corpus delicti” issue. The person who was driving Carlos’ pickup truck had “gone up the road”. He was “no esta”. Therefore, there would be no witness testifying that Carlos had lent the guy his truck knowing he did not have a license. The prosecutor was focused on the statement Carlos had made to the officer, who said that Carlos admitted knowing that the guy did not…Read More

  • October 4, 2013

Judge Tosses Out Disorderly Conduct and Resisting Arrests for Playing Christian Music at Home Monica Williams (not her real name) had the proverbial “neighbors from hell”. The neighbors had previously filed police reports making all sorts of claims. The neighbor claimed that she could hear Monica talking and coughing, which caused her “fear”. Although the neighbor made these numerous complaints, no previous Port St. Lucie (PSL) police officer ever issued a noise ordinance violation notice or made an arrest. Unfortunately, a PSL officer with just one year of experience was dispatched to the neighbor’s house in July, 2013. The neighbor claimed yet again that Monica was “blasting” music. This event took place at approximately 5:40 P.M. on a Tuesday afternoon. The “newbie” officer filed an arrest affidavit asserting that he “could clearly hear a radio from approximately 100 feet” from…Read More

  • September 16, 2013

Lonely Heart’s Club – Sister Accuses Her Own Mother and Brother of False Imprisonment and Battery – All Charges Dropped After Year of Intense Litigation – Detective Poses as Pseudo-Psychologist Adrian Antoon and his mother, Giselle (not their real names), were arrested in Indian River County in August, 2012, on charges of false imprisonment and battery – against their own sister/daughter. IRCSO Detective “Z” (not his real initial) concocted a bizarre theory of mind control and depression. The Detective supposed that Adrian and his mother “forced” 26-year-old Alexa (not her real name) to buy a house, and to work two jobs to support the family. The Detective believed that Alexa was handcuffed and beaten, and had nearly all of her hair cut off, to prevent her from moving out and from dating. The Detective supposed that Adrian and Giselle feared…Read More

  • September 13, 2013

A manager of a nationwide sporting goods chain was charged with grand theft via embezzlement. The manager retained Fort Pierce Attorney Jeffrey Garland within days of his arrest. Based upon many factors, including a lack of price record and immediate repayment of 100% of the misappropriated funds, the manager was allowed to plead to a lesser misdemeanor charge before Judge William Roby in the Martin County Circuit Court. He was sentenced to a one-year term of probation on 9/9/13.Read More

  • August 19, 2013

Jack Martin (not his real name) was arrested in March, 2013, for child abuse. He promptly retained Jeffrey H. Garland to represent him in the Martin County case. Fort Pierce Child Abuse The discovery materials revealed a tragically familiar scenario. As a young man, Martin married,had two children and divorced. Martin agreed to leave primary custody of the children with theirmother. Unfortunately, the mother fell into a merry-go-round of drug use, jail and “disappearance”.The children intermittently enjoyed visitation with their father, but were primarily being raised bythe maternal grandparents. The maternal grandparents were overwhelmed by the situation. Ultimately, the Department of Children and Families (DCF) intervened for the second time, becauseneither the mother nor her parents could properly care for the children. The two children – ages 10and 9 – were placed with Martin. The 10-year-old girl immediately adapted to…Read More

  • June 17, 2013

Our Country may have been founded on principles of personal freedom and liberty, but the enveloping police state is acting with all dispatch to suppress “limited government”. Your government, in the mad pursuit of the “war on drugs”, jailed a 78-year-old senior citizen for “doctor shopping” on the thinnest of pretexts. Mrs. Shipley (not her real name) was arrested in September, 2012, by a detective with the Port St. Lucie Police Department. Mrs. Shipley promptly retained Attorney Jeffrey H. Garland for her defense against these charges. The subsequent investigation would establish yet another instance of government run amok. To stem abuse of prescription pain drugs, the State of Florida implemented a prescription drug monitoring program. Pharmacies are compelled to submit prescription data for certain medications. The eagle-eyed Port St. Lucie detective uncovered three questionable transactions involving Mrs.Shipley. The dutiful detective…Read More

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