Jacksonville Criminal Lawyer Claims Sovereign Immunity As Duval County State Attorney


Jacksonville Lawyer

Will Angela Corey be able to use sovereign immunity as a shield from liability?

Jacksonville criminal lawyers are not immune from lawsuits.  Jacksonville attorneys can be sued just like anyone else.  The Duval County State Attorney’s Office is made up of hundreds of Jacksonville criminal attorneys.  It is the biggest Jacksonville law office.  One of the differences between the state attorney’s office and other law offices is that the Jacksonville criminal lawyers at the state attorney’s office are also considered law enforcement officers (See the Advisory Opinion).  They are prosecutors.

The Florida Times Union published an article today about the Duval County State Attorney’s Office.  It was about Angela Corey, the State Attorney for 4th Judicial Circuit.  The 4th Judicial Circuit covers Duval, Clay, and Nassau County.  Ben Kruidbos filed a lawsuit against Corey after she fired him.  Kruidbos was the information technology director at the Duval County office.  He was involved in the now infamous homicide case, the George Zimmerman trial.  Kruidbos “was fired in June after he testified that prosecutors did not turn over all information to Zimmerman’s defense team in the shooting death of the 17-year-old. Kruidbos said he was a whistleblower and under the law cannot be fired.  The lawsuit says Kruidbos testified in response to a subpoena, and the firing was retaliation for his testimony. He is asking for $5 million in damages and his job back.”

Corey’s attorneys filed papers a response to the lawsuit this week.  She is claiming, “the state attorney cannot be sued because she has sovereign immunity as an elected official.  According to Black’s Law Dictionary, sovereign immunity is the legal doctrine that says the government cannot be sued without its consent. The motion says Corey, a government official, does not consent.”  Read the Advisory Opinion for the Immunity of the State Attorney in Florida.

Wesley White is the lawyer representing Kruidbos.  He stated, “I think it’s an absurd assertion that she’s above the law.”  I do not think that it is absurd for Corey to be claiming sovereign immunity.  I am a Jacksonville criminal attorney, and when I am defending a client, I am going to use any possible defense that may be out there.  That is exactly what Corey’s attorneys are doing.  If it is a possible defense, they must bring it.  It makes sense to me.  If I have grounds for a motion to suppress in a Jacksonville drug case, I’m going to put it out there.  Even if I do not win, I am going to argue it if I have grounds for it and a chance of winning.  If my client acted in self defense in Florida, I am going to argue self defense.  The jury may not agree, but we have to do what we can to beat the charges.  You never know if the jury is going to say guilty or not guilty.  If you do not use your defenses, than you cannot win.

This is why when you hire a lawyer in Jacksonville for your case, you need to discuss all of the facts.  You want to know the defenses that you have.  It is important to be honest with your lawyer and hire a lawyer that communicates with you.  If you are in need of an attorney for a criminal case in Northeast Florida, call 20 Miles Law at (904) 564-2525.


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