Author Topic: Aug. 8 "Sounding Docket"  (Read 6170 times)

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Offline DiwataMan

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Aug. 8 "Sounding Docket"
« on: August 02, 2012, 08:46:05 AM »
Just wanted to hear from some lawyer types on this Aug. 8 "Sounding Docket"; pretrial hearing, scheduling hearing, planning hearing or whatever you call it. Some of the questions about it over at the TreeHouse are just what exactly is a "Sounding Docket", is that the last chance for a plea bargain, what about discovery, and what it may mean in light of the judge disqualification stuff. Things of that nature. As I brought up, one article mentioned O'Mara can ask for a continuance, which I'm guessing he'll do, if it get's to that, but if he does then what does that mean for the discovery?

http://theconservativetreehouse.com/2012/08/02/82-george-zimmerman-case-open-discussion-thread/#comment-171796

http://usnews.nbcnews.com/_news/2012/05/08/11597858-zimmermans-not-guilty-plea-accepted-in-martin-case-arraignment?lite

http://www.talkleft.com/comments/2012/7/13/224231/500/50#50

Offline cboldt

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Re: Aug. 8 "Sounding Docket"
« Reply #1 on: August 02, 2012, 09:23:33 AM »
Just wanted to hear from some lawyer types on this Aug. 8 "Sounding Docket"; pretrial hearing, scheduling hearing, planning hearing or whatever you call it. Some of the questions about it over at the TreeHouse are just what exactly is a "Sounding Docket", is that the last chance for a plea bargain, what about discovery, and what it may mean in light of the judge disqualification stuff. Things of that nature. As I brought up, one article mentioned O'Mara can ask for a continuance, which I'm guessing he'll do, if it get's to that, but if he does then what does that mean for the discovery?

http://theconservativetreehouse.com/2012/08/02/82-george-zimmerman-case-open-discussion-thread/#comment-171796

http://usnews.nbcnews.com/_news/2012/05/08/11597858-zimmermans-not-guilty-plea-accepted-in-martin-case-arraignment?lite

http://www.talkleft.com/comments/2012/7/13/224231/500/50#50

"Docket Sounding"

It is supposed to represent the court ascertaining that all parties to the trial are ready; or if not ready, that they will commit to a schedule for being ready.  Generally, all pretrial motions are supposed to have been filed and acted on by this time.  In this case, that would be the substantive Dennis hearing for 776.032 immunity, and/or motions that might govern the gathering of evidence (e.g., granting a party the right to subpoena a "B" or "C" witness).

I don't think it represents the last date for offer and acceptance of a plea bargain.  As far as I know, that discretionary matter is open to the prosecutor even through the trial.

Defendant can move for a continuance, and a continuance of 4 weeks can be obtained without giving a reason, and without showing up.  Given the state of discovery in this case, I think a continuance of 12 to 30 weeks would easily be granted.

See 18th Circuit Docker Sounding Waiver Procedure

I think the August 8 date is "dead," if O'Mara files a Petition for Writ of Prohibition in relation to Lester's denial of the Motion for Disqualification.

At any rate, "Docket Sounding" is just a group scheduling tool.  It ostensibly aims to cause cases to move along briskly (hahahahaha), but in any event, it aims to make sure all parties agree on deadlines for getting things done, and to confirm, at some point, that all parties are ready for trial, so a trial date can be established.

Offline FromBelow

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Re: Aug. 8 "Sounding Docket" rescheduled for Oct 3
« Reply #2 on: August 07, 2012, 07:43:24 AM »
Quote
1.  The Defendant's Second Motion to Continue is hereby granted.
2.  Docket Sounding shall be continued to October 3, 2012 at 8:30a.m. in Courtroom

http://www.flcourts18.org/PDF/Press_Releases/Order%20Continuing%20Case.pdf

Offline DebFrmHell

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Offline FromBelow

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Re: Aug. 8 "Sounding Docket" rescheduled for Oct 3
« Reply #4 on: August 07, 2012, 01:17:01 PM »
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Moving forward, we expect there will be additional motions to continue, and it is anticipated, though not certain, that this case will not be ready for trial until early next year.

I'd like to see the actual motion.

http://gzlegalcase.com/index.php/press-releases/41-zimmerman-defense-files-motion-to-continue

Offline unitron

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Re: Aug. 8 "Sounding Docket" rescheduled for Oct 3
« Reply #5 on: August 07, 2012, 02:15:28 PM »
One more delay should get them firmly past voting in November.


It would be interesting to watch the prosecution have the vapors if the defense tried to get the trial underway, and maybe even finished, before the voting.

Actually, during the same time as the Republican Convention down there would provide maximum entertainment value.

Offline annoyedbeyond

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Re: Aug. 8 "Sounding Docket" rescheduled for Oct 3
« Reply #6 on: August 07, 2012, 02:17:11 PM »

It would be interesting to watch the prosecution have the vapors if the defense tried to get the trial underway, and maybe even finished, before the voting.

Actually, during the same time as the Republican Convention down there would provide maximum entertainment value.

I'd be willing to get that pay per view.

Offline unitron

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Re: Aug. 8 "Sounding Docket" rescheduled for Oct 3
« Reply #7 on: August 07, 2012, 05:04:53 PM »
I'd be willing to get that pay per view.

I'll bring the popcorn!

Offline TalkLeft

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Re: Aug. 8 "Sounding Docket"
« Reply #8 on: August 07, 2012, 08:50:17 PM »
Like CBoldt says, it's a status/scheduling type hearing and it is represents the date by which the Court expects pretrial motions will have been  heard and disposed of and discovery completed. -- meaning the case is ready to be set for trial. From the court manual: 

Quote
Docket sounding is scheduled between eight and eleven weeks after arraignment. Twelve to fifteen weeks is generally enough time to prepare routine felony cases for trial. However, scheduling discovery sometimes causes delay and additional time is needed.

...Counsel must appear for the first docket sounding in cases that involve issues or discovery that cannot be resolved within four weeks after the first docket sounding date. In those cases, Counsel should be prepared to estimate a trial date so a realistic new docket sounding date can be set.

Some cases have loads of continued docket sounding dates. It doesn't have to do with the plea cut-off date.

According to t the court's manual l, plea offers can be made at the trial  scheduling conference (not the same as docket sounding) or up to the date of jury selection if no conference is held:

Quote
ll plea offers must be delivered to defense counsel and communicated to the defendant
prior to the scheduling conference, or the jury selection date if there is no scheduling conference.

Bottom line: today's continuance is pretty routine and doesn't have much significance, other than letting the court know that the case isn't close to being ready for trial.

 

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