October 9, 1984

Opinion No. 84/21


Your inquiry is directed toward your conduct as a judge-elect and as Chief Assistant State Attorney during the period of time prior to your investiture as Circuit Judge in January. You explain that you took a leave of absence from your position as Assistant State Attorney and have now returned to that position pending the investiture. You propose, in order to avoid the appearance of any conflict, to do the following:

1. Immediately relinquish any administrative or supervisory control over felony attorneys; and

2. Represent the State Attorney's office only in cases on a misdemeanor level or felony cases arising in another geographic area of the circuit.

The Committee responds affirmatively to your inquiry and with approval of your efforts to avoid potential conflicts. We also note that the Committee, in Opinion No. 74/13, expressly ruled that a Circuit Judge-elect could continue to act as an Assistant State Attorney in the trial of cases in the Circuit Court until he assumed office as Circuit Judge. the Committee believes that your efforts to avoid conflict, whether or not strictly required under that prior opinion, are well advised.

The Committee thanks you for your inquiry and hopes this response will be of assistance to you.


Anne C. Booth, Chairman
Committee on Standards of Conduct Governing Judges

cc: All Committee Members

All reference to the inquiring judge is deleted from the copies sent to the following individuals.

Mr. Sid White, Clerk of the Supreme Court of Florida
Linda Yates, Managing Editor, The Florida Bar Journal
Mark Hulsey, Esq., Chairman, Judicial Qualifications Commission.
Hon. Howard T. Markey, Chairman, Ethics Advisory Panel of the Judicial Conference of the United States .
Jeffrey M. Shaman, Esquire, Director, Center for Judicial Conduct Organizations
Ms. Jean Underhill, Librarian, Broward County Law Library
Mr. Robert Wallace, Librarian, Dade County Law Library
Mr. Brian Polley, Librarian, Supreme Court of Florida

Participating members: Judges Booth, Carlisle, Dell, Green, Grube, Hewitt, Letts,
and Attorney Samuel J. Powers, Jr.