O'Neill vs. Goodwin: Appellant Wins in Florida District Court of Appeals

edited July 2016
The appellate case of Joseph Lawrence O'Neill vs. Sara Skye Goodwin was brought to my attention by Eugene Volokh's recent article: https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/volokh-conspiracy/wp/2016/07/26/we-once-again-caution-trial-courts-to-be-hesitant-with-respect-to-granting-injunctions-that-restrict-protected-first-amendment-speech

The decision can be found at these links: https://scholar.google.com/scholar_case?case=16939532779542150454
http://law.justia.com/cases/florida/fourth-district-court-of-appeal/2016/4d15-2055.html

I located the docket and learned the appellant filed his case "pro se":
http://jweb.flcourts.org/pls/ds/ds_docket?p_caseyear=2015&p_casenumber=2055&pscourt=4

What is notable to me is that he asked for 2 extensions before filing his brief. He wisely took the extra time needed to ensure his brief was sufficiently good enough to be submitted. It appears he did a good enough job because he ultimately won!

This is yet another Florida injunction case that had to be appealed and reversed. This time there was a reprimand to lower courts: "We once again caution trial courts to be hesitant with respect to granting injunctions that restrict protected First Amendment speech".

Although I have not seen the transcript or the briefs, the appellate judges spent time clarifying what is "legitimate purpose". Of course, we have Sara Skye Goodwin who rushed out to file an injunction on O'Neill so that he couldn't speak out ABOUT her.

If anyone has a copy of his winning appellate brief, I would love to read it for myself. This is now two "pro se" appellants I know of who was able to win their appeals which is very good news for this community.

It didn't hurt the Appellant that the Appellee, Sara Skye Goodwin, didn't even bother to offer any appellee response at all. I am guessing she couldn't afford a lawyer or didn't feel she had a good chance of winning and basically saved her money and time.
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