Clark v. State

Decision Date13 August 1997
Docket NumberNo. 97-1533,97-1533
Citation698 So.2d 1274
Parties22 Fla. L. Weekly D1921 Vincent Joseph CLARK, Petitioner, v. The STATE of Florida, Respondent.
CourtFlorida District Court of Appeals

Anthony F. Sanchez, Washington, DC, for petitioner.

Robert A. Butterworth, Attorney General and Douglas Gurnic, Fort Lauderdale, Assistant Attorney General, for respondent.

Before SCHWARTZ, C.J., SORONDO, J., and BARKDULL, Senior Judge.

SCHWARTZ, Chief Judge.

After the 175-day speedy trial time provided by Florida Rule of Criminal Procedure 3.191(a), had expired, Clark sought to take advantage of that fact by filing a "motion for discharge" from the prosecution against him. Admittedly, he was not at the time eligible for that relief; rather, he was entitled only to a trial within a fifteen-day recapture period, the right to which would have been triggered by a "notice of expiration of speedy trial time" as provided by Rule 3.191(h),(p)(2),(p)(3) 1; compare Fla.R.Crim.P. 3.191(j) (referring to "motion for discharge"). 2 See State v. Reaves, 609 So.2d 701 (Fla. 4th DCA 1992), review denied, 623 So.2d 494 (Fla.1993). Although no such "notice" was filed, he now seeks prohibition on the ground that he was not tried within fifteen days after the motion for discharge. Because, in effect, he never asked for that "speedy trial" below by filing the requisite notice, and sought instead only a "speedy dismissal," see State v. Guzman, 697 So.2d 1263 (Fla. 3d DCA 1997), which was not justified, the petition cannot be granted.

For very practical reasons which played themselves out in this very case, we reject the petitioner's contention that such a holding improperly elevates the "form" of the motion over its "substance" which he now says was simply to invoke whatever speedy trial rights were then available. In accordance with the precise purpose a "notice" is designed to serve under the scheme carefully crafted by rule 3.191(p), the filing of a document which is so designated alerts the clerk and the prosecution that the case must immediately be brought to the attention of the court by placing it on its calendar within a day or two so that the recapture period may be complied with. See generally Salzero v. State, 697 So.2d 553 (Fla. 3d DCA 1997). On the other hand, since a "motion to discharge" may not be granted unless it is well taken when filed, see Sarrain v. State, 632 So.2d 1063 (Fla. 3d DCA 1994); see also Fla.R.Crim.P. 3.191(h), there is no necessity for scheduling it at any particular time. As defense counsel may well have anticipated, see Reaves, 609 So.2d at 701, that is exactly what, as a direct result of the fact that a "motion" and not a "notice" was filed, occurred below. It was in fact not placed on the court's calendar by anyone, including the defendant, until it was noticed by his attorney only, no doubt by coincidence, after more than fifteen days had elapsed--at which point, it was properly denied as prematurely filed. Sarrain, 632 So.2d at 1063. Having thus attempted, as it were, to entrap the clerk, the prosecution and the court into depriving him of rights which he did not appropriately assert, the defendant cannot now argue that it does not matter that he did not claim them in the way required by the rule itself.

Looking at the matter from another legal direction, an application of the parol evidence rule, 3 that one is bound by his unambiguous written word, see Hamilton Constr. Co. v. Board of Public Instruction, 65 So.2d 729 (Fla.1953); 24 Fla.Jur.2d Evidence & Witnesses § 444 (1995), precludes accepting the notion that the "motion for discharge" should be read instead as a demand for a subsequent speedy trial. Indeed, after the other actors in the case had detrimentally relied upon his representations to the contrary, Clark is, to use still another legalism, "estopped" from even making that contention. See Macina v. Magurno, 100 So.2d 369 (Fla.1958); Irby v. State, 450 So.2d 1133 (Fla. 1st DCA 1984); 22 Fla.Jur.2d Estoppel & Waiver § 55 (1980).

Prohibition denied.

BARKDULL, Sr. J., concurs.

SORONDO, J., specially concurs.

SORONDO, Judge (specially concurring).

I concur with all but the last paragraph and footnote 3 of the majority opinion.

1 (h) Notice of Expiration of Time for Speedy Trial; When Timely. A notice of expiration of speedy trial time shall be timely if filed and served on or after the expiration of the periods of time for trial provided for herein; however, a notice of expiration of speedy trial time filed before expiration of the period of time for trial is invalid and shall be stricken on motion of the prosecuting attorney.

(p) Remedy for Failure to Try Defendant Within the Specified Time.

(2) The defendant may, at any time after the expiration of the...

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7 cases
  • State v. Gibson, 5D00-702.
    • United States
    • Florida District Court of Appeals
    • April 12, 2001
    ...was not entitled to dismissal of the charges against him; defendant is entitled to speedy trial, not speedy dismissal); Clark v. State, 698 So.2d 1274 (Fla. 3d DCA 1997) Based upon the above analysis, we conclude that the trial court erred in ordering the discharge of the defendants from Co......
  • State v. Hall, 2D04-1124.
    • United States
    • Florida District Court of Appeals
    • May 20, 2005
    ...The notice required by rule 3.191(p)(3) alerts the trial court's attention to the need for a prompt hearing. See Clark v. State, 698 So.2d 1274, 1275 (Fla. 3d DCA 1997). Here, the trial court held a hearing within five days of the filing of the ...
  • Sterling v. State, 98-1866.
    • United States
    • Florida District Court of Appeals
    • March 12, 1999
    ...Procedure 3.191(h), he is not entitled to discharge. See Dabkowski v. State, 711 So.2d 1219 (Fla. 5th DCA 1998) and Clark v. State, 698 So.2d 1274 (Fla. 3d DCA 1997). In addition, this court has held that prohibition is not an appropriate proceeding for determining disputed issues of fact o......
  • Barner v. State, 97-131
    • United States
    • Florida District Court of Appeals
    • December 10, 1997
    ...cert. denied, 503 U.S. 975, 112 S.Ct. 1596, 118 L.Ed.2d 311 (1992); State v. DiGuilio, 491 So.2d 1129 (Fla.1986). See Clark v. State, 698 So.2d 1274 (Fla. 3d DCA 1997). ...
  • Request a trial to view additional results
1 books & journal articles
  • Speedy trial, speedy games.
    • United States
    • Florida Bar Journal Vol. 76 No. 11, December 2002
    • December 1, 2002
    ...attempts have been made to use the terms in the rule interchangeably to defeat the purpose of the rule. In Clark v. State, 698 So. 2d 1274 (Fla. 3d DCA 1997), the defendant filed a petition for writ of prohibition in the appellate court, suggesting that the trial court should have treated h......

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