Representing half of the state's population, the U.S. Middle District Court is one of the busiest federal courts in Florida. It is recognized most often as the battleground for the Terri Schiavo "right to die" case, but it has been at the center of major decisions for more than fifty years. The famous and the infamous have stood before the judges of the Middle District courts, including young civil rights lawyer Thurgood Marshall, mobster Santo Trafficante, drug lord Carlos Lehder, baseball star Denny McLain, movie star Wesley Snipes, criminal defense attorney F. Lee Bailey, and Constance Baker Motley, the first African American woman to argue a case before the U.S. Supreme Court. The verdicts have made headlines, but little is known about the inner workings of the court in which they were delivered. In Fifty Years of Justice, James Denham presents the fascinating history of the U.S. Middle District Court of Florida from its founding in 1962 to the present. Readers will discover the intricacies of rulings, the criminal defendants and civil litigants, and the dedicated officials - the unsung heroes - who keep the justice system running day to day.
From desegregation to discrimination, espionage to the environment, trafficking to terrorism, and a host of cases in between, litigation in these courtrooms has shaped and shaken both state andnation.
Publisher: University Press of Florida