Wednesday, July 20, 2022

Update on the Palmetto Bay Village Center litigation – Petitioner’s request for Oral Argument Granted – to be set

I am working to truly keep interested readers in the loop.  The Petitioner/Appellant, 1777 Old Cutler Road, LLC (aka the Palmetto Bay Village Center) filed a request for Oral Argument in the case styled as 17777 OLD CUTLER ROAD, LLC VS VILLAGE OF PALMETTO BAY, FLORIDA ET AL, case number: 2022-000012-AP-01 . The court granted this request by order filed July 18, 2022. 

Oral argument is not required to dispose of a case. The Court reviewed the request and the briefs filed in determining whether Oral Argument would be granted.  CLICK HERE to view a prior post where I inserted links to view all the legal briefs filed in this proceeding.

The court could have denied the request and followed up with an order affirming the action of the Palmetto Bay Mayor and Village Council, denying the petition/appeal.  Obviously the court did not take this action, but instead granted the request for oral argument.  The scheduling of Oral Argument does not foreshadow any future decision. The Oral Argument is not currently set, but will be in the near future.

Background, See Prior related post of July 1, 2022: Palmetto Bay Village Center Litigation Update – Petition for Cert (a form of appellate review). All the briefs have been filed. You can download and read them here.

Stay tuned and I will continue to keep you in the loop.

Wednesday, July 13, 2022

The guard gates are being installed along the US1 busway - photos providing first look.

As seen on my public transit ride home from downtown today:

I took a few pictures of the gate arms being installed at the intersections along the US1 busway. The gate arms will go into operation with the start of the BRT service (which will most likely signal the end of the Palmetto Bay Express Bus service to the Datran South Metrorail station).

Above - boarded at Datran south for the return trip, road is clear ahead

Below: a few pictures of the safety gate arms - they appear to be the classic railroad crossing arms that existed back when the rail road trains traveled that rail easement 40-50 years ago (and much, much earlier).

SW 104th Street

SW 132 Street (by Tire Kingdom)

Above - bus way intersections at SW 124th and 144th Streets

Monday, July 4, 2022

Happy Independence Day - 2022 - Have a safe and fun 4th!

Happy Independence Day to you and your families! 

This is a holiday to celebrate, the day we celebrate the birth of our great nation, the creation of the greatest system of freedom and democracy. All of this occurred due to the great physical and financial sacrifice of the founders of this nation, the brave men and women of yesterday and today who have sacrificed so greatly to ensure the traditions bestowed by our remarkable founders. We owe them vigilance, and the willingness to defend the democracy they have passed on to you.

Independence Day has been celebrated since 1776.  But do you know the year that July 4 officially made a Federal Holiday?  Would you believe 1941? Check out the page regarding July 4, for additional information.

Let us continue to look to a future that belongs to all of us - a future that ‘we, the people’ have the power to create.

Happy Independence Day – 2022.

Protect Your Pets on July 4th
Protect your pets on this fourth of July holiday - it is not a 'pet-friendly' holiday.  They don't understand what all the ruckus is about. (See my blog - CLICK HERE - to view my full post and important links)
July 4th is a busy day for pet shelters. Many pets get frightened and run off during fireworks. Pets are severely distressed by the noise of fireworks. Remember, dogs' and cats' hearing is much more sensitive than ours, so those loud booms can be extremely uncomfortable!

A wiser choice for your pet is for you to bring your pet inside the house and make sure that your special friend is safely tucked into a room with a television or radio on. It is recommended that if you are not staying home with your pet, make sure that their favorite hiding spot is available so they can run to a place in the house where they feel safe ---- this could be under the bed, in the closet or even their pet crate.  If you are home, stay near them, speak to them and let them know that they are safe. 
Please take the time - CLICK HERE - to view a .PDF put out by Miami-Dade County Animal Services - July 4th Pet Safety Tips.

Friday, July 1, 2022

Palmetto Bay Village Center Litigation Update – Petition for Cert (a form of appellate review). All the briefs have been filed. You can download and read them here.

This update relates to the Petition for Certiorari  (a form of appellate review) filed by the applicant Palmetto Bay Village Center (PBVC) in the case styled as 17777 OLD CUTLER ROAD, LLC VS VILLAGE OF PALMETTO BAY, FLORIDA ET AL, case number: 2022-000012-AP-01 . I am working to truly keep interested readers in the loop.

You can see the most important documents by following the links below:

Petition for Writ of Certiorari, filed April 1, 2022 (63 pages)

Two part Appendix to the Petition for Writ of Certiorari, filed April 1, 2022:
Part 1 (1,574 pages) and
Part 2 (220 pages)

Palmetto Bay's Response to Order to Show Cause/Petition for Writ of Certiorari, filed June 10, 2022 (62 pages)

Petitioner's Reply to Response to Petition for Writ of Certiorari, filed June 30, 2022 (21 pages)

Please take the time to download and review. We will discuss after everyone has the opportunity to read the arguments on their own.

BACKGROUND - see prior related post of April 1, 2022, More litigation for the Village – The Palmetto Bay Village Center has filed for judicial review – a big read. Initial review and impression – links to critical documents provided

Other significant litigation pending (there are others cases filed that are not currently significant in my opinion):

Local case number: 2022-006141-CA-01
Filed April 1, 2022

Local case number: 2022-000012-AP-01  (the case discussed in this post)
Filed April 1, 2022

Local case number: 2022-003627-CA-01
Filed February 25, 2022

Local case number: 2022-000305-CA-01
Filed January 6, 2022

Local case number: 2020-023918-CA-01
Filed November 5, 2022

Local case number: 2019-031036-CA-01
Filed October 18, 2019

Case watch - Sarasota Circuit Court Judge DENIES Landrie's Motion to Dismiss by order rendered 6-30-2022. Claim for intentional infliction of emotional distress moves forward.

"Context matters." 

Many are watching the civil case of  JOSEPH PETITO, NICHOLE SCHMIDT v. CHRISTOPHER LAUNDRIE, ROBERTA LAUNDRIE, Case No.: 2022 CA 001128 SC, which is pending in the the Circuit Court in Sarasota County Florida.  This case arises out of the murder of Gaby Petito - and for those who want a refresher, please see: A timeline of 22-year-old Gabby Petito’s case, by Christina Maxouris, CNN, January 21, 2022. 

The facts of this case define 'intentional infliction of emotional distress'. I have attached a link to the eight page order rendered Thursday, June 30, 2020, by the Honorable Hunter W Carroll, Circuit Judge. Please note that the order is not a full adjudication of the claim. It merely finds that the Plaintiffs, the parents of Gabby Petito, have stated a legally sufficient case for intentional infliction of emotional distress. The next step will be the filing of an answer by the Defendants, the parents of Brian Laundrie. The Answer is due on or before July 15, 2022. This lawsuit is far, far from over and it remains to be seen who will prevail in the end.

Why sue the parents of the murder, what did they do? This case is more than just a statement that the Defendants released through their lawyer that gave the Plaintiffs false hope that their daughter was still alive. The Plaintiffs have alleged a course of conduct by the defendants where the Plaintiffs were toyed with, and knowingly giving false hope that Gaby Petito would be found alive and returned to her family.  This lawsuit seeks redress for a course of conduct and deceit from the defendants that caused severe emotional distress to the Plaintiffs - the parents of Gaby Petito.

The short bites:

According to the lawsuit, the Defendants' son murdered the daughter of the Plaintiffs on August 27, 2021.  The Defendant's son sent text messages to Gabby’s mother while posing as his fiancée after killing her. He then returned alone to his parents’ home in North Port, FL, on Sept. 1 and was reported to have traveled with his parents at Fort DeSoto Park from Sept. 6 to Sept. 7. The Plaintiff's Joseph Petito and Nichole Schmidt, Gabby’s parents, further allege that the Laundries ignored their frantic requests for information about their daughter; the Laundrie parents allegedly went so far as to block the text messages from — and the social media accounts of — Gabby’s parents on or about September 14, 2021.

Gabby’s remains were found on Sept. 19 near a camping area along the border of the Grand Teton National Park in northern Wyoming. 

The Plaintiffs allege that Defendants Christopher Laundrie and Roberta Laundrie, “acted with malice or great indifference” and “exhibited extreme and outrageous conduct which constitutes behavior, under the circumstances, which goes beyond all possible bounds of decency and is regarded as shocking atrocious, and utterly intolerable in a civilized community.”

The defendants moved to dismiss the civil lawsuit and argue that they remained silent and, therefore, were acting within their constitutional rights — specifically the First Amendment free speech right and the Fifth Amendment right to remain silent.

Silence is one thing, but speaking through a lawyer, the agent of the Defendant is not silence. Though the court recognized that there was no duty for the defendants to respond to the Plaintiffs, to break their silence, the Defendant acted otherwise, putting out a statement:
"On behalf of the Laundrie family it is our hope that the search for Miss Petito is successful ad that Miss Petito is reunited with her family."
Judge Carroll soundly rejected the Defendants' argument.
“As alleged by the Plaintiffs, the Laundries made their statement knowing that Gabby was dead, knowing the location of her body, and knowing that her parents were frantically looking for her. If this is true, then the Laundries’ statement was particularly callous and cruel, and it is sufficiently outrageous to state claims for intentional infliction of emotional distress.” (Bold emphasis added) 
As stated in the order:
“... Florida law recognizes that family members are particularly susceptible to emotional distress around the time of a loved one’s death. Malicious conduct during that timeframe can rise to the level of outrage.”
The judge ruled that the outrageous threshold was met when juxtaposed with the other conduct on the case.
“Plaintiffs have not identified, and the Court is unaware, of any legal duty the Laundries would have owed to Plaintiffs to tell the Plaintiffs that Gabby was dead or the location of her body,” Carroll wrote, adding that Joseph and Nichole similarly did not identify a duty the Laundries had to them that would require that they responded to their text messages “or refrain from taking a vacation” while Gabby’s parents searched for her.

The bottom line (so far):

If the facts of this case truly were about silence with no affirmative act by the Laundries, the court would have granted the motion to dismiss in the Laundries' favor."
Stay tuned. This is a very sad case.