Ferris v. Turlington, No. 69561

CourtUnited States State Supreme Court of Florida
Writing for the CourtBARKETT; McDONALD
Citation12 Fla. L. Weekly 393,510 So.2d 292
Parties12 Fla. L. Weekly 393 Thomas B. FERRIS, Petitioner, v. Ralph D. TURLINGTON, as the Commissioner of Education, Respondent.
Decision Date16 July 1987
Docket NumberNo. 69561

Page 292

510 So.2d 292
12 Fla. L. Weekly 393
Thomas B. FERRIS, Petitioner,
v.
Ralph D. TURLINGTON, as the Commissioner of Education, Respondent.
No. 69561.
Supreme Court of Florida.
July 16, 1987.

Page 293

John J. Chamblee, Jr. and Susan E. Hicks of Chamblee & Miles, Tampa, for petitioner.

Sydney H. McKenzie III, General Counsel, and Cecilia Bradley, Counsel, State Bd. of Educ., Tallahassee, for respondent.

Pamela L. Cooper of Meyer, Brooks and Cooper, P.A., Tallahassee, for Florida Teaching Profession-Nat. Educ. Ass'n, amicus curiae.

Thomas W. Young III, General Counsel, FEA/United, Tallahassee, for Florida Educ. Ass'n/United, AFT, AFL-CIO, amicus curiae.

Robert A. Butterworth, Atty. Gen. and Susan Tully Proctor, Asst. Atty. Gen., Tallahassee, for Educ. Practices Com'n, amicus curiae.

BARKETT, Justice.

We have jurisdiction under article V, section 3(b)(3) of the Florida Constitution, because of express and direct conflict between Turlington v. Ferris, 496 So.2d 177 (Fla. 1st DCA 1986), and Ferris v. Austin, 487 So.2d 1163 (Fla. 5th DCA 1986).

Thomas Ferris was an elementary schoolteacher in Hernando County. In 1983, the school board filed a complaint against Ferris, seeking his dismissal on charges of immorality based upon allegations of sexual misconduct with a fifteen-year-old male student. (Ferris had pleaded nolo contendere to sexual battery and had been placed on probation for three years with adjudication of guilt withheld.) Thereafter, the Commissioner of Education, Ralph Turlington, filed an administrative complaint seeking revocation of Ferris' teaching certificate.

The two cases were consolidated by stipulation and heard jointly by an administrative hearing officer. As a threshold finding applicable to both proceedings, the hearing officer concluded that Ferris had no sexual contact with the student as alleged. The hearing officer recommended that both the school board's charges and the administrative complaint be dismissed.

The school board rejected the recommended order and dismissed Ferris, finding that the hearing officer incorrectly applied a clear and convincing standard of proof to the evidence and erroneously concluded that corroboration was necessary to sustain the minor's testimony. The school board's order permanently dismissing Ferris was appealed by Ferris, however, and reversed by the Fifth District in Ferris v. Austin. The Fifth District, quoting extensively from the hearing officer's recommended

Page 294

order, determined that "[t]he hearing officer made a clear factual determination that Ferris 'never made any sexual contact with any minor,' and that there was a 'failure of the weight of the evidence to support a factual finding that [the minor's] allegations are true.' " Id. at 1166. The court then concluded that a reading of the recommended order made it apparent that pursuant to...

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44 practice notes
  • Rameses, Inc. v. County of Orange, No. 6:04CV1824ORL28KRS.
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 11th Circuit. United States District Court of Middle District of Florida
    • April 3, 2007
    ...to suspension or revocation only upon proof by clear and convincing evidence of the alleged violations."); Ferris v. Turlington, 510 So.2d 292 (Fla.1987) (holding that after a teacher's plea of nolo contendere to sexual battery, the administrative revocation of his license must be base......
  • Nguyen v. STATE HEALTH MED. QUALITY ASSUR., No. 68994-6.
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Washington
    • August 23, 2001
    ...licensure proceedings); Rife v. Dep't of Prof'l Regulation, 638 So.2d 542 (Fla.App.1994) (clear and convincing); Ferris v. Turlington, 510 So.2d 292 (Fla.1987) (clear and convincing in license revocations); Bernard v. Bd. of Dental Exam'rs, 2 Or.App. 22, 465 P.2d 917 (1970) (license revocat......
  • Cook v. State, No. 2D03-2987.
    • United States
    • Court of Appeal of Florida (US)
    • September 16, 2005
    ...of proof," Smith, 405 So.2d at 186, which is equivalent to the clear and convincing evidence standard, see Ferris v. Turlington, 510 So.2d 292 (Fla.1987). The State was also required to establish the basis for C.B.'s similar fact testimony by clear and convincing proof. See Bryant v. S......
  • McDonald v. Department of Professional Regulation, Bd. of Pilot Com'rs, No. 89-246
    • United States
    • Florida District Court of Appeals
    • June 13, 1991
    ...proving the violations by clear and convincing evidence, rather than by a mere preponderance of the evidence. See Ferris v. Turlington, 510 So.2d 292, 294-95 (Fla.1987) (revocation of teaching certificate). In proving its case, however, DPR relied upon the prima facie negligence presumption......
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44 cases
  • Rameses, Inc. v. County of Orange, No. 6:04CV1824ORL28KRS.
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 11th Circuit. United States District Court of Middle District of Florida
    • April 3, 2007
    ...subject to suspension or revocation only upon proof by clear and convincing evidence of the alleged violations."); Ferris v. Turlington, 510 So.2d 292 (Fla.1987) (holding that after a teacher's plea of nolo contendere to sexual battery, the administrative revocation of his license must be b......
  • Nguyen v. STATE HEALTH MED. QUALITY ASSUR., No. 68994-6.
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Washington
    • August 23, 2001
    ...licensure proceedings); Rife v. Dep't of Prof'l Regulation, 638 So.2d 542 (Fla.App.1994) (clear and convincing); Ferris v. Turlington, 510 So.2d 292 (Fla.1987) (clear and convincing in license revocations); Bernard v. Bd. of Dental Exam'rs, 2 Or.App. 22, 465 P.2d 917 (1970) (license revocat......
  • Cook v. State, No. 2D03-2987.
    • United States
    • Court of Appeal of Florida (US)
    • September 16, 2005
    ...standard of proof," Smith, 405 So.2d at 186, which is equivalent to the clear and convincing evidence standard, see Ferris v. Turlington, 510 So.2d 292 (Fla.1987). The State was also required to establish the basis for C.B.'s similar fact testimony by clear and convincing proof. See Bryant ......
  • McDonald v. Department of Professional Regulation, Bd. of Pilot Com'rs, No. 89-246
    • United States
    • Florida District Court of Appeals
    • June 13, 1991
    ...proving the violations by clear and convincing evidence, rather than by a mere preponderance of the evidence. See Ferris v. Turlington, 510 So.2d 292, 294-95 (Fla.1987) (revocation of teaching certificate). In proving its case, however, DPR relied upon the prima facie negligence presumption......
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1 books & journal articles
  • Administrative Procedure for the Generalist.
    • United States
    • Florida Bar Journal Vol. 95 Nbr. 6, November 2021
    • November 1, 2021
    ...285 So. 3d 975, 979 (Fla. 3d DCA 2019); Beckett v. Dept. Fin. Servs., 982 So. 2d 94, 100 (Fla. 1st DCA 2008). (70) Ferris v. Turlington, 510 So. 2d 292, 293 (Fla. (71) Dept. of Banking and Fin. v. Osborne Stern and Co., 670 So. 2d 932, 935 (Fla. 1996). (72) In re Graziano, 696 So. 2d 744, 7......

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