2500 Rhode Island Ave, Suite B, Fort Pierce, FL 34947
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2500 Rhode Island Ave, Suite B, Fort Pierce, FL 34947
Call Today: (772) 489-2200

2500 Rhode Island Avenue
Suite B
Fort Pierce, FL 34947

Call Now For A Personalized Case Evaluation

(772) 489-2200

Judge Cannon and the Role of Judges in Criminal Cases

St. Lucie County Criminal Judges

Intense scrutiny has surrounded U.S. District Court Judge Aileen Cannon ever since she issued two controversial rulings that were subsequently overturned by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit last year. While those decisions were issued in a civil case filed by former President Donald Trump and later dismissed, Judge Cannon continues to face scrutiny since her appointment to handle the U.S. Department of Justice’s federal criminal case filed against Trump in the Mar-a-Lago documents case. Recently, Port St. Lucie criminal lawyer Jeffrey Garland, Esq. was interviewed by two reporters for the Associated Press about his insight into Judge Cannon and her handling of federal criminal cases.

Judging the Judge: America Watches Closely

Judge Aileen Cannon was nominated by former President Donald Trump and confirmed by the U.S. Senate during the final days of his term. She wasn’t confirmed until after the 2020 U.S. Presidential election, assuming her position on Nov. 13, 2020. Because of this, the national media has watched her closely ever since she was assigned to handle the civil case Trump filed against the DOJ last fall after the government served a search warrant at Mar-a-Lago and seized documents. After she issued two separate rulings in the case that were struck down by the Eleventh Circuit, that case was dismissed.

However, Judge Cannon was recently appointed to handle the federal criminal case that was recently filed against him in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida. Cases are randomly assigned to the judges, but her appointment to Trump’s criminal case after the detours in last year’s related civil case has led to renewed scrutiny. Many news personalities have expressed concerns over her ability to be fair and argue she has demonstrated bias in favor of the former President in the past. Consequently, politicos have worried whether Trump will be tried fairly and impartially.

Recently, Trump’s lawyers filed a motion requesting an indefinite suspension of a trial. The DOJ requested a trial date starting in Dec. 2023. Following a few days of consideration, Judge Cannon set the trial to begin in May 2024, which will be in the midst of the primary season for the 2024 U.S. presidential election.

All eyes will be on Judge Cannon throughout this case because of the national interest and the fact that the defendant is running for the presidency once again. Recently, the Associated Press interviewed Port St. Lucie criminal lawyer Jeffrey Garland, Esq. to learn his take on how Judge Cannon operates in court when handling federal criminal cases.

When interviewed, attorney Garland praised how Judge Cannon handled a case in which he represented a client who threw a chair at the U.S. Attorney prosecuting the case. He stated that Judge Cannon handled the case with decorum and maintained control of the courtroom in a non-threatening way. He also stated he believed Judge Cannon would similarly handle Trump’s criminal case fairly because she understands that is what federal judges must do.

There is no question that the case against Trump will continue to draw intense interest over the next 18 months and longer. No case like the one against Trump has ever been filed, and the subject matter deals with the national interest.

Role of Port St. Lucie County Criminal Judges

Similar to federal judges, county court judges in Port St. Lucie also serve as impartial arbiters in criminal cases. They must ensure trials are conducted fairly and issue decisions about the evidence that will be admitted and that will be excluded from a criminal trial. County criminal judges serve as referees to ensure the due process rights of defendants are protected. In bench trials, they serve as the jurist deciding a defendant’s case and issue rulings of guilty or not guilty.

Judges also preside over plea entries and decide whether to accept a plea agreement. When a case goes to a jury trial, the judge instructs the jury about the law, makes rulings about objections and the admission of evidence, and manages trial procedures. Judges also issue sentences when a defendant pleads guilty or is found guilty after a trial.

Because of the important role they play, judges must remain neutral, unbiased, and fair to both sides in any criminal case they preside over. It’s important for a Port St. Lucie criminal lawyer to understand the proper role of a judge and to treat them with respect. Doing so helps to protect the interests of the defendant the attorney represents. If a judge issues a questionable ruling, a defense lawyer should be prepared to object and possibly file an appeal.

Get Help from Port St. Lucie Criminal Lawyer Jeffrey Garland

If you are facing criminal charges in either state or federal court, it’s important to talk to an experienced criminal defense attorney. Jeffrey Garland, Esq. has more than four decades of experience vigorously defending individuals charged with crimes and can help you understand the defenses that might be available. To learn more, contact us today to schedule a consultation at (772) 489-2200.